Over previous years, players represented by Drew Rosenhaus have unceremoniously found their way out of Cleveland on a near yearly basis.
Rosenhaus was the architect behind Terrelle Pryor's career ending free agency departure, after turning down a mega-deal from the Browns for a one-year deal with Washington which resulted in 20 receptions. Pryor would later admit on the Joe Thomas/Andrew Hawkins podcast that he had received bad advice from his agent. Rosenhaus immediately pushed Duke Johnson in to demanding a trade only to end up with similar usage in Houston, which is comparatively less touches than Kareem Hunt receives in Cleveland - who wasn't far behind Johnson despite missing 10 games. Now he's pushing David Njoku to act out in demanding a trade, while his value is objectively at its lowest and he has every reason to stay in place.
In fact, Rosenhaus is stated as saying, "It is in David's best interests to find a new team at this time." (Schefter)
What interest? He's not getting worthwhile trade offers, and certainly not interest enough from teams to suggest they are poised to either re-sign him to a large deal or even utilize him as their primary tight end threat. It does not take an NFL insider to know Njoku's value is currently low while coming off an injury-riddled, unproductive season. He is, however, playing for a team which will utilize multiple tight ends at amongst the highest rate in the league with a quarterback whom has previously had success with Njoku. Personally, I think it would be easier to justify Cleveland being the best spot for Njoku than it would be to justify a trade being in his best interests.
And these are amongst only the weird and wild examples from this cyclical issue. Other players, such as Breshad Perriman's recent free agent departure, have gone from a resurgance with the Browns to wanting out rather quickly. Don't even get me started on Josh Gordon and how frequently Rosenhaus has failed him. It is consistent to find players on Rosenhaus' social media who were once Browns but are no longer: Joe Haden, Isaiah Crowell, Jabaal Sheard, Emmanuel Ogbah, Ricardo Louis and James Burgess, to name a few, were represented by Rosenhaus at the time of their departure.
I tend not to know much about agents, they represent their players and that is that. Protect your mentals and your chicken, right? Yet Rosenhaus is consistently associated with disgruntlement and an immediate breakdown of the relationship when it comes to his representation of players contracted to the Cleveland Browns. Browns fans know his name, and know his name well.
Pete Smith did a wonderful job documenting the questionable history of Drew Rosenhaus in his piece on Njoku's actions. Smith feels the structure of Rosenhaus contracts with clients creates the aggressive approach to compensate financially for the low fees and hands off approach of the agency. Generation of new money is where Rosenhaus Sports profits.
While that may be true, I can't help but feel like no other franchise has this many documented issues with Rosenhaus. It is extensive, it is consistent and I struggle to find examples of another NFL team so frequently at odds with his clients - or, more specifically, with him.
So I find myself asking, is Rosenhaus an issue specific to the Cleveland Browns? I struggle to see it being a Browns issue given the consistent changes in ownership, front office and coaching. When the issues persist through fresh faces, the only constant remaining is Rosenhaus.
It is difficult to find a comprehensive list of clients for Rosenhaus on a yearly basis to determine the extent of the issue - strange in and of itself. But what is not difficult to find is the headlines regarding issues between the Browns and Rosenhaus. Going further back, Tom Heckhert lashed out at Rosenhaus due to Matt Roth oddly demanding a trade. We could go on and on.
Meanwhile, the only notable Rosenhaus signing we appear to have made in recent years is Jack Conklin. Simply, we offered the most money and Jack wanted to be a Brown. That was no secret.
I worry about Rosenhaus. The issues are too consistent. Personally, I would like to see the Browns explore their options with the league. These situations are too consistent to not create some form of discomfort. The most powerful agent in the league, with the largest clientele base, having consistent issues with one franchise in particular could undoubtedly disrupt the competitive fairness the league strives for.