Browns Sign Kareem Hunt

The Browns have signed running back Kareem Hunt, the club announced Monday.

This will reunite Hunt with John Dorsey, who drafted the embattled running back in the third round during his final draft as Chiefs GM in 2017. That said, this is borderline shocking given Hunt’s status. Now that the Browns have signed Hunt, he will be placed back on the commissioner’s exempt list, Dan Graziano of ESPN.com tweets.

Hunt signed a one-year deal that could be worth more than $1MM, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). This does not factor in the suspension, so Hunt will not max out this value. (He would have made $678K in 2019 on his rookie contract.) The 2017 rushing champion is due to be a restricted free agent after the season, so the Browns would stand to have an easier time retaining him in 2020.

Hunt, 23, is under investigation for three separate 2018 events — most notably the incident captured on video that showed him shoving and kicking a woman at a Cleveland hotel/apartment complex in February of last year.

The NFL placed Hunt on the exempt list before the Chiefs cut him in November, and Rapoport tweets Hunt’s goal was to sign before the discipline was levied. The investigation is expected to conclude by March, but Graziano adds (via Twitter) it might be a while before the Browns know how long Hunt will be banned. He will almost certainly end up missing a sizable portion of the 2019 season.

My relationship and interaction with Kareem since 2016 in college was an important part of this decision-making process, but we then did extensive due diligence with many individuals, including clinical professionals, to have a better understanding of the person he is today and whether it was prudent to sign him,” the second-year Browns GM said.

Kareem took full responsibility for his egregious actions and showed true remorse and secondly, just as importantly, he is undergoing and is committed to necessary professional treatment and a plan that has been clearly laid out.”

Considering Hunt’s suspension is not yet known, and the fact that the talented back has been out of the league less than three months, the Browns will take heat for this move. While it was expected Hunt would receive another chance, due to his immense talent, it was not expected he would sign more than a month before free agency.

Given what we know about Kareem through our extensive research, we believe he deserves a second chance but certainly with the understanding that he has to go through critical and essential steps to become a performing member of this organization. … Here at the Browns, there is a detailed plan with expectations laid out that he understands and must follow, because any similar incident will not be tolerated.

“We will support Kareem through this process and utilize our resources, however permitted, to help him become successful on and off the field as long as he continues to show the commitment necessary to represent this organization.”

This will place Hunt mere minutes away from the scene of his defining moment. The Toledo alum grew up in Willoughby, Ohio, a suburb just east of Cleveland. He is also under investigation for an alleged assault at a Kansas City nightclub from January 2018 and an alleged incident at a Ohio resort later last year.

Hunt gone through alcohol and anger management treatment since the Chiefs waived him, Rapoport adds (on Twitter), and will continue to do so.

I would like to once again apologize for my actions last year,” Hunt said. “What I did was wrong and inexcusable. That is not the man I was raised to be, and I’ve learned a great deal from that experience and certainly should have been more truthful about it after the fact. 

I am committed to following the necessary steps to learn and to be a better and healthier person from this situation. I’m a work in progress as a person, but I’m committed to taking advantage of the support systems that I have in place to become the best and healthier version of myself.”

From a football standpoint, this crowds the Browns’ backfield. If/when Hunt receives the green light to play in 2019, he will join a team that already employs Nick Chubb. Cleveland’s second-round pick last year averaged 5.2 yards per carry, amassing 996 on the season, and scored eight touchdowns. The Browns also have passing-down back Duke Johnson, who signed an extension to stay in Cleveland last year. Johnson’s $1.8MM 2019 salary becomes fully guaranteed on March 17, Adam Caplan of Sirius XM Radio tweets.

Hunt won the 2017 rushing title in just more than 15 games, gaining 1,327 yards on the ground. Prior to his Kansas City departure, he compiled 1,202 yards from scrimmage and scored 14 total touchdowns last season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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137 comments on “Browns Sign Kareem Hunt

          • SuperSinker

            No it’s not wrong. You can idolize a fictional sky fairy all you like, but I’m certainly not gonna have my speech censured by people who believe in immaculate conception. Lol

          • bencole

            I think what’s wrong here is when one tries to apply or force his religious views onto another. If you think it’s wrong, internalize it and don’t do it yourself. That’s obviously not his view, and you have no business telling someone else he should have to follow your religious views.

            • sufferfortribe

              I will never deny the name of Jesus in front of men. I didn’t try to force anything, but that’s almost always the first attack from non-believers.
              How about, if you don’t believe, you try ignoring me, instead?

              • yoyo137

                I don’t know, Pat made a simple comment and you felt that you should chime in with your religious stuff. So why don’t YOU try ignoring comments about Jesus and stop preaching to people who obviously don’t care for your gospel? Acting like you’re being attacked for your beliefs when it was your choice to respond in the first place.

                • sufferfortribe

                  @yoyo
                  What you call preaching I call my beliefs/opinion in comment form. So, am I now not allowed to post my opinions? Have you made yourself ruler over these comment threads? Or do you like butting into other folks conversations, just so you can act all high and mighty?

                  • troll_smasher

                    “How about, if you don’t believe, you try ignoring, instead.”

                    Sounds like @yoyo was just telling you to practice what you preach. I could be wrong though.

                  • Im sure you wouldn’t find it annoying at all if it were people of another faith shoving it down your throat. You aren’t posting an opinion when you tell me not to take Jesus’ name in vain. You are giving me a command due to your religious beliefs. That’s in no way an opinion

          • Only if I believed in your religion, which I don’t. Therefore I’m gonna use it to the fullest extent. Christ, I wish people wouldn’t shove their religion at others.

            • yoyo137

              You don’t need to explain yourself to people who project their own insecurities onto others man. We all know you meant no harm by your comment. Have a great night dude

              • sufferfortribe

                I am nowhere near insecure. I am very secure in my beliefs, and in knowing where I’ll be the second after I pass on. Jesus provided me that opportunity, just like He did for all who choose Him.
                It appears like you’re the insecure ones.

                • The insecure people are those who feel the need to continually state their position, I think one person here has managed that sufficiently…

          • tank62
            tank62

            Oh no using your imaginary gods name in vain too bad. Are you sensitive about Santa claus too?

      • lawdog23

        Here we go, always has to lead to something racial. So sick and tired of this argument. No matter what color you are, if you act an idiot, be ready to be called an idiot!

        • Ironman_4life

          Well This situation is kind of a catch 22. It seems if you support Kareem hunt then you’re OK with woman beating And if you don’t support Kareem hunt then you’re a racist.

    • Ctrl alt dlt

      gotta love the people who have absolutely no idea what domestic violence is

    • Begamin

      is it domestic violence if you kick some random groupie chick? its obviously still violence, but is it considered domestic?

      • doug.daniel243

        Considering that is what he’s being charged with yes, it is domestic violence.

        • Ironman_4life

          He has never been charged with DV. Police have zero charges against him at this time. Do some research

            • bencole

              No, he won’t be. It’s not domestic. If anything there’s a battery issue, and that should fall under the regular personal conduct policy, with a far more limited range of suspension.

        • Begamin

          But he is not being charged with DV? He is being accused of assault. Domestic Violence implies that its violence within a household/family. A random groupie at a hotel isnt what I’d consider domestic.

        • bencole

          Is that what he’s being charged with? If it is he’ll likely be acquitted. In the absence of a state statute to the contrary, given that she wasn’t a member of his household or family, and that they weren’t dating, under the national standard it is at most a battery, rather than a domestic battery, if it’s not self defense (not claiming anything here, but if she made first harmful or offensive contact, which I’m not sure if she did or not, it is self defense in most cases). If the statute did include gender, it may well be unconstitutional under intermediate scrutiny.

          Moral and legal wrongs are two vastly different things. In this case in fact, unless the NFL CBA domestic violence policy defines the word “domestic” as broadly as to include a person you met today at a bar and are now asking to leave your hotel room,this doesn’t fall under that domestic violence policy at all, rather it falls under the league’s personal conduct policy, which substantially reduces the maximum suspension possible.

          In absence of a league rule defining otherwise, what you’d have to ask yourself is would it still be domestic battery if the person hit was a male, and the facts were all the same? If the answer is no, it’s just a battery, like any fight, and not domestic battery. There would have to be something the court could interpret as at least dating to make it domestic violence.

          Also, if it’s found to be self defense, then the contact is legally justified, and I don’t believe he can be suspended at all, even with the NFL’s conduct policy saying he does not need to be found guilty to be suspended. If no trial, the league would have discretion. But if it were to be found to be legally justified at trial, Hunt probably has had his substantive due process rights violated.

          • Ironman_4life

            Ezekiel elliot kind of went through the same thing. No one knows the whole story. I wish somebody would correct me if I’m wrong but when this original story went down if I’m not mistaken Kareem hunt left the hotel and came back and that’s when this encounter happened. He should have just stayed home.

            • troll_smasher

              Ironman: if I recall correctly, you’re the one screaming THUG when this first came out. Why the sudden defense attorney shoes you’re wearing for Hunt?

                • daveknowsbest

                  Is your email a government issued email? If so, you think it is appropriate to be used for this purpose and to support a player accused of such charges?

                    • yoyo137

                      Ok man. The word thug is racist because you guys only use it to talk about black athletes when they commit a crime. Riley Cooper wasn’t a thug when he decided to be racist af when he was drunk in public right?

                    • yoyo137

                      I now would completely believe that you were calling Hunt a thug. But I understand that he gets a pass because you are a Kansas City fan and you bought a few of his jerseys? At least keep it consistent dude you’ll excuse a guy beating on a girl as long as he plays for your team right?

          • Begamin

            I appreciate the insight.
            Can you help me try to distinguish the two cases of assault and battery? I’ve taken some law classes before so i know that assault deals with threatening behavior that deals no actual physical harm while battery is when physical contact was made. However, i seem to see a lot of a cases where if its just very light physical harm (like a light kick or maybe a shove) it would be considered assault and not battery. It seems to me that only when the damage is real bad do they consider it battery, maybe because they dont want to dish out a bigger punishment when they didnt really do much harm? Would you agree with this observation? If so, what would you then classify Hunts case to be, assault or battery? From what I am picking up from news articles, he is being accused of assault but i guess you could technically claim it was battery.

            • Ironman_4life

              Nobody was hurt. I think battery cancbe a slap or a punch or a kick that doesnt result in injury. Im assuming if you punch someone and maybe break a nose or a jaw, that would be assault. But also every city County state jurisdiction has different laws and rules

            • bencole

              Battery is a volitional act causing the harmful or offensive contact to another. The harmful or offensive contact need not be intentional, only the act causing it. Assault is either attempted and failed battery, or the intentional creation of a reasonable apprehension of immediate bodily harm, and it must be more than just words, it must include a threatening action close to the victim. Actual fear is not required for either cause of action.

              I’m not sure what examples you may be talking about, but once there is actual touching, it’s always battery and never assault. When there is both assault and battery, battery overrides the assault and it is just battery.

              It may be that the examples you are thinking of were plea bargains or crimes dropped to a lesser charge because of lack of evidence.

              Additionally, actual injury is not required for either action.

              • Begamin

                I mean, i understand the technical difference between the two classifications (assault and battery), I just find that sometimes there is physical contact in the incident but yet it is still only classified as assault.

                One example we are both aware of is the Kareem Hunt incident. While it is technically battery, all news articles i find are classifying it as a case of assault.

                Another example i can think of it that time that one guy roundhouse kicked a lady’s phone for being pro-life. The articles I find about that case claim that incident to be assault. That case was in Toronto, CA so i am sure the rule of law is different there, i just dont know how different.

                There are also examples of assault cases on nolo.com (see: their examples of aggravated assault) that all include physical contact but are not necessarily considered battery

                • bencole

                  So technically, the rule of the law is exactly as I have stated it. A prosecutor can go for the lesser count if assault if they feel that there may be both, but assault may be harder to prove. So there’s prosecutors discretion if there are both, to pursue assault as it’s lesser, based upon strategy or strength/weakness of evidence or really anything they decide.

                  For example, if one kicked a phone out of someone’s hand, technically a battery has occurred, and you can’t be prosecuted for both, at least for the same action. But a prosecutor may feel she has a stronger case for the lesser charge of assault, or its easier to prove, or it’s the right thing to do. I believe your examples on Nolo probably may fall under this. I can’t speak to their examples, only to what’s on the Multistate Bar Exam and in blank letter law and case law. I would be cautious of examples on those types of websites, but without seeing it specifically I wouldn’t be able to comment on it.

                  Canada has different law, and I lack a degree in their law.

                  • bencole

                    Second sentence should say “battery is harder to prove” rather than “assault”

                    • bencole

                      I would also say writers of news articles probably don’t all the way understand the distinctions either, although without seeing the articles I couldn’t tell you.

                  • Begamin

                    Ah, I see. That is probably what I am seeing then. Thanks for the clarification!

                    btw, i wouldve linked the articles but i know that usually when i link stuff its actually clickable (at least on the app). if you really want to see those articles all you would need to google is “Kareem Hunt Assault” and you’ll find the articles i found most likely.

      • Begamin

        right?
        the Browns arent promoting assault by giving Hunt a job. a company doesnt just promote every little mistake someone makes just because they hire your services. it would be like a company decided not to hire you because you had a speeding ticket and they dont want to promote reckless driving and breaking of the laws. a stance like that also implies that he cannot become a better person or should not be forgiven, which is essential qualities to humans. self improvement and forgiveness play a big part of life and only the worst of the worst should not be given those benefits. kareem hunt did wrong, sure, but he is not the worst the worst. not even in the confines of violent cases in the nfl is he the worst of the worst, but i digress.

    • kevinnelson

      This was not Domestic Violence, there was no domestic relationship between the victim and Hunt. There was nothing Domestic about it. This is what we call battery and assault. Stop calling this something that it isn’t.

      And no that does not make this better, however, it is a different circumstance.

  1. kenleyfornia2

    Cleveland cares not for your outrage. Dorsey wants to win and this is looking like a 2019 playoff tean

  2. byronious

    Why wouldn’t they sign him for more years? He may get suspended half the year?

    • Michael Chaney

      Why *would* they sign him for more than a year? If things go well they hold his rights as a restricted free agent. No need to guarantee more than you have to before you know how things play out.

  3. I think this is just someone who knows the player, and wants to give him a second chance. He won’t be in Cleveland more then 1 season, unless they want to trade one of the backs?

    • Ironman_4life

      Plus I almost would be willing to bet that most commenters here have kicked their wife harder than Kareem hunt kicked that girl.

      • TheTruth12

        Jesus what the f*ck is wrong with you? I hope you get banned, I’d be willing to bet most haven’t even hit a woman cause they aren’t complete pieces of sh*t. How can you comment on how hard he kicked her? It doesn’t matter how hard he kicked her bottom line is he kicked her something no one should do. I’m absolutely disgusted with you you’re a horrible human.

        • Ironman_4life

          Ahh. Are you gonna report me to the internet police calm down. Ive been married since 2004 and ive never kicked my wife. If i did it would make the newspaper since i work for FD. Im saying DV is more common than not. It happens. Obviously its wrong. Im saying it happens.

          • TheTruth12

            It’s absolutely fine to say it happens and it’s common, but it’s not okay to say something like you said.

            • Begamin

              Enough with the fake outrage out of you. Just another slack who wants to have peoples right to communicate axed for saying something you dont like.

              +Ironman
              Say what you want to, dont let the easily offended dictate what is ok and not ok to say

      • sufferfortribe

        I never did…..neither the first or second ones. A man who chooses to strike a woman in any way is a lowlife piece of cr@p.

      • burtgummer1

        I’ve been married for 43 years and have never raised a hand to my wife (or foot or anything else)

  4. sufferfortribe

    I’m a lifelong Browns fan, and am not pleased with this signing……for two reasons. First, even though I believe in forgiveness, his previous actions are not those of a real man. Maybe he should seek out Christ Jesus before he does anything else, because that’s the only way to truly change our makeup.
    Second, the Browns didn’t really need him. Chubb and Johnson rock already, and adding to the backfield just takes away chances from them, chances they’ve earned.

    • Ironman_4life

      Im a Chiefs fan. I will come from a football standpoint since Jesus and religion Have zero to do with being a good person. The guy is a great player. He wouldnt be the backup. He will be the starter. Once you see what he does in that offense, you will grow to like him.

      • Ironman_4life

        Plus. Would you rather have a player like this on your team or running against you?

        • sufferfortribe

          Against. And I disagree, Jesus is Who saved me from the piece of $#&@ that I used to be. Only Jesus.

          • Ironman_4life

            So jesus has left the building. Why do you not want this football player on your team who can help contribute and maybe get Cleveland to a playoff game? For close to league minimum.

            • sufferfortribe

              Because there’s more important things in life than playoff games, like character.

          • Begamin

            No one is saying religion cannot be a positive influence on you. Ironman is making that point that you can be both a religious person and a bad person. He is making the point that it is not necessarily so that religion is tied to being a good person.

            +SuperSinker
            *tips fedora*

            • sufferfortribe

              I’m not religious……I’m a Christian. Big difference there. And yes, I am yet a sinner. But on that day, I will be made perfect in His name.

              Being a good person won’t get anyone into Heaven. But being saved by His blood will.

              • bigkingk

                My good God. That’s some bassackward thinking. Be good, that’s all anyone can do. Stop shoving religion into a football thread.

                • sufferfortribe

                  Everywhere is the place for it. I don’t deny my Savior…..ever. I choose to glorify His name.

    • Mel hall ruled

      The more weapons the better! I don’t care about what these clowns do off the field!! I want wins on the field. If hunt isn’t locked up in jail he should be able to play. Everyone against it stop watching the nfl!! Every team has a woman beater

    • A person who can’t change themselves and instead requires the assistance of some all powerful being is weak willed. The only thing keeping a person an a$$ is that person.

  5. connfyoozed

    Just when it looked like the Browns had finally figured out how to avoid being the public relations nightmare of the NFL…

    • Legit, more people are upset about the Reid signing, so not really. Excellent timing on their part

  6. Julio Franco's Birth Certificate

    Right when you think the Browns have turned a corner and stopped being the Browns, they totally jump back into being Browns again. Biggest professional franchise joke in any league anywhere.

        • Begamin

          The Ravens and Steelers werent all the impressive last year. Browns thwarted the Ravens playoff chances. Browns are on the upswing especially if this coaching staff is actually good. Hus Jackson stunted the Browns growth any chance he got, but the moment he left is the moment they started looking pretty good. If they have a good draft dont be surprised if they take the division

  7. Polish Hammer

    This was the last city he needed to sign with, he needs to stay away from his negative influences.

  8. hill

    Reason #412 why the NFL is broken.

    Fans who support the Browns’ decision are complicit.

    Yay America

    • Complicit to a guy hitting a woman who assaulted him first? Guilty as charged! If women want equal treatment, they need it in all facets. If a guy comes up to you, hits and spits in your face, you are gonna hit him. Equality demands you do the same for the opposite sex.

  9. Julio Franco's Birth Certificate

    If I’m Nick Chubb right now, I’m calling Dorsey (or Haslam, or whatever idiot is really making these decisions) and saying, I want out. Now. This carnival also knowns as the Clowns is a disaster.

    • How? By signing a player Dorsey personally knows and who has been seeking treatment since his release? Chubb has no leverage for any kind of demand, I don’t know why you seem to think he does.

  10. manos

    Gets into an altercation at a Cleveland hotel.
    Signs in Cleveland.
    This guy is just asking for it lol.

  11. Hannibal8us

    And I thought going 0-16 was embarrassing for the city of Cleveland but now this? Putting winning ahead of morals is pathetic.

  12. Mel hall ruled

    I believe that broad was identifying as a man…. so after further review the kick is legal

  13. jeb39999

    Hunt is the hypocrisy of the NFL we don’t care what you do as long as you help us win. The chiefs took the high road the Browns did not. Too many guys working their butts off and not hitting woman to give Hunt a job right now. If there was a video of anyone else hitting a woman circling the internet and they applied for a job he wouldn’t get called for an interview. Truth is he made a bad choice and there could be consequences but this signing seems to undermine the process. Does he deserve a second chance? Maybe but not now, the timing is off about this signing. Needs to get his life figured out, not worry about football, or he will just keep making mistakes.

    • bencole

      He’s not you. You don’t bring enough value to the world to get called for a job after doing that. He does. I wish my team signed him.

      • jeb39999

        I don’t agree with your opinion that Hunt adds value to the world by playing football. Other guys do, my point is, hire them instead.

        • Polish Hammer

          You’re right, and when the Chiefs did the right thing and moved on his backup slid right in there and filled in well. At least Veach and the Chiefs didn’t sell out and dumped their star RB in the middle of what could of been their Super Bowl run.

          • Filled in we? They went from having the most balanced and scary offense to a pass-heavy team that couldn’t run on an average defense.

  14. crosseyedlemon

    So much for Leprechaun’s guarantee that the Bears would sign Hunt. Maybe now Nagy will stop trying to recruit former Chiefs and focus on finding someone who can kick FGs.

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