Monday, February 6, 2023

Kareem Hunt’s second chance with the Browns shouldn’t make Chiefs reunion ‘personal’

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It’s true that the Chiefs knocked out Kareem Hunt and he will play for the Browns against his former team in their NFL Division playoff game. It created a redemption story tale between Hunt, his teammates past and present, and some in the media ahead of Sunday’s game.

“I kept telling the guys I had a feeling we were going to see them in the playoffs,” Hunt said Thursday. “I knew they were going to make the playoffs, it’s a great program there. I kept telling them early in the season, we have to make it to the playoffs, we have to make a run and I have the feeling that we are going to see the chiefs. “

Kansas City released Hunt in 2018 when video emerged of him appearing to be kicking and pushing a woman. Kansas City said it was aware of the incident, but Hunt had not been completely honest about what happened. Hunt’s subsequent release was the right choice for the Chiefs given the circumstances that Hunt himself had created.

Hunt apparently doesn’t see it that way. In one Instagram Live video On Sunday after the Browns beat Pittsburgh, Hunt repeatedly said the upcoming game with Kansas City was “personal.”

Cleveland-area NFL analyst Tony Grossi doubled down after Hunt’s comments. he tweeted on Monday, “I forgot that angle: Kareem Hunt is coming back to Kansas City to try to overthrow the team that abandoned him.”

Here’s what current and former Hunt teammates said ahead of Browns vs Chiefs.

MORE: Why Did the Chiefs Cut Kareem Hunt?

Kareem Hunt: ‘Next week staff’

The Chiefs selected Hunt in the third round of the 2017 NFL Draft in Toledo, and he took the NFL by storm, leading the league in rushing yards as a rookie with 1,327 yards. He also played the first 11 games of the 2018 season, running for 824 additional yards.

But between his first and second seasons, Hunt was involved in a violent incident with a woman, Abigail Ottinger, according to his report to the Cleveland Police Department. Ottinger told police Hunt “pushed and shoved her.” Hunt also allegedly punched a man in the face in June after a verbal argument, according to TMZ.

Chiefs later said they were aware of Hunt’s incident with Ottinger, but security camera footage released in November made Hunt’s discussions with them less truthful. Kansas City quickly posted Hunt after the video was released, with footage showing him kicking and pushing Ottinger.

When the Chiefs drove to the Super Bowl in early 2020, Hunt was recorded telling a police officer during a traffic stop that he “hurts my soul” the Chiefs were in the big game without him.

“I think it’s going to permeate our guys too,” Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield said during the week, by Cleveland.com, “and they’re going to have the same feelings and want to play for him. It’s like Kareem’s trades hurt that they’re in the Super Bowl, and he was cheering on his guys but you know he wanted to be there. That’s why he comes to work everyday and works his ass to try to make it happen with us now.

The Browns signed Hunt in February 2019, and after serving an eight-game suspension in 2019, he was the second piece of a dynamic fullback with Nick Chubb. Cleveland’s 2019 season was a disappointment, but with Chubb and Hunt dominating in 2020, the Browns made their first playoffs since 2002 and won their first playoff game since 1994 to stage a game against the seeded Chiefs. in the division round.

Hunt ran for 48 yards and two touchdowns against Pittsburgh in the wildcard round victory, and he took to Instagram Live after the game, twice proclaiming: “Next week staff.”

“Kareem has been talking about this game all year like he knows it’s going to happen,” Browns running back Nick Chubb said during the week. by Cleveland.com. “He’s excited for this. I’m excited for him. Glad to see him come out and play. He’s ready for it.

(Getty Images)

What the chefs say about Kareem Hunt

Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce and Andy Reid have all been asked about Hunt’s next game against his former team. Hunt had his best year of racing in Mahomes’ 2018 MVP season with Reid at the helm as well.

“He’s very successful on this pitch with every opportunity he gets and he’s a great football player and someone I know will continue to improve as his career continues.” Mahomes said on KCSP 610 in Kansas City. “He’s a special football player. He finishes every game, he catches and runs, he can do anything. I’m happy for him that he’s back home in Cleveland and is able to play some really good football. ”

Reid, too, kept his answer focused on what Hunt can do on the football field.

“Look, I love Kareem,” Reid said in a Monday press conference. “I’m glad everything is going well for him. He knows a lot of guys who were on this team last year and felt bad that he wasn’t on it. I understand all this. But above all, I’m happy for him that things are going in the right direction for him. He is part of a good football team, they are well trained and they won their first playoff game. There is something to be said about this. ”

Kelce’s comments suggest Hunt has overcome adversity since his release.

“I wish we had talked more often,” Kelce said, via Cleveland.com. “He’s my brother for life. To see what he’s been through and see him grow from everything. I am someone who had some red flags coming out of college. It wasn’t always a lot of fun for me. I had to figure out some things related to my name. With this you have to challenge yourself as a man, as a human.

“You have to grow from that, understand how people see you, and you have to go on knowing that. I think Kareem did an amazing job going right over there playing football and keeping his head up. I am very happy for him.

The Chiefs didn’t ‘give up’ Kareem Hunt

Despite what the Cleveland radio and television personality Tony Grossi tweeted, the Chiefs have not abandoned Hunt.

No one has abandoned Hunt. His release was only the effect of a cause: his incident with Ottinger and the subsequent release of the video showing him. It is not to give up. He responds in kind.

And so, no matter what anyone says about redemption or revenge, there is no redeeming quality in Hunt’s game against the Chiefs. His performance won’t suddenly make Kansas City silly for setting him free or make Hunt look like a changed man. It’ll just be a running back playing a soccer game against his old team, nothing really “personal” about it.



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