When Cleveland Browns running back Kareem Hunt asked for a trade this summer, the Philadelphia Eagles seemed like a logical destination for the talented offensive weapon. As final roster decisions are made, though, it appears Hunt won’t be headed to the Eagles.
A 2017 Pro Bowl selection, Cleveland’s 27-year-old back has become unhappy with the current situation. Hunt requested in early August to be moved, seeking an opportunity to play for a team that would prioritize a contract extension. The Browns have thus far denied Hunt’s request, instructing him that he is a core part of their offense and won’t be moved to another contender.
- Kareem Hunt contract: $6.25 million cap hit (2022), free agent in 2023
Related: 2023 NFL free agent rankings
Heading into a contract year, Hunt isn’t among the Browns’ priorities right now. While the team is operating with the most cap space ($49.2 million) in the NFL right now, it is poised to have one of the highest payrolls in the NFL next season. With running backs increasingly devalued in the NFL financially, there is even less incentive to extend Hunt.
During the 11-game Deshaun Watson suspension, the Browns will be especially reliant on their running back. Hunt might be among the leaders in targets with quarterback Jacoby Brissett under center and he’ll also likely see a solid number of carries each game. Those circumstances likely play a role in Cleveland’s insistence on keeping him and the Eagles seemingly not pushing to acquire him.
NFL insider Adam Schefter reported on 97.5 The Fanatic (H/T Adam Hermann) that the Eagles aren’t “knocking on doors” to try and acquire Hunt. It seems Philadelphia is satisfied with its situation at running back, even with Miles Sanders dealing with an injury this summer.
- Kareem Hunt stats (2021): 386 receiving yards, 174 rushing yards, five total touchdowns in eight games
The Eagles are optimistic that Sanders will play in Week 1 against the Detroit Lions. If he is unable to receive clearance, Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott would lead a committee backfield. Philadelphia also still has the option to explore what running backs are cut across the league as teams trim down to 53-man rosters before the regular-season opener.
Related: Week 1 fantasy football rankings