1970 Cleveland Browns season
Head Coach Blanton Collier
Home Field Cleveland Stadium
Record 7–7–0
Place 2nd AFC Central
Playoff Finish did not qualify
Previous Season Next Season
1969 1971

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

Season summaryEdit

The merger between the NFL and AFL was complete, with the leagues now playing each other in the regular season for the first time. This was the last step in a four-year process that began in January 1967 with the champions from both leagues playing in Super Bowl I.

To finish the merger, the Browns, along with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Colts, agreed to move in 1970 from the NFL to the old AFL, renamed the AFC, to balance the leagues, now called conferences (NFC and AFC), at 13 clubs each. The merger had hit a stalemate when none of the NFL teams initially wanted to jump to what many of the old-line NFL people felt was an inferior league overall.

Concerning just the Browns themselves, there was the situation involving Blanton Collier. Although no one except maybe the man himself knew it at the start of the season, this was going to be the last year for the venerable head coach. Collier, who had been on the job since 1963 and had guided the Browns to the NFL championship a year later, would announce his retirement shortly before the 1970 season ended.

Paul Warfield trade to DolphinsEdit

Realizing quarterback Bill Nelsen's aching knees were on borrowed time, the Browns had made a blockbuster trade with the Miami Dolphins on the eve of the 1970 NFL Draft to get the rights to select the man they felt would be their passer of the future, Mike Phipps. But it came at a steep price, for they had to give up Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Paul Warfield in the process. That loss, coupled with Nelsen's physical condition and the unfamiliarity with the personnel on the former AFL clubs they were playing for the first time, took the starch out of what had been a good offense going all the way back to 1963. The result was the Browns scored 65 less points than they had the year before, and 108 less than two seasons before.

Along with that, the defense, though it gave up 35 fewer points than it had in 1969, just couldn't make up the difference, led to the Browns finishing 7-7, only the second non-winning mark in club history. In spite of that, the season started well for the Browns, as they opened 3-1 and then were 4-2.

First Monday Nicht Football gameEdit

The Browns beat Joe Namath and the New York Jets 31-21 at Cleveland Stadium in the opener in the first Monday Night Football game in history, and, three games later, edged Cincinnati 30-27 in Bengals head coach Paul Brown's first official visit to Cleveland since being fired by the Browns eight years before. [1]



1970 Cleveland Browns final staff
Front Office

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches

  Defensive Coaches

Special Teams Coaches

Strength and Conditioning

  • Trainer - Leo Murphy


1970 Cleveland Browns roster

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen


Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists

Practice/Taxi Squad

Rookies in italics



NFL DraftEdit

The following were selected in the 1970 NFL Draft.

Round Overall Player Position School/Club Team
13Mike PhippsQuarterback Purdue
121Bob McKayTackle Texas
236Turkey JonesDefensive End Tennessee State
247Jerry SherkDefensive Tackle Oklahoma State
499Ricky StevensonDefensive Back Arizona
5125Steve EngelRunning Back Colorado
6151Mike CilekQuarterback Iowa
7177Craig WycinskiGuard Michigan State
8203Honester DavidsonDefensive Back Bowling Green
9229Geoff BrownLinebacker Pittsburgh
10255William YancharDefensive Tackle Purdue
11281Gene BennerWide Receiver Maine
12307Jerry SandersKicker Texas Tech
13333Larry RobertsRunning Back Central Missouri
14359Jim TharpeLinebacker Lincoln (Mo.)
15385Guy HomolyDefensive Back Illinois State
16410John RedebaughTight End Bemidji State
17436Charles TabbRunning Back McMurry

Exhibition scheduleEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 August 8, 1970 at Los Angeles Rams L 17–30
2 August 15, 1970 vs. San Francisco 49ers at Tampa W 17–10
3 August 22, 1970 vs. Kansas City Chiefs at Memphis L 13–16
4 August 29, 1970 at Cincinnati Bengals L 24–31
5 September 5, 1970 Minnesota Vikings L 21–24
6 September 12, 1970 at New York Giants W 30–29

Regular season scheduleEdit

Date Opponent Score Record Attendance
Sept. 21 New York Jets W 31–21 1–0
Sept. 27 at San Francisco 49ers L 34–31 1–1
Oct. 3 Pittsburgh Steelers W 15–7 2–1
Oct. 11 Cincinnati Bengals W 30–27 3–1
Oct. 18 Detroit Lions L 41–24 3–2
Oct. 25 at Miami Dolphins W 28–0 4–2
Nov. 1 San Diego Chargers L 27–10 4–3
Nov. 8 at Oakland Raiders L 23–20 4–4
Nov. 15 at Cincinnati Bengals L 14–10 4–5
Nov. 22 Houston Oilers W 28–14 5–5
Nov. 29 at Pittsburgh Steelers L 28–9 5–6
Dec. 7 at Houston Oilers W 21–10 6–6
Dec. 12 Dallas Cowboys L 6–2 6–7
Dec. 20 at Denver Broncos W 27–13 7–7


AFC Central
Cincinnati Bengals 8 6 0 .571 312 255 W-7
Cleveland Browns 7 7 0 .500 286 265 W-1
Pittsburgh Steelers 5 9 0 .357 210 272 L-3
Houston Oilers 3 10 1 .231 217 352 L-3


External linksEdit


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