The news was first reported by ESPN’s Jordan Raanan:
Orleans Darkwa is in Cleveland for a workout with the #Browns, per source. He missed last year with an Achilles injury but is back at full strength. Averaged an impressive 4.4 yards per carry in 2017 with Giants.— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) July 22, 2019
Darkwa originally signed as an undrafted free agent with the Miami Dolphins in 2014. He spent four games with the Dolphins before singing with the New York Giants. He appeared in 48 games over four seasons with the Giants, and led the team in rushing in 2017 with 751 yards, while adding five rushing touchdowns.
Darkwa did not like the offer the Giants presented him after that season, however, and he was drawing interest from the Washington Redskins, Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots, according to an ESPN article in February. Those deals never materialized and Darkwa suffered his injury during a workout with the Jacksonville Jaguars in early October.
According to that same ESPN story, Darkwa’s injury was “a fairly straightforward complete rupture of his Achilles” and his most-recent checkup at the time of the article came with positive news. It was expected that Darkwa would be medically cleared for football activities in the spring and his surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Willers, told ESPN that Darkwa “has had no issues whatsoever in the recovery progress.”
Which brings him to today and the Browns, where Darkwa will look to join a running back group that includes Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt, Duke Johnson and Dontrell Hilliard, among others.
The Browns kept three running backs on the roster last year, so the opportunity to grab a roster spot could be limited. Of course, Hunt is suspended for the first eight games of the season, so that could be one avenue for Darkwa.
Another could come if general manager John Dorsey ultimately decides to trade Johnson, which Dorsey might feel more comfortable doing if the coaching staff believes that Hilliard and/or Darkwa can fill Johnson’s role at an adequate level until Hunt returns from his suspension.