Johnson still is expected to seek a trade from Cleveland.
Earlier this week, agent Kristin Campbell confirmed to Cleveland.com that she no longer was representing Johnson.
Johnson, who has attended mandatory Browns workouts during the offseason, said last month that there was nothing the team can do to change his mind about wanting a trade.
In June 2018, Johnson signed a three-year, $15.6 million extension with the Browns. He is under contract through the 2021 season.
A third-round draft choice of the Browns in 2015, Johnson has rushed for 1,286 yards over four seasons. He fell behind rookie Nick Chubb on the depth chart last season, and the team signed Kareem Hunt, who will miss the first eight games of 2019 for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.
ESPN’s Jake Trotter contributed to this report.
Source — WR Bryant applies for reinstatement
Bryant sent an e-mail to league officials Saturday requesting reinstatement from an indefinite suspension the league imposed in December for Bryant’s repeated violations of the league’s drug policy.
Bryant, 27, was a fourth-round pick by the Steelers in 2014 but has missed 36 of a possible 80 regular-season games since then because of suspensions.
Last season, with the help of attorney Peter Ginsburg, Bryant was able to delay his suspension with an appeal by arguing that the league had failed to properly treat him for mental health issues including ADHD — a condition with which he was diagnosed as a child. Ultimately, the league rejected Bryant’s appeal and his arguments that his mental health issues were the reason he was unable to comply with the drug program and imposed his third suspension in four years.
Since the end of last season, a source said, Bryant has worked with the NFL and the NFLPA on ways to address his mental health issues and put him in a position where he feels his application for reinstatement has a chance to succeed. He has submitted to drug testing over the past couple of months and has consulted with the league and the union to get himself set up with mental health professionals and proper medication.
In May, the NFL and the NFLPA jointly announced the establishment of a new mental health and wellness committee as well as a new regulation for 2019 that requires every team to employ a mental health professional who works in its building.
At the same time, the two entities also established a joint pain management committee to conduct research into pain management and alternative therapies. That announcement has led many inside and outside the game to believe a change is coming in the league’s policy on and attitude toward drugs such as marijuana.
49ers reach deal with K Gould before deadline
Terms were not disclosed. The contract was announced as a four-year deal, but league sources told ESPN it’s a two-year, $10.5 million fully guaranteed contract that, including an option clause, could turn into a four-year, $19 million deal with $15 million guaranteed.
Gould’s deal, which his agent, Brian Mackler, and 49ers executive Paraag Marathe have been working on for months, reached a breakthrough over the weekend. At the start of the weekend, both sides thought it would be challenging to get it done, but they reached a compromise Sunday by installing an option clause.
The 49ers have an option in which they can pick up the remaining two years on Gould’s contract by the 17th week of the 2020 season, per a source. To do that, the 49ers would have to fully guarantee Gould $2.25 million at that time, then another $2.25 million on April 1, 2021.
The deal includes a $3 million signing bonus and a $3.15 million fully guaranteed base salary this season, then a fully guaranteed $4.35 million base salary in 2020, per a source. If the option is picked up, the deal would include a $4.5 million base salary in 2021 and a $4 million base salary in 2022.
“Over the years, Robbie has established himself as one of the best at his position in the NFL, which is precisely why we were so committed to working out a new contract with him,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said in a statement. “I would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to make this deal come to fruition. We are very happy to start off the year on the right foot with this agreement in place so that Robbie can get back with his teammates and focus on making the most out of the upcoming season.”
In April, an inability to come to terms on a long-term contract, combined with Gould’s desire to return closer to his Chicago home, prompted the kicker to shut down any further contract talks and to formally request a trade. The team said then it wouldn’t honor Gould’s request.
Gould, 36, had been living in a hotel near the Niners’ team facility in Santa Clara, California, the past two years while his wife and family remained in Chicago during the season.
In two seasons with the 49ers, Gould has been one of the league’s best kickers, making 72 of 75 field goal attempts. He led the league in field goal percentage (97.1) last season.
ESPN’s Nick Wagoner contributed to this report.
Deadline passes without new deal for Clowney
No trade is in the works for him, either, sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Clowney is expected to miss most, if not all, of training camp, as he still hasn’t signed his franchise tender, which is worth $15.967 million for the 2019 season.
The Texans tagged Clowney as a linebacker ($15.443 million) rather than as a defensive end ($17.128 million). However, because players receive the higher amount between the tag value or 120% of last year’s salary, Clowney is poised to get an additional $524,000 this season. He made $13.306 million, including a $1 million bonus, while playing on his fifth-year option in 2018.
The NFL Players Association is anticipated to file a grievance against the Texans over the position the team assigned Clowney when they used the franchise tag on him, league sources told Schefter.
Despite being tagged as a linebacker, Clowney played most of his snaps at defensive end in 2018, according to ESPN Stats & Information. He logged 729 at defensive end, 101 at defensive tackle and 33 at linebacker last season.
Clowney, who was named to his third consecutive Pro Bowl last season, finished 2018 with 47 tackles, nine sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He also had 16 tackles for loss, which tied for ninth in the NFL last season, and he now has 53 tackles for loss over the past three seasons, which ranks third in the league.
Clowney, 26, the first overall pick of the 2014 draft, struggled with knee injuries early in his career, missing 15 games in his first two seasons. In 2016, he played through wrist and elbow injuries, appearing in 14 games and making the Pro Bowl for the first time. Since then, he has missed just one game over two seasons.
ESPN’s Sarah Barshop contributed to this report.
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