My grandpa was a fan of the Cleveland Browns and so is my father. Me and my brothers grew up with a love of football, and have always been loyal to our team. There is nothing out there like the Cleveland Browns fans, and we enjoy being a part of that! Don’t just take my word for it though!
In 2006, a study conducted by Bizjournal stated that the Cleveland Browns fans are the most loyal in the entire NFL. Now, some will argue that such a study isn’t scientific, and that is true. It is based on overall fan loyalty – both during the winning and losing seasons. It is also based on game attendance and challenges that fans face to attend. This can include the weather, traffic, and even ticket prices for the various NFL teams.
First Energy Stadium
Cleveland Browns fans love their home games, and I have to admit I look forward to that very much. My dad and I rarely miss a game as we have had season tickets for many years. Even though our team has far more losses than wins over the past 10 years, we are proud to say our stadium is 99% full for every home game. I think that speaks volumes about our loyalty!
First Energy Stadium is where we play our home games, and it opened in 1999. The stadium originally offered seating for 73,200. However, the stadium had some renovations done to it recently. As of the start of the 2014-2015 season, the seating has been reduced to 67,407.
It isn’t just our local stadium that we like to watch games at either. When the Cleveland Browns take on the Cincinnati Bengals, one may assume that the game is in our hometown. However, that isn’t always the case. Yet we are there cheering for our team so much that the Bengals fans may be outnumbered! In fact, we try to get as many members of The Dawg Pound to make that road trip down I-71 as possible!
The Dawg Pound
Yes, we are part of The Dawg Pound! Over the years, the rowdiness and antics of this group of Cleveland Browns fans has often been in the spotlight more than our team. The name stems from the bleacher section in the East end of the old stadium, Cleveland Municipal Stadium. It has continued tradition in the East end of First Energy Stadium.
Those of us in The Dawg Pound show up in our orange and brown like the other fans. Yet we take it a step further – with costumes and props that are canine related. The name started out in 1984 after the Browns defense who were often called The Dawgs. In fact, I remember Minnifield and Johnson barking to each other on the field – and sometimes even to fans in the crowd!
In 1995, us fans were sure upset to learn that the team would be relocating to Baltimore. How could the owner even consider that? As a way to protest, The Dawg Pound fans removed bleachers and seats from the stadium. We sure were glad that they didn’t ban us from games for life or press criminal charges!
So the life of the Baltimore Ravens began from that move. It wasn’t until 1999 that we had our Cleveland Browns back. This was due to an arrangement that the NFL was key in completing. Those that are fairly new Cleveland Browns fans have no idea that for several years, we didn’t have our team!
Browns Backers Worldwide
My dad and I also belong to the Browns Backers Worldwide (also known as BBW). I am proud to say we now have over 105,000 fans and continue to grow. We have members in every major city you can think of around the USA! We also have plenty of members that are found on military bases around the world!
Famous Fans of the Cleveland Browns
While my dad and I are just your average guys, the Cleveland Browns have a legacy of famous fans. It is interesting to learn who all enjoys the same NFL team that I do. One of my music idols is icon Elvis Presley. He was a fan of the Browns beginning in 1957 when his friend from Memphis, Gene Hickerson, started on the team. Hickerson was one of the greats of our team, and retired in 1973.
A few professionals of other sports have shown their love for this NFL team. They include WWE wrestlers Dolph Ziggler and The Miz. Both of them were born in the Cleveland area. Baseball legend Hank Aaron has also supported the Cleveland Browns as a loyal fan.
It seems that the Cleveland Browns have quite a list of rivals, and the fans love it! We enjoy when we get to play these rival teams. We know that it is going to be an action packed game with plenty of excitement and energy.
Our biggest rival happens to be the San Francisco 49ers. However, over the years it seems that this rivalry has diminished. Part of that stems from the 49ers personnel that helped to bring the NFL team into Cleveland again in 1999.
Our rivalry with the Pittsburgh Steelers is often referred to as the Turnpike Rivalry. It is considered to be the oldest rivalry in the AFC. The Battle of Ohio is what Cleveland Browns fans reference our rivalry with the Cincinnati Bengals. There are quite a few cultural and social issues that seem to keep fans divided, even though the two teams are located in the same state.
Many of the old timer fans, including me and my dad, see the Baltimore Ravens as a huge rival. It stems from the fact that the team was moved there long ago. I think this rivalry is more persona with Art Modell though than with the actual team. No matter who we play, win or lose, I love being a Cleveland Browns fan!