Once you’re convinced that time isn’t the missing ingredient, you must move along. I’m convinced that the Kenny Britt experiment is a failure for both the player and the team. I can’t imagine a scenario where he suddenly starts producing and the vibe around him, the team, and Cleveland Browns fans suddenly improves. With that conclusion in mind the Cleveland Browns need to part ways with Kenny Britt immediately.
In fairness to the Browns, maybe they’re trying to trade him. A trade of Kenny Britt seems as likely as Swagger talking at the next Browns press conference.1 The Britt contract isn’t as horrendous as you might think. After the Browns trade him, the acquiring team gets him for the pro-rated amount of his $4 million salary and then can cut him before 2018 or agree to pay him $6.5 million for the season. $6.5 million is overpaying based on what he’s done in Cleveland, but if you put Kenny Britt in a better situation with a true, healthy, number one receiver, he can probably give you commensurate value. So why is a trade so unlikely? If you’re engaged in talks with the Browns, and you know they want to get rid of this guy, why would you give them anything of real value to take on a speculative rental contract?
And even if Kenny Britt’s contract guarantee (after a trade) at $4 million isn’t the worst contract in the world, it’s still pretty bad. He’s tied for 20th highest base salary with Torrey Smith. There are many options around the league on practice squads that have far more upside potential than Kenny Britt. On top of that, you might just have to wait until the Browns cut him, and then you don’t even have to give up a pick or swap a fourth rounder for a fifth or whatever the Browns might be proposing as compensation for this “asset.” As Browns fans, we value Bryce Treggs more than Kenny Britt, and he makes less than $500k right now. There are many front offices who feel the same way.
Regardless, for the Browns, this is an easy decision. I’ve hired people, and I’ve had to fire people. It’s not fun, but the more you do it, the more you realize that there’s a point of no return in these things. Everyone can sense when a situation has soured and there’s no amount of time that’s going to allow it to turn around. That time has arrived in Cleveland with Kenny Britt and the longer they allow it to fester, the worse it is for everyone involved.
- BTW, is Swagger making the trip to London for the “home game?” How about the drum line? What about the infamous “Dawg Pound” banners? [↩]