TE David Njoku (8.18.20)

TE David Njoku:

On why he originally made the trade request and why he ultimately rescinded it:

“Basically, I would rather not go into it. I understand where I am right now, I am a Cleveland Brown and I just want to leave it like that.”

On if seeing the teammates, the coaching staff and discussions with them when returning made him feel like he wanted to stay in Cleveland:

“Let me take you back to my rookie year. We struggled, we went 0-16 and it was tough. Fast forward now, I just feel like it is in my best interest to stay here for the time being and try to contribute in any way that I can to help the team win and succeed. I am here, I am excited to be here and I am ready to win.”

On what he said to LB Mack Wilson after taking down RB Nick Chubb in practice:

“That is a confidential.”

On if he is getting a sense of how he will be used in the offense and if he is comfortable with it:

“Yes, I am, and yes, I feel comfortable with it.”

On if he feels in some ways he may need to try to repair his relationship with Browns fans after backlash from requesting a trade:

“I love the fans. Let me start off by saying that. The Cleveland Browns fans, they are amazing – probably second to none. At the end of the day, this is a business. This is my life, and I choose to do what I do with my life. Now with that being said, I am still here, I am a Cleveland Brown and I am excited to be a Cleveland Brown.”

On if it is true that his agent Drew Rosenhaus was responsible for asking to be traded or if he hired Rosenhaus after initially wanting a trade:

“Like I said, I am not going into that at this moment. I am a Cleveland Brown for the time being. For now, I am a Cleveland Brown for the time being, and I am just going to leave it like that. Thank you.”

On if an incident like Wilson on Chubb yesterday can impact the locker room:

“This a tough sport, and with that being said, we had our first padded practice today. Nevertheless, that was not right nor does anybody condone that behavior. Tensions fly and things happen, but we try to take care of other as much as we can.”

On how hard he worked in the offseason to improve on catching and if clearing his mind on the topic may also help, referencing tight end coach Drew Petzing’s comment earlier in the day:

“The answer to your question, is yes, I have worked hard in the offseason in all aspects, and, yes again, a clear mind potentially plays into that. So yes and yes.”

On if he thinks that having the trade request situation behind him may also help clear his mind and could translate to better play:


On his relationship with TE Austin Hooper:

“Hoop is a great person. He and I connected rather quickly, and we are just always together. We are hanging out. He is a great dude, a real cool dude, and we are excited to do this together. We are excited to be side by side for the attack this year.”

On what he and Hooper can do together on the field:

“Like pretty much what I said earlier, him and I bonded immediately, and we both have great talent so we are really excited to join forces and do this thing. We are excited.”

On congratulations on recently having a baby and if it has been exciting for him:

“I did, thank you. Very exciting. It is a surreal experience.”

On if he has optimism that he will have a big role this season due to Head Coach Kevin Stefanski using multiple tight end sets:

“Yes, it does.”

On how does Stefanski uses tight ends that makes him feel like he can make big impact:

“In the past, obviously, as we both know, two tight end sets in his offenses are very frequent. I believe Austin and I have talent that not many tight ends have. I am excited to finally play again. Mind you, I also got hurt last year for potentially the whole season, dealing with some extra curricular confrontations. I am really excited to finally start playing again with my teammates. They are great so I am excited.”

On the value of his trip to Austin, Texas to spend time and work out with QB Baker Mayfield and other Browns players:

“Obviously, with everything going on, it was tough to focus this offseason, especially with not being able to get together as soon as we could. Nevertheless, we had a great time in Austin. We bonded. It was a fun time. It was a fun time. We got a lot of work done. I would say it was a really great experience.”

On if he thinks that this is his last year in Cleveland, given his phrasing of being here ‘for the time being’:

“Oh, no. I was just speaking on today and on now. I am not saying this is my last year here. I am just talking because all we have is the present.”

On if he wants to be in Cleveland long term:

“Yes, I want to be here long term.”

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