Isaiah Crowell showed up to voluntary Cleveland Browns OTAs on Tuesday after signing a contract tender with the team on May 10, according to Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal.
Cleveland’s restricted free agent and leading rusher wasn’t given an offer sheet by other teams and ended up signing the roughly $2.7 million tender. That’s not an awful consolation if you consider he made just over $1.5 million during the last three seasons after going undrafted in 2014, per Spotrac.com.
If the pay bump, however temporary, isn’t motivation enough, Crowell’s set up in a great position to line his pockets after this season, whether it’s with Cleveland or not. The Browns have beefed up their offensive line by adding standout guard Kevin Zeitler, signing center J.C. Tretter, and welcoming back mauler Joel Bitonio from injury. Bitonio had been playing at a Pro Bowl level prior to losing his season to a broken foot in Week 5.
Those moves following his offense’s big picture struggles, could signal a potential shift in approach by Hue Jackson. You have to think a more run-dominant offense is more likely than not in his second season. After all, Jackson’s signal-caller will probably be a young player who needs all the help he can get for survival.
Crowell, 24, is playing the season for perhaps the biggest contract he’ll receive during his career. It’ll be fun to watch how he responds and how the Browns handle his contract negotiations throughout the next calendar year.