Last year, Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb was in line to be the NFL's rushing leader until Titans' Derrick Henry blasted off for 211 yards in Week 17 to swipe the title.
One man who blocked for Henry, right tackle Jack Conklin, joins the Browns after signing a big-money deal in free agency. The offensive lineman hopes to plow the road for Chubb to lead the league in rushing in 2020.
"To be able to switch teams and have a guy who's just as good as Henry] and be able to have an opportunity to go win that record again next year, that's my goal," Conklin said, [via the Akron Beacon Journal. "I want to help us get there and help Chubb reach that goal and win that."
Under new coach Kevin Stefanski, the Browns' offense will employ a zone running scheme. As the offensive coordinator in Minnesota last year, Stefanski was under a mandate from coach Mike Zimmer to employ a run-heavy offense. Conklin hopes that carries over to Cleveland.
"I love running the ball," Conklin said. "That's my favorite thing to do -- put it to the defense. I think that's really by running it. That's when you break their back. There's not a better feeling than when you're putting defenders on their back and you can see the quit in them by the time the fourth quarter comes around.
"The great thing with the zone offense is that you can still get those aspects of the run with the pass. Once you start getting that run going, your play action is going to look exactly the same as the runs. That's when you start getting those bombs. That's when you start getting those 70-yard downfield passes, and you get these wide-open receivers."
Too often last season, the Browns got away from feeding Chubb when he was rolling. The bulldozing back still almost won the rushing title. He could run away with it if given the bulk of the workload.
The Browns' offense offers a plethora of weapons with Chubb and Kareem Hunt in the backfield, quarterback Baker Mayfield looking for a bounce-back season, star wideouts in Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry, and newly acquired tight end Austin Hooper. Feeding them all harmoniously will be Stefanski's biggest task in 2020.