The Cleveland Browns have spent most of the past two decades as one of the principle laughingstocks of the NFL. They have reached the postseason only twice in that time, and have never won a division title. Last season’s 7-8-1 record filled the fan base with optimism and excitement over the future following a 1-31 record over the two previous seasons.
Everything is fresh and new in Cleveland, it seems, but that doesn’t mean that they haven’t had their story of storylines of the non-football variety, which tend to get labeled as drama. One such storyline has played out throughout the offseason, that being the signing and continued employment of running back Kareem Hunt.
A mid-round pick by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2017, he quickly emerged as a Pro Bowl player, but following an incident in a hotel last year in which he can be seen pushing and kicking a woman, he was released during the season.
The Browns signed him to a non-guaranteed contract, knowing that he would face a suspension, which eventually came down in the form of eight games. General Manager John Dorsey held the same position in Kansas City when he was drafted, so that likely played a role.
Hunt had an incident in a bar a couple of months ago in Cleveland that once again result in him having a chat with the police, but nothing came of it, and the team has expressed its belief that they will continue to be the case from the league. The back spoke about it with reporters for the first time recently.
“It was a misunderstanding”, he says in a video Tweeted by Daryl Ruiter. “I appreciate that the Browns still have my back. It was just something that was a misunderstanding, and I know I can’t have that, so I look to move forward and continue bettering myself and working and getting ready for the season”.
“I just have to be smart. That’s pretty much it”, he added. “I’m just going to lay low and continue working to be a better person…I’m just doing whatever it takes to stay out of the way and enjoy myself and my family and keep my mind on football”.
His remarks continued to go on in that vein. He also spoke to the fact that he is continuing to see a counselor regarding his issues, and that has helped. Hunt concluded, “I’m gonna learn from everything and not make the same mistake again”.
The third-year running back’s presence on the roster has caused some on-field issues as well. His signing helped prompt running back Duke Johnson to seek a trade, which he continues to do. Johnson said that the team had already attempted to trade him before he ever requested it.
The latter has had issues remaining available during training camp so far. A groin injury has had him sidelined for a while, but he was cleared to practice recently.
#Browns RB Kareem Hunt addresses the “misunderstanding” in June with a series of responses to questions about it pic.twitter.com/CCJOFoIuy1
— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) August 5, 2019