DeAndre Hopkins

Browns do not need DeAndre Hopkins

Not too long ago it would have made a ton of sense for the Cleveland Browns to pursue the recently released DeAndre Hopkins. Hopkins did spend some time in Houston with current Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson, and like many other former Texans that connection has been a sticking point in discussing ways on how Cleveland can improve their group of pass catchers. But with how the Browns approached free agency and the draft, Hopkins no longer fits their approach.

It would be one thing if the front office was not aggressive in improving the wide receiver group. Trading for Elijah Moore, signing Marquise Goodwin, and drafting Cedric Tillman is a pretty strong set of acquisitions to come out of the offseason with. Without these additions, Hopkins would be a clear match in Cleveland to pair (again) with Watson. If it was to be Hopkins, Amari Cooper, and Donovan Peoples-Jones it would be one thing. The three new guys inserted into the equation makes things very complicated to try and fit Hopkins into the mix.

There is also the issue with missed time. Now almost 31, DeAndre Hopkins has appeared in just 19 of a possible 34 regular season games for the Cardinals the last two seasons. This does include missing a playoff game against the eventual Super Bowl Champion Los Angeles Rams in 2021 due to a torn MCL. Hopkins did not appear in the first six games of the 2022 season due to a violation of the league’s performance-enhancing drugs policy.

DeAndre Hopkins does not fit Cleveland’s roster timeline

The Browns are attempting to balance the fine line between competing this season and building a sustainable roster for the future. With their additions and current roster construction, the Browns simply do not have a viable way to insert DeAndre Hopkins into their plans. If it was Hopkins of a few years ago they would find a way to make it work. Now on the wrong side of 30 and with Father Time looking to claim another victory, it would not be wise to go down this path. The Browns made their plans for their receiving corps clear earlier this season and diverting from them would be incredibly foolish at this juncture.

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