Duke Johnson confirms he wants Browns to trade him
Duke Johnson is going to have a difficult time finding touches in the Cleveland Browns’ offense once Kareem Hunt returns from his eight-game suspension, and the running back is hoping to be traded before that becomes an issue.
Johnson did not attend voluntary offseason workouts with the Browns, and a report back in April claimed his representatives had informed the team that the former Miami star wants to play elsewhere. Johnson confirmed that at minicamp on Tuesday, though he said Cleveland was shopping him in trade talks before he made the request.
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“My trade request was to meet them on a middle ground,” Johnson said. “I was put on the trade block a month before I requested a trade, so that’s all it is.”
Johnson added that he won’t be a “disgruntled employee” if the Browns don’t move him before Week 1, but he wants to avoid a situation like the one where Carlos Hyde was traded in the middle of the season.
Johnson, who is entering his fifth NFL season, averaged 5.0 yards per carry in 2018 and played a decent role in the passing game with 47 catches for 429 yards and three touchdowns, but he’s a clear No. 2 behind Nick Chubb and will be even further down the depth chart when Hunt’s suspension is up. At least two teams are said to have expressed interest in acquiring Johnson earlier in the offseason, but it may be tougher to find a home for him now that the draft has come and gone.