The Browns‘ decision to sign Kareem Hunt this week might be a PR risk, but the team definitely didn’t risk anything financially when they signed the former Chiefs running back on Monday

Not only did the Browns get Hunt to sign a one-year deal that includes zero dollars in guaranteed money, but the contract also includes a roster bonus for every game during the regular season that he’s active, which means, if Hunt gets suspended, he won’t be seeing much money in 2019. 

According to ESPN.com, the contract is worth a total of $1.1 million; however, it’s not going to be easy for Hunt to collect all of that. The biggest part of Hunt’s contract is his base salary, which will pay him a total of $645,000 in 2019. The running back will also get paid a $25,000 bonus for every game that he’s on the Browns’ active roster. Hunt can also collect another $55,000 if he meets the criteria for his offseason workout bonus. 

Of course, the only way that Hunt can earn all that money is if he’s active all 16 games in 2019, which isn’t a given. The former Chiefs running back has been under investigation by the NFL since December after a video was released that showed him shoving and kicking a woman during an altercation that took place at Cleveland hotel in February 2018. The NFL placed him on the commissioner’s exempt list shortly after the video surfaced, and that’s where he’s been ever since. 

If the league decides to suspended Hunt for just four games in 2019, that means he would lose out on a total of $62,941 per week ($37,941 in base salary and $25,000 for his active roster bonus) for a total loss of $251,764. If that were to happen, Hunt’s contract in 2019 would be worth just $848,236. If the suspension were to go on for six games, Hunt would lose out on nearly $380,000. 

Although Hunt won’t be making much with the Browns, the money he’ll be making in Cleveland will actually be a raise over what he would have made with the Chiefs. As a third-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, Hunt would have only made a maximum of $678,750 if the Chiefs had decided to keep him for the 2019 season

The Browns might not be taking a financial risk with Hunt, but there is some risk associated with signing him and general manager John Dorsey definitely realizes that. Dorsey, who drafted Hunt back in 2017 while both men were in Kansas City, told Cleveland.com that he signed the running back as a way to give him a second chance. 

“I think we’re all appalled by it,” Dorsey said of Hunt’s actions. “But after doing extensive research, analyzing the situation, we came to the conclusion that I’m willing to help a man from a second chance moving forward to be a better person. My faith tells me that.”

Dorsey also noted that the team did its due diligence on Hunt before giving him the one-year deal. 

“We’ve done our extensive research,” Dorsey said. “He’s extremely remorseful for that. I’ve always believed that if a person wants to better themselves and be a better person, I’m willing to give them a chance. I truly believe he’ll be a better man today than he was yesterday.”

The upside for the Browns is that if Hunt has a breakout season, he’ll be a restricted free agent in 2020, which will make it easier for Cleveland to keep him. On the other hand, if Hunt struggles on the field or struggles to stay out of trouble, the Browns can dump him without taking a financial hit thanks to the way his deal is structured. 

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