Rewind time, to about a month ago when the father of Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was allegedly criticizing the team’s quarterback, Baker Mayfield, on Instagram. There are differing reports as to whether it was Beckham’s father, Beckham himself, or another party altogether who criticized Mayfield on the popular social media platform, but what matters most is that the team’s golden boy had fallen from grace in quite the public manner.
The 11-minute post, publicized on Instagram, included a detailed video that highlighted how Mayfield failed to target Beckham for passing opportunities in several games this season. This social media post ultimately spurred the star wide receiver’s release from the team. Beckham signed with the Los Angeles Rams a couple weeks after his unceremonious departure from the Browns.
Here we are, merely two weeks later, and the father of yet another teammate is publicly criticizing Mayfield. This time around, it is the father of Kareem Hunt who is lambasting Mayfield on social media for his poor play on the field.
Hunt’s Father Takes aim at the Browns’ Beleaguered QB
Kareem Hunt, the backup running back on a struggling Browns squad, hasn’t performed up to expectations since departing Kansas City. However, Hunt’s lack of production on the field has not stopped his father from publicly attacking Baker Mayfield. Hunt’s father went after the team’s quarterback after watching the Ravens beat the Browns on Sunday Night Football. Mr. Hunt used Facebook to critique Mayfield’s game, stating, “He’s scared to throw the ball.”
Mr. Hunt went on to comment that Facebook users accused him of being “like Obj Daddy” yet he insisted he is merely “stating facts on football.” Though Mr. Hunt did note that Mayfield is playing through an injury, it’s clear that he, along with some of Mayfield’s teammates as well as former teammates don’t think much of Mayfield’s ability to play the quarterback position.
Mayfield is limping through his fourth year with Cleveland. He has played through several injuries including a torn left shoulder labrum dating back to the second week of the season. He is also battling through foot and knee injuries.
Mr. Hunt went on to post: “Last thing I don’t want nobody to be hating at me like I said new quarterback, new situation, we could have won this game long time ago. I don’t know what the defense was doing, they did good three interceptions or more. All I can say is, please don’t hate me but I told you so.”
It is the final words of Mr. Hunt’s statement that are the most disappointing. As is often said, only small people say I told you so. Mr. Hunt appears to be thinking more clearly now, and he deleted the posts about 12 hours after the end of the Browns Sunday Night Football debacle.
Kareem Hunt’s Response to his Father’s Controversial Post
The Browns running back has not yet responded to the messages his father posted to social media. Hunt recently returned to action after spending several weeks on injured reserve status following a calf injury during a Week Six loss to the NFC-leading Arizona Cardinals. It will be interesting to see if Hunt makes a public statement later today, or in the weeks ahead in an attempt to sweep his father’s words under the rug and move on with a clean slate.
Mayfield’s Future in Cleveland is in Doubt
Once the dust settles on the 2021 NFL campaign, it’s quite possible that both Mayfield and Hunt will move on to new home teams. Hunt has struggled to stay healthy while toting the rock in Cleveland. Backup D’Ernest Johnson is carving into Hunt’s playing time, possibly setting the stage for his departure from the Browns. Hunt’s lack of production and reduced playing time might have played a role in his father’s decision to air his grievances in such a public fashion on social media.
Mayfield is struggling to make it to the end of a forgettable season. The Ravens pressured the diminutive quarterback the entire night, sacking him twice and aggravating his shoulder injury. Though Mayfield threw one touchdown to tight end David Njoku, he ended the game with a mere 247 yards, completing less than 49% of his passes, both of which are paltry figures in today’s pass-happy NFL. Mayfield will be a free agent at the season’s end.
After the game, Browns’ head coach Kevin Stefanski stated he does not intend to switch quarterbacks during the bye week. Mayfield’s backup is Case Keenum, a gunslinger who led the Minnesota Vikings to the NFC championship game a couple seasons ago, only to be rendered to backup duty in Cleveland.
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Stay tuned… The Browns (6-6) are on the outside of the AFC playoff picture, looking in. The pressure on Mayfield and Stefanski will be even greater as the team’s disappointing season comes to a close in the weeks ahead.