The History of the Browns’ Uniforms
When a team has such a long and interesting history like the Browns, they have likely gone through quite a few changes.
One of these changes includes many, many jerseys.
And while the team often played around with very similar designs over the years, fans often loved and hated them for reasons that may seem confusing to non-fans.
The Original Style
During the early years of the Browns’ history, their uniforms took on a very simple and elegant design for home games.
Anyone who has seen footage of those games or more modern games that resurrect the style know it well: white pants with a white jersey and stripes on the sleeves.
Ths no-nonsense look is eye-catching and is one that many nostalgic fans embrace.
Others, however, find this look to be quite simplistic and even dull.
And as football is a rough and sometimes dirty game, these jerseys often had a tendency to get quite stained between games and to look pretty rough by the end of the season.
After the Jim Brown era and the late 60s, a few changes were made to upgrade the overall look of the Browns’ jerseys.
The 70s and Early 80s
By the time the 70s rolled around, Art Modell was well established as the Browns owner and ready to make upgrades to the team to make them more interesting and exciting.
New jerseys were one method utilized by the team during this period.
The team didn’t want to stray too far from their normal colors, however, so the end result is still very Browns.
During this era, players wore orange pants with white and black stripes down the sides of each leg.
The jerseys were the typical white but featured a slightly darker variation of the blinding white common during the Paul Brown era.
These jerseys were a staple for most of the 70s and have even appeared a handful of times after the team’s 1999 resurrection.
During the Kardiac Kids era, the team’s jerseys went through another change.
The classic white shirt was gone for home games and was replaced by the brown typically worn for away games.
The pants stayed orange, with the same stripe on the leg, however.
For many fans, particularly those after the Jim Brown era, these jerseys are often considered the best.
The popularity of the Kardiac Kids Browns likely has something to do with that opinion.
Others argue that the style is simply elegant and provides a handsome look for the team.
The uniforms were then upgraded in 1984 for one season.
The stripes on the sleeves disappeared, new outlined numbers appeared on the sleeves, and not much else changed.
Fans were not happy with this look.
The Classic Style
While the Browns experimented with many different uniform looks over the years, they often came back to the classic brown jersey, and white pants look for their home games.
This look has been particularly popular during the post-relocation era, though it was a common one during the Belichick period and before.
Fans appreciated the simplicity and elegance of the design.
Even now, the team breaks out this combination from time to time to bring a classy look and feel to their old games.
And while people outside of the Browns fanbase may argue that their colors and jerseys are dull and uninteresting, fans appreciate the basic style.
Many Browns fans say that they simply want great football and that the jerseys aren’t as crucial to the game.
Others simply enjoy the historical significance of the jerseys.
However, updates have been made to this look from time to time, often with mixed reactions.
Experiments and More Modern Styles
There have been a handful of experiments with alternative Browns jersey styles over the years.
For example, the Browns started their 2008 preseason with Brown pants but got rid of them later.
Coach Eric Mangini brought them back during his brief stint with the team, but fans never got behind them.
Since then, white jerseys and brown pants are rarely, if ever, seen.
And in the mid-2000s, the Browns occasionally wore orange jerseys paired with white pants.
This changeup was brief and only lasted a few games before never returning.
During this time, the team always wore white pants and never pared with brown or orange.
The result would likely have been quite jarring or even loud to some people.
Lastly, the team debuted a brown jersey and brown pants combo in the 2013 season.
They still occasionally wear this style, and it is one with many fans and detractors.
Whatever style the team picks, though, there is always going to be a group of people who don’t like it.
That’s simply a fact of life for any football team.