CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 2: Cleveland Browns president Mike Holmgren greets people on the field prior to to the game between the Cleveland Browns and the Tennessee Titans at Cleveland Browns Stadium on October 2, 2011 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
With the Cleveland Browns confirming Steelers minority owner Jimmy Haslem III will purchase the Browns for $1 billion ($700 million up front and $300 million over the next four years), the question becomes what do the Steelers do about the approximately 5-8 percent ownership stake of the team Haslem sells off?
It would seem likely the current owners buying him out would be the quickest, easiest way to do that.
Or, they could sell it to me.
That is correct, Mr. Rooney. I am interested in buying five percent of the Steelers.
I can assure you, I am not going to buy the Cincinnati Bengals two years after I buy into the Steelers. I'll tell you I am "100 percent" a Steelers fan, and by saying that, I mean two things; 1. I am dedicated and committed to the ownership's vision of this great franchise, and 2. I live within the confines of physical reality and won't give you hyperbolic statements before leaving to buy our team's arch nemesis.
You're a business man, and money talks. I get that. So where's what I'm proposing.
I've been kicking around the numbers, and here's what my people tell me is doable. According to Forbes, the franchise is worth approximately $1.02 billion. Considering the Browns just sold for $1 billion, I'm nearly 100 percent (see? workin' in reality here, sir) certain the value of your franchise just went up. I know you won't hold that against me, so we're gonna split the difference. Let's call it an even $1.1 billion.
Eight percent (the high end of Haslem's ownership stake of the Steelers) of $1.1 billion is $88 million.
I am offering you an up-front payment of $4,500, which drops that figure down to $87,995,500. That money will be repaid to you at a rate of $10,000 a year for the next 8,799.5 years.
Or, approximately the next time the Browns make the playoffs.
Now, I know what you're thinking, that doesn't seem to be a great rate of investment, but I assure you, I'm good for it, as will be the next 1,200 generations of my family.
I haven't mentioned my work skills, either. You need a memo typed up, or maybe a spreadsheet created or a coffee shop run made, I'm your guy. I'm humble, sir, please, take my $88 million and let me be a part of this franchise.
In the end, you can rest well in knowing I'm not purchasing the team to learn how to run another team. And that should count for something.