Browns spending big with Austin Hooper after last season’s debacle

Browns spending big with Austin Hooper after last season’s debacle

Baker Mayfield is about to have another weapon at his disposal to try to bring the Browns out of their misery.

Austin Hooper, the top tight end on the free-agent market, is nearing a deal with the Browns that would make him the highest-paid player at his position, according to multiple reports.

“I’m definitely leaning Cleveland,” Hooper told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. “Unless something comes up unexpected, then no question Cleveland is the leader.”

Last season with the Falcons, Hooper caught 75 passes for 787 yards and six touchdowns. The 25-year-old made the Pro Bowl in each of the last two years.

Hooper joins a Browns offense that is high on potential, with Mayfield, running back Nick Chubb and wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry. Of course, those skill players didn’t translate to success last season as the Browns started the year with huge expectations and finished 6-10.

They now have a new general manager, Andrew Berry, and head coach, former Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski, who will be charged with turning all the weapons into wins.

Hooper, a third-round pick in the 2016 NFL draft, joins a tight end room that includes David Njoku, the New Jersey and University of Miami product who broke out in 2018 before being limited to four games last season because of a broken wrist.

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