About a month ago, David Njoku made it known he wanted out of Cleveland. Apparently that came as news to Cleveland.
Browns general manager Andrew Berry admitted Tuesday he was somewhat surprised when Njoku's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, demanded a trade on behalf of his client in early July.
"I will be honest, yes, a little bit,'' Berry told reporters in a video conference, via Cleveland.com. "I guess you learn not to be surprised about anything. He communicated well through it. He worked through it professionally. We had good communication with his representation. We think we are in a pretty good place right now."
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As our Tom E. Curran wrote last month, the New England Patriots would have been a great landing spot for Njoku. The 24-year-old tight end played in just four games last season due to injury but is a first-round draft pick with plenty of potential who would have been the clear No. 1 in a thin Patriots tight end group.
Njoku also had reason to seek greener pastures after the Browns signed high-profile tight end Austin Hooper to a four-year contract this offseason. It appears Njoku is staying put, however: The fourth-year tight end tweeted Saturday he's "all in" with the Browns for the 2020 season.
I'm all in Cleveland. Time to work.
— Chief David Njoku (@David_Njoku80) August 1, 2020
"We have been very consistent that we think David can be a big part of where we're trying to go as a team this year and that we think he has an important role to play for this roster and for this team," Berry added. "We're looking forward to working with David. I think he can have a fantastic year."
The Patriots, meanwhile, will need to look for tight end help elsewhere. Matt LaCosse recently opted out of the 2020 season, leaving Ryan Izzo and rookies Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene as the only tight ends on the depth chart.
New England reportedly has interest in free agent Delanie Walker and could end up signing a veteran target of Walker's ilk to add experience to a position group desperately lacking it.
Browns GM admits David Njoku's trade request caught him off guard originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston