Kareem Hunt, a running back with the Cleveland Browns, reportedly missed Saturday’s training camp session for the second time in order to focus on negotiations for a new deal.
“Browns running back Kareem Hunt, who is in the midst of negotiating a new deal, sat out of Saturday’s practice for the second straight week. Hunt has lately informed the team that he intends to take part in individual drills solely.
“Per league sources, Friday was the first day since training camp began that Hunt did not take part in the team portion of practice. They think that Hunt’s ‘hold-in’ isn’t related to his health at all. The club can impose sanctions against Hunt. According to multiple sources, Hunt’s agent visited the Browns’ facility earlier this week.
“I’ve heard rumors that Hunt has informed team members informally on multiple occasions that he wants to be compensated or traded. One source, however, stressed that they believe Hunt would rather remain in Cleveland than anywhere else, and that he is only seeking fair compensation for his services.”
According to Anderson, Hunt is still taking part in individual drills, which can be seen as a form of a holdout. Five NFL seasons into his career, Hunt turned 27 on Saturday. His 2021 season was cut short due to injuries (calf, ankle), but he still managed to score five times for 560 yards.
To back up Anderson’s story, Chris Easterling of the Akron Beacon-Journal has corroborated it.
League source has confirmed the @JosinaAnderson report that #Browns running back Kareem Hunt has sat out team drills the last two practices as he seeks out a new contract. Hunt, who did participate in individual drills, is in his final season of his current deal.
— Chris Easterling (@ceasterlingABJ) August 6, 2022
Currently, Hunt is in the second to last year of a two-year, $12 million contract deal. In 2020, his greatest season with the Browns, he had 1,145 yards passing and 11 touchdowns.
Together with Nick Chubb, he created a potent backfield combo that helped Cleveland reach the playoffs for the first time since 2002 and win the postseason for the first time since 1994.
The Browns’ offense suffered a number of injuries in 2017, leading to a less than stellar season. As an example, former Browns quarterback and current Panthers starter Baker Mayfield played with a damaged labrum (among other injuries) for much of the season, while Hunt missed much of the year and offensive lineman Jack Conklin and Chris Hubbard went on injured reserve.
The Browns’ backfield, meanwhile, is healthy and ready to go with the hopes of recapturing its former glory in 2020. Hunt is apparently already looking ahead to his next contract, although he could easily land another lucrative multi-year deal if he can rediscover his old form.
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