After a brief interview yesterday in which he expressed hope that he'd be at Houston Texans training camp when it opened in a few weeks, Andre Johnson has now reportedly told the Texans he wants to play elsewhere after the team denied his request to "earn back" a $1,000,000.00 offseason workout bonus he forfeited by skipping certain offseason activities. Ian Rapoport tweets:
#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
Possible solution for #Texans, considering Andre Johnson wanted to show up at 1 time: Guarantee he’s on roster for ’15. Can retire a Texan— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 10, 2014
Andre Johnson restructured his contract 3 times at the team’s behest. Wants same goodwill from #Texans for $1M bonus. Thinks he’s earned it— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 10, 2014
Those tweets form the basis for this article on NFL.com by Rapoport. The following excerpt makes it sound like 'Dre had come around to rejoining the Texans, only to reverse course after the team told him that $1,000,000.00 bonus was gone and not coming back.
Before OTAs and minicamp, star wide receiver Andre Johnson told the Houston Texans he had heard enough from the new staff and coach Bill O'Brien to make him want to show up and join the team. He told them of his plans to be there for offseason workouts, despite missing the early portion of it. The question revolved around his $1 million bonus for attending workouts.
Though Johnson had missed some of the sessions, he wanted to earn his money back by working out extra, allowing him to receive the money.
The Texans told him no, per two sources informed of the situation.
That furthered the divide between Johnson and the Texans, driving a wedge between the parties. That caused Johnson to tell them he wanted to play for another team. He is now working out, "not thinking about the Texans," a source said.
The Texans have not yet been willing to trade him.
This is not good. This is not good at all.
While 'Dre was well within his rights to skip the workouts, the team is entirely within its rights to tell him that the workout bonus ship has sailed. Then again, is that how the organization should treat the best player in franchise history? If an exception was ever going to be made, wouldn't Andre Johnson be the guy to make it for in this case?
Much more on this as additional facts come to light. In the meantime, leave your thoughts in the Comments.