This felt like a no brainer but now it is confirmed.
The Cleveland Browns plan to tender running back Kareem Hunt according to general manager Andrew Berry, via Nate Ulrich.
#Browns GM Andrew Berry said he’ll tender RB Kareem Hunt as restircted free agent, declined to reveal what level tender
— Nate Ulrich (@ByNateUlrich) February 25, 2020
Hunt Wanted To Stay In The First Place
Hunt 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
Browns Are Modernizing
Nick 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, but bringing back the former Kansas City Chief could pay huge dividends towards the Browns offense.
In 2017, the New Orleans Saints looked like the franchise that 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 yards, while Chubb nearly led the league in rushing in 2019.
The Tender Cost
According to Over The Cap, the Browns have three tender options to place on Hunt.
- First-round tender: One-year contract worth around $4.7 million. The Browns would receive a first-round draft pick if Hunt is signed by another team and the Browns do not match.
- Second-round tender: One year contract worth $3.2 million. The Browns would receive a second-round draft pick if Hunt is signed by another team and the Browns do not match.
- Original-round tender: one year contract worth $2.1 million. The Browns would receive a third-round pick if Hunt is signed by another team because Hunt was drafted in the third round.
The Browns have room to offer him a first-round tender but it is unknown at this time what the Browns plan to do.
Andrew Berry says Kareem Hunt understands the expectations the Browns have for him. Says the team will give him a RFA tender, but wouldn’t reveal which level.
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) February 25, 2020
We have been expecting this for quite some time.
Hunt has publically stated he wanted to return.
Plus, when he had a run-in with the law, ownership had his back.
It seems like this is a fit for all parties involved.
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