2016 Cleveland Browns roster analysis: The running backs

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George Atkinson III

Age: 24 

Experience: 1 year 

Contract Status: Exclusive Rights Free Agent 2017 

Atkinson was claimed by the Browns after he failed to make the Oakland Raiders final cuts this past season. He was signed by the Raiders in 2014 as an undrafted free agent out of Notre Dame. He had bounced back and forth between the Raiders practice squad and active roster.

With the Browns, Atkinson was active for all 16 games and received minimal action. He primarily served on special teams and returned some kicks. Atkinson didn’t receive touches until Week 17 in Pittsburgh where he scored a touchdown.

As a free agent this offseason I expect the Browns to extend a one-year offer to Atkinson. He was on the roster the entire season and showed some potential in the season finale.

2016 Stats: 

Att  Yds  Y/A  TD 

  7    34   4.9   1 

2017 Outlook:  

With a full offseason with the Browns, Atkinson will fight in training camp to be the team’s third string running back. The Browns also need an upgrade at kick returner and he could improve on the limited number of kicks he returned this season and compete for the kick returner job.

INC. When Atkinson finally got an opportunity at the end of the season, he ran hard and produced. The only question becomes, in this rebuilding season why didn’t he get a chance much sooner in the year?. RB, Cleveland Browns. . George Atkinson III