David Njoku called 'cut candidate' in laughable take

While trying to 'fix' the Cleveland Browns, PFF might have come up with the worst idea ever

Cleveland Browns, David Njoku
Cleveland Browns, David Njoku / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

The folks at PFF typically do some great work but on Wednesday, they made waves for the wrong reasons. Sam Monson and Steve Palazzolo released a podcast where they fixed every AFC and NFC North team in five minutes. That included spending some time looking at the Cleveland Browns.

It didn’t take long for them to dive into the meat and potatoes of things as Palazzolo said the comments were already coming in stating Cleveland was in cap trouble. He said the reason was their massive contracts, which included five names on defense with an average payment per year of $10 million — one of which was Za’Darius Smith who isn’t even currently on the roster in 2023.

On offense, he said nearly the entire roster falls into this category. He then named six players which is roughly half the starters (which isn’t close to the entire roster). The players named were Nick Chubb, Deshaun Watson, Amari Cooper, Joel Bitonio, Wyatt Teller, and David Njoku.

They dove into a couple of those deals, starting with Watson. While talking about Watson, they brought up the asinine trade idea from Mike Tannenbaum who says Cleveland should send Watson and a second to the Giants for Daniel Jones. They then said Andrew Berry doing this would get him fired because it makes sense to fire a guy who got out of the contract you just called the worst ever — after he made the playoffs with backups everywhere.

As bad as some of this was, nothing could have prepared us for the next comment. Palazzolo, who just finished saying Nick Chubb was either going to be cut or restructured, said David Njoku was a cut candidate.

Yes, that David Njoku. The one who just led the team with 81 receptions and had a personal high in yardage (882) and touchdowns (6). And if the Browns decided to move on from their stud tight end, they would save a whopping amount of $2 million while having a dead cap hit of $7.5 million. That’s only if they designate him a post-June-1 cut because a pre-June cut would lead to a loss of $9.3 million in space plus a dead hit of $19 million.

David Njoku is not, and should not be a cut candidate

Again, the guys at PFF usually do a solid job. They take a lot of heat which sometimes is unfair but this is one example of them completely missing the mark.

Beyond his stats, Njoku became an emotional leader for this team in 2023. His toughness to fight through injuries suffered when he was burnt during a home accident was just one example. He also continually fought hard on the field, picking up several first downs by bowling over defenders while racking up the yards after the catch.

All of this is without even getting into his blocking, which is a vastly underrated part of his game. Throw all of that together and the money is an afterthought. Even if his entire deal was wiped out, there’s no way Cleveland is cutting No. 85.

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