JC Tretter: getting extension with Browns done "a great feeling"

Freddie Kitchens says Browns "reward guys that play well here, buy into team concept"

Daryl Ruiter
November 08, 2019 - 3:38 pm
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Berea, Ohio (92.3 The Fan) – JC Tretter had at least $23 million reasons to smile Friday afternoon after putting pen to paper on a 3-year contract extension that could pay him up to $32.5 million.

Talks between Tretter’s agent and the Browns picked up in recent weeks and they were able to finally get the deal done Thursday night.

“I wouldn't say it's a relief but it's a great feeling,” Tretter said. “I went into the year understanding the possibility of having to play out all 16-plus games and then go from there and luckily the two sides were able to lock things down early and take any thought out of the process.”

The 28-year old Tretter was in the final year of a 3-year $16.75 million deal he signed as a free agent in 2017 to leave Green Bay and come to Cleveland to anchor the middle of the offensive line.

He was prepared to join a third team next March but grateful he doesn’t have to move, and the count will stay at 2.

“I think anybody wants to feel at home and wanted,” Tretter said, “and I think that's one of the best feelings is that you can settle in and make Cleveland your home and have that franchise that you have the ties to and not have to move around to three teams, that's really one of the best feelings for me is just knowing now I can be a Cleveland Brown and be happy about that.”

Tretter, who struggled with injuries earlier in his career with the Packers, hasn’t missed a snap in 40 games for the Browns.

“I think what it shows you more than anything is we reward guys that play well here, are committed to what they are supposed to do and buy in totally to the team type concept,” head coach Freddie Kitchens said. “JC is all about the team. He is all about the fact that he wants to do what he can do to help us win. I think it shows that hopefully.”

Left guard Joel Bitonio joked that the next offensive line dinner gathering will be on Tretter – those are the rules when you get paid in season – but he was also thrilled for his teammate.

“It’s awesome. He works his tail off,” Bitonio said. “He’s a good guy, good teammate, does the right thing. He’s a guy you want on your team and I think the Browns recognize that he has a great relationship with Baker and he’s one of the leaders on the offensive line and to get him tied up for the next three years is huge. It’s well deserved.”

Tretter’s extension also ensures he and Baker Mayfield will remain together for the foreseeable future.

“I think Baker would agree, I think we're both excited to be together and continue to work and grow together for years to come, so I think it's going to help both of us in the long run,” Tretter said.

While the relationship between a center and the quarterback might not seem like a big deal, it is.

“It is always comfortable with a quarterback and center when they work together for an extended period of time,” Kitchens said. “There is a comfort level there that the center knows what he is doing, the quarterback knows what he is doing and they can continue to get on the same page. I saw it a lot in Arizona from the standpoint of we had the same center, the quarterbacks changed a little bit but the center always knew what to do and it is always a benefit of when they are on the same page and kind of know what each other is thinking before they ever say it.”