The Cleveland Browns have heard no shortage of criticism since agreeing to give troubled running back Kareem Hunt a second chance in the NFL. That was expected when John Dorsey and company added the Cleveland native to the roster back in February.
And just when it seemed like he was staying on the straight and narrow, a video released in late June showed Hunt involved in some sort of incident that had him chatting to Cleveland police late at night. It wasn’t a good look for a guy who has a short leash. And as Browns owner Dee Haslam put it, Hunt has work to do.
“We know that Kareem has work to do and he’s in counseling working really hard,” Dee Haslam said. “It’s up to him. It truly is up to him and we have high expectations for our players.”
Of course the more troubling incident that led to Hunt’s eight-game suspension heading into the season, is the one that took place here in Cleveland in February 2018, where the then 22-year-old was caught on tape in the hallway of The 9 downtown pushing and kicking a woman.
That incident ultimately forced the Chiefs to release the NFL’s leading rusher in 2017. And it’s one the Haslam’s take very seriously.
“I think you have to take the situation very, very seriously,” Dee Haslam asserted. “We spent a lot of time and John [Dorsey] spent a lot of time with Kareem and felt like he has potential as a person which is obviously as important as a player. He needs to continue to work very hard to be part of our organization.”
Hunt’s eight game suspension stems not only from that incident but at least two others where he was involved in physical altercations. This latest, mystery situation from June is not included but does reiterates the work Hunt has to do to gain the team’s trust.
“Kareem understands what he has to do to continue to be part of the Cleveland Browns,” Jimmy Haslam said.
In order to better monitor Hunt’s actions during his upcoming eight week hiatus and keep him out of trouble, the Browns petitioned the league to allow the three-year vet to stay around the team facility but according to Jimmy Haslam those conversations are ongoing.
Through the first four days of camp, Hunt has remained on the non-football injury list with a groin ailment.