DeAndre Hopkins has been dropping hints throughout the offseason that he’s been unsatisfied with his relatively "meager" rookie contract. After lighting the NFL on fire during his first three years in the league, that frustration has now seemingly boiled over into a full-blown holdout.
Update: Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins did not report to training camp. He now will be subject to fines of $40,000 for each day missed.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 30, 2016
Some rare drama in Houston. Hopkins no-shows. https://t.co/XGgEoflJ3G— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 30, 2016
Hopkins is only making $1,000,000.00 in base salary in 2016 with an additional $445,000.00 available in roster bonuses. Meanwhile, "lesser" receivers around the league like Allen Hurns, Doug Baldwin, and T.Y. Hilton are each making at least ten times that amount per year on average with all of their newly-signed contracts. Nuk has already proven to be a truly special player in Houston, and he has easily earned the right to be among the highest paid wideouts in the league. Whether Rick Smith, fresh off a new contract extension of his own, agrees with that assessment of Hopkins’ worth, however, remains to be seen.
I think I speak for all Texans fans when I say this, however – just pay the man, Rick. Now is not the time to get cute with the best weapon on the team. Just. Pay. Him.
UPDATE: We've got some more reactions and information coming in from around the Twitterverse.
Damn it, which one of y'all sent DeAndre this video https://t.co/qhUUsA2JpR— Seth Payne (@PayneNFL) July 30, 2016
DeAndre Hopkins switched representation this year to @CAA_Football— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) July 30, 2016
WR DeAndre Hopkins has 2 years left on his deal & #Texans won't negotiate or engage. But... they redid JJ Watt's deal with 2 years left.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 30, 2016
Texans' stance has been to not negotiate new deals with two years left. Made an exception for J.J. Watt and his $100 million deal in 2014— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) July 30, 2016
Texans picked up $7.915 million fifth-year option for DeAndre Hopkins for 2017. Basic issue is he's outplayed his rookie deal— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) July 30, 2016
Hopkins stopped by the facility last night for some errands, but didn't report for camp and didn't tell anyone his plans. #Texans— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) July 30, 2016
If Hopkins watched the Texans make an exception to their rule for the best defensive player on the team, he likely thinks that they will make the same exception for the best offensive player on the team. I'll say it again - pay him, Rick.
UPDATE II: It was the Anglo-Zazibar War of NFL holdouts.