As the Super Bowl comes around every year, Browns fans look at a game that they have never had the opportunity to see their team in. However, fans of the Browns may forget that they have won many AAFC and NFL championships in the 1940s, 50s and 60s.
Before the Browns were an NFL team, they belonged to the All-American Football Conference (AAFC). During their time in the AAFC, the Browns were a dominant team that won four championships four years in a row, 1946-49. One of the biggest reasons behind the Browns’ success was their future Hall of Fame quarterback Otto Graham. Graham is not the only person for Browns fans to thank for the very distant championships in their history, the other person is head coach Paul Brown. Brown led the team to their four AAFC championships, as well as their first three NFL championships in 1950, 1954 and 1955.
Brown had such an impact on the team that he is who the Browns are named after.
After 1949, the AAFC merged with the NFL and the Browns became an NFL organization. The Browns would continue their dominance in football in 1950 winning their fifth-straight championship defeating the Los Angeles Rams in Cleveland Stadium by a score of 30-28. The Browns would keep up their dominance as a team in 1951 boasting an 11-1 record but ultimately lose in the NFL Championship game to the Rams, 24-17.
In 1952, Cleveland would again make the NFL Championship, but again ultimately fall to the Lions by a score of 17-7. After finishing the 1953 season with an 11-1 record, the Browns would make the NFL Championship for the fourth-straight year but lose a heartbreaker of a game by a score of 17-16. After three consecutive seasons of making it to the NFL championship only to have their dreams dashed. the Browns came back in spectacular fashion in the 1954 NFL Championship game by blowing through the Lions with a score of 56-10. This would start the Browns’ second-round of dominance as an organization because they would go back to the NFL Championship game in 1955 defeating the Rams by a score of 38-14. From 1956-1963 the Browns would fluctuate from a winning team going as far as making the NFL Championship game, only to lose to the Lions in a dismantling by a score of 59-14, to their lowest point with a 7-5 record causing them to not qualify for the playoffs.
As the 1964 season ended, the browns boasted a 10-3-1 record under head coach Blanton Collier and would make it all the way to the NFL Championship game again. In that game, the Browns and Baltimore Colts would have a scoreless first half. However, this would change in the third quarter with the Browns scoring 17 points and an additional 10 points in the fourth quarter. The game would end with a final score of 27-0 giving the Browns their fourth NFL Championship against a Colts team that was favored by seven points.
The eight championships that the Browns have won show that even for a team that hasn’t won a championship in 56 years; there is hope. The Browns have talent in their organization and should have a chance to be contenders for years to come, but only time will tell. In the meantime, Browns fans can celebrate the championships they previously won and pray for another.