CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - When you're 0-9, and have lost your last two games by a combined 31 points, you probably shouldn't be in need of extra motivation.
But just in case, the Cleveland Browns have some.
Tashaun Gipson is coming to town with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but not before taking some shots at his former team.
"When you talk to guys who've left that organization, the first thing they say is 'I'm happy", Gipson said on a radio show on Monday. "I talked with (Mitchell) Schwartz last year, and the first thing he said, 'man, I'm happy'."
Schwartz and Gipson, just two of the talented free agents who Sashi Brown, in his new role as chief decision-maker back in early 2016, failed to hold on to.
In Gipson's case, they didn't even make him an offer. So, he cashed in with the Jaguars. 5 years, $35 million $12 million guaranteed.
Now he wants to come back and, as part of the No. 1 pass defense in the league, stick it to the Browns.
"I truly hope we hang 40 on them", Gipson said.
Most of these Browns weren't even around when Tashaun played here. The overhaul was that great.
Honestly, they don't care what he thinks.
But Christian Kirksey is still friends with Gipson, and took Tashaun's comments in stride.
"I talked to Tashaun yesterday", Kirksey said on Wednesday. "Like I said, he is a good friend of mine. My rookie year, those group of guys that were here took me under their wing. Tashaun was one of those players who I could go up to and ask him questions. He is just bringing up the competitive nature on his side. For me, I am here in Cleveland. This is my team. I am going to continue to fight. He said he feels for guys like me, which I appreciate him for trying to speak up for me, but I am here and I have a job to do and it is to go out and win ball games and lead this team the best way I can lead it. We will see Sunday how everything unfolds, but I think this offense and defense here will be ready for battle. That is all I can speak on for that."
As for Gipson, to his credit, he was out in front of his comments today, in a conference call with the Cleveland media, and backed 'em up.
"People can try to put a stand and take a shot and try to twist this and make my comments more critical than what they were", Gipson said. "Like I said, I think that my comments justifiably about the front office. I take ownership in saying the things that I said may have been pointed towards them, but make no mistake about it, I never disrespected anybody on the Browns team. They get paid just like we do, and I show respect for the guys they have, the same guys I knew when I was living in Cleveland. I think that it was not a shot. I think our defense is the best defense in the National Football League. Unless you have (Patriots QB) Tom Brady at the helm, I think any given team against us we can pitch a shutout. We pitched a shutout against Indianapolis, and they have a Hall of Fame running back in (Colts RB) Frank Gore, an All-Pro receiver (Colts WR) TY Hilton and an up-and-coming quarterback (Colts QB) Jacoby Brissett. We pitched a shutout on them. To say that I took a shot is a reach in that aspect. As far as the players and things like that, I really think this defense could pitch a shutout. Obviously, that is a huge feat in this league and that is the plan each week. I don't take those comments back. I stand by those comments."