Watson spoke to reporters at the Browns Foundation Golf outing and alluded to the idea that he’s let the front office in Cleveland know he’d be happy if they were able to make the move happen.
“That’s kind of out of my range of things,” Watson said. “All I can do is make a call and see what happens.”
Watson has maintained a relationship with Hopkins since their days together in Houston. The two played together from 2017-19 with the Texans. Hopkins thrived during that span, catching 315 passes for 4,115 yards and 31 touchdowns.
“Me and D-Hop, we just naturally talk. We’ve been talking since the Houston days, and whenever he was in Arizona, we were always talking,” Watson said. “He’s always been a brother of mine since I was coming out of high school. Our connection, our relationship has always been great. And I know there’s a lot of things swirling around in the media about him possibly coming to Cleveland. For me, my answer to that is, of course we’d love to have him.”
Landing Hopkins Would Give Browns Elite Receiver Corps
Landing Hopkins would give the Browns one of the more formidable passing attacks in the NFL. The Browns already have Amari Cooper and traded for former New York Jets standout Elijah Moore this offseason. Donovan Peoples-Jones, Marquise Goodwin, David Bell and Cedric Tillman are also going to be in the mix.
The Browns may not be able to hand him the most lucrative contract on the market but if Hopkins’ priority is winning, Watson feels like Cleveland is the place to do it.
“I’ll just say this, D-Hop, DeAndre Hopkins would love to be in a place where the opportunity is there for us to win,” Watson said. “We check all those boxes and I think for us to know and make sure we check all those boxes on the national stage, we’ve got to go out there and prove it and I think D-Hop would love to be a part of that.”
Schefter: Browns in the Mix for DeAndre Hopkins
The Browns were mentioned by ESPN’s Adam Schefter among teams that are in the mix for Hopkins. The other teams eyeing the former All-Pro include the Kansas City Chiefs, Buffalo Bills and the New England Patriots.
“There is the Cleveland Browns. He worked with Deshaun Watson in the past, I am sure Watson wants to work with him again,” Schefter said on his show The Adam Schefter Podcast. “The Browns certainly could use another wide receiver to compliment Amari Cooper although Donovan Peoples-Jones came on and they do have some other young wide receiving talent. But Cleveland would make some sense, but again, does DeAndre Hopkins want to go there?”
As Watson said, the Browns would welcome Hopkins but head coach Kevin Stefanski also made it clear that they like the players currently on the roster.
“I really, really like our wide receiver room,” Stefanski said. “I love the guys that are in there. [General manager] Andrew [Berry] and his crew are always looking at every avenue and that type of thing, so I won’t comment specifically on the player other than to say I really like our roster.”