Around the AFC North: Browns Make Controversial Move, Sign RB Kareem Hunt

021119_AroundAFCN

Browns: After Disturbing Video, Browns Give Kareem Hunt a Second Chance

Running back Kareem Hunt was given a second chance Monday by the Cleveland Browns, who signed him less than three months after a video surfaced showing him shoving and kicking a woman. 

The NFL placed Hunt on the Commissioner Exempt List after the video became public and he was released Nov. 30 by the Kansas City Chiefs. He is not eligible to play until the NFL investigates his case and determines his punishment.

Hunt was not arrested for the incident, which occurred last February. However, once the video went viral, there was wide speculation about how long Hunt would have to wait for another opportunity, or if another NFL chance would ever come.

The Browns provided the answer and released a statement by general manager John Dorsey, who was general manager of the Chiefs when they drafted Hunt in 2017.

Hunt also released a statement through the Browns, again apologizing for his actions.

At this point, nobody can be certain when Hunt will be eligible to play. Hunt is just 23 years old and he had 14 touchdowns last season – seven rushing and seven receiving. As a rookie in 2017, he ran for a league-high 1,327 yards and eight touchdowns, and caught 53 passes for 455 yards and three more scores.

The Browns finished 7-8-1 last season, winning six of their last eight games. Cleveland already has some impressive offensive playmakers like quarterback Baker Mayfield, wide receiver Jarvis Landry, running back Nick Chubb, and tight end David Njoku. Adding Hunt to that mix would only make Cleveland more explosive.

The Browns, who sense a chance to win the division next season, are willing to absorb the off-the-field problems and risk of signing Hunt.

Bengals: Todd Grantham Could Be Cincinnati’s Next Defensive Coordinator

Cincinnati has asked for permission to interview Florida defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, The Athletic reported Monday. New Bengals Head Coach Zac Taylor is looking for someone to run his defense, and the search has been extensive. Potential candidates mentioned for the job include former NFL head coaches Jack Del Rio and Dom Capers, and former Atlanta Falcons defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel.

Grantham was the Browns’ defensive coordinator for three seasons (2005-07) and he was a defensive line coach with the Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, and Indianapolis Colts. Cincinnati is looking for a defensive coordinator to orchestrate a turnaround after the Bengals yielded a league-high 413.6 yards per game in 2018. Former Ravens assistant coach Teryl Austin was fired as the Bengals’ defensive coordinator midseason, and former Marvin Lewis’ 16-year-run as head coach ended after the season.

Steelers: Michigan Inside Linebacker Devin Bush Could Be on Pittsburgh’s Draft Wish List

The Steelers have the 20th pick in this year’s draft, just two spots ahead of the Ravens. A player who could be on both teams’ radar is Michigan inside linebacker Devin Bush.

In his latest mock draft, ESPN’s Todd McShay has Bush going to the Steelers. Bush has also been linked to the Ravens in some mock drafts, and Baltimore’s interest in Bush could be stronger if free agent inside linebacker C.J. Mosley leaves during free agency.

Whatever the Steelers do at No. 20 could impact the Ravens’ choice at No. 22. However, the Ravens hope Mosley is re-signed by the draft, giving them with one less need to address.

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