Art Modell

After Art Modell, the former owner of the Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens, bought the Browns in 1961, he became a hands-on boss. Back then, owners rarely chimed in on draft picks. Modell, who died of natural causes at 87 on Sept. 6, was different. He often clashed with coach Paul Brown, for whom the franchise was named, and fired him after two seasons. "You cannot just show up on Sunday with scotch in your hand and say, 'I'm an owner,'" Modell once told NFL Films. "You've got to work the business."

Thanks in part to Modell's moxie, football is the...

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