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#pounditTuesday, June 22, 2021

Articles tagged: Cleveland Browns

Baker Mayfield, Browns could begin contract extension talks during training camp

Baker Mayfield

Baker Mayfield is under contract with the Cleveland Browns through next season, but there have not yet been any extension talks between the two parties. However, that could soon change.

The Akron Beacon Journal’s Nate Ulrich reported on Wednesday that contract extension talks between the parties could begin in or around training camp, or even early in the season.

Mayfield is completing the final season of his four-year rookie contract and making $5.1 million this season — a bargain for a quality starting quarterback. In April, the Browns picked up Mayfield’s 5th-year option, which would be for $18.8 million in 2022.

Mayfield says he is not worrying about it now because he is focused on his play.

“I’m in no rush because I’m just trying to win games,” Mayfield said.

Both sides have consistently said they are not in a rush to work things out long-term. However, Cleveland’s owner implied they wanted to sign Mayfield to an extension.

Browns fans! It’s Baker’s team in Cleveland. This Cleveland Bakers shirt is a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

Travis Kelce has interesting take on Browns as contenders

Travis Kelce

The Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs met in the AFC Divisional round of the 2020 playoffs. That means Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce got a first-hand look at the up-and-coming Browns team, and it’s safe to say he came away impressed.

Kelce attended Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry’s celebrity softball game Saturday, and when asked about the Browns’ status as contenders, he was giving them plenty of respect.

“They’re definitely a contender, without a doubt,” Kelce said, via Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal. “It’s definitely there. Baker [Mayfield] and the gang have upped the ante, made this team an unbelievable team and a team you have to prepare for and take serious. I think that moving forward without a doubt, I can see a lot more playoff games between us, and I’ll just take it one day at a time and hope for it. I think the Browns and Chiefs are definitely neck and neck.”

Neck and neck may seem like a bit much, but it’s worth remembering the Browns pushed the Chiefs hard during their playoff game and only ended up losing by five. That was without Odell Beckham in the lineup, who is apparently looking great in preseason workouts.

The Chiefs look firmly entrenched among the AFC’s elite. That said, Kelce may be right. The Browns look to be on the rise, and they may challenge the Chiefs quite strongly for years to come.

Browns have no trade interest in Aaron Rodgers for interesting reason

Kevin Stefanski

The Green Bay Packers are not making Aaron Rodgers available for trade despite his issues with the team. But if they ever do decide to explore a trade, it does not sound like the Cleveland Browns would be one of the teams in the mix.

Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot reported that the Browns are happy with what they have in Baker Mayfield and believe he can lead them to a Super Bowl. Because of their faith in Mayfield, they would not be interested in pursuing a trade for Rodgers.

That may sound crazy to some, but the age of both players has a lot to do with it. Rodgers is turning 38, while Mayfield is 26. Mayfield has a long future ahead of him in Cleveland.

Of course, this might be a moot point anyway. Maybe the Browns’ front office knows Rodgers wouldn’t name Cleveland as his desired trade destination, so they could gain favor with Mayfield by saying they want him more than Rodgers. Either way, getting that information out there is a smart move for their relations with Mayfield.

If he does seek a trade, there are some reports about for whom Rodgers would like to play.

Browns fans! It’s Baker’s team in Cleveland. This Cleveland Bakers shirt is a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

JuJu Smith-Schuster reflects on infamous comment that motivated Browns

JuJu Smith-Schuster

The end of JuJu Smith-Schuster’s 2020 season was one to forget. The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver seemed to constantly be motivating his opponents whether he intended to or not.

The most notable example of this came before the Steelers’ AFC Wild Card game against the Cleveland Browns. Smith-Schuster infamously dismissed the opponents, stating that “the Browns is the Browns” and shrugging off the threat from them. The comment was seized upon by Browns players and fans, and looked particularly bad for Smith-Schuster after Cleveland’s 48-37 win.

Smith-Schuster reflected on the comment recently, and said while he was aware it motivated the Browns, he didn’t have any regrets.

“Probably a lot, honestly,” Smith-Schuster said on “PFT PM” when asked how much the remark motivated the Browns, via Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk. “I’m not going to lie to you. It got to a point where the Cleveland Browns had a billboard up in Cleveland that said, ‘The Browns is the Browns.’ I think by me saying that, it says that a lot of people care about what I say.

“At the end of the day, I said what I said. I don’t take anything back. They did come out there, they did whoop our a–. It is what it is. We lost that game. We lost early in that game in the first five, 10 minutes.”

Credit to Smith-Schuster for owning it, because he’s definitely correct about it being a motivating factor. While he may have no regrets, he may want to be a bit more careful about handing opponents bulletin board material in the future. It went wrong for him a lot in 2020.

Browns reportedly in no hurry to get Baker Mayfield contract extension done

Baker Mayfield

The Cleveland Browns made the expected decision to pick up quarterback Baker Mayfield’s fifth-year option, but it sounds like nothing more is in the pipeline for right now.

According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, the Browns have yet to begin long-term contract extension talks with Mayfield, and there’s “no sense of urgency” to do so on either side. This does not reflect a lack of commitment, however, as there is said to be a “general sense of satisfaction” with how things are right now for both sides.

With the fifth-year option, Mayfield has two years remaining on his rookie deal. The roughly $19 million salary he’ll earn in 2022 is fully guaranteed, so the quarterback won’t really be suffering financially.

By all accounts, the Browns are very happy with Mayfield, and the feeling appears mutual. However, a lot of young quarterbacks’ second contracts have been disasters in recent years, so the Browns might as well wait it out.

Browns fans! It’s Baker’s team in Cleveland. This Cleveland Bakers shirt is a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

Jadeveon Clowney agrees to one-year deal with Browns

Jadeveon Clowney

The Cleveland Browns have been pursuing Jadeveon Clowney since last offseason, and they have finally landed the star pass-rusher.

Clowney was in Cleveland on Wednesday for a second free agent visit with the Browns, and ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the two sides have agreed to a deal. Clowney will sign a one-year contract that is worth up to $10 million.

Clowney, 28, played in just eight games last season. The Browns pursued him a year ago before he signed with the Tennessee Titans, and their level of interest did not fade even after Clowney’s disappointing 2020.

The Browns likely believe Clowney can thrive alongside Myles Garrett. Health is always going to be a concern for Clowney, but Cleveland should be a good situation for him if he can stay on the field.

Photo: Jeffrey Beall/Wikimedia via CC BY-SA 4.0

Jadeveon Clowney appears close to signing with Browns

Jadeveon Clowney

The Cleveland Browns have been aggressive in showing their interest in Jadeveon Clowney this offseason, and it sounds like that interest may be mutual.

Clowney is expected to make a second free agent visit to Cleveland on Monday. According to ESPN’s Dianna Russini, the Browns are hoping to get a deal done with the pass-rusher in the near future.

Clowney, 28, played in just eight games last season. The Browns pursued him a year ago before he signed with the Tennessee Titans, and their level of interest did not fade even after Clowney’s disappointing 2020.

The Browns likely believe Clowney could thrive alongside Myles Garrett. Health is always going to be a concern for Clowney, but Cleveland could be a good situation for him if he can stay on the field.

Photo: Jeffrey Beall/Wikimedia via CC BY-SA 4.0

Browns want to host Jadeveon Clowney for a second visit

Jadeveon Clowney

The Cleveland Browns are trying to make more of a push to land Jadeveon Clowney in free agency.

The Browns first hosted Clowney for a visit two and a half weeks ago. That visit was said to be exploratory in nature. Josina Anderson reported on Sunday that the Browns want to have a second visit on Monday.

It’s pretty clear that Cleveland wants to sign Clowney, which is no surprise. They pursued him in free agency last year, though Clowney signed with Tennessee.

The 28-year-old played in just eight games last season and did not record a sack. He was a major disappointment for the Titans, but Cleveland does not sound discouraged.

Cleveland could be a good spot for Clowney to rebuild his value. He would be able to play on a line where Myles Garrett would see most of the attention, giving him lots of opportunities to cause damage.

Photo: Jeffrey Beall/Wikimedia via CC BY-SA 4.0

Browns willing to listen to Odell Beckham trade offers?

Odell Beckham Jr

The Cleveland Browns insist that Odell Beckham Jr. is in their plans for 2021, but that may not be true if someone is willing to take him off their hands.

In a recent appearance on 92.3 The Fan’s “The Barber Shop,” Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot suggested that while the Browns aren’t shopping Beckham, they would likely be willing to listen if someone called with an enticing trade offer.

“I don’t think that there will be a trade partner for him out there,” Cabot said. “I think he’s going to be on the team this season. But I would also say that even though I am believing that Odell and Jarvis (Landry) are going to be the two main receivers this year, if someone did come and make an offer to the Browns for Odell, I still think that they would listen to it. I don’t think they’re 100 percent locked into having to have him on the team this year.”

Even if the Browns wanted to move Beckham, it’s unlikely that they would find a return that would make them happy. The 28-year-old is coming off an ACL injury, and combined with his nearly $16 million cap hit in 2021, that’s likely to depress his trade market.

Beckham caught 23 passes for 319 yards and three touchdowns in seven games in 2020 before suffering his season-ending injury.

Photo: Erik Drost/Flickr via CC-BY 2.0

Hue Jackson makes wild claim about Browns’ 2017 draft

Hue Jackson

Hue Jackson promised bombshell claims about his time with the Cleveland Browns, and he’s made another one in a recent media appearance.

Jackson told NFL Network reporter Mike Silver’s “Pass It Down” podcast that he was the one who ultimately talked the Browns into selecting Myles Garrett with the No. 1 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, claiming that the front office favored quarterback Mitchell Trubisky instead.

“I was lock and barrel on Myles Garrett. But there was others that were lock and barrel on Mitchell Trubisky. And me being a quarterback guy, I did not want that,” Jackson said. “I liked Mitchell but I didn’t think he was the first pick of the draft at quarterback. There were some rumblings about that, and I think everybody knew that. There was truly divide.”

Jackson added that he was not told that Garrett would be the pick until the day before the draft, which he felt was “unheard of.” The former Browns coach also claimed he felt he had to “compromise” to get Garrett by backing down on other things, though he did not specify what he meant by that.

If Jackson did influence the Browns into picking Garrett ahead of Trubisky, the organization owes him thanks. Garrett has blossomed into a star, collecting his third straight season with double-digit sacks in 2020. Trubisky was ultimately drafted second overall by the Chicago Bears, where he struggled with consistency and did not get a second contract. He signed with the Buffalo Bills as a backup earlier in March.

It’s worth noting that there were reports at the time that back up Jackson’s version of events. It’s not clear how seriously the Browns considered Trubisky over Garrett, or how much of a role Jackson played in ensuring that didn’t happen, but it at least crossed their mind.

Jackson has not shied away from making bold claims about his tenure with Cleveland. However accurate his side of the story is, it’s certainly interesting and controversial.