Andre Johnson Reportedly Wants to Be Traded
Well, now we at least know something.
After months of cryptic interviews, nebulous filibusters by his uncle and vague implications that he would hopefully-be-coming-back-but-I-don't-think-I'm-coming-back, we at least know something as it pertains to Andre Johnson, his desires and what's causing all of this.
Until Thursday morning, the latest news consisted of Johnson doing a courtesy session with NFL Media at an event at Nike in Oregon. Yay. We've seen this movie before. But then, Thursday morning, they came across Twitter like three swift Twitter bullets.
Tweets from NFL.com's Ian Rapoport:
#Texans Andre Johnson's absence involves standoff over $1M bonus per source. Johnson wanted to earn it back after missing time. Team said no— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 10, 2014
Four teams have expressed interest in trading for #Texans WR Andre Johnson, who is working out now "not thinking of the Texans," source said— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 10, 2014
I have to admit that hearing a professional football player wants to have a chance to "earn back" a squandered $1 million bonus (squandered because he was absent without an excuse, by the way) by doing "extra work" is one of the most absurd things I've ever heard. What NFL player asks for this? Does Andre Johnson think the Texans are running a football team or a lemonade stand? Maybe he can clomp erasers or scrub desks to earn back his million.
Back in college, I was in a class called U.S. Constitution where the teacher dropped your grade a full letter if you had too many skips. However, you could earn back the letter grade if you wrote a review of a movie you'd recently seen. Yes, it was as ridiculous as it sounds (and yes, a LOT of athletes took this class). That sounds stupid for a throwaway college course, right?
Yeah, Andre Johnson wants that arrangement for a $1 million bonus.
He wants a mulligan on earning a bonus for workouts that he missed in an offseason where the team has a new coach, new playbook and new quarterback. He is paid eight figures a season in part to be a leader on the team (He does have a "C" on his jersey, right?), and in an offseason where his leadership was needed more than ever, where was he?
Who the hell knows. Not at NRG Stadium, that's for sure.
By the way, if you think that this bonus situation is the stumbling block that holds the key to repairing the relationship between both sides, then clearly (and thankfully for you) you've never been through a divorce. This bonus flap is merely the trigger event, the same way a husband's constantly leaving dishes in the sink or forgetting to take out the garbage is not really the cause of a divorce. It's merely a symptom.
Andre Johnson is tired of losing, sees his peers going to the playoffs more often than not, some even winning Super Bowls. Meanwhile, he's played in four playoff games and won two. He doesn't want to be here. This is my semi-educated behavioral assessment based on what he's said, done, not done and leaked.
Now, Johnson's finally floated his desire to be traded publicly (See, how hard was that, Dre?), and we will find out how serious both sides are. Supposedly, four teams (Baltimore, Carolina, New England and Cleveland) are interested in trading for Johnson.
The Texans have said they won't trade Johnson, and he doesn't appear to be ready to come back anytime soon. It's a good ol'-fashioned standoff!
Texans fans, by and large, continue to support Andre. (Totally unscientific, but when I share the above views on the radio, the text line on our show is a slew of messages skewering me.) I don't know if I've ever seen an athlete who is, at best, straddling the line of professionalism get more leeway.
Being the only "boss" in an expansion franchise's largely futile 12-year history has its privileges, I guess.
Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.
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