Dec 12, 2022; Glendale, Ariz., USA; Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (10) tries to catch the ball with one hand between New England Patriots safety Adrian Phillips (21) and New England Patriots cornerback Marcus Jones (25) during the second quarter at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael Chow-Arizona Republic

The Cleveland Browns probably didn’t envision a 7-10 season when they traded for then-Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson in March.

Watson missed the first 12 games of the season while serving a suspension for gross sexual misconduct, but Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski recently confirmed the franchise’s commitment to Watson as the starting quarterback.

One move the Browns could make to bolster their receiving corps would be trading for Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who played with Watson with the Texans to much acclaim.

Browns beat reporter Mary Kay Cabot says that’s “not impossible” in her latest mailbag asking about Hopkins’ availability.

“The Browns would have what it takes from an exchange standpoint, but probably wouldn’t want to pay Hopkins, 30, his base salaries for 2023 and 2024, about $20 million and $15 million,” Cabot wrote.

“If the two sides were interested in a deal, he’d likely have to restructure his contract. An older, high-priced receiver doesn’t really fit the Browns’ profile, but Hopkins still has plenty in the tank and a natural connection with Watson. It seems unlikely, but not impossible.”

The Browns finished last place in the AFC North. Watson finished his abbreviated season with 99 completions on 170 attempts for 1,102 yards, seven touchdowns and five interceptions. He added 36 rushes for 175 yards and one touchdown on the ground, as well.

[Cleveland.com]