Remember 2016? Damn, what a crappy year. The Texans played the Broncos on Monday Night Football. [NAME REDACTED] threw a fumble that went farther than his yards per attempt that game. The Texans were massacred by an actual good football team once again. But that wasn’t even the worst part.
The most brutal act was Von Miller vaporizing Derek Newton’s knee caps. The right tackle’s career came to an end right there in Denver.
Since that moment, Newton has tried to crawl back on the field, but he hasn’t been able to. He was stuck in this weird purgatory where he was trying to come back, and no one heard anything about his recovery externally. Then, this past offseason, the Texans released him from their roster.
That wasn’t the end to this. Newton filed a grievance with the NFL to try and recoup a roster bonus that was supposed to be paid out on April 1st, as he wasn’t released until April 12th. The rest of Newton’s contract was already settled when he was released last year.
Placed on the reserve-physically unable to perform list due to torn patellar tendons last season, Newton was originally due $4.75 million in base salaries for 2017, 2018 and 2019. He was due a guaranteed $1.75 million base salary last year, which was paid, and had been due nonguaranteed base salaries of $2.25 million and $2 million in 2018 and 2019 under the restructured deal.
The contract was altered to a three-year, $10 million deal in the renegotiation of his original five-year, $26.5 million contract extension signed in 2015.
When the contract was terminated, the Texans didn’t owe Newton any more money.
There’s no logic or rational thinking when it comes to this. It’s all sentimentality. I loved watching Derek Newton play football, mostly because I was wrapped up in this whole write and argue about football online. I sang from the Derek Newton mountaintops that he was some lower pad level away from being a competent football player. It happened. He went from a seventh round draft pick to a millionaire, one of the rare ones who makes it from the cracked egg shell to the ocean to a carapace. This whole thing has just made me terribly sad.
Just pay him the little bit of bonus, Texans. His peak earning years were evaporated along with his patella tendons. The Texans are a billions upon billions of dollars enterprise. They clean up wads with $500,000. This is an opportunity to do the right thing instead of merely saying they do the right thing. But, no, instead they’ll keep their hands clenched and not help out a player who made an enormous contribution to this franchise.