|2020 Cleveland Browns season|
|Head coach||Kevin Stefanski|
|General manager||Andrew Berry|
|Home field||FirstEnergy Stadium|
|Division place||2nd AFC North|
The 2020 season is the Cleveland Browns' 68th as a member of the National Football League, their 72nd overall, and their first under general manager Andrew Berry and head coach Kevin Stefanski. The Browns improved on their 6-10 record from 2019 and clinched their first non-losing season since 2007. They will also attempt to end their franchise-record and league-high 17-year playoff drought.
On January 27, 2020, the Browns hired former Philadelphia Eagles' vice president of football operations Andrew Berry as general manager. Berry previously served as the Browns' vice president of player personnel from 2016 to 2018. At age 32, Berry became the youngest general manager in NFL history.
On January 29, the Browns and vice president of player personnel Alonzo Highsmith and assistant general manager Eliot Wolf mutually agreed to part ways after the hiring of Berry. Both had served in their roles since the 2017 hiring of Dorsey.
On January 13, 2020, the Browns hired former Minnesota Vikings' offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as head coach. Stefanski served as a Vikings' assistant coach from 2006 to 2019, including the past two seasons as their offensive coordinator. This will mark Stefanski's first NFL head coaching opportunity.
On January 29, the Browns hired former Cincinnati Bengals' quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt as offensive coordinator. Van Pelt, who served as offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills in 2009, replaced Todd Monken, who was not retained by Stefanski.
On February 7, the Browns hired former San Francisco 49ers' defensive backs coach Joe Woods as defensive coordinator. Woods, who previously served as the defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos from 2017 to 2018, replaced Steve Wilks, who was not retained by Stefanski.
|DT||Andrew Billings||UFA||Cincinnati Bengals||March 19|
|DE||Adrian Clayborn||UFA||Atlanta Falcons||March 31|
|OT||Jack Conklin||UFA||Tennessee Titans||March 18|
|LB||B.J. Goodson||UFA||Green Bay Packers||March 20|
|TE||Austin Hooper||UFA||Atlanta Falcons||March 18|
|CB||Kevin Johnson||UFA||Buffalo Bills||March 19|
|S||Karl Joseph||UFA||Oakland Raiders||March 19|
|QB||Case Keenum||UFA||Washington Redskins||March 18|
|WR||JoJo Natson||UFA||Los Angeles Rams||March 19|
|CB||Donovan Olumba||UFA||Dallas Cowboys||March 23|
|S||Andrew Sendejo||UFA||Minnesota Vikings||March 20|
|Position||Player||Tag||Date lost||2020 team||Date|
|S||Morgan Burnett||Release||March 16|
|CB||T. J. Carrie||Release||February 17||Indianapolis Colts||March 31|
|TE||Demetrius Harris||Release||February 17||Chicago Bears||February 20|
|LB||Christian Kirksey||Release||March 10||Green Bay Packers||March 16|
|G||Eric Kush||Release||February 17||Las Vegas Raiders||March 30|
|S||Eric Murray||UFA||March 18||Houston Texans||March 21|
|S||Damarious Randall||UFA||March 18||Las Vegas Raiders||April 3|
|LB||Joe Schobert||UFA||March 18||Jacksonville Jaguars||March 18|
|TE||Ricky Seals-Jones||UFA||March 18||Kansas City Chiefs||April 3|
|LB||Adarius Taylor||Release||February 17||Carolina Panthers||July 27|
|2||44||Grant Delpit||S||LSU||from Indianapolis|
|3||88||Jordan Elliott||DT||Missouri||from New Orleans|
|97||Jacob Phillips||ILB||LSU||from Houston|
|4||115||Harrison Bryant||TE||Florida Atlantic|
|5||160||Nick Harris||C||Washington||from Indianapolis|
|6||187||Donovan Peoples-Jones||WR||Michigan||from Arizona|
|Solomon Ajayi||LB||Liberty||April 25||September 5|
|Elijah Benton||S||Liberty||April 25||September 5|
|Ja'Marcus Bradley||WR||Louisiana||April 25||September 5|
|Tony Brown||WR||Colorado||April 25|
|Kevin Davidson||QB||Princeton||April 25||September 5|
|Drake Dorbeck||OT||Southern Miss||April 25||August 6|
|A.J. Green||CB||Oklahoma State||April 25||September 5|
|Brian Herrien||RB||Georgia||April 25|
|Jameson Houston||CB||Baylor||April 25|
|Benny LeMay||RB||Charlotte||April 25||September 5|
|Jovante Moffatt||S||Middle Tennessee State||April 25||September 5|
|George Obinna||DE||Sacramento State||April 25|
|Alex Taylor||OT||South Carolina State||April 25||September 5|
|Jeffery Whatley||DE||South Alabama||April 25|
|Nate Wieting||TE||Iowa||April 25|
The NFL and the NFLPA reached an agreement on July 24 to allow players to opt out of playing the 2020 season due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. These players would not be paid for the season, but receive an advance of $150,000 to $350,000 from their 2021 salary. The following five players opted out of this season:
On April 15, the Browns unveiled new uniforms to be used starting in the 2020 season. The jerseys are brown with white numbers and white with brown numbers, each featuring the five-stripe sleeve pattern used prior to 2015. The pants are brown or white, each with an orange-brown-orange stripe pattern on the sides. The "Cleveland" wordmark on the front of the jerseys and the "Browns" wordmark on the side of the pants have been removed.
|1||at Chicago Bears||Soldier Field||Cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic|
|2||at Green Bay Packers||Lambeau Field|
|3||August 30||Minnesota Vikings||FirstEnergy Stadium|
|4||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||FirstEnergy Stadium|
|1||September 13||1:00 p.m.||at Baltimore Ravens||L 6-38||0-1||M&T Bank Stadium||CBS||Recap|
|2||8:20 p.m.||Cincinnati Bengals||W 35-30||1-1||FirstEnergy Stadium||NFLN||Recap|
|3||September 27||1:00 p.m.||Washington Football Team||W 34-20||2-1||FirstEnergy Stadium||Fox||Recap|
|4||October 4||1:00 p.m.||at Dallas Cowboys||W 49-38||3-1||AT&T Stadium||Fox||Recap|
|5||October 11||4:25 p.m.||Indianapolis Colts||W 32-23||4-1||FirstEnergy Stadium||CBS||Recap|
|6||October 18||1:00 p.m.||at Pittsburgh Steelers||L 7-38||4-2||Heinz Field||CBS||Recap|
|7||October 25||1:00 p.m.||at Cincinnati Bengals||W 37-34||5-2||Paul Brown Stadium||CBS||Recap|
|8||November 1||1:00 p.m.||Las Vegas Raiders||L 6-16||5-3||FirstEnergy Stadium||Fox||Recap|
|10||November 15||1:00 p.m.||Houston Texans||W 10-7||6-3||FirstEnergy Stadium||Fox||Recap|
|11||November 22||1:00 p.m.||Philadelphia Eagles||W 22-17||7-3||FirstEnergy Stadium||Fox||Recap|
|12||November 29||1:00 p.m.||at Jacksonville Jaguars||W 27-25||8-3||TIAA Bank Field||CBS||Recap|
|13||December 6||1:00 p.m.||at Tennessee Titans||Nissan Stadium||CBS|
|14||8:15 p.m.||Baltimore Ravens||FirstEnergy Stadium||ESPN|
|15||December 20||1:00 p.m.||at New York Giants||MetLife Stadium||CBS|
|16||December 27||1:00 p.m.||at New York Jets||MetLife Stadium||CBS|
|17||January 3||1:00 p.m.||Pittsburgh Steelers||FirstEnergy Stadium||CBS|
The Browns traveled to Baltimore to start their season. The Ravens took advantage of two early Browns turnovers with a 5-yard touchdown pass from Lamar Jackson to Mark Andrews and a Justin Tucker 41-yard field goal to take a 10-0 lead. The Browns cut the Ravens' lead to 10-6 late in the first quarter on a Baker Mayfield 1-yard touchdown pass to David Njoku, however Austin Seibert would miss the extra point. The Ravens dominated the rest of the game, scoring 28 unanswered points on two additional Jackson touchdown passes to Andrews and Willie Snead, as well as two touchdown runs by rookie J.K. Dobbins, to win 38-6.
With the loss, the Browns started their season 0-1. They failed to win in Week 1 for the 16th consecutive season.
The Browns opened the home portion of their schedule with a Thursday night game against their in-state rival, the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals received the opening kickoff and put together a 15-play drive, culminating in a Randy Bullock field goal to take a 3-0 lead. The Browns responded with a 10-play drive of their own, but were able to find the end zone on a Nick Chubb 11-yard run to take a 7-3 lead. The teams exchanged scores in the second quarter: The Browns scored a touchdown on a 43-yard pass from Baker Mayfield to Odell Beckham, Jr., the Bengals responded with a Joe Burrow 23-yard touchdown pass to C. J. Uzomah, the Browns struck back with a Mayfield touchdown pass to Kareem Hunt, and the Bengals added another Bullock field goal, giving the Browns a 21-13 lead going into halftime.
The Browns struck first in the third quarter with a 1-yard touchdown run by Chubb. This was set up Myles Garrett forcing a Burrow fumble, which was recovered by Joe Jackson at the Bengals' 1 yard-line. Bullock kicked another field goal to make it 28-16 after three quarters. The Bengals closed the Browns' lead to 28-23 midway through the fourth quarter on a Burrow 9-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd set up by a Mayfield interception. However, the Browns regained a two-score lead on a Hunt 1-yard touchdown run set up by long runs from Hunt and Chubb. The Bengals added a touchdown in the final minute but could not recover an onside kick attempt, allowing the Browns to run out the clock in a 35-30 win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 1-1.
The Browns hosted Washington in Week 3. Washington took an early 7-0 lead on a Dwayne Haskins touchdown pass to Dontrelle Inman. In the second quarter, the Browns took advantage of two Haskins interceptions while scoring 17 points in the quarter: a Cody Parkey 42-yard field goal and a pair of touchdowns on a Nick Chubb 16-yard run and a Baker Mayfield 9-yard pass to Kareem Hunt to take a 17-7 lead into halftime. In the third quarter, Washington scored two touchdowns on an Antonio Gibson 2-yard run and a Haskins 11-yard pass to Inman to re-take the lead at 20-17. However, the Browns took a 24-20 lead on a Mayfield 3-yard touchdown pass to Harrison Bryant and built their lead to 31-20 on a Chub 20-yard touchdown run that was set up by another Haskins interception. Parkey added a late field goal to make the final score 34-20.
With the win, the Browns improved to 2-1. This win ended the longest active losing-record streak in the league; Week 4 was the first game since Week 15 of the 2014 season, a span of 90 games, in which the Browns entered with a record above .500.
The Browns traveled to Dallas to take on the Cowboys in Week 4. The Browns opened the scoring on a trick play as WR Jarvis Landry threw a 37-yard touchdown pass to Odell Beckham, Jr. to take a 7-0 lead. The Cowboys then scored two touchdowns later in the quarter on Dak Prescott passes to CeeDee Lamb and Amari Cooper to tie the game and then take a 14-7 lead after the first quarter. The Browns took control of the game by scoring 34 straight points in the second and third quarters. In the second quarter, Baker Mayfield completed touchdown passes to Beckham and Austin Hooper, Kareem Hunt scored a touchdown run, and Cody Parkey added a field goal to give the Browns a 31-14 lead at halftime. The Browns scored on another Hunt run on their opening drive of the third quarter and added another Parkey field goal to build their lead to 41-14 after three quarters.
However, the Cowboys mounted a comeback in the fourth quarter. They scored three touchdowns on a Tony Pollard run and Prescott passes to Dalton Schultz and Lamb - converting the two-point conversion each time - to cut the Browns' lead to 41-38 with 3:42 to go. However, the Browns recovered the Cowboys' on-side kick attempt and scored on the next play on a 50-yard run by Beckham. The extra point attempt was blocked, but a Cowboys player muffed the ball and the Browns tight end Stephen Carlson recovered it in the end zone for a two-point conversion, giving the Browns a 49-38 lead. On the ensuing possession, Denzel Ward intercepted a Prescott pass to seal the 49-38 win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 3-1. This marked the team's best 4-game start to a season since 2001. Defensive end Myles Garrett was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week after recording two sacks and a forced fumble.
The Browns returned home to host the Indianapolis Colts in a battle of 3-1 records. The Browns opened the scoring on a Cody Parkey 24-yard field goal on their opening drive to take a 3-0 lead. However, the Colts responded on their first drive with a Jonathan Taylor 4-yard touchdown to take a 7-3 lead. In the second quarter, the Browns took a 10-7 lead on a Baker Mayfield 2-yard touchdown pass to Kareem Hunt, but the Colts tied it at 10-10 as Rodrigo Blankenship hit a 32-yard field goal. The Browns would add a 15-yard touchdown pass from Mayfield to Rashard Higgins and a Parkey 34-yard field goal to take a 20-10 lead at halftime.
The Browns extended their lead to 27-10 as Ronnie Harrison intercepted a Philip Rivers pass and returned it for a touchdown. However, Isaiah Rodgers returned the ensuing kickoff 101 yards for a touchdown to cut the Browns' lead to 27-17. Blankenship would add another field goal on a drive set up by a Mayfield interception to cut the Browns' lead to 27-20. Early in the fourth quarter, the Browns recorded a safety on a Rivers intentional grounding penalty in the end zone to build their lead to two possessions, at 29-20. The teams traded late field goals to give the Browns a 32-23 win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 4-1. This marked the team's best 5-game start to a season since 1994.
The Browns traveled to Pittsburgh to take on their division rival, the Pittsburgh Steelers, hoping to end a 16-game losing streak to the Steelers in Pittsburgh, having last won there in 2003. However, Pittsburgh dominated the game from the beginning, opening the scoring with a Chris Boswell 35-yard field goal and a Minkah Fitzpatrick interception return for a touchdown on the Browns' third offensive play to take an early 10-0 lead. Pittsburgh added two more touchdowns in the second quarter on a James Conner run and a Ben Roethlisberger pass to James Washington to extend their lead to 24-0. Cleveland got on the board late in the quarter on a Baker Mayfield pass to Rashard Higgins to make it 24-7 at halftime. The Steelers continued their domination into the second half, adding a pair of touchdowns on a Roethlisberger pass to Chase Claypool and a Benny Snell Jr. run to make the final score 38-7.
Mayfield left the game late in the third quarter after aggravating a minor rib injury he suffered in the Browns' previous game. Backup Case Keenum served as the Browns' quarterback for the remainder of the game. The Browns' run offense, which came into the game averaging a league-leading 188 yards per game, was held to 75 yards.
With their 17th consecutive loss in Pittsburgh, the Browns fell to 4-2.
The Browns traveled to Cincinnati to take on the Bengals, hoping to bounce back from the tough loss at Pittsburgh. After both teams had interceptions on their opening drives, Cincinnati opened the scoring with Joe Burrow 1-yard touchdown run to take a 7-0 lead. The teams then traded field goals before Cleveland scored on a Baker Mayfield 3-yard touchdown pass to Harrison Bryant. making the score 10-10. Cincinnati took a 17-10 lead into halftime on a Burrow 11-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd.
The second half saw the teams go back-and-forth. Cleveland tied the score at 17 with a Mayfield 6-yard touchdown pass to Bryant. Cincinnati took a 20-17 lead into the fourth quarter on a Randy Bullock 23-yard field goal. The fourth quarter featured an NFL record five go-ahead touchdown passes. Cleveland took a 24-20 lead on a Mayfield 16-yard pass to David Njoku. Cincinnati went up 27-24 with a 16-yard touchdown pass from Burrow to Tee Higgins. Cleveland responded with an 8-yard touchdown pass from Mayfield to Kareem Hunt, taking a 31-27 lead. Cincinnati took the lead back, 34-31 with 1:06 remaining on a Burrow 3-yard touchdown pass to Giovani Bernard. The Browns drove down the field in the final minute and Mayfield connected with Donovan Peoples-Jones for a 24-yard touchdown, giving the Browns a 37-34 lead after missing the extra point attempt. An unsuccessful Hail Mary pass attempt by Burrow ended the game, with the Browns hanging on to a 37-34 win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 5-2. Mayfield was named AFC Offensive Player of the Week for his 297 yard, 5 touchdown performance. He also set a franchise record with 21 consecutive completed passes.
The following day, the Browns announced that WR Odell Beckham Jr, who left the game with a knee injury in the first quarter, suffered a torn ACL and will miss the rest of the season.
The Browns returned home to take on the Las Vegas Raiders on a very windy afternoon. After a scoreless first quarter, Cleveland opened the scoring with a Cody Parkey 41-yard field goal to take a 3-0 lead. However, Las Vegas kicker Daniel Carlson connected on field goals from 29 and 33 yards to take a 6-3 lead at halftime. In the third quarter, Cleveland tied the game 6-6 on a Parkey 38-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Las Vegas scored the game's lone touchdown on a Derek Carr 4-yard pass to Hunter Renfrow to take a 13-6 lead. They extended their lead to 16-6 on a Carlson 24-yard field goal. Cleveland had a chance to close the Las Vegas lead to one possession with just under two minutes remaining, but Parkey missed a field goal attempt.
With the loss, the Browns went into their bye week at 5-3.
The Browns returned from their bye week to host the Houston Texans. The game was delayed moments before kickoff due to severe weather including high winds, severe rain, and hail. The game started after a 36 minute delay. The Browns took the opening drive of the game 12 plays and scored on a Cody Parkey 41-yard field goal take an early 3-0 lead. This was the only score until the fourth quarter as high winds made it very difficult for either offense to establish any consistency. Early in the fourth quarter, the Browns extended their lead to 10-0 on a 9-yard touchdown run by Nick Chubb in his first game since suffering a knee injury in Week 4. Houston responded with a Deshaun Watson 16-yard touchdown pass to Pharaoh Brown to close the Browns' lead to 10-7. However, the Browns were able to run out the clock as Chubb and Kareem Hunt rushed for four first downs to seal the 10-7 win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 6-3. In the game, Chubb and Hunt became the first pair of Browns teammates to each rush for 100 yards in the same game since Ernie Green and Leroy Kelly in 1966. This win marked Baker Mayfield's 12th win as starting quarterback at FirstEnergy Stadium, setting a record for the most wins at the venue. The previous record of 11 wins was held by Ben Roethlisberger. Offensive tackle Jedrick Wills was named NFL Rookie of the Week.
The Browns stayed home to take on the Philadelphia Eagles. The game started slowly as neither team scored in the first quarter despite each team missing an opportunity within the opponent's 5-yard line; Philadelphia's drive ended on a Miles Sanders fumble, while Cleveland was stopped on fourth down at the goal line. Cleveland opened the scoring in the second quarter on a Sione Takitaki 50-yard interception return to take a 7-0 lead into halftime. In the third quarter, Philadelphia tied the game on a Carson Wentz 19-yard touchdown pass to Richard Rodgers. Cleveland took a 10-7 lead on their next drive with a Cody Parkey 46-yard field goal and extended it to 12-7 on a safety by linebacker Olivier Vernon. In the fourth quarter, Philadelphia made it 12-10 on a Jake Elliott 43-yard field goal. Cleveland extended their lead to 22-10 with a Kareem Hunt 5-yard touchdown run and a Parkey 28-yard field goal. Philadelphia made it 22-17 on a Wentz 4-yard touchdown pass to Dallas Goedert in the final minute, but could not recover their onside kick attempt, allowing Cleveland to run out the clock.
The Browns traveled to Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars. Jacksonville opened the scoring in the first quarter with an Aldrick Rosas field goal to take a 3-0 lead. Cleveland took a 7-3 lead on a Baker Mayfield touchdown pass to Jarvis Landry, Mayfield's first touchdown pass since Week 7. After both teams kicked short field goals in the second quarter, Jacksonville took a 13-10 lead on a 46-yard touchdown pass from Mike Glennon to Collin Johnson. Cleveland answered and took a 17-13 lead on a Mayfield touchdown pass to Austin Hooper. In the third quarter, Jacksonville recovered a Harrison Bryant fumble and scored a touchdown six plays later on a Glennon 2-yard pass to Tyler Eifert to take a 19-17 lead following a missed 2-point conversion attempt. Cleveland responded with a Cody Parkey 46-yard field goal and a Nick Chubb 1-yard touchdown run to take a 27-19 lead. Jacksonville closed the Browns' lead to 27-25 with just over two minutes to go on a James Robinson 4-yard touchdown run, but failed to make a game-tying 2-point conversion. The Browns were able to run out the clock to preserve the win.
With the win, the Browns improved to 8-3 and clinched their first non-losing season since 2007. In the game, Browns' chief of staff Callie Brownson became the first woman to serve as a position coach in NFL history. She filled in as the tight ends coach in place of Drew Petzing, as he did not travel with the team in order to attend the birth of his child.
|2||Kansas City Chiefs||West||10||1||0||.909||3-1||8-1||.431||.420||W6|
|In the hunt|
|8[c]||Las Vegas Raiders||West||6||5||0||.545||3-1||4-3||.585||.567||L2|
|10||New England Patriots||East||5||6||0||.455||2-1||4-4||.529||.455||W1|
|13||Los Angeles Chargers||West||3||8||0||.273||0-3||3-5||.476||.106||L1|
|Eliminated from playoff contention|
|16||New York Jets||East||0||11||0||.000||0-5||0-9||.579||.000||L11|