RB Nick Chubb (7.23.23)
What’s your take on the situation with Saquon (Barkley) and really generally the economic situation with running backs in the NFL right now?
“We’re definitely in a tough situation, running backs as a whole. Saquon is a great player and you can ask anyone around the league or even on the (New York) Giants how much he means to that team. So it’s hard seeing him not get what he deserves.”
There’s a report that some of you guys got on a Zoom call yesterday to kind of discuss the situation. Anything that came out of that that makes you feel positive?
“Right now it’s just talking, there’s really nothing we can do. We’re kind of handcuffed with the situation, but what I took from it – (Christian) McCaffrey, Derrick Henry and Saquon all had a lot of good points. The biggest thing is that we’re the only position where our production hurts us the most. If we go out there and run 2000 yards with so many carries, the next year they’re going to say you’re probably worn down. That’s the biggest thing that I took from it. It’s tough. It hurts us just to go out there and do well. It hurts us at the end of the day.”
How do you feel about your situation here with this team? You’ve got another year to go after this year.
“Yeah, I got another year. I mean, it’s easy for me to say it’s not a big deal, but next year it could be me in the same situation. But for right now, I do have one more year, but I’m here, I’m all in. I’m ready to work my guys.”
Is there any talk of you or your rep working on an extension?
“No, I’m focused on just playing right now.”
In light of everything that’s going on. Is this something, though, that creeps into your mind about what your situation may be next year?
“I can’t say I haven’t, but I’m so focused and locked in. I’m there with those guys, too. I understand the situation. I know it can be me one day and yeah, I’m just kind of playing both sides. I’m here for my team, but I’m also understanding the situation that I could be in.”
How difficult is it to separate the business of the game with the actual game itself?
“That’s probably what I hate most about it now, being in NFL – just the business side of it. But for me, I just take the day at a time. I come out here and when I’m on the field it’s easy, I’m doing what I love. Off the field, you do have to think about some things for your future, but for me, I was focused on just coming out here every day and going to work.”
How important was it for you to participate in the Zoom call and show that you were supporting these guys even though right now you don’t have your own contract issues?
“I feel like I had to be there. I’m in camp. Those guys aren’t in camp right now, but I still made time to get on the Zoom and listen to what everyone’s saying and I feel like it was important for me to be there because we got young guys who’ll be up next like JT (Jonathan Taylor), Najee (Harris), and J.K. Dobbins. I feel like it was important for them to see my face and to hear my voice there just supporting everyone.”
What’s happening this year, does it make you appreciate what the Browns did when you came up with that second contract?
“It’s easy for me to say because I feel like the Browns definitely value us differently. I feel good with what we got done years ago. It’s not the same for everyone, at the end of the day we are all running backs, so we all are together but it’s a tough situation for everyone.”
Do you feel Kareem’s (Hunt) situation is being affected by this trend?
“I’m not sure. I haven’t talked to Kareem about it. I’m sure it is in a way. I mean, it hurts us when guys sign for six million a year, I would say that. That hurts a lot and just as a whole because if they get one guy to do it then they’re going to push that for someone else and we’re in a bind, a tough spot.”
Is there some sort of collective action you guys can take?
“I don’t think we got that far, but there are a lot of talks. We have a lot of options for things we can do. But as far as right now, we’re looking for a call to action I would say. But I don’t think anything was actually established as far as that aspect. But we’re still thinking of things we can do.”
Nick, do you feel like your value to this offense is still as high as it’s ever been?
Nick, we talked about wear and tear on running backs. Do you feel like kind of the tread is still there and there’s plenty of tread left on the tires? Wear and tear hasn’t gotten to you yet?
“I feel like that’s a myth in a way. I think everyone’s different. You can’t say wear and tear just as a whole with every running back because Derrick Henry, how many yards he had and he’s still rolling. I feel good. I think we’re in a position that matters. You can see receivers who have been hurt and it’s in every situation if they get hurt, if they’re injury prone or anything. They only say that with running backs. I don’t think that’s fair for us.”
Why do you feel like they do it for you guys but they don’t do it for offensive linemen or receivers?
“Because they say we get hit every play and we’re more injury prone when we’re all on the field doing the same thing. But only that applies to us. I would say if we’re taking the most risk and doing the most, then we should be valued more.”
Nick, have you gotten positive feedback from other teammates not necessarily running backs from the whole situation?
“Yeah. I feel like everyone can say that we work harder than what we’re valued. Anyone would tell you that. Some guys in the meeting yesterday said for like a team scout, let’s say Monday we’re playing a different team and in the team meeting, the head coach going to bring up their running back. The first person they’ll bring up is how good is their running back? How can we stop them? That’s every team. I feel like every team’s running back gets the team going. Cowbell, when we need something big, make a big play or a big run, everybody’s going to look to the running back.”
Nick, it sounds like you’re going to do more at the shotgun. How are you feeling about that?
“I’m ready for whatever we can do to help this team win games. I’m all in.”
Does it make a difference for you as a running back?
“Doesn’t make a difference.”
I’m just curious. How are you able to? I’ve heard some running backs like under center, that kind of thing.
“We all have preference under center. You’re farther back so you have more time, you’d be more patient with the ball, but I’m able to switch it up to whatever we need to do.”
Nick, are you concerned about this trend now that’s happening with the running backs that trickle down to not just rookies and young players in the pros, but all the way down to the grassroots level? The impact it had for kids who maybe want to play the position and debate whether they should?
“I mean it’s tough. What do you tell them? You’re going to go out there because running back is usually the strongest guy on the team. They usually are all hard workers. So what are you going to tell a kid that wants to be a running back? I mean work hard and do all these things to not get as much as your teammate who’s not doing the same things as you. It’s tough, but I hope it doesn’t come to that. I think we will find a solution.”
How, if at all, do you think your role is going to change as this offense evolves into Deshaun’s (Watson) second season?
“I’m not sure. I mean, hopefully, it’ll be the same. Be able to run the ball and pass the ball both in balance.”
If you had a son and wants to play football, would you talk him playing running back?
“Whatever he wants to do would be his cause. It doesn’t even have to be football. Whatever he’s doing, I’m going to be supportive of him.”
If he had a choice between wide receiver and running back, would you shoo him toward wide receiver?
“I’m so far from having a kid. I don’t even know what to say.”
Every offseason, you kind of gear your personal training to get to this point. Are you pleased with the way you came in? We saw the video, the recent squatting video.
“Yeah, I’m pleased. I feel good. I did everything I want to do in the offseason, so I feel like I’m good where I’m at.”
Did you set a personal best this year, weight-wise?
“Yeah, I did.”
Reveal the number?
You’re rated the number one running back in Madden. What does that mean to you? Is that cool to see?
“It’s definitely cool to see. I mean, as a kid, everyone plays Madden. It’s cool to actually be in the game for one, but, yeah, it’s special.”
Did you play growing up?
“Yeah, everyone played Madden.”
The thought of you could be next, or just in general, how many years you might have left be on top of your game? Is this stuff you’ve just recently started thinking about?
“No, I haven’t thought about it. Every offseason, I go in, do the same thing, hit the same numbers, hit the same time, so I feel good where I’m at.”
Nick, you’re the last running back to receive a double-digit million contract, I believe. Are you grateful that you got that contract when you did and that you’re in good shape like that right now?
“Yeah, it was perfect timing for me and my team. Of course, we got it done at the right time, I guess, because now it’s kind of in shambles. But, yeah, I’m grateful that we’re able to get it done.”
Have you seen Jerome (Ford) look so far since he’s been back?
“Jerome looks good. He’s fast. He’s very fast. He’s smooth. He can do anything you ask him to do. He’s a special player.”
Did you notice a big difference in him in any way?
“He’s more mature. I would say that he understands the playbook and saying what his role is and what he needs to do, and just overall, he’s matured a lot more.”
# # #
***Visit the Browns Media Center for materials provided by the Browns communications department, including media schedules, press releases, quotes, photos, media guides, rosters, depth charts and more.***