Browns Make Massive Decision on Nick Chubb Contract

Dec 17, 2022; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24) warms up before
Dec 17, 2022; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24) warms up before / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Chubb may well be the greatest Brown since the team returned to Cleveland in 1999, but he came into this offseason with a very uncertain future. A torn ACL while he headed into the final year of his contract created an absolute mess of a situation that wasn't favorable for either Chubb or the team.

Always a team-first guy, Chubb has agreed to a reworked contract that will certainly keep him in Cleveland while also benefiting both sides.

The specifics of the deal aren't out yet, but the concept makes a lot of sense. His $11.775 million base salary and $15.8 million cap hit weren't numbers any team can afford to be paying a running back coming off their second catastrophic knee injury. Only five other running backs in the NFL make more than that on a per-year basis.

Chubb isn't being asked to just throw away money out of the goodness of his heart though. The incentives will almost certainly be big ones, and if he can work his way back to the field and perform at a high level again, he'll still get paid like a high-level performer.

A 1,500-yard season with 660 snaps played like he had in 2022 may not be a super realistic goal, but if he does hit marks like that I'd guess he's going to get paid pretty similarly to what he was originally set to make anyway.

It also feels an awful lot like the Browns expect him to be full-speed pretty early in the season. Their offseason moves at running back (adding Nyhiem Hines and D'Onta Foreman) don't feel like moves from a team that considers themselves lacking a true RB1. This is doubly true when you consider how unlikely it feels that Deshaun Watson will be able to carry this offense without a strong rushing attack at this point.

The team hasn't said much publicly about Chubb's recovery, but in January Kevin Stefanski and Andre Berry both made comments. They didn't give much away, but Stefanski said "I don't have an update other than to say he's doing great" while Berry mentioned how impressed he's been with Chubb in the process.

Time will tell what this contract ends up looking like and how much Chubb can contribute in 2024, but one thing feels very clear from this deal. Chubb wants to be in Cleveland, and the Browns feel the same way. This should give fans a ton of optimism about the possibility of Chubb signing another contract extension so that 2024 isn't his final year with the team.

Cleveland Browns news and rumors: