Kareem Hunt signing with Browns hasn’t made Duke Johnson ‘expendable yet’
The Cleveland Browns made headlines with their questionable signing of former Kansas City Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt. Although most of the attention is surrounding the ethics of the decision, running back Duke Johnson is focused on keeping his job.
Hunt’s presence now brings up Johnson’s future with the team in question. According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, general manager John Dorsey says he will look into his role on offense in the offseason.
“I don’t think it makes him expendable yet.” Says he’ll research it as time goes on.
This is certainly not the most encouraging sign for Johnson. His workload already took a hit last year with the addition of running backs Carlos Hyde and Nick Chubb. Although the Browns eventually traded Hyde, Chubb has established himself as the team’s workhorse moving forward.
Johnson has long served as the team’s change-of-pace back in passing situations. His prowess as a pass-catcher out of the backfield has helped him solidify an integral role in the offense. He finished the 2018 campaign with a career-low 47 receptions for 429 yards and the three touchdowns. Despite Chubb’s emergence, it is clear that Cleveland obviously felt the need to add more depth to the backfield.
Of course, this all remains speculation at this point. There is no question that the addition of Kareem Hunt has come with its fair share of criticisms and rightfully so. Regardless, the Browns would not be willing to deal with all the skepticism unless they are planning to utilize him heavily early on. Perhaps the time has come for Johnson to start fielding interest elsewhere this offseason.