The Cleveland Browns designated running back Kareem Hunt and right tackle Jack Conklin to return from injured reserve on Wednesday, strengthening the O-line and giving struggling quarterback Baker Mayfield a much-needed offensive weapon.
Hunt played in the Browns' first six games of the season before going down with a calf injury. He had to be carted off the field and missed the last five games. Before his injury, Hunt tallied 361 rushing yards with five touchdowns, as well as 20 receptions for 161 yards. Conklin appeared in six games before dislocating his elbow and hasn't played since Oct. 31.
Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said on Monday that both Hunt and Conklin were close to being ready and could possibly play on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
#Browns HC Kevin Stefanski also said RB Kareem Hunt and RT Jack Conklin "should" return to practice this week. Both on IR and will be designated to return. Could they play @ #Ravens? "I'm hopeful. I think they're progressing well"
— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) November 22, 2021
Hunt ready to give his all
After missing five games, Hunt told Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com that he's more than ready to get back onto the field and help his team beat the Ravens on Sunday.
“It’s a very big game,’’ Hunt said. “I feel like for us, every game from now on us is [a] playoff game. If we want to make a run, we’ve got to do what we do.’’
“I’m just going to come back and bring the fire and energy I always do. That’s all I can do."
The Browns desperately need Hunt's fire and energy. They're 6-5 and currently last in the AFC North and their passing game has suffered since Hunt's injury, falling from 227.8 yards per game after Week 6 to 205.6 yards per game after Week 11.