Hall of Fame executive Ron Wolf won three Super Bowls in his NFL career thanks to his expertise in scouting. As he watches teams like the Cleveland Browns go further and further with the use of analytics, Wolf believes it’s now getting out of control.
Cleveland recently hired Andrew Berry to become their general manager. Following the Browns’ decision to hire the analytically-driven Berry and move on from assistant general manager Eliot Wolf, Ron ripped into his son’s former employer.
Wolf might have a point with the Browns. Cleveland embraced analytics in 2013 when it hired executive Sashi Brown and he ran the team until he was fired in 2017. After letting Brown go, the Browns hired John Dorsey then ultimately fired him this offseason.
Through all of the changes in Cleveland’s front office and the organization’s embrace of analytics, the Browns haven’t made the playoffs since 2002.
Of course, the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers will be competing in Super Bowl LIV because their front offices value analytics and data.
Wolf is obviously frustrated that things didn’t work out for his son in Cleveland and the game is changing in front of his eyes. While his methods clearly worked for decades, NFL teams are having success with analytics. Teams will continue to embrace any method that gives them more information and a potential edge.