The Cleveland Browns may be done adding to their wide receiver room after the trade for Elijah Moore and signing Marquise Goodwin. Adding those two, even if Goodwin isn’t a lock to make the team, with Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones, David Bell and Jakeem Grant, quickly fills the depth chart.
The Browns also have Anthony Schwartz, Michael Woods II, Jaelon Darden, Demetric Felton, Isaiah Weston and Mike Harley on the roster at wide receiver. Felton could play running back again as well.
A few big names had been connected to Cleveland this offseason at the position. Jerry Jeudy and DeAndre Hopkins have been bandied about in trade discussions while Odell Beckham Jr. has been noted as a possible reunion candidate since last season.
While Jeudy is probably too expensive in a trade and OBJ seems headed to the New York Jets with Aaron Rodgers, Hopkins' situation may be different than anyone expected. According to Albert Breer, some teams around the NFL believe that Hopkins could be released:
“Some teams, Greg, think they are going to cut him, think the Cardinals are going to end up cutting him.”
If Hopkins becomes a free agent, things would get really interesting for the league. In the linked video (starting around the 40-minute mark), Breer notes that signing with the Kansas City Chiefs for a reasonable number then becomes an option.
If Hopkins is released, it would be interesting if Deshaun Watson’s relationship with the talented receiver would be enough to sway him to sign with the Browns. Would GM Andrew Berry be willing to pay $6-8 million on a one-year deal? Would Hopkins want to sign elsewhere on a similar deal where he could be that team’s first or second receiving option instead of among the masses in Cleveland?
At this point, it is obvious that teams are not interested in trading for Hopkins and paying him whatever contract he may be seeking. If he is released, one of those costs goes away but a big contract seems unlikely for the former Houston Texans and current Arizona Cardinals who has only played in 19 games the last two seasons.