Lower priority: Nick Chubb, J.C. Tretter, Joel Bitonio
This list is painful to look at. Nick Chubb is arguably the best player on the team, or closely behind Garrett. The problem is, the past in the NFL shows it is very risky to give running backs a second contract in this league, especially an extremely lucrative one.
Nick Chubb will likely be asking to be one of, if not the highest-paid back in the league when it is time for an extension. Running backs just take too many hits and wear on their bodies. They get injury prone and production slows down greatly. Sure, they may be great for a year or two into their next contract, but then they could slow; Todd Gurley for example was great at first and has since been cut.
Running back production can be replaced in the draft and not see much of a dip if they’re in a good system. The Browns will love having Chubb as their bell-cow back for the remainder of his deal, but will, unfortunately, have to likely watch him walk. Unless he is willing to take a bit of a cut from the top players at his position, the new analytical staff will likely not give him a mega-deal.
J.C. Tretter and Joel Bitonio have been staples for the Browns offensive line for several years. When other positions around them up front have been poor, these two were solid. Unfortunately, when both deals expire in 2023 Bitonio will be 31 and Tretter will be 32 years old. They will again be asking for a contract equivalent to the top tier of their respective positions, but could be over their prime.
The Browns could surely use them up front and pay them, but with a bunch of other younger players who will be requiring paydays as well, these two could be left out.
The Browns have a good problem right now of having acquired so much talent, but soon they will have to make tough decisions on who will receive contract extensions. Regardless, the Browns are set up for great success in the near future.