Browns could get a second chance at potential cap casualty DeAndre Hopkins

If the Tennessee Titans make DeAndre Hopkins a cap casualty, the Cleveland Browns would be an ideal landing spot

DeAndre Hopkins
DeAndre Hopkins / Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

Could DeAndre Hopkins once again be a target for the Cleveland Browns in 2024? Hopkins and the Browns were linked to one another in 2023 due to the relationship the wideout has with Deshaun Watson. The two played together with the Houston Texans and put up some impressive numbers.

Cleveland's quarterback made it no secret he wanted a reunion but that never happened. Instead, the Browns went into the season with Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones, and Elijah Moore while Hopkins signed with the Tennessee Titans. With Tennessee, Hopkins had 75 receptions for 1,057 yards with seven touchdowns. Even with the solid stats, his future with the team is in doubt after a coaching change.

Mike Vrabel was replaced as the head coach by Brian Callahan and offensive coordinator Todd Downing was replaced by Nick Holz. These changes have led to speculation that Hopkins could be a cap casualty this offseason. The biggest reason would be the savings with the Titans set to save more than $16 million with less than $2 million in dead money should he be designated a post-June 1 cut.

Browns receivers underperforming in 2023 could lead to a longer look at DeAndre Hopkins

It became apparent that Cleveland never intended to go after Hopkins full force. Perhaps if his salary commands fell through the floor, they might have. But they felt good about their guys in 2023 and decided not to get into a bidding war.

The question now is whether or not they would change their tune if given a mulligan. Outside of Cooper, Cleveland's receivers underperformed expectations. Cooper had 1,215 yards while Elijah Moore had 640 with just two touchdowns. Behind them, Peoples-Jones hardly made a sound before being traded to Detroit.

Rookie Cedric Tillman showed flashes but ended up with just 224 yards on 21 receptions without a touchdown. David Bell had 167 yards and three touchdowns on 14 receptions but was aided by a huge outing in Week 18 when all the starters were resting.

Cleveland general manager Andrew Berry still insists he feels good about his guys but the Browns need to think long and hard about making a splash at the position. Perhaps that could mean giving Hopkins a longer look should he become available once again.

More Browns coverage