Dorsey: Time in KC helped with signing Kareem Hunt

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Cleveland Browns' signing of running back Kareem Hunt will continue to draw scrutiny from outside the organization.

Hunt, whom the Browns inked to a one-year deal on Feb. 11, remains on the Commissioner's Exempt List while awaiting action on a possible suspension based on video surfacing showing Hunt kicking and shoving a woman in February 2018 at a Cleveland hotel. Hunt, then with the Kansas City Chiefs, was released immediately when the video became public in late November.

The choice to bring in Hunt wasn't taken lightly by the Browns' organization. And it helped that general manager John Dorsey went through a similar process with the Chiefs in 2016 upon the decision to draft Tyreek Hill, who pleaded guilty to domestic assault in college.

Dorsey told following his Thursday news conference with reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine that the previous experience in Kansas City with Hill helped him "a lot" to make an informed decision on Hunt.

"When you make a decision of that magnitude, you have to have depth of knowledge," Dorsey said. "You have to be able to communicate what everybody sees, and then from a managing up position, you have to be able to express that with clarity to your bosses and get them to understand that this is a good person, so just trust us on this."

Dorsey knows Hunt well from a past relationship, of course. Dorsey was the Chiefs general manager in 2017 when the Chiefs selected Hunt in the third round of the draft, and Hunt went on to lead the league in rushing as a rookie en route to being selected to the Pro Bowl.

The Browns could have waited for a league ruling on Hunt before electing to bring him in, but Dorsey felt comfortable to do it now.

"We had done our research with regards to Kareem," Dorsey told reporters. "And we thought at the appropriate time with all the information we did have, listening to his story, listening to how truly remorseful he was with regards to the egregious act that transpired knowing that once he comes here, there are no guarantees.

"But what he's going to do, he's going to earn your respect and everybody's respect within the Cleveland Browns organization by his actions and not his words. And I've always lived this is that at the end of the day, if a player can leave not only as a good player, but a better person at the end of the day, you've done your job. And that's what we're attempting to do, so right now I feel very comfortable with this signing."

In Cleveland, Hunt would join a backfield with Nick Chubb, who totaled 1,145 yards (996 rushing) and 10 touchdowns in his rookie campaign last year. The two would provide a formidable one-two punch at the running back position, but it remains to be seen exactly when Hunt will be available.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport previously reported Hunt could face more than a baseline six-game suspension for violating the league's personal conduct policy.

But until then, the Browns are in a holding pattern pending official notification from the NFL.

"I think right now, the league is probably in their final steps in making the determination," Dorsey told reporters. "I think at the appropriate time, they'll contact us and let us know that."

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