Kareem Hunt landed a two-year extension with the Cleveland Browns
Entering this past offseason, Kareem Hunt was a restricted free agent but the Cleveland Browns were adamant that they wanted him back. They proved that as they re-signed him to a one-year deal but now, it’s apparent they had more than 2020 on their mind with Hunt.
That’s because the team has come to terms with the former NFL rushing leader on a two-year extension.
As reported by Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Hunt’s new deal keeps him in Cleveland for three years and adds $13.25 million to hid contract.
The move is a brilliant one for Browns general manager Andrew Berry. He understood that Hunt’s value has been hurt by the off-field incident that cost him his job with the Kansas City Chiefs. Berry decided it was best to lock him up now rather than to wait and allow a market to develop for Hunt.
It also helps them when it comes to Nick Chubb. While it’s clear Chubb is the leader of the backfield right now, there are only two years remaining on the rookie contract for the No. 2 rusher from a season ago. And if Chubb continues to perform as well as he has, the Browns running back is going to be asking for a significant payday.
For an example of what that could cost Cleveland, look to contracts for players such as Christian McCaffrey, Derrick Henry, and Ezekiel Elliott. Zeke was given a six-year, $90 million extension in 2019, and McCaffrey was signed toa four-year $64 million deal.
Henry didn’t earn as much but the No. 1 rusher in the NFL from a year ago was signed to a $50 million deal covering four years.
While Hunt isn’t being mentioned in the same breath of these players right now, he had been in the past. Not only did he lead the NFL in rushing as a rookie for Kansas City, but he had also already racked 14 total touchdowns in just 11 games in 2018 before the Chiefs let him go when the video of his altercation with a female was released.
Hunt has been making the most of his second chance in Cleveland and the contract he just signed looks like a bargain when compared to other big deals signed. It also could prevent the Browns from having to shell out that kind of money to Chubb, considering Hunt is on the books for a year longer than him now.
Of course, this isn’t to say that’s what the team is thinking. But they did set themselves up nicely to where they have at least one featured back now on an affordable contract for the next three seasons.