LAKEWOOD, Ohio (WJW) — The Cleveland Browns’ loss in the second game of the playoffs to the Kansas City Chiefs is bittersweet.
Fans like Tyler Pike who were able to be there in person told us about the moment during the long drive back after the game.
“Little disappointed. Um, it was a great season though, we can’t be mad at that,” he said. “I mean, to go 11-5 and then knock Pittsburgh out, that was the highlight of it.”
Larry Laurello was one of the few Browns fans at Heinz Field last weekend.
“It really almost elevates your emotion to a point where you’re not the same as just a regular game anymore,” he said. “I mean, Browns fans, when it came down to it, we had a Superbowl last week.”
The superfan said his backers bus, The Kennel II, was the first in line Sunday morning — 45 minutes before the first Chiefs fan showed up.
“The hype was still real. There were 16,000 fans there. Browns fans came out strong when we had a good play you could hear, when they had a good play, you could hear their fans,” said Michael Diamond, who traveled with Larry.
You could also hear Browns Backers at Plank Road Tavern in Lakewood. “We thought we were gonna win, we thought we had a chance,” said MacKenzie Truviano.
But those fans shared in the renewed optimism. “This isn’t a one-year thing. Like, they have a strong foundation for multiple playoff appearances and I’m really excited for next year already,” said Plank Road Browns Backers President John David.
This year is one fans will never forget.
“First time the Browns went to the playoff in my life,” said David’s 7-year-old son, Finn.
“It’s extremely positive. I think all the fans from Cleveland can appreciate what they’ve given to us in this very tough year,” said Kyle Singleton.
Fans say the 2020 season also brought more respect and credit to the franchise. “We’re no longer the laughing stock of the NFL. They know we’re for real,” said Pike.
And they plan to be ready for the Chiefs the next time. “We congratulated everybody when we left and we said ‘hey, we’ll see you next year, but on our turf,'” said Diamond.
Browns fans went home Sunday night knowing their team is back in the fight.