Cleveland Browns To Sign Former 49ers Running Back

Cleveland Browns To Sign Former 49ers Running Back

He played a full 16-game season for the first time in his National Football League career, and his 59 receptions and 350 receiving yards were more than he had posted in his previous three years combined (50 receptions for 284 yards).

The biggest concern for the running back is whether he can stay healthy. Crowell lamented not getting the ball more the past two seasons under Hue Jackson.

Interestingly enough, Hyde and Crowell have put up nearly identical numbers since entering the league in 2014 as they both have averaged 4.2 yards per carry and have rushed for 21 touchdowns each. McKinnon, who ran a 4.41 40-yard dash at his combine, is faster and is a more dynamic pass-catcher than Hyde, who had a career-best 59 catches a year ago. He's never panned out as a full-time runner, but McKinnon showed how dynamic he could be in the right situation a year ago. That's an exceptional haul for the former Patriot, who becomes a top-five earner at the position in terms of guaranteed dollars if we omit the backs still on first-round rookie contracts.

If that is true, then the potential is there for Hyde to up his game and at least match his output from 2016.

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Free agent running back Carlos Hyde is off the market. He also finished the year with 1,151 total offensive yards good for nine total touchdowns (another career-high). Hyde lands in with a team more committed to its ground game and the kind of offensive line needed to make it work.

With Hyde and Johnson both in Cleveland, the Browns may feel there are more pressing needs to address with the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, such as quarterback, rather than spend it on another running back in Barkley.

In Cleveland, Hyde pairs with excellent receiving back Duke Johnson to form a strong one-two punch - three if we include new dual-threat QB Tyrod Taylor. Plus, with Hyde in the mix, there just wouldn't be enough work to justify spending a high pick on him.

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