Report: Bengals oversaw Henry's money previously reported that Bengals receiver Chris Henry and his fiance met with a wedding planning company the night before the accident that resulted in his death.

Here’s a new nugget from TMZ — two checks that were given to the company came from the Bengals organization, with signatures from “two team honchos.”

The team tells TMZ that the checks came from “money that [Henry] had requested us to oversee.”

In a salary-cap environment, any team that provides such services invites scrutiny from the league office.  Even if the money fully came from salary and other reported compensation paid by the team to the player, the mere act of managing a player’s money has value to the player, and thus is subject to the cap system.

Regardless of whether the Bengals have plenty of extra 2009 cap space, failure to apply a value to these services and report them to the league office arguably constitutes a salary-cap violation.  Consider the terms of Article XXV, Section 1 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement:  “A Club (or a Club Affiliate) and a player (or a Player Affiliate or player agent) may not, at any time, enter into undisclosed agreements of any kind, express or implied, oral or written, or promises, undertakings, representations, commitments, inducements, assurances of intent, or understandings of any kind: (a) involving consideration of any kind to be paid, furnished or made available or guaranteed to the player, or Player Affiliate, by the Club or Club Affiliate either prior to, during, or after the term of the Player Contract; and/or (b) concerning the terms of any renegotiation and/or extension of any Player Contract by a player subject to a Franchise Player or Transition Player designation.”  (Emphasis added.)

The stakes in this regard are fairly high.  Under Article XXV, Section 6(b), the Commissioner may impose a maximum fine of $5.25 million on the team, order the forfeiture of two first-round draft picks, fine any team executive who committed the violation up to $375,000 and suspend the executive for up to a year.

Though helping Herny manage his money is a far cry from sliding under the table a briefcase full of it, the point here is that the subject of giving anything of value to a player requires teams to be sure to disclose such matters, because of the magnitude of the potential consequences.

And while the league is unlikely to give the Bengals a hard time regarding its effort to help Henry, the next question becomes whether the Bengals are providing similar services to other players — and whether the Bengals have disclosed these arrangements to the league.

34 responses to “Report: Bengals oversaw Henry's money

  1. Can you confirm that there was no language in the contract stating that they would provide such service? Have you been afforded the opportunity to look at the entire contract? I really, really hope they nail you with something like “uh… it’s in the contract.” That would be funny.

  2. How is helping Henry not puke off all his money giving “value”? I would like to think that more players(kids) would have their teams do the same thing.
    Remember, these are young kids still, making an enormous amount of money, and reality is that most are not mature enough yet to handle such amounts of money.
    When I was 15 and got my first job I gave my dad a percentage of my check so I wouldnt blow it all.
    The league has idiotic rules.

  3. Mike Brown is a lawyer, a very good one. This is the guy who got the most one-sided deal in history from the city of Cincinnati. I’m sure he has all his i’s dotted and t’s crossed.

  4. So essentially, if the Bengals didn’t report this to the league they were “cheating” and could lose multiple draft picks ……….
    If this were the New England Patriots, imagine the uproar. Because it involves the death of a player (and a team other than the Patriots), it will probably get swept under the rug.

  5. Mr Florio, can’t you leave the dead be? Save the tabloid press for the living. Henry doesn’t need his name dragged thru the mud now or, for that matter, ever again.

  6. On the other hand, if more players had this kind of arrangement with their clubs, they would not be dirt poor by the time they are 40.

  7. Anything he posts about Cleveland, Cincinnati, or Baltimore is something negative or something he feels could be negative toward those franchise.
    Notice, you never see these ignorant blurbs in regards to his precious Stoolers.
    But, the funniest of it is that his glorious Pissbug franchise is on its way to the toilet and showing that Mike Tomlin is not a very good coach. And before one of you Stooler downy’s replies, it was the Chins team and system that won Tomlin the Bowl…. Nothing that he was doing personally!

  8. There is absolutely NO VIOLATION of the CBA. Assuming theses were funds “Earned” pursuant to his contract, there is nothing wrong in asking his employer to hold his checks until he needs them.

  9. i think the reputation of mike brown will precede him, before any repricussions can be handed down, mike brown is the last owner you would expect to pay a guy off the books, this is the guy who doesn’t want the fans to “overflush” the toilets….
    also, perhaps as condition of his re-employment, and to satisfy goodell that henry was making sufficient progress towards reinstatement, its possible the league already knows all this….

  10. db26 if it was cowher’s team that won the super bowl, then it’s cowher’s team that is struggling the year after…basic logic…
    oh wait, rational thinking is way over your head, you must be the product of an ohio education.

  11. So he was maybe smart enough to get real help from people that cared and now it’s a problem? I’m sure there are hundreds of football players that wished they’d had similar agreements and not wasted all their money before they even have the chance to get married. This isn’t like Denver giving Elway interests in car dealerships. Or was that Marino? Anyway, not hard to tell Florio is a lawyer.

  12. Sounds like something more teams should do. It might save a lot of players a lot of money. This is what happens when lawyers get involved in things. Much ado about nothing.

  13. I read some stat that some very high percentage of players…well over 50%…are broke and maybe even bankrupt after five years removed from the game. I never understood why the players wouldn’t pro-rate their huge signing bonuses over, say , at least ten years. Wouldnt the taxes be better for them? Maybe the NFLPA ought to allow teams to manage player’s bonuses like this in an untouchable trust.

  14. Florio was always a 2 -bit ambulance chaser as a lawyer. Now he shows his true colors by daring to insult the dead man’s team for his ‘imagined’ violations’ in a tabloid article that few sane people care about. Oh, we don’t include Cheatriot fans or their whining in the sane bucket.

  15. has anyone asked the question,did the bengals get the leagues permission to do this?i think they did.

  16. This seems a bit excessive Mike. I think the team should be applauded for doing everything the could to try and help a troubled player turn things around.
    And the value of that service would be rather minimal. The teams bookkeeper who is no doubt a full time employee has to make a few extra entries. I don’t think the extra 5 or 10 minutes a month they might have spent on Chris Henry could be valued at more than a few dollars, so lets not be too nuts about this.

  17. While I appreciate the continual effort you make to ensure that the sport we all love stays ‘clean’ by publishing information that may show the league, teams, or players doing otherwise.
    In this case instead of pointing this out and trying to make it sound like Cincinnati was double dealing, you should have used your bully pulpit to ensure that the league do everything in its power to promote more of this activity.
    The Bengals should be applauded, while the league and the NFLPA should work together to find a common valuation and make it a standard offering for every team and player.

  18. So… you got a kid that’s in a lot of trouble.
    On his last chance with the league.
    Probably doesn’t have a clue how to handle his money.
    Brown brought him back against the coach’s wishes… Genuinely trying to help the kid get back on track.
    Then some douche bag lawyer out of west virginia has to make an issue out of this.

  19. @fellasheowed,
    Not the same team. Changes have been made. Check the “rooster” before you spout at the mouth.
    Maybe you can look forward to a good showing from the Panthers in their bowl, its the only postseason your going to enjoy in P-burgh this year!

  20. So let me get this straight. The Bengals are too cheap to hire a General Manager and a scouting department, but gladly pay two staff memebers to babysit the finances of a troubled player?
    Seems like a model for success to me.

  21. It makes sense that Chris will entrust his money affairs to the team, since he blew through his initial contract with the Bengals. And it wasn’t any chump change at that. R.I.P

  22. turning your life around must involve, not being mature enough to handle your own money, jumping in the back of a moving truck and pounding on it with your fiance in it, and jumping out of it – allegedly –
    He should have just stayed the way he was… wasnt that much worse given the outcome

  23. Florio: Cowboys has same arrangement with Pacman Jones. Jerry Jones was public about it — guess you didn’t glom that story — league saw it and apparently thought it did not break salary cap rules.

  24. Florio, a “fiancé” is a man engaged to be married; a “fiancée” is a woman engaged to be married. You should be referring to this woman as Henry’s fiancée, not his fiancé.

  25. Your a scumbag for even writing about this. You are a voulcher you say ” O condolences” but then after you use the story to get you more traffic and more money in your pocket.
    I dont care if its a story or not have some integretity and dont talk about what the man did wrong right after he passes away.
    For god sakes they havent even had his funeral yet.

  26. the magnitude of the potential consequences.
    Really? That’s self-absorbed, even for the NFL. “The Magnitue of The Potential Consequences” of writing checks for a player?
    Yes, this is truly An Important Issue That Should Be Discussed.
    This is worse than when Bradshaw died.

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