|1994 Cleveland Browns season|
|Head coach||Bill Belichick|
|Home field||Cleveland Municipal Stadium|
|Local radio||WKNR · WDOK|
|Division place||2nd AFC Central|
|Playoff finish||Won Wild Card Playoffs (Patriots) 20-13|
Lost Divisional Playoffs (Steelers) 29-9
The 1994 Cleveland Browns season was the team's 45th season with the National Football League and 49th overall. It was the only season that the Browns qualified for the playoffs under head coach Bill Belichick. The Browns finished as the NFL's number one defense in terms of points surrendered per game (12.8 points per game). In the playoffs, Belichick got his first playoff victory as a head coach in the AFC Wild Card Game against his eventual current team, the New England Patriots, 20-13. The Browns would lose to the Steelers 29-9 in the divisional round.
|1994 Cleveland Browns draft|
|1||9||Antonio Langham||Cornerback||Alabama||1993 Jim Thorpe Award|
|1||29||Derrick Alexander||Wide receiver||Michigan||1992 All-American|
|3||75||Romeo Bandison||Defensive tackle||Oregon|
|6||171||Robert Strait||Running back||Baylor|
|7||203||Andre Hewitt||Offensive tackle||Clemson|
|1||September 4||at Cincinnati Bengals||W 28-20||NBC 1:00 ET|
|2||September 11||Pittsburgh Steelers||L 17-10||NBC 1:00 ET|
|3||September 18||Arizona Cardinals||W 32-0||Fox 1:00 ET|
|4||September 25||at Indianapolis Colts||W 21-14||NBC 1:00 ET|
|5||October 2||New York Jets||W 27-7||NBC 1:00 ET|
|7||October 13||at Houston Oilers||W 11-8||TNT 8:00 ET|
|8||October 23||Cincinnati Bengals||W 37-13||NBC 1:00 ET|
|9||October 30||at Denver Broncos||L 26-14||NBC 4:00 ET|
|10||November 6||New England Patriots||W 13-6||NBC 4:00 ET|
|11||November 13||at Philadelphia Eagles||W 26-7||NBC 1:00 ET|
|12||November 20||at Kansas City Chiefs||L 20-13||NBC 1:00 ET|
|13||November 27||Houston Oilers||W 34-10||NBC 1:00 ET|
|14||December 4||New York Giants||L 16-13||Fox 4:00 ET|
|15||December 10||at Dallas Cowboys||W 19-14||NBC 4:00 ET|
|16||December 18||at Pittsburgh Steelers||L 17-7||NBC 4:00 ET|
|17||December 24||Seattle Seahawks||W 35-9||NBC 1:00 ET|
Both Vinny Testaverde and falling third-year Bengal David Klingler were picked off twice. Testaverde got the better of the first round of 1994's Battle Of Ohio as he raced the Browns to a 28-13 lead, enough to absorb a Klingler touchdown in the fourth to Darnay Scott. The Browns won 28-20.
The Steelers ended a four-game road losing streak to the Browns as they erased a 10-0 Browns lead with 17 unanswered points. Vinny Testaverde was picked off four times in the 17-10 loss.
The Browns hosted Buddy Ryan, now coach of the Cardinals after his tumultuous stay with the Oilers. Ryan had to bear witness as Vinny Testaverde tossed two touchdowns and ran in a third while Jay Schroeder and Jim McMahon combined for just 26 of 58 passes with three interceptions in a 32-0 Browns shutout win.
In a 21-14 Browns win, Testaverde threw three more touchdowns as the game lead tied or changed on every score. Testaverde's scores offset scores by Marshall Faulk and Jim Harbaugh, both destined to be important rivals of Browns coach Bill Belichick in the future.
Eight years after their infamous playoff meeting, the Jets and Browns renewed acquaintances and the Browns raced to a 27-0 lead before Jack Trudeau, subbing for regular starter Boomer Esiason, found the endzone from 24 yards out. Trudeau was picked off twice as well in the 27-7 Browns win. The game was the first meeting as head coaches of Jets coach Pete Carroll and Browns coach Bill Belichick.
On a rare Thursday Night NFL game, the collapse of the Oilers following their 1993 season continued as the Browns clawed out a Vinny Testaverde touchdown, a two-point conversion, and a field goal in the second quarter, offsetting a fourth-quarter score from Billy Joe Tolliver. The 11-8 loss put the Oilers at 1-5 with the Browns now 5-1.
The winless Bengals clawed to a 13-10 halftime lead, then the Browns exploded to 27 unanswered points en route to a 37-13 rout; one touchdown came off a goalline fumble by the Bengals. Former Redskins hero Mark Rypien came in late and completed three of eleven passes.
The Browns remained haunted by the ghost of their two bitter playoff failures to John Elway as Elway led a Broncos offense putting up 457 yards of offense and 26 points to offset two Matt Stover field goals and a touchdown from Mark Rypien. The 26-14 Broncos win was only the third of their season.
Bill Belichick faced his former boss Bill Parcells and got the better of Parcells and second-year quarterback Drew Bledsoe, intercepting him four times as Mark Rypien tossed a one-yard score to Leroy Hoard. The 13-6 outcome put the Browns at 7-2 while the Patriots fell to 3-6 awaiting the Vikings.
Joe Montana managed only 169 passing yards but still got the better of the Browns 20-13 as three different passers for the Browns managed only 152 yards and a pick.
The Browns completed a season sweep of the Oilers - now under new coach Jeff Fisher - 34-10, limiting the Oilers to 182 yards of offense.
Facing his former team, Bill Belichick saw the Giants unable to reach 300 yards of offense yet still win 16-13, picking off Vinny Testaverde twice while sacking him four times. The game was a penalty-laden affair with 21 combined fouls for 162 yards.
Once again Testaverde couldn't deliver much yardage - just 118 passing yards with one touchdown and one interception - but he did produce enough for a 19-14 win over the defending Super Bowl champions. The Browns picked off Troy Aikman twice while forcing two fumbles. Matt Stover's four field goals were sufficient for the win.
The measuring stick for the Browns has always been the Steelers and once again the Browns came up short, this time 17-7. Testaverde had one touchdown and two picks while Barry Foster rushed for 106 yards and Neil O'Donnell had 175 passing yards and a touchdown. The win locked up the AFC Central for the Steelers, but the Browns nonetheless were also in the playoffs.
Vinny Testaverde scored three times, once on the ground, as five different Cleveland backs combined for over 100 rushing yards and two additional scores in a 35-7 rout of the Seahawks. With vaunted 1993 rookie Rick Mirer faltering, two different Seahawks quarterbacks combined for 229 yards and a pick.
|Wild Card||January 1, 1995||New England Patriots||W 20-13||NBC 12:30et||77,452|
|Division||January 7, 1995||at Pittsburgh Steelers||L 29-9||NBC 12:30et||58,185|
This was the Browns' most recent home playoff game and their last playoff victory until January 10, 2021, when Baker Mayfield led the Browns to a victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card Playoff Game.