5 players the Browns can select in the 2023 NFL Draft to replace Kareem Hunt
By Randy Gurzi
Browns replacement RB No. 3: Keaton Mitchell, East Carolina
Another smaller back at 5-foot-8 and 179 pounds, Keaton Mitchell of East Carolina turned a lot of heads over the past two seasons. He ran for 1,132 yards and nine touchdowns in 2021 followed by a junior campaign that saw him rush for 1,452 yards with 14 more touchdowns.
He's also able to impact the game as a receiver, pulling in 60 receptions for 580 yards with three touchdowns in three seasons. Those numbers are nothing to scoff at but he has the potential to do even more in this area — although he will need to clean up his issue with drops.
Mitchell was another player who stood out at the draft as he put up some impressive numbers including a 4.37 in the 40-yard dash while hitting 38 inches on the vertcal jump and 10 feet and 6 inches in the broad jump.
The one issue with Mitchell seems to be a lack of dominance as an inside runner. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com says any team that adds him is going to need to "have a plan." He does add that he's electric when he gets the ball, which could make him worth the selection.
"Teams will need to have a plan for him, but he’s electric with the ball in his hands. His big-play potential could be hard to pass up for teams needing more juice."- Zierlein, NFL.com
Adding Mitchell would mean Jerome Ford would take over as the starter if Nick Chubb were injured but he would still be a dangerous change of pace option.