Cleveland Browns

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Posted by motoman 03/11/2009 @ 13:14

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News headlines
Cleveland Browns' Coaching Staff: Similar Football Minds Converge - Bleacher Report
by Kim Lakner (Contributor) In his first five months on the job, Browns head coach Eric Mangini has brought some of his “New York flavor” to Northeast Ohio. He not only is transforming his defense into the “Cleveland Jets” with six defensive players...
Hood signs one-year deal with Cleveland - ESPN
By Len Pasquarelli The Cleveland Browns have agreed to to terms with free agent cornerback Rod Hood, one of the most sought-after players remaining in the diluted unrestricted pool. The deal, for one year, was first reported by the Cleveland Plain...
Agent: Cribbs to attend minicamp - ESPN
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Cribbs plans to report to the team's voluntary minicamp on Tuesday after skipping most of last week's camp in a contract protest, his agent said in a text message, according to The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer....
Cleveland Browns quarterback carousel begins anew - The Plain Dealer -
The Browns' (seemingly annual) quarterback competition got under way this week with Brady Quinn running the first-team offense the last two days of coach Eric Mangini's first voluntary minicamp. "There's no overwhelming significance to that," Mangini...
Edwards prefers to remain with Browns - ESPN
Against the fitting backdrop of a voluntary minicamp, Cleveland Browns receiver Braylon Edwards says he wants to remain a Brown and hopefully make up for a forgettable 2008 season. Browns WR Braylon Edwards wrestles the ball from Ravens CB Frank Walker...
Cleveland deserves a world title - Parkersburg News
Having said that, I'm pulling for the Cleveland Cavaliers. If any city deserves a winner, it is Cleveland. There's a Web site devoted to all the woes that have befallen Cleveland sports teams, who have not won a championship since the Cleveland Browns...
Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Cribbs deserves a new contract - JOCKlife Sports
In the case of Cleveland Browns return specialist Josh Cribbs, he has been the latest player to fall victim ownership and management refusing to keep their promises. Cribbs is currently in the midst of a dispute with the Browns over issues concerning...
Dare Cavs fans hope to overcome the Cleveland curse? - Canton Repository
He was 15 when he witnessed the last pro sports title in Cleveland — the Browns in 1964. “I remember Gary Collins catching three touchdown passes from Frank Ryan,” Kobzowicz said. From there the memories grow darker. “I was also there for Red Right 88...
Browns Sign Roderick Hood to 1-Year Deal - Waiting For Next Year
According to Tony Grossi (who was backed up by PFT,) the Cleveland Browns have signed Roderick Hood to a one year contract. Hood started for Arizona in the Super Bowl this year after spending his first four seasons in Philly....
Five Minutes With Don Carey - The Orange and Brown Report
By Ed Thompson Cleveland Browns cornerback Don Carey had one of the most exciting and unusual draft weekends of any NFL draft prospect. Find out which other teams were ready to pick him in the sixth round, why he expected to be a Pittsburgh Steeler,...

Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns helmet

The Cleveland Browns are a professional American football team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They play in the AFC North division of the American Football Conference (AFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The Cleveland Browns began play in 1946 as a charter member of the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) and joined the NFL in 1950 after the AAFC folded.

Cleveland has won a total of eight league championships; they won all four AAFC titles (including a 15-0 undefeated season in 1948), and after joining the NFL won four additional championships prior to the NFL-AFL merger in 1970. The Browns were one of three teams which joined ten former AFL teams to form the American Football Conference. Despite the Browns' historical successes the club has not played in a league championship game since the merger; however, they have competed for the AFC Championship three times. Having lost all three games, along with two NFL Championship Games of the Super Bowl era prior to the merger (in 1968 and 1969), Cleveland is one of the five NFL teams that has yet to qualify for the Super Bowl. Additionally, Cleveland has not hosted a Super Bowl, making it the only NFL city to have neither hosted nor sent a team to the Super Bowl.

The Cleveland Browns were founded in 1946 as a charter member of the All-America Football Conference, under businessman Arthur B "Mickey" McBride. Not long after gaining the franchise, McBride named Ohio State Buckeyes coach Paul Brown as vice president, general manager and head coach. The franchise conducted a team naming contest in 1945. The most popular submission was "Browns" in recognition of Paul Brown, already an established and popular figure in Ohio sports. Brown at first objected to the name and the team selected from the contest entries the name "Panthers." However, after an area businessman informed the team that he owned the rights to the name Cleveland Panthers from an earlier failed football team, Brown rescinded his objection and agreed to the use of his name.

Brown parlayed his ties to the Buckeyes and the Navy (where he'd coached a base football team during World War II) into the most extensive recruitment network that had ever been seen at the time in pro football. He used it to assemble a team that, in terms of talent, would have been more than a match for any NFL team—including quarterback Otto Graham, kicker/offensive tackle Lou Groza, wide receiver Mac Speedie, fullback Marion Motley and nose guard Bill Willis. The Browns dominated the AAFC, winning all four of its championships including the 1948 season in which they became the first unbeaten and untied team in professional football history—24 years before the NFL's perfect team, the 1972 Miami Dolphins. Cleveland's undefeated streak (including 2 ties) reached 29 games, and included 18 straight wins and the 1947 and 1948 AAFC championship games. During the AAFC's four-year run, the Browns lost only four games. The Browns issued occasional challenges to NFL teams, only to be turned down almost out of hand each time.

Thanks in large part to McBride's promotional efforts, the Cleveland area showed terrific support for the Browns from the moment they were created. The team saw a record setting average attendance of 57,000 a game in its first season. The Browns unexpectedly had Cleveland to themselves; the NFL's Cleveland Rams, who had continually lost money while in Cleveland despite winning the 1945 NFL championship, moved to the booming area of Los Angeles after the 1945 season (the team is now located in St. Louis).

The AAFC dissolved after the 1949 season, due largely to the Browns' near absolute domination of the league. Jim Crowley, the AAFC's first commissioner, later said that if the AAFC had held a draft rather than simply encourage its teams to sign as many top players as possible, the league may well have survived. When the NFL agreed to take in three of the AAFC's teams for the 1950 season, it was a foregone conclusion that the Browns would be included.

The Browns' first NFL game was against the two-time defending champion Philadelphia Eagles. The overwhelming consensus at the time was that the Eagles would blow the Browns off the field; there were still many who thought the Browns were merely the dominant team in a minor league. However, the Browns were determined to prove they belonged. They shredded the Eagles' vaunted defense for 487 yards of total offense en route to a 35–10 blowout.

Behind a potent offense that included future Hall of Famers Graham, Motley and Dante Lavelli, the Browns picked up right where they left off in the AAFC. After going 10–2 in the regular season, the Browns defeated the New York Giants 8–3 in a playoff game and then beat Cleveland's previous NFL tenants, the Rams (who were now in Los Angeles), 30–28, in the NFL Championship game. Since the NFL does not recognize the AAFC's records, this technically makes the Browns the most successful expansion team in league history. However, the 1950 Browns were not an expansion team in any sense of the term.

During the next season, the Browns went 11–1, facing the Rams in a rematch of the previous year's title game. A 73-yard touchdown pass by Norm van Brocklin to Tom Fears in the fourth quarter put Los Angeles in the lead for good. The 24–17 loss was the Browns' first in a championship game.

Cleveland also advanced to the 1952 NFL championship game, finishing 8–4 to face the Detroit Lions. A muffed punt, several defensive stands, and a 67-yard touchdown run by Doak Walker combined to help the Lions win 17–7, frustrating the Browns for the second consecutive year. On the upside, Ray Renfro became a star with 722 yards receiving and 322 yards rushing.

The Browns then started the 1953 season winning 11 straight games, but finished with a loss to the Eagles in the final week, and then lost the 1953 Championship game in a rematch with the Lions. The game was, however, closer than the year before. With the score tied at 10 going into the final quarter, Lou Groza kicked two field goals to put Cleveland up 16–10. But Detroit's Bobby Layne threw a 33-yard touchdown pass to Jim Doran with less than two minutes left and the Lions won 17–16.

In 1954, the Browns finished 9–3 and met up with Detroit in the championship for a third consecutive year. This time, however, the Browns were relentless on both sides of the ball, intercepting Bobby Layne six times and forcing three fumbles. Otto Graham threw three touchdowns and ran for three more, en route to a 56–10 thrashing and the Browns' second NFL crown.

The Browns kept rolling along in 1955. Chuck Noll had a productive season at linebacker with five interceptions, Graham passed for 15 touchdowns and ran for six more, and the team, who finished 9–2–1, won their third NFL Championship game in six seasons 38–14, against the Los Angeles Rams. In 10 years of existence, the Browns reached the title game every year (four in the AAFC, six in the NFL) and won seven of them.

Graham retired before the 1956 season due to injuries, and the Browns floundered without him behind center. Three quarterbacks (George Ratterman, Babe Parilli, and Tommy O'Connell) were used, none of them throwing more touchdowns than interceptions. The team's 5–7 record was the team's first losing season ever.

The Browns responded in 1957 when they drafted fullback Jim Brown out of Syracuse University, who easily became the NFL's leading rusher (and NFL Rookie of the Year) with 942 yards in a 12-game regular season. Once again at the top of the division at 9–2–1, they advanced back to the championship game against Detroit. But the Lions dominated from start to finish, causing six turnovers and allowing the Browns' two quarterbacks (Tommy O'Connell and Milt Plum) only 95 yards passing in a 59–14 rout.

In 1958 Jim Brown ran for 1,527 yards, almost twice as much as any other running back. In his nine seasons in the league, he crossed the 1,000-yard barrier seven times. The only snag in their getting back to another championship was the New York Giants. They lost to New York on the last week of the season after a spirited fourth-quarter comeback, then, due to their equal 9–3 records, faced the Giants again in a tiebreaker game with the winner going to the finals. However, the Giants limited Jim Brown to eight yards and the team committed four turnovers as they were shut out 10–0.

In 1959 the Browns started 6–2 but finished 7–5, out of championship contention, despite Brown once again leading the league in rushing with 1,329 yards. In 1960, Plum threw for 21 touchdowns and Brown's 1,257 yards was still best in the NFL, but the team still finished second at 8–3–1.

Art Modell purchased the team from David Jones (who had bought the team from McBride in 1953) in 1961. The beginnings of a power struggle between Paul Brown and Art Modell took its toll. Journalist D.L. Stewart recounted in Jeff Miller's book on the AFL, Going Long, "As you well can imagine, Jimmy Brown and Paul were not thick. The buzz was that Jimmy had Modell working for him, and Paul took exception to that." The season otherwise was typical: a fifth consecutive league-leading season from Jim Brown and a half-decent performance in the standings, but again, at 8–5–1, they were two games out of a berth in the championship.

After a 7–6–1 record in 1962, Modell fired Brown and replaced him with longtime assistant Blanton Collier. Many of the Browns' younger players—such as Jim Brown and Frank Ryan had chafed under Brown's autocratic coaching style. Collier rode his team with a considerably looser rein. He also installed a much more open offense and allowed Ryan to call his own plays. In Collier's first season, the Browns went 10–4 and finished a game out of the conference title, led by Jim Brown's record 1,863 yards rushing.

In 1964, the Browns went 10–3–1 and reached their first title game in 7 years. The Browns throttled the heavily favored Baltimore Colts 27–0, with receiver Gary Collins catching 3 TD passes to earn the MVP award. The Browns would go to three more NFL title games in Collier's eight-year tenure—including 1968 and 1969, after Jim Brown retired. After the 1970 season, Collier retired due to increasing deafness; that same year the Browns finished 7–7 and was replaced by offensive coordinator Nick Skorich.

Skorich led the Browns to a division title in 1971 and a wild-card berth in 1972. In the latter year, the Browns nearly defeated the Dolphins in the second round—the closest the Dolphins would come to losing a game that season (until the Dolphins played the Steelers in the Conf. Championship game, beating the Steelers by only 4 points compared to the Browns 6. They barely missed the playoffs in 1973.

However, the Browns' era of success came to a crashing halt as the team dropped to 4–10 in 1974. Neither Mike Phipps nor rookie QB Brian Sipe was effective; they threw 24 combined interceptions to only 10 touchdowns. The Browns allowed 344 points, most in the league. It was only the second losing season in franchise history, and it cost Skorich his job.

Assistant coach Forrest Gregg took over in 1975, but the Browns stumbled out of the gate with an 0–9 start that finally came to an end on November 23 in a 35–23 comeback victory over the Cincinnati Bengals. Three weeks later, third-year running back Greg Pruitt paced the team with 214 yards rushing in a rout over the Kansas City Chiefs, helping the team finish the season 3–11.

Cleveland showed marked improvement with a 9–5 mark in 1976 as Brian Sipe firmly took control at quarterback. Sipe had been inserted into the lineup after a Phipps injury in the season-opening win against the New York Jets on September 12. After a 1–3 start brought visions of another disastrous year, the Browns jolted the two-time defending Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers with an 18–16 victory on October 10. Third-string quarterback Dave Mays helped lead the team to that victory, while defensive end Joe "Turkey" Jones's pile-driving sack of quarterback Terry Bradshaw fueled the heated rivalry between the two teams. That win was the first of eight in the next nine weeks, helping put the Browns in contention for the AFC playoffs. A loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the regular season finale cost them a share of the division title, but running back Greg Pruitt continued his outstanding play by rushing for exactly 1,000 yards, his second-straight four-digit season.

The Browns continued to roll in the first half of the 1977 NFL season, but an injury to Brian Sipe by Pittsburgh's Jack Lambert on November 13 proved to be disastrous. Cleveland won only one of their last five games to finish at 6–8, a collapse that led to Forrest Gregg's dismissal before the final game of the season. Dick Modzelewski served as interim coach in the team's 20–19 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

On December 27, 1977, Sam Rutigliano was named head coach, and he aided a healthy Sipe in throwing 21 touchdowns and garnering 2,900 yards during the 1978 NFL season. Greg Pruitt and Mike Pruitt led a rushing attack that gained almost 2,500 yards, but problems with the team's dismal pass defense resulted in the Browns finishing 8–8 on the year.

The 1979 campaign started with four consecutive wins, three of which were in the final minute or overtime. Four more games were won by less than a touchdown. This penchant for playing close games would later earn them the nickname "Kardiac Kids". Sipe threw 28 touchdown passes, tying him with Steve Grogan of New England for most in the league, but his 26 interceptions were the worst in the league. Mike Pruitt had a Pro Bowl season with his 1,294 rushing yards, while the defense was still shaky, ranking near the bottom in rushing defense. The team finished 9–7, behind division rivals Houston and Pittsburgh in a tough AFC Central.

The 1980 season is still fondly remembered by Browns fans. After going 3–3 in the first six games, the Browns won three straight games with fourth-quarter comebacks, and stopped a late comeback by the Baltimore Colts to win a fourth. The Browns won two more games in that fashion by the end of the season, and even lost a game to the Minnesota Vikings on the last play when a Hail Mary pass was tipped into the waiting hands of Ahmad Rashad. Sipe passed for 4,000 yards and 30 touchdowns with only 14 interceptions(enough for him to be named the NFL MVP), behind an offensive line that sent three members to the Pro Bowl: Doug Dieken, Tom DeLeone and Joe DeLamielleure. The "Kardiac Kids" name stuck. A fourth-quarter field goal by Don Cockroft in the final game against the Cincinnati Bengals helped the Browns capture the division with an 11–5 mark, with the Oakland Raiders their opponent in the team's first playoff game in eight years. However, a heartbreaking end of this dramatic season came in the closing seconds when Sipe called what became known as "Red Right 88" and passed toward the end zone, only to watch Oakland's Mike Davis intercept the ball. The Raiders went on to win the Super Bowl, and "Red Right 88" has numbered among the list of Cleveland sports curses ever since.

If 1980 was a dream season, then 1981 was a nightmare. Sipe threw only 17 touchdowns while being picked off 25 times. The Browns went 5–11, and few of their games were particularly close. Tight end Ozzie Newsome, their only Pro Bowler, had 1,004 yards receiving for six touchdowns.

In 1982 Sipe split quarterbacking duties with Paul McDonald, and both put up similar numbers. The Browns had little success rushing or defending against it, finishing in the bottom five teams in both yardage categories. Despite going 4–5, Cleveland was able to make the playoffs due to an expanded playoff system in the strike-shortened year. They were matched up with the Raiders in the playoffs, but were easily defeated 27–10.

Sipe and the Browns got some of their spark back in 1983. Sipe had 26 touchdown passes and 3,566 yards, while Mike Pruitt ran for 10 scores on 1,184 yards. Cleveland even won two games in overtime and another in the fourth quarter. A fourth-quarter loss to the Houston Oilers in their second-to-last game dashed their playoff hopes. At 9–7 the Browns finished one game behind the Steelers, and lost out on a wild-card spot due to a tiebreaker.

1984 was a rebuilding year. Brian Sipe defected to the upstart USFL after the 1983 season, and Paul McDonald was named the starting quarterback. Mike Pruitt missed much of the season and later ended up with the Buffalo Bills. Coach Sam Rutigliano lost his job after a 1–7 start as Marty Schottenheimer took over. The Browns coasted to a 5–11 record.

In 1985, the Browns selected University of Miami quarterback Bernie Kosar in the Supplemental Draft. As a rookie, Kosar learned through trial by fire as he took over for Gary Danielson midway through the 1985 season. Progressing a bit more each Sunday, the young quarterback helped turn the struggling season around, as the Browns won four of the six games Kosar started. Two young rushers, Earnest Byner and Kevin Mack, played a large part in the team's success as well; each ran for 1,000+ yards, a feat that would not be repeated until the 2008-09 season, when Brandon Jacobs and Derrick Ward of the New York Giants each broke the 1,000-yard barrier. The Browns' 8–8 record gave the team the top spot in a weak AFC Central, and they looked poised to shock the heavily favored Miami Dolphins in the 1986 Divisional Playoff game with a 21–3 lead at halftime. It took Dan Marino's spirited second-half comeback to win the game for Miami 24–21. While the Browns faithful may have felt the initial sting of disappointment, there was tremendous upside in the loss: Schottenheimer's team, with Kosar at quarterback, reached the playoffs each of the next five seasons, advancing to the AFC Championship game in three of those years.

The Browns broke into the ranks of the NFL's elite—particularly on defense—with a 12–4 showing in 1986. Behind Kosar's 3,854 yards passing and a defense with five Pro Bowlers (Chip Banks, Hanford Dixon, Bob Golic, Clay Matthews and Frank Minnifield), the Browns dominated the AFC Central with the best record in the AFC, and one of the NFL's stingiest defenses. With these on their side, the Browns clinched home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. In the 1987 Divisional Playoff game, the Browns needed some serious heroics (and a bit of luck) to overcome the New York Jets. The Jets were leading 20–10 with less than four minutes to play, with the Browns in a dire 3rd and 24 situation. As fate would have it, Mark Gastineau was called for roughing the passer, which gave Cleveland a first down. The drive ended with Kevin Mack running into the end zone for a touchdown. After going three-and-out the Jets went back on defense, but allowed the rejuvenated Browns to again drive the ball deep into their end of the field. With 11 seconds remaining in regulation, Mark Moseley kicked a field goal to tie the game. In the first of two ensuing overtime periods, Moseley missed his next attempt, but later redeemed himself by ending what had become the second longest game in NFL history. Final score Browns 23 Jets 20.

The 1986 AFC Championship game saw the Denver Broncos arrive in the windswept, hostile confines of Cleveland Municipal Stadium. No one knew at the time, but the Broncos would become Cleveland's arch-nemesis of the Kosar era, having only lost once to the Browns in a span that still continues to this day. As it had been the previous week, the showdown proved again to be it was an overtime heart-stopper. But this time, it was John Elway and the Broncos who came away the victors. Pinned in on their own two yard line with 5:11 left to play and the wind in his face, Elway led his now famous 98-yard drive, which is now known by NFL historians as simply "The Drive"). With 37 seconds on the clock, Elway's 5-yard touchdown pass to Mark Jackson tied the game at 20 apiece. The 79,973 Browns fans in attendance were silenced when Rich Karlis' field goal attempt just made it inside the right-side upright to win the game for Denver early into overtime.

The Browns success was replicated in 1987, with 22 touchdown passes and 3,000 yards for Kosar, and eight Pro Bowlers: Kosar, Mack, Dixon, Golic, Minnifield, linebacker Clay Matthews, wide receiver Gerald McNeil and offensive lineman Cody Risien. At 10–5, the Browns won the AFC Central again. Cleveland easily defeated the Indianapolis Colts 38–21 in the divisional playoff and traveled to Denver for a rematch with the Broncos in the AFC Championship. With the score 21–3 in favor of the Broncos at halftime, Kosar led a third-quarter comeback with two touchdowns by Earnest Byner and another by Reggie Langhorne. Early in the fourth quarter, Webster Slaughter's 4-yard touchdown catch tied it at 31–31. The Broncos regained the lead with a 20-yard Sammy Winder touchdown with less than five minutes to go, setting the stage for another Browns comeback... or so they thought. Kosar drove the Browns to the Broncos' 8 yard line with 1:12 to go, and handed off to Byner. When it looked like he had an open route to the end zone, he was stripped of the ball by Jeremiah Castille. The Broncos recovered what became known as "The Fumble". After taking an intentional safety, the Broncos had shocked the Browns again, 38–33.

Injuries to Kosar and two of his backups sidelined them for much of the 1988 season, but the Browns still finished 10–6. A final-week comeback victory in a snowstorm at Cleveland Stadium over the Houston Oilers clinched them a wild-card playoff spot, and a home game rematch against the Oilers in the first round. After Mike Pagel, in for an injured Don Strock (recently signed ex-Dolphins quarterback), threw a touchdown pass to Webster Slaughter late in the fourth quarter to pull the Browns within a point at 24–23, the Browns had three chances to recover an onside kick (due to penalties), but the Oilers recovered and stopped the Cleveland comeback.

Schottenheimer left the Browns by mutual agreement with Modell shortly after the loss to the Oilers. Modell was tired of losing in the playoffs, and Schottenheimer was tired of what he perceived as Modell's interference with his coaching personnel and game strategy. Schottenheimer was quickly hired by the Kansas City Chiefs for the 1989 season. Bud Carson was his replacement in Cleveland, but his tenure was short - only one and a half years. The 1989 season, headlined by Slaughter's Pro Bowl-worthy 1,236 yards receiving, was a success at 7–3 until a 10–10 tie with Schottenheimer's Chiefs in November led to a 3-game losing streak. Two comeback wins over the Minnesota Vikings and Houston Oilers in the season's final two weeks kept them in the playoff race. The tie ended up being the Browns' saving grace, with their 9–6–1 record winning them the AFC Central title and first-round bye over the Oilers and Pittsburgh Steelers at 9–7. The Browns narrowly survived a scare from the Buffalo Bills in their divisional playoff game, when Scott Norwood missed an extra point that would have pulled Buffalo within 3 points and, later, when Jim Kelly's desperation pass to the end zone on the final play of the game was intercepted.

Cleveland's 34–30 win set them up for a rematch with the Broncos in Denver for the AFC Championship. While their two previous matchups went down to the wire, this one was never in doubt. The Broncos led from start to finish, and a long Elway touchdown pass to Sammy Winder put the game away in the fourth quarter. Denver easily won 37–21.

In 1990 things began to unravel. Kosar threw more interceptions (15) than touchdowns (10) for the first time in his career; and the team finished last in the league in rushing offense, and near the bottom in rushing defense. Carson was fired after a 2–7 start, and the team finished 3–13, second-worst in the league. After the season Bill Belichick, defensive coordinator of the then-Super Bowl champion New York Giants, was named head coach.

The Browns saw only a slight improvement under Belichick in 1991, finishing 6–10. Kosar was markedly better, with a ratio of 18 touchdowns to 9 interceptions, and Leroy Hoard had a breakout season. The next season, with Kosar sitting out much of the season and Mike Tomczak in under center, Cleveland was in the thick of the AFC Central race before dropping their final three games to finish 7–9.

The 1993 season saw Belichick make the controversial decision of cutting Kosar while back-up Vinny Testaverde, who had been signed from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, was injured. The Browns were in first place at the time and the Browns faltered as Todd Philcox became the starter. Kosar was signed by the Dallas Cowboys and a few days later led the Cowboys to a win in place of an injured Troy Aikman. Kosar would win a ring that season as the Cowboys won the Super Bowl with a healthy Aikman. Cleveland won only two of its final nine games finishing 7–9 once again.

Cleveland managed to right the ship in 1994, although the quarterback situation hadn't quite improved. A solid defense led the league for fewest yards allowed per attempt, sending four players (Rob Burnett, Pepper Johnson, Michael Dean Perry, and Eric Turner) to the Pro Bowl. The Browns finished 11–5, making the playoffs for the first time in four seasons. In the AFC Wild Card game against the New England Patriots, the Browns' defense picked off Drew Bledsoe three times, with Testaverde completing two-thirds of his passes, to win 20–13. Arch-rival Pittsburgh ended the Browns' season the following week, however, with a 29–9 blowout in the AFC Divisional game.

Modell announced on November 6, 1995, that he had signed a deal to relocate the Browns to Baltimore in 1996—a move which would return the NFL to Baltimore for the first time since the Colts relocated to Indianapolis after the 1983 season. The very next day, on November 7, 1995, Cleveland voters overwhelmingly approved an issue that had been placed on the ballot at Modell's request, before he made his decision to move the franchise, which provided $175 million in tax dollars to refurbish the outmoded and declining Cleveland Municipal Stadium. Modell's plan was later scrapped and taxpayers ultimately paid close to $300 million to demolish the old stadium and construct a new stadium for the Browns on the site of Municipal Stadium.

Browns fans reacted angrily to the news. Over 100 lawsuits were filed by fans, the city of Cleveland, and a host of others. Congress held hearings on the matter. Actor/comedian Drew Carey returned to his hometown of Cleveland on November 26, 1995, to host "Fan Jam" in protest of the proposed move. A protest was held in Pittsburgh during the Browns' game there but ABC, the network broadcasting the game, declined to cover or mention the protest. It was one of the few instances that Steelers fans and Browns fans were supporting each other, as fans in Pittsburgh felt that Modell was robbing their team of their rivalry with the Browns.

Virtually all of the team's sponsors immediately pulled their support, leaving Municipal Stadium devoid of advertising during the team's final weeks.

The 1995 season was a disaster on the field as well. After starting 3–1, the Browns lost 3 straight before the news broke about the team's impending move cut the legs out from under the team. They finished 5–11, including a 2–7 record in the nine games after the announcement. When fans in the Dawg Pound became unruly during their final home game against the Cincinnati Bengals, action moving towards that end zone had to be moved to the opposite end of the field. Several fans set fires in the stands, especially in the "Dawg Pound" section, and assaulted security officials and police officers who tried to quell the growing fires. The Browns won their final game.

After extensive talks between the NFL, the Browns and officials of the two cities, Cleveland accepted a legal settlement that would keep the Browns legacy in Cleveland. In February 1996, the NFL announced that the Browns would be 'deactivated' for three years, and that a new stadium would be built for a new Browns team, as either an expansion team or a team moved from another city, that would begin play in 1999. Modell would in turn be granted a new franchise, (the 31st NFL franchise), for Baltimore, the Baltimore Ravens, retaining the current contracts of players and personnel. There would be a new team, but the Browns' name, colors, history, records, awards and archives would remain in Cleveland. Coincidentally, the only other current NFL team to suspend operations without merging with another, the St. Louis Rams, had once played in Cleveland (they suspended during the 1943 season, at the height of World War II). During this period the threat of relocation to Cleveland was used by several teams, such as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Denver Broncos, to help convince the taxpayers in those areas to fund new stadiums.

Cleveland NFL Football LLC (Cleveland Browns Trust) was formed by the NFL. President of the Trust was Bill Futterer, and NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue was the Trustee. The Trust represented the NFL in the stadium design and construction, managed the sale of suites and club seats, and sold Permanent Seat Licenses and season tickets. Additionally, the Trust reorganized the Browns Backers fan clubs across the United States, resumed coaches shows on television and radio throughout the state of Ohio, and conducted a dramatic one-year countdown celebration that incorporated the first live Internet broadcast in NFL history. The Trust operated its campaign under a Countdown to '99 theme, utilizing Hall of Famers such as Lou Groza and Jim Brown extensively, and sold nearly 53,000 season tickets—a team record in 1998. It remains the only time in professional American football history that a league operated a team "in absentia" in order to preserve the history of the franchise and to build value in that franchise for the future owner. The NFL sold the Browns as an expansion team in 1998 for a North American record $530 million for a professional franchise, more than double any previous selling price for a pro sports team. Commissioner Tagliabue announced that the Browns would be an expansion team, rather than a relocated team, at the owners meeting in March 1998. Some consider the current Baltimore Ravens and the pre-1995 Cleveland Browns organization as one continuous entity, using terms like "The Modell organization" or "Art Modell's Franchise" to denote it. Officially, the National Football League, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens all consider the current Browns team to be a continuation of the team founded in 1946.

Cleveland returned to the NFL in 1999 with high hopes and expectations, featuring deep-pocketed ownership in Al Lerner. The team's football operations appeared to be in solid hands in the form of president and CEO Carmen Policy and general manager Dwight Clark, both of whom had come from the San Francisco 49ers. Chris Palmer, former offensive coordinator of the Jacksonville Jaguars, was hired as head coach. The team was rebuilt from an special expansion draft and the regular NFL draft; the latter included the number one selection, QB Tim Couch.

It was to be expected that the resurrected Browns would struggle at first, as for all practical purposes they were an expansion team. However, the Browns' first two seasons were awful even by expansion standards. 1999 saw the Browns start 0–7 en route to a 2–14 finish, the worst in franchise history. 2000 was slightly better, with a 3–13 finish—the lone highlight being the Browns' first home win in five years, against the Steelers on September 17. Compounding the fans' frustration was the Baltimore Ravens' win over the New York Giants in Super Bowl XXXV that season. Though the Ravens were considered a "new franchise", the team still had players such as Matt Stover and Rob Burnett who had played for the Browns before the Modell move. Palmer was fired after the season and replaced by University of Miami coach Butch Davis.

Under Davis the Browns became more competitive, finishing 7–9 in 2001, three games out of the playoffs. With the team apparently close to being a contender again, Clark was forced to resign after the season, and Davis was named general manager as well as coach. In 2002, the Browns finished 9–7, and thanks to multiple tiebreakers they made the playoffs for the first time since 1994. Facing Pittsburgh in the first round, the Browns led 33–21 with five minutes to go, but ultimately lost 36–33.

The Browns did not sustain the momentum, finishing with double-digit losing records in 2003 and 2004. Davis resigned in December 2004 with the team shouldering a 3–8 record; Policy had resigned earlier in the year. Offensive Coordinator Terry Robiskie, was named interim head coach for the remainder of the 2004 season.

Before the 2005 season began, Romeo Crennel, a one-time Browns assistant coach under Chris Palmer and, at the time, defensive coordinator for the New England Patriots, was named the Browns head coach. Despite the change, the 2005 and 2006 seasons saw the Browns losing trend continue.

Prior to the Browns' final game of the 2005 NFL season, ESPN reported that team president John Collins was going to fire general manager Phil Savage. However, the resulting uproar from fans and local media was strong, and on January 3, 2006 Collins resigned instead. The role of team "President and CEO" was vacated, with owner Randy Lerner filling in as de facto CEO for the time being.

In the 2007 season, the team saw a remarkable turnaround on the field. After opening the season with a 34–7 defeat to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Browns traded starting quarterback Charlie Frye to the Seattle Seahawks, with backup Derek Anderson assuming the starting role. In his first start, Anderson led the Browns to a 51–45 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, throwing five touchdown passes, which tied the franchise record. In this same game, alumni from Oregon State University combined for a total of nine touchdowns. The Browns finished the 2007 season 10–6, barely missing the playoffs on tie-breaker rules. Nevertheless, the 10–6 record was the team's best record since 1994. Six players earned Pro Bowl recognition, with Anderson starting for the AFC in place of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Coach Crennel agreed to a two-year contract extension.

The Browns entered the 2008 season with high expectations, and many pundits predicted the team would win the division. The highlight of the season was an upset of the defending Super Bowl Champion New York Giants. However, inconsistent play and key injuries led to a disappointing 4-12 record. The Browns used four starting quarterbacks: Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn and Ken Dorsey were lost to injury; the fourth, Bruce Gradkowski was hired mid-season. Ending with six straight losses, the Browns finished with two consecutive shutouts (a franchise first) and 24 consecutive quarters without an offensive touchdown. General Manager Phil Savage and Head Coach Romeo Crennel were subsequently fired. On January 7, 2009, the Browns hired former New York Jets coach Eric Mangini to a four-year contract as the new head coach.

The Browns' orange "logo-less" helmet 1999–2005. This was the logo for the Browns during that period.

The Browns' orange "logo-less" helmet. This is the current logo for the Cleveland Browns. They have switched from a white to a gray facemask.

The original "Brownie Elf" mascot with a crown on its head. The crown signified the team's seven AAFC and NFL championships from 1946 to 1955.

The "Brownie Elf" mascot in modernized form.

Alternate Cleveland Browns "B" logo, also used from 2003 to present.

The Browns' orange "logo-less" helmet 1966–1972. This was the primary logo for the Browns during that period, popular during the "Kardiac Kids" period from 1979–1983, and also used with the Kosar quarterbacked teams in 1985 and 1986.

The Browns' orange "logo-less" helmet 1973–1986. This was really the secondary logo for the Browns during that period, the first being the logo without the script.

The Browns' Primary Script Logo 1999–2002. This was also the Browns' script logo from 1983–1995.

This has been the Browns' cap logo since 2000.

The Browns' Primary Script Logo 1975–1995. This logo was modernized with the resumption of the franchise in 1999.

Since debuting in 1946, the Browns' uniforms have essentially remained the same. However, the team originally wore white helmets before switching to orange (with a white center stripe.) on a full-time basis in 1952. (In the 1950 & '51 seasons, the Browns wore the white helmets in day games and plain orange helmets in night games because of an NFL rule prohibiting the use of white or light-colored helmets for night games because of the lighting and the use of a white football for night games. Also because of night games, they experimented with silver game pants in the 1950 & '51 seasons, and a third orange jersey for night games in the 1954 season.) From 1957 to 1960, the players' numbers were on the sides of their helmets. In 1960, the Browns went to the now familiar brown-white-brown stripe sequence on the helmets.

Pants: White with an orange-brown-orange stripe sequence on the sides. The stripes are of equal width.

Socks: Brown or white to match the jerseys with the identical stripe sequence as the jersey sleeves.

Helmet: Solid white (1946–1949); solid white for day games and solid orange for night games (1950–1951); orange with a single white stripe (1952–1956); orange with a single white stripe and brown numerals on the sides (1957–1959); orange with a brown-white-brown stripe sequence and brown numerals on the sides (1960); orange with a brown-white-brown stripe sequence (1961–1995 and 1999–present).

Over the years, the Browns have had on-again/off-again periods of wearing white in their home games, particularly in the 1970s and 80s, as well as in the early 2000s after the team returned to the league. Until recently, when more NFL teams started to wear white at home at least once a season, the Browns were the only non-subtropical team north of the Mason-Dixon line to wear white at home on a regular basis. Since 1999, the team has worn white, brown and orange jerseys at home. In recent years, the Browns have only worn their white jerseys at home for a significant event (60th year anniversary, Gene Upshaw's dedication).

Numerals first appeared on the jersey sleeves in 1961. Over the years, there have been minor revisions to the sleeve stripes, the first occurring in 1968 (brown jerseys worn in early season) and 1969 (white and brown jerseys) when stripes began to be silk screened onto the sleeves and separated from each other to prevent color bleeding. However, the basic five-stripe sequence has remained intact (with the exception of the 1984 season). A recent revision was the addition of the initials "AL" to honor team owner Al Lerner who died in 2002.

Orange pants with a brown-white-brown stripe sequence were worn from 1975–1983 and become symbolic of the Kardiac Kids era. The orange pants were worn again occasionally in 2003 and 2004.

In 1985, the uniform returned to a look similar to the original design and remained that way through 1995.

In 1999, the expansion Browns adopted the traditional design with two exceptions: 1. Jersey-sleeve numbers were moved to the shoulders. 2. The orange-brown-orange pants stripes were significantly widened.

Experimentation with the uniform design began in 2002. An alternate orange jersey was introduced that season as the NFL encouraged teams to adopt a third jersey. Also in 2002, a major design change was made when solid brown socks appeared for the first time since 1984 and were used with white, brown and orange jerseys. Other than 1984, striped socks (matching the jersey stripes) had been a signature design element in the team's traditional uniform. The white striped socks appeared occasionally with the white jerseys in 2003–2005 and again in 2007.

Experimentation continued in 2003 and 2004 when the traditional orange-brown-orange stripes on the white pants were replaced by two variations of a brown-orange-brown sequence, one in which the stripes were joined (worn with white jerseys) and the other in which they were separated by white (worn with brown jerseys). The joined sequence was used exclusively with both jerseys in 2005. In 2006, the traditional orange-brown-orange sequence returned.

In 2006, the team reverted to an older uniform style, featuring gray face masks; the original stripe pattern on the brown jersey sleeves (The white jersey has had that sleeve stripe pattern on a consistent basis since the 1985 season.) and the older, darker shade of brown.

The Browns wore brown pants for the first time in team history on August 18, 2008, during a Monday night nationally-televised preseason game against the New York Giants at Giants Stadium. The pants contain no stripes or markings. The team had the brown pants created as an option for their away uniform when they integrated the gray facemask in 2006. They have not been worn in a regular-season game.

Perhaps the most visible Browns fans are those that can be found in the Dawg Pound. Originally the name for the bleacher section located in the open (east) end of old Cleveland Municipal Stadium, the current incarnation of is likewise located in the east end of Cleveland Browns Stadium and still features hundreds of orange and brown clad fans sporting various canine-related paraphernalia. The fans adopted that name in 1984 after members of the Browns defense used it to describe the team's defense.

Retired cornerback Hanford Dixon, who played his entire career for the Browns (1981–1989), is credited with naming the Cleveland Browns defense 'The Dawgs' in the mid-80's. Dixon and fellow teammates Frank Minnifield, and Eddie Johnson would bark at each other and to the fans in the bleachers at the Cleveland Stadium to fire them up. It was from Dixon's naming that the Dawg Pound subsequently took its title. The fans adopted that name in the years after.

The most prominent organization of Browns fans is the Browns Backers Worldwide (BBW). The organization has approximately 93,100 members and is considered the largest sports-fan organization in the USA. Browns Backers clubs can be found in every major city in the United States, and in a number of military bases throughout the world, with the largest club being in Phoenix, Arizona. In addition, the organization has a sizable foreign presence in places as far away as Egypt, Australia, Japan, and Sri Lanka. According to The Official Fan Club of the Cleveland Browns, the two largest international fan clubs are in Alon Shvut, Israel and Niagara, Canada, with Alon Shvut having 129 members and Niagara having 310.

A 2006 study conducted by Bizjournal determined that Browns fans are the most loyal fans in the NFL. The study, while not scientific, was largely based on fan loyalty during winning and losing seasons (however, it does not account for the ratio of winning to losing seasons by a team), attendance at games, and challenges confronting fans (such as inclement weather or long-term poor performance of their team). The study noted that Browns fans filled 99.8% of the seats at Cleveland Browns Stadium during the last seven seasons, despite a combined record of 36 wins and 76 losses over that span.

The Cleveland Browns have the fourth largest number of players enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame with a total of sixteen enshrined players elected based on their performance with the Browns, and five more players elected who spent at least one year with the Browns franchise. No Browns players were inducted in the inaugural induction class of 1963. Otto Graham was the first Brown to be enshrined as a member of the class of 1965, and the most recent Brown to be included in the Pro Football Hall of Fame is Gene Hickerson, who was a member of the class of 2007.

As of 2006, the Browns' flagship radio stations are WMMS, 100.7 FM, a hot talk/rock station, and news/talk station WTAM 1100 AM. Jim Donovan, sports director of WKYC Channel 3, is the play-by-play announcer, former Browns offensive tackle Doug Dieken is the color analyst, and WTAM sports anchor/reporter Andre Knott serves as sideline reporter. WTAM morning co-host/sports director Mike Snyder and former Browns quarterback Mike Pagel host the pregame, halftime, and postgame shows. During the preseason and early September games, WTAM will broadcast the Cleveland Indians games while WMMS will broadcast Browns games when both teams play during the same time.

In 2006, preseason telecasts moved to WKYC (with Jim Donovan and Bernie Kosar in the booth, and WKYC weekend sports anchor Dave Chudowski as sideline reporter) from WOIO after a controversy arose over the 911 calls at the drowning death of the team owner's niece (see above). When Donovan does TV, Mike Snyder does the radio play-by-play, and WTAM evening host Bob Frantz handles pregame/halftime/postgame duties.

SportsTime Ohio is the official cable home of the team, and airs numerous weekly Browns related programs.

WJW-TV Channel 8 ("Fox 8") locally televises any regular season games which are nationally broadcast by ESPN or NFL Network.

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1991 Cleveland Browns season

The 1991 Cleveland Browns season was the team's 42nd season with the National Football League. On August 5, Browns founder Paul Brown passed away at the age of 82.

The following were selected in the 1991 NFL Draft.

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1995 Cleveland Browns season

The 1995 Cleveland Browns season was the team's 46th season with the National Football League. Prior to the season, then-owner Art Modell announced his intentions to move the team to Baltimore. Among the notable players on this year's roster were Matt Stover (kicker) and Vinny Testaverde (QB).

Modell announced on November 6, 1995, that he had signed a deal to relocate the Browns to Baltimore in 1996—a move which would return the NFL to Baltimore for the first time since the Colts relocated to Indianapolis after the 1983 season. The very next day, on November 7, 1995, Cleveland voters overwhelmingly approved an issue that had been placed on the ballot at Modell's request, before he made his decision to move the franchise, which provided $175 million in tax dollars to refurbish the outmoded and declining Cleveland Municipal Stadium. Modell's plan was later scrapped and taxpayers ultimately paid close to $300 million to demolish the old stadium and construct a new stadium for the Browns on the site of Municipal Stadium.

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1970 Cleveland Browns season

The 1970 Cleveland Browns season was the team's 21st season with the National Football League.

The following were selected in the 1970 NFL Draft.

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1951 Cleveland Browns season

The 1951 Cleveland Browns season was the team's second season with the National Football League. Dub Jones set an NFL record with six touchdowns in one game versus the Chicago Bears.

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2008 Cleveland Browns season

Cleveland Browns vs. Denver Broncos, November 6, 2008

The 2008 Cleveland Browns season was the team's 62nd season as a franchise and was the team's 58th season as a member of the National Football League. The Browns finished with a 4-12 record and failed to qualify for the playoffs. The season marked Romeo Crennel's fourth (and what would be final) year as head coach of the Browns. Cleveland played all of their home games at Cleveland Browns Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio.

On January 7, the Browns signed offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski to a two-year contract extension, effectively allowing the coach to remain in Cleveland through the 2011 season. Chudzinski declined an opportunity to interview for the vacant head coach position of the Baltimore Ravens to remain in Cleveland.

On January 11, it was announced by Crennel that the team had fired defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, and that a replacement would be announced soon. Grantham's firing comes just months after signing a two-year contract extension. The next day, it was announced that Mel Tucker, defensive backs coach for the Browns, was given the job. After spending three years on the Browns defensive coaching staff, Cory Undlin was promoted to defensive backs coach to replace Tucker.

On January 29, the team announced that it had re-signed head coach Romeo Crennel to a two-year contract extension. General manager Phil Savage stated that Crennel did not ask for an extension, but rather that the team felt that it was the proper thing to do for the head coach.

The Browns did not have a selection in the first three rounds.

The Browns began their 2008 campaign at home against the defending NFC East champion Dallas Cowboys. In the first quarter, Cleveland trailed early as Cowboys RB Marion Barber got a 1-yard TD run. In the second quarter, the Browns responded with QB Derek Anderson completing a 2-yard TD pass to TE Kellen Winslow. Dallas would respond with QB Tony Romo completing a 35-yard TD pass to WR Terrell Owens, along with another 1-yard TD run from Barber. In the third quarter, Cleveland's defensive struggles continued as RB Felix Jones got an 11-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, the Browns tried to rally, yet all they could come up with was a 34-yard field goal from kicker Phil Dawson.

With the loss, Cleveland began its season at 0-1.

Hoping to rebound from their disappointing home loss to the Cowboys, the Browns stayed at home for the first of five primetime games with a Week 2 AFC North duel against their hated rival, the Pittsburgh Steelers, in very high winds due to the remnants of Hurricane Ike. After a scoreless first quarter, Cleveland trailed as Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger completed an 11-yard TD pass to WR Hines Ward. In the third quarter, Pittsburgh increased its lead with kicker Jeff Reed getting a 48-yard field goal. Afterwards, the Browns got on the board with kicker Phil Dawson getting a 31-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Cleveland tried to rally, but the only thing that came out of it was Dawson's 38-yard field goal.

With their 10th-straight loss to Pittsburgh, the Browns fell to 0-2.

Trying to snap their two-game losing streak, the Browns flew to M&T Bank Stadium for a Week 3 AFC North duel with the Baltimore Ravens. After a scoreless first quarter, Cleveland got on the board with QB Derek Anderson completing a 19-yard TD pass to RB Jerome Harrison. The Ravens would respond with RB Willis McGahee getting a yard TD run. The Browns would close out the half with kicker Phil Dawson hitting a 38-yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Baltimore took control as RB Le'Ron McClain scored on a 1-yard TD run, safety Ed Reed returned an interception 32 yards for a touchdown, and McClain getting another 1-yard TD run.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 0-3.

Still searching for their first win of the year, the Browns flew to Paul Brown Stadium for a Week 4 AFC North duel with the Cincinnati Bengals in Round 1 of 2008's Battle of Ohio. In the first quarter, Cleveland drew first blood as kicker Phil Dawson got a 25-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Bengals responded with kicker Shayne Graham getting a 42-yard and a 45-yard field goal. After a scoreless third quarter, the Browns began the fourth quarter with QB Derek Anderson completing a 4-yard TD pass to WR Braylon Edwards and RB Jamal Lewis getting a 1-yard TD run. Cincinnati would answer with QB Ryan Fitzpatrick completing a 4-yard TD pass to WR Chad Ocho Cinco (with a failed 2-point conversion), yet Cleveland pulled away with Dawson nailing a 29-yard field goal.

With their first win of the season, the Browns' record improved to 1-3.

The Browns entered their bye week with a record of 1-3. The team used the bye week to rest and allow injured players to recover. The Browns also used the extra week to better prepare for their Week 6 opponent: the defending champion New York Giants.

Browns' tight end Kellen Winslow II was hospitalized on October 9 with an undisclosed illness (later revealed to be a staph infection) . Winslow spent four nights in the hospital and did not play in the Browns' game against the Giants. Citing Winslow's privacy, the Browns did not comment on his illness.

Coming off their bye week, the Browns went home, donned their throwback uniforms, and played a crucial Week 6 interconference duel with the defending Super Bowl champions, the New York Giants, on Monday Night Football.

In the first quarter, Cleveland drew first blood as kicker Phil Dawson got a 28-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Giants responded as RB Brandon Jacobs had a touchdown run. The Browns would answer with two touchdowns: A run by RB Jamal Lewis and with QB Derek Anderson pass to TE Darnell Dinkins. New York closed out the half with QB Eli Manning completing a TD pass to WR Plaxico Burress.

In the third quarter, Cleveland added on to its lead as Dawson nailed a 26-yard field goal. The Browns pulled away in the fourth quarter with a touchdown pass from Anderson to WR Braylon Edwards, as well as an Eric Wright interception returned for a touchdown.

With the impressive win, Cleveland improved to 2-3. This was also the Browns' first win on Monday Night Football since 1993.

After the Browns' victory over the Giants, head coach Romeo Crennel received NFL Coach of the Week honors for Week 6.

Coming off their impressive Monday Night home win over the Giants, the Browns flew to Fedex Field for a Week 7 duel with the Washington Redskins. After a scoreless first half, Cleveland trailed in the third quarter, as Redskins RB Clinton Portis got a 3-yard TD run. The Browns would respond with kicker Phil Dawson nailing a 37-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Washington answered with QB Jason Campbell completing an 18-yard TD pass to WR Santana Moss. Cleveland tried to rally as QB Derek Anderson completed a 1-yard TD pass to WR/KR Joshua Cribbs (along with a 2-point conversion pass to WR Braylon Edwards). However, Dawson's game-tying 54-yard field goal attempt sailed wide right, preserving the Redskins' win.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 2-4.

Winslow planned to appeal the suspension, but the hearing was not scheduled until October 28, two days after the Jaguars game.

On October 25, the Browns rescinded Winslow's suspension. Although he did not play the game against the Jaguars, he received his game check minus a $25,000 fine.

Hoping to rebound from their last-second road loss to the Redskins, the Browns flew to Jacksonville Municipal Stadium for a Week 8 duel with the Jacksonville Jaguars. In the first quarter, Cleveland drew first blood as QB Derek Anderson completed a 3-yard TD pass to WR Donté Stallworth. In the second quarter, the Jaguars tied the game as QB David Garrard completed a 5-yard TD pass to WR Reggie Williams. The Browns responded with RB Jamal Lewis getting a 2-yard TD run, along with kicker Phil Dawson getting a 32-yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Jacksonville drew closer as Garrard completed an 8-yard TD pass to WR Matt Jones. In the fourth quarter, the Jaguars tied the game as kicker Josh Scobee made a 53-yard field goal. Afterwards, Cleveland regained the lead with Dawson nailing a 20-yard and a 42-yard field goal, with the defense fending off Jacksonville's last attempt at a comeback.

With the win, the Browns improved to 3-4.

Coming off their road win over the Jaguars, the Browns went home for a Week 9 AFC North rematch with the Baltimore Ravens. In the first quarter, Cleveland trailed early as Ravens kicker Matt Stover kicked a 41-yard field goal, along with QB Joe Flacco completing a 47-yard TD pass to WR Mark Clayton. The Browns immediately responded with WR Joshua Cribbs returning a kickoff 92 yards for a touchdown. In the second quarter, Cleveland increased its lead with kicker Phil Dawson kicking a 23-yard field goal. Baltimore responded with Stover making a 32-yard field goal, yet the Browns replied with Dawson's 54-yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Cleveland took the lead as QB Derek Anderson completed a 28-yard TD pass to WR Braylon Edwards and a 7-yard TD pass to RB Jason Wright. The Ravens responded with FB Le'Ron McClain's 1-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, Baltimore rallied as Flacco completed a 28-yard TD pass to WR Derrick Mason, Stover kicking a 22-yard field goal, and LB Terrell Suggs returning an interception 42 yards for a touchdown.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 3-5.

On November 3, it was announced that quarterback Derek Anderson would be benched in favor of QB Brady Quinn for the Browns' next game against the Denver Broncos.

Hoping to rebound from their season-sweeping loss to the Ravens, the Browns stayed at home for a Week 10 Thursday night game against the Denver Broncos. In the first quarter, Cleveland trailed early as Broncos RB Ryan Torain got a 1-yard TD run. The Browns would respond as QB Brady Quinn, making his first career start, completed a 5-yard TD pass to TE Kellen Winslow. In the second quarter, Cleveland took the lead as kicker Phil Dawson made a 24-yard field goal, along with Quinn hooking up with Winslow again on a 16-yard TD pass. Denver would answer with kicker Matt Prater making a 35-yard field goal. The Browns would close out the half with Dawson making a 52-yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Cleveland added onto its lead as Dawson got a 33-yard field goal. The Broncos would reply with Prater making a 30-yard field. In the fourth quarter, Denver regained the lead as QB Jay Cutler completing a 93-yard TD pass to WR Eddie Royal and a 27-yard TD pass to TE Daniel Graham. The Browns would respond with RB Jamal Lewis getting a 1-yard TD run. However, the Broncos replied with Cutler completing an 11-yard TD pass to WR Brandon Marshall. Cleveland tried to come back, but Denver's defense stiffened.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 3-6, making it impossible to improve on their 10-6 record from the 2007 season.

This also marked Cleveland's eighth-straight loss to Denver. Even with the loss the Cleveland Browns saw an upside to that game: Quinn showed that he could be the new face of Cleveland football.

Trying to snap a two-game losing streak, the Browns flew to Ralph Wilson Stadium for a Week 11 MNF duel with the Buffalo Bills. In the first quarter, Cleveland took advantage of early Bills miscues as kicker Phil Dawson kicked two field goals. In the second quarter, the Browns increased their lead as Joshua Cribbs scored a 2-yard TD run. Buffalo responded with QB Trent Edwards completing an 18-yard TD pass to RB Marshawn Lynch, along with kicker Rian Lindell getting a 26-yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Cleveland answered with Dawson getting a 43-yard field goal. The Bills would reply with Lindell making a 31-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, the Browns greatly answered with RB Jerome Harrison getting a 72-yard TD run. Buffalo would immediately respond with CB Leodis McKelvin returning a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown and would take the lead on a 1-yard TD run by Edwards. Afterwards, the Browns regained the lead as Dawson nailed a 56-yard field goal. Buffalo did try to make a comeback, yet Lindell's 47-yard field goal sailed wide right, preserving Cleveland's victory and preventing them from becoming the first NFL team to lose three staight games after having a lead of 13 or more points in each of them.

With the win, the Browns improved to 4-6.

You are easily the worst GM in the NFL. Chud, Crennel and Tucker should NOT have jobs. How the hell do you play prevent defense the entire game? How do you NOT use Jerome Harrison more? Why the hell would you throw the ball with 6 minutes left? This is officially a regime that is worse than Butch Davis'. By the way, just like last week - this email was written while the Browns still had the lead.

Coming off their MNF road win over the Bills, the Browns went home for a Week 12 duel with the Houston Texans. In the first quarter, Cleveland trailed early as Texans QB Sage Rosenfels completed a 17-yard TD pass to WR Kevin Walter. In the second quarter, Houston increased its lead as kicker Kris Brown got a 31-yard field goal. The Browns would respond with kicker Phil Dawson getting a pair of 32-yard field goals, but the Texans answered with Brown's 31-yard field goal. In the third quarter, Houston kept its momentum going with Brown nailing a 31-yard field goal. Cleveland tried to rally, but Houston's defense was too much.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 4-7.

On November 25, it was announced that quarterback Brady Quinn would be out for the season due to a fractured right index finger suffered in the Browns' week 11 duel with the Buffalo Bills. Derek Anderson was announced to be the starter for their next game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Hoping to rebound from their loss to the Texans, the Browns stayed at home for a Week 13 duel with the Indianapolis Colts. In the first quarter, Cleveland struck first as kicker Phil Dawson kicked a 34-yard field goal. The Colts answered with kicker Adam Vinatieri kicking a 30-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Browns regained the lead as Dawson nailed a 25-yard field goal. However, after a scoreless third quarter, Indianapolis' defense answered in the fourth quarter, as DE Robert Mathis returned a fumble 37 yards for a touchdown. From there on out, Cleveland was unable to come back.

With the loss, the Browns stumbled to 4-8.

On December 1, it was announced that QB Derek Anderson would be done for the season following a torn MCL suffered in the loss to the Colts. Third-string QB Ken Dorsey was announced to be starting for the Browns' next game against the Tennessee Titans.

On December 2, the Browns signed free-agent veteran QB Bruce Gradkowski to a two-year contract. Gradkowski will serve as the backup QB under Dorsey for the Browns' next game against the Tennessee Titans.

Trying to rebound from back-to-back home losses, the Browns flew to LP Field for a Week 14 duel with the Tennessee Titans. Cleveland struck first in the opening quarter as kicker Phil Dawson got a 47-yard and a 41-yard field goal. The Titans took the lead in the second quarter, as QB Kerry Collins completed a 28-yard touchdown pass to FB Ahmard Hall, along with RB LenDale White got a 3-yard touchdown run. Tennessee would increase its lead in the third quarter as Collins completed a 9-yard touchdown to wide receiver Justin Gage. In the fourth quarter, the Browns to rally as Dawson nailed a 39-yard field goal, yet the Titans pulled away as RB Chris Johnson got a 25-yard touchdown run.

With the loss, Cleveland fell to 4-9.

Coming off three straight losses without a touchdown, the Cleveland Browns sought to go 3-0 on Monday Night games, this time at home against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles struck first with a touchdown pass to WR Kevin Curtis. Both teams also traded field goals in the first quarter. CB Asante Samuel extended the Eagles' lead in the second quarter with an interception return for a touchdown, and K David Akers added a field goal in the third quarter. Cleveland could not answer, but DB Brandon McDonald scored the first touchdown for the Browns in 4 games with an interception return in the fourth quarter. This game saw the Browns extend their offensive troubles, going 16 quarters without an offensive touchdown.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 4-10, the third time in four years under Romeo Crennel that the Browns have had double-digit losses.

Coming off four straight losses in which their offense failed to score a touchdown, the Cleveland Browns played their final home game of the season in near-zero wind chills against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals scored first, with CB Leon Hall intercepting a Ken Dorsey pass and retuning it 50 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter. WR Chris Henry completed the scoring by adding on a 20 yard touchdown reception in the second quarter. The shutout marked five straight games in which Cleveland's offense couldn't find the end zone. The only bright spot for the Browns was RB Jamal Lewis, who became the 24th NFL player to reach 10,000 career rushing yards.

With the loss, the Browns fell to 4-11, and ended the season 1-7 at home.

Coming off five straight losses without a touchdown on offense, the Cleveland Browns closed out the regular season at Heinz Field in a Week 17 AFC North rematch with their hated rival, the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers put up two touchdowns in the second quarter, a 34 yard run by RB Willie Parker and an 8 yard scramble by QB Byron Leftwich. The Steelers added 17 points in the second half (22-yard Jeff Reed field goal, 3-yard Gary Russell touchdown run, and a 32-yard interception TD return by Tyrone Carter), but they were unnecessary as the Browns were incapable of scoring at all, marking six straight games in which the offense couldn't score a touchdown (an NFL record 24 quarters). Again, the only good news for the Browns was RB Jamal Lewis, who topped 1,000 rushing yards this season. He would become the first Browns running back since Mike Pruitt in 1980 & 1981 to have back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons.

With the loss, the Browns ended their season at 4-12, with a record of 3-5 away from home. This also marked the Browns' eleventh straight loss to the Steelers.

After the game, it was announced that GM Phil Savage was fired. One day later, head coach Romeo Crennel would also be released after the Browns ended their season at 4-12, at the bottom of the AFC North.

Despite the disappointing performance by the team, LT Joe Thomas, DT Shaun Rogers, and LS Ryan Pontbriand were recognized for individual accomplishments as they were named to the AFC roster for the 2009 Pro Bowl. Thomas and Rogers were selected by the pro-bowl voters., and Pontbriand was selected as a "need" player by the Baltimore Ravens coaching staff, who will be coaching the AFC squad.

KR Joshua Cribbs was named a first alternate, K Phil Dawson a second alternate, and LG Eric Steinbach and LB D'Qwell Jackson were named third alternates at their respective positions.

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Source : Wikipedia