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Art Modell dead at 87

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  • Art Modell dead at 87

    Art Modell, the longtime owner of the Baltimore Ravens, died on Thursday, the team confirmed. He was 87.

    Modell purchased the Cleveland Browns in 1961 for $4 million, an unprecedented sum at that time.

    Modell moved the franchise to Baltimore in 1996, where he won his first and only Super Bowl title in 2000.

    Sessler: Move overshadowed great career
    He might be villified in Cleveland, but Art Modell meant a lot to the NFL over his 43 seasons as sole owner of the Browns and Ravens, Marc Sessler writes. More...
    In the pre-Super Bowl era, Modell's Browns won the NFL Championship in 1964, defeating the Baltimore Colts 27-0.

    The Brooklyn, New York-native served as NFL president from 1967 to 1969 and negotiated the NFL's television contracts between 1962 and 1993. He also led negotiations on the NFL's first collective bargaining agreement with its players in 1968.

    "I believe Art belongs in the Hall of Fame," former New York Giants owner Wellington Mara, now deceased, said in 2002. "I don't think I know a person who has done more for the league than Modell, especially through television."

    Modell married the actress Patricia Breslin in 1969. She died in October 2011 at the age of 80.

    Modell sold his majority share of the Ravens to Steve Bisciotti in 2004.

    Born June 23, 1925, in Brooklyn, N.Y., Modell dropped out of high school at age 15 and worked in the Brooklyn Navy Yard cleaning out the hulls of ships to help out his financially strapped family after the death of his father.

    He completed high school in night class, joined the Air Force in 1943, and then enrolled in a television school after World War II. He used that education to produce one of the first regular daytime television programs before moving into the advertising business in 1954.

    A group of friends led by Modell purchased the Browns in 1961 for $4 million - a figure he called "totally excessive."

    "You get few chances like this," he said at the time. "To take advantage of the opportunity, you must have money and friends with more."

    Sad day for all football fans.

    RIP Art
    Last edited by BroncosDivision; 09-06-2012, 04:53 AM.
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  • #2
    Art Modell's impact much more than just 'The Move'

    The people of Baltimore will hail Art Modell as the man who brought football back to Charm City in 1996.

    The people of Cleveland will remember Modell as the man who worked behind the scenes to tear their beloved team from them.

    It's because of "The Move" that many have forgotten about Modell's accomplishments during his 43 seasons as sole owner of the Browns and Ravens. They should remember them now, after Modell passed Thursday at age 87.

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    As the league's broadcast chairman from 1962 to 1993, Modell fueled the engine that brought "Monday Night Football" into our living rooms. It's fair to remember him as a visionary for how he developed the relationship between television and football.

    On the field, Modell's teams compiled 18 playoff appearances and 12 postseason wins, including Cleveland's 1964 NFL championship and Baltimore's Super Bowl XXXV victory over the New York Giants. Unlike the Ravens, the Browns haven't won a playoff game since New Year's Day 1995, with Modell staring down from the owner's box.

    That Browns team included Bill Belichick as coach, Nick Saban as defensive coordinator and Ozzie Newsome in the front office. When word of the Browns move to Baltimore leaked the following November, a shocked public was left wondering what just happened to 50 years of memories.

    And that decision has overshadowed a lifetime of notable accomplishments.
    Adopted Poster
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    • #3
      Modell meant a lot to football. Whether you remember him as a savior or a snake. He was a hell of a business man that worked for everything he ever had and lived a long and luxurious life. RIP.


      • #4
        Rest In Peace Art...
        "January 25, 1998: The night God answered our prayers


        • #5
          He was a hero here in Baltimore.


          RIP, Mr. Modell.

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