In the modern day NFL, the running back position is not valued to the degree at which it once was. Traditional running backs that can thrive in between the tackles have become almost a thing of the past, (with multiple exceptions) as teams now oftentimes favor players at the position who can act as an extra receiver for the quarterback to throw too. While Nick Chubb’s game as a pass catcher is still evolving, he remains a focal point of the Cleveland Browns’ offense, and the franchise should look to extend the former Georgia Bulldog’s contract as soon as possible due to not only his production on the field, but his attitude and workman like mentality that has permeated through the entire organization.
Despite signing Kareem Hunt through 2023, the Browns would be smart to look to extend Chubb as well, who is set to hit free agency in 2022. A comparable deal for Chubb would be the contract of Derrick Henry, who is signed for $12.5 million per year through 2024. Chubb and Henry’s production was similar in 2019, and could have been in 2020 as well if Chubb had not missed games due to a knee injury.
The emergence of Hunt in Cleveland’s offense should not shy them away from extending Chubb, as the two in tandem create one of, if not the most feared combination of backs in the league. Additionally, NFL teams in this day and age will oftentimes utilize multiple running backs anyways in hopes of keeping runners fresh. Cleveland is able to capitalize on this strategy keeping either Chubb or Hunt ready for major work if the Browns are winning come the fourth quarter. Keeping both backs would also help limit overuse, something that can cause a running back to wear down after a few years of playing in the NFL. If Chubb wants to sustain a lengthy NFL career, teaming up with a player like Kareem Hunt is a terrific way to stay fresh throughout the season.
Not only would Hunt and Chubb himself benefit from Chubb resining longterm, but the entire organization would benefit as Chubb is a premier playmaker at his position. While legitimate running backs can be found in the draft in the later rounds, Chubb has become a transformational talent who’s lead by example mentality is a terrific example for the younger players on the team to follow. Chubb brings excellent on and off field intangibles to the table, despite being one of the more quiet members of the Cleveland locker room.
The Browns are in a unique position that they have not been in since returning to Cleveland. The team has an abundance of talent on both sides of the ball, and will be left to make some critical decisions as to who gets a contract extension. Chubb is everything the Cleveland Browns could want in a football player, and will hopefully be a Brown for his entire NFL career.