Freddie Kitchens has already ruffled a lot of feathers in Cleveland during his first year as head coach of the Browns, and that is making its way to the team’s players.
According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, former first-round tight end David Njoku isn’t sure if he’ll return next season if the Browns keep Kitchens as their head coach.
During Cabot’s chat with Njoku, the tight end was asked if he expected to be inactive three weeks after returning from injured reserve. “I didn’t, which is why I pushed coming back so hard. I didn’t come back from a wrist injury this fast to sit on the sideline. It hurts my heart. I’ve got to say, this is not what I saw coming, but at the end of the day, it is what it is. I’ve got to keep moving from there.’’
“Obviously, I want to be out there giving it my all with my teammates, but under whatever condition, I’m a healthy scratch for the second week in a row,” he said. “Here we are last game, and I’m still unsure whether I’m allowed to play or not. It’s tough, but it’s not up to me. … I’m practicing every week, day in and day out, just to sit out, so it doesn’t make sense to me.”
Njoku’s contract expires at the end of the 2020 season, assuming the team doesn’t exercise their fifth-year option on his rookie deal.
In 2018, Njoku’s best year with Cleveland, the now-23-year-old caught 56 passes for 639 yards and four touchdowns in 16 games (14 starts). In 35 career games (20 starts), he caught 93 passes for 1,066 yards andninescores.
We will just have to wait and see whether or not Njoku suits up on Sunday and if Kitchens keeps his job or not. Sunday will say a lot about Njoku’s future in Cleveland.