Karim Hunt’s “pay me or trade me” position is problematic in many ways

The Cleveland Browns have had their fair share of drama this season, most of it being made by the quarterback. Former player Baker Mayfield wanted to be traded after finding out the team was visiting Houston. Even before QB Deshaun Watson agreed to come to Cleveland, Mayfield was done with the team.

Watson’s situation is well known at this point. Everything but the final conclusion, both through NFL Appeal or a Federal lawsuit.

Around the NFL, a few players took their contract applications to the team via a copy of a “contract.” Instead of walking away from the team, which is often not present for players under contract now, players appear in the mandatory activities but do not participate. WR DK Metcalf, for example, has done it before get knot.

For Browns, RB Kareem Hunt added to the drama with multiple reports, First, Josena Anderson, that he wants a new contract or it is traded. This report is also backed up locally:

Earlier this Offseason

Hunt’s desire for a new contract is not new. Talk about that desire earlier in the season but seemed to be talking about it as a wish or a dream, not an expectation.

The change now is that Hunt appears to be expecting a new contract or being traded, not just hoping to stay with his hometown team. It was a hunt organization members On hand for his charitable events in the past two years including General Manager this summer.

The timing is less than perfect

(AP Photo/ Ron Schwane)

While we still have more than a month until the start of the regular season, the timing of this decision isn’t ideal. Teams have already allocated their finances and upstream resources in a variety of ways. An injury or a desperate team could turn things around but Cleveland were also planning to own Hunt.

In fact, many times we’ve seen different offensive combinations that have both Nick Chubb and Hunt in the background.

To stop doing team rehearsals over a week at boot camp is poor planning and poor timing by Hunt on the outside. Hunt and his agents may think that this will put Brown in a difficult position, but, nevertheless, it is not a good time to start the process.

Finance

Kirby Lee USA Today Sports

Unfortunately, finances often play a role in the NFL. Despite having plenty of room for this year, Cleveland’s maximum commitments are skyrocketing next year. The team also committed to Chubb as the rear captain.

Nothing has changed since then This was written earlier in the offseason:

Chubb’s salary cap jumped from $5 million on 22 to less than $15 million on 23. If Deshaun Watson isn’t suspended for the entirety of season 22, his hat jumps $44 million.

With the arrival of Jadeveon Clowney, Greedy Williams, and Anthony Walker Jr. and others to free agency at the end of the year, Cleveland may need to allocate resources to other positions after this season.

Hunt is currently the highest paid backup and the 15th highest paid annually. The extension will likely be more or less expensive in the future.

Crane Hunt

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In any negotiation, leverage is an important piece of the puzzle. Hunt tries to capitalize on his role with the team, the potential of Watson’s long suspension and his all-round talent to secure his wish.

Hunt’s problem is that Cleveland doesn’t have to bow to Hunt’s will, has talented backups in the position and appears to have plans to leave at the end of the season.

Ultimately, if nothing happens, Hunt will play Brown this year. While he may be grudgingly, the team may accept it.

Team influence

Ken Tops USA Today Sports

Cleveland’s influence with Hunt is clearly related to another talented appearance on the field, plus other teams have already expended most of their resources.

Browns’ leverage in the trade market is much lower. Hunt’s position is now well known, few teams value running back highly at this point, and unless there’s an injury, no rival team has a great need for that position. While the assessment is different, GM Andrew Perry had a similar problem trying to trade Mayfield.

The team doesn’t have to give Hunt a new contract and finding a suitable value in the trade seems unlikely.

talent hunt

Gary A. Vasquez – USA TODAY Sports

It is also important to note where Hunt is at this time in his career. While it’s important to note his role as Chubb’s backup, Hunt wasn’t the influential player he once was:

He missed nine matches last year due to injury. In the previous two years, Hunt’s yards per attempt had dropped to 4.2 after 4.9 and 4.6 in his first two years in the league. Last year, on just 78 cars, it jumped to 4.9 without a full workload.

To be fair, runners often feel more comfortable when they are able to get a lot of load into each game. They can feel what the defense is doing better and feel more impact.

Hunt was very active in the passing game with 122 receptions during 32 games with Brown. Even in this area, Hunt’s influence decreased. In his first two years with Kansas City, Hunt averaged 10.5 yards per reception. That dropped to 7.9 with Brown.

Hunt is still pretty good but is he worth a decent sized contract extension from Cleveland or another team? Have the past three years shown that they are enough for another team to trade in assets of value to them? Yes it’s a possible answer to both, but it does require some projection that the 27-year-old will be back in chiefs form.

drop result

Gary A. Vasquez – USA TODAY Sports

Could Perry be able to smooth things over to keep Hunt happy? yes. Whether it comes from more money, sprawl, or just talking about it, Hunt has always loved to play with the Browns.

It is also possible that Berry will find a business partner. My old Philadelphia employer is always aggressive. Some have suggested Hunt could be used as part of a deal for QB Jimmy Garoppolo. There might also be a desperate team that needs some kind of pop.

Anticipating today, Hunt is likely to stay in Cleveland. He has more value to the team as it is, even if he is disgruntled, than any kind of trade.

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