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Clowney unlikely to return next year, makes numerous negative statements about team

Clowney “95%” gone, claims team doesn’t believe in him, wants Garrett to shine

NFL: Cleveland Browns at Houston Texans Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns have one game remaining in the 2022 NFL season but it seems one big question mark may have just been answered for this upcoming offseason.

The Browns pursued DE Jadeveon Clowney a couple of offseasons before signing with the team in 2021. His first year in Cleveland was a success but the former first-overall pick said that money would decide where he played in 2022. After not signing early in free agency, Clowney came back to the team after they acquired QB Deshaun Watson.

His 2022 season didn’t match his first season with the team and, now, just days away from the finale, Clowney spoke out in an interview with Mary Kay Cabot. His remarks are strong allegations about the team and his time with it.

Clowney noted that he expected a lot of change “so they might not be back — I might.” He may be referring to DC Joe Woods, HC Kevin Stefanski or both with that comment.

The hulking defensive end also accused the team of wanting to pump up DE Myles Garrett’s numbers by making sure he got the best matchups because “You’re all trying to get somebody into the Hall of Fame when all that matters is winning.” He made sure to note he didn’t believe his teammate was the one who made it happen.

While the interview may not paint the Browns in a great light, Clowney also put the spotlight on how he responded negatively:

“We practiced all week, and we get in the game and they want to move me,” he said. “I’m not doing that (stuff). I’m old. I’ve done my job.”

He opted to play only third downs that game because of the switch, winding up with only 22 snaps for 35%. Defensive tackle Taven Bryan started in his place, and Chase Winovich played 23 snaps for 37%. Clowney ended up with one assist that game.

Cabot’s piece has a lot of strong words from Clowney including his belief that he could have had 10 sacks if used correctly, is 95% sure he will not return next year and that the team does not believe in him.

Late in the piece came what seemed to be a threat from the huge defensive end when he said that “I could still end up in the division next year.”

It will be interesting when DL coach Chris Kiffin and other players meet with the media on Friday and after the game. Will they respond to Clowney’s comments? Will the team issue discipline? What will Garrett say about a player he pushed the team to bring back this year?