Cleveland Browns: Duke Johnson talks up Denzel Ward and Nick Chubb

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 08: Nick Chubb
ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 08: Nick Chubb /

Cleveland Browns running back Duke Johnson touched on a lot of topics on Sirius XM NFL Radio Friday, including giving some praise to rookies Denzel Ward and Nick Chubb

There’s plenty of reason for Cleveland Browns running back Duke Johnson to be excited right now. He just struck a deal to stick around for three more seasons by signing a contract extension that pays him $15.6 million — with $7.74 guaranteed.

He talked about that deal, and the state of the Browns this past week when he joined Sirius XM NFL Radio and spoke with Mark Dominik and Bruce Murray.

One topic he discussed was his belief that the talent added this offseason could have a huge impact on the team. He feels strongly that new quarterback Tyrod Taylor can lead the team in the direction they want to go.

He also had some praise for a couple of the rookies that Cleveland brought in. When discussing who he sees as the two best rookies, Johnson spoke on No. 4 overall pick Denzel Ward  — the cornerback from Ohio State — and No, 35 overall pick Nick Chubb — the former Georgia Bulldog running back.

"“I think Denzel (Ward) will be one of the best corners in this league when his time comes. … Him and Nick Chubb, because they both are kind of not big talkers. They just come to work every day and grind and make sure they know what they’re doing and come about work as a true professional and not like a rookie.” — Johnson said on Sirius XM NFL via Mary Kay Cabot of"

The best part about Johnson’s statement is that he said both those players come across as professionals instead of rookies. That’s great especially with Ward because he’s expected to start right away.

Ward was behind Marshon Lattimore and Gareon Conley until last season, both who were first round picks in 2017. When he did get his chance to start, he was impressive — especially in press coverage which makes him an ideal fit in the NFL.

Chubb won’t be counted on as early. With Carlos Hyde and Duke Johnson in the same backfield, he will be eased in slowly. Duke and Chubb will have different roles despite playing different positions, so the UGA product will have to be ready to spell Hyde initially.

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He’s got the kind of talent though that makes it seem likely that he will be a huge success and make it hard to justify him sitting much.