The long, long wait is over. The Cleveland Browns came away with a 24-22 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday and officially clinched a postseason berth for the first time since the 2002 season. Prior to this year, the Browns only had one winning season since qualifying for the playoffs back in January 2003.

The Browns -- as evidenced by the information above -- were the laughingstock of the NFL for quite some time. This is a team that constantly had a high draft pick and ended up going through 27 different franchise quarterbacks. However, the franchise did finally get their selection right when they selected Baker Mayfield with the first pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. 

Since then, Cleveland has put together a very talented roster that features a two-head monster at the running back position in the form of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, along with a very strong defense. 

Since it's been quite some time since Cleveland was a playoff team, let's take a closer look at what life was like the last time that the Browns made the postseason. Let's travel back to January 2003 when the Browns appeared in the Wild Card round of the playoffs. Ironically, that came against the Steelers as well, who they'll face this weekend.

Top movie

"The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" was the number one film in the United States for the weekend of Jan. 5, 2003.

Top song

"Lose Yourself" by Eminem stood at No. 1 in early January 2003. Other notable popular songs of the time include:

  • "Work It" by Missy Elliott
  • "Air Force Ones" by Nelly
  • "03 Bonnie & Clyde" by Jay-Z and Beyonce
  • "Jenny From The Block" by Jennifer Lopez

Top album

In January 2003, "Up!" by Shania Twain and the "8 Mile" soundtrack were the highest-selling albums. The best performing album of the whole year was "Get Rich or Die Tryin" by *50 Cent.

Average gas price



  • Popular video game consoles were Playstation 2, Xbox and Nintendo Gamecube
  • Camera phones were just beginning to become popular
  • The T-Mobile Sidekick was released 

What the NFL's divisions looked like

The league was broken down into eight divisions and it was the Texans' inaugural season.

Snapshot of the 2002 NFL season

Here is a look at the 2002 season as a whole, including what occurred in the Super Bowl:

  • Super Bowl: Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeat Oakland Raiders, 48-21, in Super Bowl XXXVII
  • Super Bowl MVP: Dexter Jackson, Buccaneers
  • Super Bowl National Anthem: Dixie Chicks
  • Super Bowl halftime show: Shania Twain, No Doubt
  • Most rushing yards: Ricky Williams rushed for 1,853 yards on the season
  • Most pass receptions: Marvin Harrison registered 143 catches
  • Receiving touchdowns leader: San Francisco 49ers wideout Terrell Owens hauled in 13 touchdowns to lead the league


Raiders quarterback Rich Gannon took home MVP honors for the 2002 season

Champions in other sports

  • MLB: The Anaheim Angels beat the San Francisco Giants in the World Series. Troy Glaus was the MVP
  • NBA: The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the New Jersey Nets to win their third consecutive championship. Shaquille O'Neal was the MVP
  • NHL: The Detroit Red Wings beat the Carolina Hurricanes. Nicklas Lidstrom was the MVP