Baker Mayfield is about to have another weapon at his disposal to try to bring the Browns out of their misery.
Austin Hooper agreed to a four-year, $44 million contract with the Browns on Monday, making him the highest-paid tight end in the NFL. He will earn $23 million in the first two years of the deal, all guaranteed.
Hooper was regarded as the top tight end on the free-agent market and had been “definitely leaning Cleveland” earlier in the day according to ESPN.
Last season with the Falcons, Hooper caught 75 passes for 787 yards and six touchdowns. The 25-year-old made the Pro Bowl in each of the last two years.
Hooper joins a Browns offense that is high on potential, with Mayfield, running back Nick Chubb and wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry. Of course, those skill players didn’t translate to success last season as the Browns started the year with huge expectations and finished 6-10.
They now have a new general manager, Andrew Berry, and head coach, former Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski, who will be charged with turning all the weapons into wins.
Hooper, a third-round pick in the 2016 NFL draft, joins a tight end room that includes David Njoku, the New Jersey and University of Miami product who broke out in 2018 before being limited to four games last season because of a broken wrist.