BEREA, Ohio — Isaiah Crowell thinks he’s a top five running back and he hopes to get paid like one.
Falcons running back DeVonta Freeman signed a five-year, $41.25 million contract this week to become the highest paid back in the NFL.
“Yeah, you go and think about it,” Crowell said before Saturday’s practice. “It is just obvious to think about, but I feel like it is great for him. I feel like he is a great player. He deserves it.”
In recent years, running backs haven’t been commanding the biggest salaries in the NFL as they were ten years ago.
“I feel like (Freeman) changed the mark,” he said. “I feel like it is a great deal for him, and I feel like he is just a great deal for all the running backs that are out here right now that deserve to get paid. I am happy for him.”
Crowell is in the final year of his contract and will become a free agent in March of 2018 if the Browns cannot sign him to a contract extension. He hired Drew Rosenhaus to be his agent.
“I just feel like God controls everything so I am just trying to just be patient,” he said. “I know my time is coming. I am just being patient, stay working and keep working hard and just trying to be the best I can be.”
Crowell rushed for 952 yards last season, but averaged 4.8 yards a carry, the same as Freeman. Crowell views himself as a top-tier running back and he wants to be viewed as one.
“It’s time for that to change,” he said. “That’s why I’m just trying to go out here and prove myself, just each and every play when I’m out there on the field, so that won’t be the case.”
Njoku Back: Rookie TE David Njoku returned to the practice field after missing the preseason opener with the Saints with a back injury.
Marcus Released: The Browns released DL Jamal Marcus from injured reserve.
No Go: The following players did not practice today due to injury: DL Caleb Brantley (finger), DB Marcus Burley (face laceration), DB Ibraheim Campbell…