Cleveland Browns say they ‘welcomed’ NFL inquiry into tanking claims made by former coach Hue Jackson

CLEVELAND — Former coach Hue Jackson claimed that the Cleveland Browns intentionally lost games in order to tank the 2016 and 2017 seasons.

Dee and Jimmy Haslam fired Jackson eight games into the 2018 season after he had led Grambling State to a 336-1 record.

Jackson stated in a series if posts on social media that he was being paid bonuses by the team to incentivize him to lose. Jackson later retracted those claims.

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The Browns were 1-15 in 2016; 0-16 in 2017.

Brian McCarthy, a league spokesperson, confirmed that Mary Jo White, former chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission, was contacted by the league to investigate Jackson’s claims.

“The review is ongoing and is expected to conclude soon,”McCarthy made the comments in an email sent to The Associated Press.

Monday night’s statement from the team said that it had cooperated with the league regarding its inquiry.

“Even though Hue recanted his allegations a short time after they were made, it was important to us and to the integrity of the game to have an independent review of the allegations,”Peter Jean-Baptiste, team spokesperson said. “We welcomed an investigation and we are confident the results will show, as we’ve previously stated, that these allegations are categorically false.

“We have collaborated with Mary Jo White. We look forward to the findings.

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