Browns running back Duke Johnson sitting out voluntary minicamp
Cleveland Browns running back Duke Johnson will not be participating in voluntary workouts, according to Mary Kay Cabot of The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
This hardly comes as a surprise, as Johnson requested a trade from the Browns after the team signed fellow running back Kareem Hunt earlier this offseason, knocking Johnson down on the depth chart.
Hunt will be suspended for the first eight games of the season, so, as of right now, Johnson is still second in the pecking order behind Nick Chubb, but once Hunt returns, Johnson’s playing time will almost surely diminish, hence the reason why he wants out.
However, Cleveland has maintained that it expects Johnson to have a role on the team in 2019.
It’s not out of the realm of possibility.
After all, Johnson is actually most effective as a receiver. This past season, for example, Johnson carried the ball 20 times for 401 yards but hauled in 47 receptions for 429 yards and three touchdowns.
The 25-year-old fills sort of a James White type of role for the Browns, as he has never had a season where he accumulated more rushing yards than receiving yards.
Johnson, who played his collegiate football at the University of Miami, was originally selected by Cleveland in the third round (77th pick overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft.
His best season came in 2017, when he totaled 348 yards and four touchdowns on the ground while catching 74 passes for 693 yards and three scores.
The Browns went 7-8-1 this past year, marking their best finish since winning 10 games all the way back in 2007.