Browns Reveal Severity of RB Duke Johnson’s Injury

Getty Cleveland Browns running back Duke Johnson Jr.

Duke Johnson Jr. was not on the field for the third day of Cleveland Browns training camp, but it had nothing to do with his highly-publicized trade request.

Johnson is dealing with a hamstring injury, but Cleveland Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens revealed that the ailment is not a serious one. Kitchens said he doesn’t expect the fifth-year running back to miss much time. Johnson hasn’t missed a game in his previous four seasons, all with the Browns.

Kitchens spoke on the injury and also might have dropped a tidbit on the trade news.

“We don’t know specifics. We are going to see how it progresses. Duke is a quick healer but we also want to be cautious from the standpoint of this guy has to play for us,” Kitchens told reporters after practice. “We have to make sure he’s healthy and it’s not something that lingers. Sometimes with these hamstrings, they linger. Duke will be fine but we want to err on the side of caution.”

Browns RB Duke Johnson Involved in Minicamp Scuffle

It’s been an interesting start to training camp for Johnson, to say the least. On the first day of practice, Johnson was involved in a scuffle with rookie linebacker Sione Takitaki.

Takitaki came in a little too hot in a 9 on 7 drill, bumping Johnson a more than he anticipated in the no-pad practice. They exchanged words and had to be separated before practice moved along.

Following Saturday’s practice, Takitaki acknowledged that the coaches told him to cool it a bit and he needs to “learn how to practice.”

“That’s just me being a rookie, not understanding what the NFL is,” Takitaki said. “It’s not the smart thing to do.”

Duke Johnson, Baker Mayfield are “Good” Following Minicamp Drama

Quarterback Baker Mayfield addressed Johnson’s trade request at minicamp and his comments caused quite a stir.

“That’s something that we’ve been dealing with for a while,” Mayfield said. “If we have guys that want to be here, they’ll show that, they’ll voice that. Obviously, he’s going to handle his stuff how he wants, but you’re either on this train or you’re not, It’s moving. You can get out of the way or you can join us, so it is what it is.”

It doesn’t seem those comments have caused any long-term tension between the two players. Mayfield said the he and Johnson spoke before camp and figured out their differences.

“We addressed it,” Mayfield told reporters. “Freddie [Kitchens] talked about it yesterday. We’re good.

“If we’re out there smiling, we’re here to do our job. He’s here. And like I said when it all came out, we want people that want to be here and he’s here right now and that’s important. I think that shows we’re here to win.”

The Browns spoke with Johnson and his agent Drew Rosenhaus before camp regarding the running back’s trade request. Head coach Freddie Kitchens and general manager John Dorsey have made clear they expect Johnson to have a role with the Browns this season.

“Drew and I had a conversation yesterday — a very good conversation,” Dorsey said. “We had a chance to discuss each other’s sides. I had a chance to state my opinions, he had a chance to state his opinions. This is the first day of training camp and it looks like Duke is here. So he’s reported to training camp. With regards to the role in the offense, that’s a question you can ask Freddie, but if history is any indicator, he will be a very productive player in the offense.”

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