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Browns returning to white facemasks beginning in 2024

The Browns are turning back the clock with a uniform adjustment in 2024.

Cleveland is giving its helmet a minor makeover, ditching the brown facemasks in favor of a return to white, and reverting its matte orange helmet shell to a glossy finish. The Browns revealed their changes on Wednesday, complete with an accompanying update to the team's helmet logo.

Cleveland first wore gray facemasks when the protective gear was initially introduced in the NFL, but switched to white facemasks in 1975, pairing them with the introduction of the now-beloved orange pants that featured striping matching their helmets. Though the orange pants eventually disappeared in the mid-1980s, the white facemasks remained until 2006, when the club returned to gray facemasks in honor of the team's 60th anniversary of its inception.

The Browns debuted brown facemasks as part of the team's radical 2015 redesign -- which included the change to a matte orange helmet finish -- and although those kits only lasted for the league-required minimum of five years, the brown facemasks and matte finish carried over into their 2020 shift back toward their traditional look. Since then, Cleveland has introduced throwback sets, including an all-white homage to the team's first uniform, which featured drop-shadow numbers. After first being paired with a throwback orange helmet, they were eventually matched with a new all-white helmet -- which included a brown facemask -- in 2023.

During that time, the Browns also occasionally swapped out their brown masks for white, pairing this helmet with brown jerseys and orange pants as a nod to the team's beloved 1980 Kardiac Kids. Though the look was initially planned to honor the 40th anniversary of the 1980 team in 2020, the Browns didn't debut the alternate set until Week 15 of the 2022 season, a 13-3 win over Baltimore. They rolled out the same uniforms for a Week 11 win over Pittsburgh in 2023, instantly sending scores of fans back into the glory years of the 1980s (and the less-prosperous first decade of the 2000s), and prompting them to ask for a permanent return to white facemasks.

Browns ownership listened and delivered, largely resetting the team's current look to the same kits worn when Tim Couch led the expansion Browns into the new millennium.

Cleveland's facemask shift isn't the first in which an NFL team ditched one mask for a white replacement. Buffalo made such a change permanent in 2021 after fan response to the alternate look was overwhelmingly positive.

The Browns are following suit, relying on history and fan support to justify their change.

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