Duke Johnson hires Drew Rosenhaus as trade demand to Browns remains unmet

Yahoo Sports

Duke Johnson is not getting his way in Cleveland.

Now he’s playing hardball.

The disgruntled Browns running back who demanded a trade and fired his agent has new representation, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports — Drew Rosenhaus.

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What Rosenhaus hire means

Rosenhaus is known for hard-nosed tactics that sometimes involve player holdouts. As Schefter noted, he helped facilitate the trade that sent third-year defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah to the Kansas City Chiefs in April.

He’s also Antonio Brown’s agent and oversaw his contentious exit from the Pittsburgh Steelers that saw the wide receiver land with the Oakland Raiders this offseason.

Duke Johnson's latest move suggests that he remains determined to leave the Cleveland Browns. (Getty)
Duke Johnson's latest move suggests that he remains determined to leave the Cleveland Browns. (Getty)

Johnson’s trade demand

Johnson reportedly demanded a trade sometime after the Browns signed Kareem Hunt in February, finding himself sitting behind Hunt and Nick Chubb on the depth chart.

With Hunt suspended for the first half of the season for assaulting a woman, the Browns have been content to keep Johnson on the roster.

Head coach Freddie Kitchens made his views clear in April.

“Duke is under contract,’’ Kitchens said. “I’ve said this for like a month now, I don’t know where all this trade talk started happening. People just assumed that we are going to trade him because we signed another good football player. Me, personally, I like good football players and I like as many of them as we can get.”

Second-year quarterback Baker Mayfield blamed Johnson for the situation.

“It's not awkward,” Mayfield told reporters. “No. It's self-inflicted. It is what it is. That's not awkward for anybody else in this building.”

“He's got to do his job. He said he's a professional, I hope he does his job.”

Johnson signed a three-year, $15.6 million extension with the Browns in 2018. He appears to remain determined that he finishes that deal out with another team.

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