American Football Database
1999 Cleveland Browns season
Head Coach Chris Palmer
Home Field Cleveland Browns Stadium
Record 2–14
Place 6th AFC Central
Playoff Finish did not qualify
Previous season Next season
1995 2000

The 1999 Cleveland Browns season marked the team's return to the National Football League after a three-year absence. The 1999 season also marked the return of football to the city of Cleveland for the first time since the 1995 season.

Season information

During the course of the 1995 season, then-Browns owner Art Modell announced his decision to move the Browns to Baltimore. Modell's new team would begin playing in the 1996 season. It would be the first time since 1945 that Cleveland would be left without a football team.

However, many Browns fans and Cleveland city officials were determined to keep the team in Cleveland, and orchestrated a grassroots movement to keep the team in Cleveland. The NFL responded by working with city officials, and the two parties came to a unique agreement which would provide the city with a brand-new, state-of-the-art stadium and would promise the return of professional football to Cleveland by the beginning of the 1999 season. Modell also agreed to relinquish the Browns' name, colors and team history to the new owner of the Browns. Modell's new team would begin playing in the 1996 season as the Baltimore Ravens, and was regarded as a new franchise expansion team. The Browns were then considered to have suspended operations from 1996 to 1998.

While the Browns' new stadium was being built on the site of the old Cleveland Stadium, the foundation of the front office was being set in place. Al Lerner won a bidding war for the new team for $750 million. Lerner hired former San Francisco 49ers front office staffers Carmen Policy and Dwight Clark as the Browns' president and vice president.

Football finally returned to Cleveland on September 12 when the Browns opened the season against the Pittsburgh Steelers at home. However, the fans were sorely disappointed as the Browns were defeated by the Steelers 43–0. The team would go on to lose their first seven games, but finally won their first game against the New Orleans Saints when rookie and overall number one pick in the draft quarterback Tim Couch threw up a Hail Mary pass with three seconds left. The pass was caught by rookie wide receiver Kevin Johnson and the Browns won the game 21–16. Two weeks later, the Browns defeated the Steelers in Pittsburgh, 16–15, for their second and final win of the year.

The Browns ended the season badly, finishing 2–14—sixth in the AFC Central. It was the worst record that any Cleveland team ever compiled at the end of a season. They did not win a home game throughout the season.



1999 Cleveland Browns staff
Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches

  Defensive Coaches

Special Teams Coaches

  • Special Teams – Ken Whisenhunt
  • Special Teams Quality Control – Mark Michaels

Strength and Conditioning

  • Strength – Tim Jorgensen
  • Assistant Strength – Aril Smith



Hall of Fame Game

  • Cleveland Browns 20, Dallas Cowboys 17 (Overtime) [2]

Regular season


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 12, 1999 Pittsburgh Steelers L 43–0
2 September 19, 1999 at Tennessee Titans L 26–9
3 September 26, 1999 at Baltimore Ravens L 17–10
4 October 3, 1999 New England Patriots L 19–7
5 October 10, 1999 Cincinnati Bengals L 18–17
6 October 17, 1999 at Jacksonville Jaguars L 24–7
7 October 24, 1999 at St. Louis Rams L 34–3
8 October 31, 1999 at New Orleans Saints W 21–16
9 November 7, 1999 Baltimore Ravens L 41–9
10 November 14, 1999 at Pittsburgh Steelers W 16–15
11 November 21, 1999 Carolina Panthers L 31–17
12 November 28, 1999 Tennessee Titans L 33–21
13 December 5, 1999 at San Diego Chargers L 23–10
14 December 12, 1999 at Cincinnati Bengals L 44–28
15 December 19, 1999 Jacksonville Jaguars L 24–14
16 December 26, 1999 Indianapolis Colts L 29–28


AFC Central
view · talk · edit W L T PCT PF PA
Jacksonville Jaguars 14 2 0 .875 396 217
Tennessee Titans 13 3 0 .813 392 324
Baltimore Ravens 8 8 0 .500 324 277
Pittsburgh Steelers 6 10 0 .375 317 320
Cincinnati Bengals 4 12 0 .250 283 460
Cleveland Browns 2 14 0 .125 217 437



1999 NFL Draft

Draft order Player name Position College
Round Pick
1 1 Tim Couch Quarterback Kentucky
2 32 Kevin Johnson Wide receiver Syracuse
45 Rahim Abdullah Linebacker Clemson
3 62 Daylon McCutcheon Cornerback USC
78 Marquis Smith Defensive back California
4 124 Wali Rainer Linebacker Virginia
5 148 Darrin Chiaverini Wide receiver Colorado
6 174 Marcus Spriggs Defensive tackle Troy State
187 Kendall Ogle Linebacker Maryland
191 James Dearth Tight end Tarleton State
7 207 Madre Hill Running back Arkansas

Expansion Draft

Players selected from other teams in the Cleveland Expansion Draft, in order of selection.[4]

1. C Jim Pyne, Detroit
2. DE Hurvin McCormack, Dallas
3. T Scott Rehberg, New England
4. WR Damon Gibson, Cincinnati
5. C Steve Gordon, San Francisco
6. LB Tarek Saleh, Carolina
7. G Jeff Buckey, Miami
8. LB Jason Kyle, Seattle
9. DE Rod Manuel, Pittsburgh
10. LB Lenoy Jones, Tennessee
11. CB Tim McTyer, Philadelphia
12. LB Elijah Alexander, Indianapolis
13. T Pete Swanson, Kansas City
14. S Gerome Williams, San Diego
15. S Marlon Forbes, Chicago
16. WR Justin Armour, Denver
17. T Paul Wiggins, Washington
18. S Duane Butler, Minnesota
19. WR Fred Brock, Arizona
20. CB Kory Blackwell, N.Y. Giants
21. CB Kevin Devine, Jacksonville
22. CB Ray Jackson, Buffalo
23. G Jim Bundren, N.Y. Jets
24. G Ben Cavil, Baltimore
25. RB Michael Blair, Green Bay
26. DT Antonio Anderson, Dallas
27. G Orlando Bobo, Minnesota
28. LB James Williams, San Francisco
29. QB Scott Milanovich, Tampa Bay
30. S Eric Stokes, Seattle
31. RB Ronald Moore, Miami
32. RB Clarence Williams, Buffalo
33. WR Freddie Solomon, Philadelphia
34. S Brandon Sanders, N.Y. Giants
35. DT Mike Thompson, Cincinnati
36. RB Jerris McPhail, Detroit
37. CB Antonio Langham, San Francisco


  1. "All-Time Assistant Coaches". Archived from the original on May 22, 2008. Retrieved February 6, 2009.
  2. NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book, Workman Publishing Co, New York,NY, ISBN 978-0-7611-2480-1, p. 369
  3. NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book, Workman Publishing Co, New York, NY, ISBN 978-0-7611-2480-1
  4. 1999 Cleveland Expansion Draft
AFC East Central West East Central West NFC
Buffalo Baltimore Denver Arizona Chicago Atlanta
Indianapolis Cincinnati Kansas City Dallas Detroit Carolina
Miami Cleveland Oakland NY Giants Green Bay New Orleans
New England Jacksonville San Diego Philadelphia Minnesota St. Louis
NY Jets Pittsburgh Seattle Washington Tampa Bay San Francisco
1999 NFL DraftNFL PlayoffsPro BowlSuper Bowl XXXIV