The Cleveland Browns will have a big decision coming up.
Running back Kareem Hunt is a restricted free agent this offseason, but the team already boasts one of the best backs in the league in Nick Chubb.
Chubb finished second in the league in rushing yards last season with 1,494 yards on the ground in 2019.
Bringing back Hunt could potentially complicate touches for both backs; however, bringing back the former Kansas City Chief could pay huge dividends towards the Browns offense.
He Wants To Stay Home
Did you know that Hunt is an Ohio man?
He attended South High School in Willoughby and then attended college at the University of Toledo.
What makes this contract situation easier is that Hunt reportedly wants to return to the Browns.
#Browns RB Kareem Hunt: “Ain’t no place like home and this is home for me so I would love to be in my hometown playing for a long time…maybe even finish my career. That would be something special. I’m just excited to see wherever it takes me, they’re going to get a ballplayer.”
— Keith Britton (@KeithBritton86) December 27, 2019
Follow The Saints’ Blueprint
In 2017, the New Orleans Saints looked like the franchise would be on their way towards a Super Bowl, but instead were struck by the “Minneapolis Miracle.”
During that season, the Saints boasted the best pair of running backs in the league in (at the time a rookie) Alvin Kamara and veteran Mark Ingram.
The team’s offense was second in the league in yards-per-game thanks to huge contributions from Ingram and Kamara.
Ingram led the franchise with a career-high 1,124 rushing yards and a career-high 416 receiving yards.
Kamara added 728 yards on the ground and 826 receiving yards to go with 13 combined touchdowns.
In 2017, Hunt led the league in rushing with 1,327 rushing yards, and Chubb nearly led the league in rushing this season.
See the potential?
The Bengals Proved It Can Work
In 2014, the Bengals qualified for the playoffs as a wild card team, and in 2015, the team won the AFC North.
On those teams, the Bengals sported two running backs in Jeremy Hill and Giovanni Bernard who ran the table on the rushing and receiving end.
Now, were HIll and Bernard just as good as the Ingram-Kamara combo?
In terms of a statistical approach, no; however, the two were dynamic at their respective abilities that look very similar to what Chubb and Hunt could provide the Browns.
In 2014, Hill led the Bengals with 1,124 yards on the ground, while Bernard added 680 yards on the ground and 349 receiving yards.
In 2015, Hill rushed for 794 yards, but had 11 rushing touchdowns, while Bernard added 730 rushing yards and 472 receiving yards.
Chubb could be the ground attack, while Hunt supplements. If the Bengals can make it work, then surely two top-two rushers could make it happen, right?
Who Will Coach the Browns?
Bruce Arians, Sean Payton/Pete Carmichael, Josh McDaniels, Andy Reid, and Kellen Moore.
These are the coaches that have built the NFL’s leader in yards-per-game over the last five years.
With the exception to Moore, these are proven offensive minds in the league.
Even if the Browns do resign Hunt, the production of Chubb and Hunt will solely rely on who is calling the plays.
Don’t believe us? Look at what happened on Sunday.
A team that has Baker Mayfield, Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry, Nick Chubb, and Kareem Hunt is going to lose to the one win Bengals. That’s how bad Freddie Kitchens is as a coach. #Browns
— Holiday Brew (@brewhaha36) December 29, 2019
The Final Projection
Chubb and Hunt could be the next dynamic duo at the position.
With the athleticism that both could bring, Chubb and Hunt could bring production that could be between the likes of the Ingram-Kamara and Hill-Bernard combo.
When Hunt led the league in rushing, Hunt also added 53 receptions for 455 yards.
With a power-running back like Chubb and a receiving threat like Hunt, this Browns offense could hit on all angles.
Then again, it all depends on who is calling the plays, which is something that the Browns have failed to solve over the past decade.
OMG yes these two would make a killing on the field if they decide to rehire Hunt. Please let that happen, because I can see magic with these two taking turns running that ball out there.
I like when teams have tandem running backs taking turns out there. Give us more chances in the run game, as well as more options in the passing game. Baker needs more targets and having two RBs in there could be good for them.
Good Article … almost like the old Byner and Mack combo but even better … its crazy to think that if the browns do resign Hunt ( which I hope they do ) they could have not only the top running back duo in the league but the top receiving duo in the league ( OBJ , Landry ) as well … all we need is direction with a new coach that knows how to use these guys and as long as Baker gets over his sophomore slump ( which good coaching will help him do ) are offense should be close to the top for years …. still need help on D tho