Browns RB Duke Johnson again connected to Tampa Bay

(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /

Duke Johnson recently changed agents which fueled more speculation that he wants the Cleveland Browns to trade him and Tampa Bay is again being pointed to as a destination

Throughout the offseason, rumors have been swirling around Duke Johnson. The Cleveland Browns running back reportedly was being shopped by the team and didn’t appreciate that.

This led to him sitting out of OTAs and asking to be dealt elsewhere. Players have short careers and simply want to make the most of them, and he feels going elsewhere could benefit him which makes the request from Johnson understandable. Surely, he felt the team wasn’t interested in keeping him around after the rumors as well as the fact they added Kareem Hunt to a backfield that already contained Nick Chubb.

Even so, the Browns have yet to give Duke what he asked for and head coach Freddie Kitchens said he expects him to be on the team and have a “key role” in 2019. This was followed by comments from Baker Mayfield which were critical of Johnson and may not have gone over well in the locker room.

Everything seemed resolved on that end but now there’s been more development as Johnson switched agents, moving on to Drew Rosenhaus. One of the most famous agents in the game, Rosenhaus usually gets what his clients want, which could be a trade in this case.

If so, Pro Football Talk seems to think the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a team to watch.

This move makes plenty of sense if you are Johnson and Tampa Bay. Head coach Bruce Arians is expected to give the offense a shot in the arm but he needs talented players in order to make things work. While they do have playmakers in certain spots, their running back cabinet is pretty bare.

Johnson would assumedly get more touches in Tampa than in Cleveland and has a shot at being the starter. With the Browns, he’s expected to have a key role, but that could be diminished once Hunt serves his eight-game suspension.

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There hasn’t been much more than speculation at this point, but it’s worth keeping an eye on.