Mar 2, 2018; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions Saquon Barkley running back goes through workout drills during the 2018 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
The Browns have been one of the teams most frequently linked to former Penn State star Saquon Barkley leading up to the NFL Draft, but Cleveland seemingly found a new starting running back on Wednesday in Carlos Hyde. What does that mean for Barkley’s draft stock?
Very little, perhaps.
While the Browns agreed to a three-year, $15 million deal with Hyde, Aditi Kinkhabwala of NFL Network reports that the signing does not mean they are no longer considering Barkley with the No. 1 or No. 4 overall picks in the draft.
“I’ve been told that signing Carlos Hyde does not disqualify Barkley. That does not mean Barkley comes off the board here,” Kinkhabwala said Wednesday. “Remember, Hue Jackson has worked with multiple backs and likes a platoon of backs. We saw both Super Bowl teams use three backs a piece.”
Barkley was always seen as a lock to be taken in the top 10, but his stock has risen as high as a running back’s stock can rise after his remarkable performance at the NFL Scouting Combine. Rookies aren’t nearly as expensive as veterans, so the Browns could easily fit both Barkley and Hyde onto their roster. If they feel Barkley is the best player available when they are picking, they should still take him.