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Cedric Benson says he turned down two before signing with Packers

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New running back Cedric Benson claims he turned down offers from two teams before signing with the Packers.

But the contract he signed doesn’t exactly scream leverage.

According to’s Paul Imig, Benson said both the Lions and Raiders tried to sign him before he chose to go to Green Bay, saying “both teams needed backs.”

“They talk about a Super Bowl around here, not about winning their first playoff game,” Benson said.

They’re also apparently fiscally responsible, as they were able to arm-twist Benson into accepting a “split” contract, which reduces his salary if he ends up on injured reserve.

Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Benson’s deal included no bonus and the veteran minimum base salary of $825,000, which will drop to $393,000 if he’s hurt and lost for the year.

Splits are more common for younger players such as undrafted rookies, since they don’t have the leverage to demand full payment. McGinn noted that when the Packers signed Phillip Merling off the street in May, there was no split in the contract.

Benson’s been a durable player lately, missing just four games the last three years, all of which he finished with more than 1,000 yards. If he keeps that up, he’ll make his money this year. If he gets hurt, he might wish he’d have chosen another option.

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22 Responses to “Cedric Benson says he turned down two before signing with Packers”
  1. joetoronto says: Aug 15, 2012 8:20 AM

    Sometimes it’s best to keep your mouth shut, Cedric.

    Better for you too.

  2. simplesimon1 says: Aug 15, 2012 8:28 AM

    Cedric Benson’s comments have been disputed. Looks like he was trying to cause a little bit of extra motivation between the Lions and Packers this year. Jason La Canfora has already said the Lions offered nothing to him. It makes sense too. The Lions have had enough problems this offseason without a guy that has been riddled with issues throughout his career. Add in the fact that in order to get those 1000 yards each year he’s taken so many snaps that his yards per carry is actually closer to 3, and that is with a guy that isn’t getting any younger, and the Lions would stay right away from this guy.

    The only veteran back I could see the Lions interested in is Ryan Grant, that according to, once again, La Canfora. Nice try anyways Benson.

  3. matt2calvin says: Aug 15, 2012 8:40 AM

    CB is not living in the real world. His agent may have called the Lions, but the Lions DID NOT have an interest in CB. Doesn’t he know that his statements will be seen in Detroit?

    CB is either not very bright, or completely dishonest.

    Or both…

  4. spellingcops says: Aug 15, 2012 8:43 AM

    Hahaha, even Cedric Benson realizes the Raiders are a freaking joke.

  5. rml1989 says: Aug 15, 2012 8:59 AM

    Benson???? Who????? Oh now I remember the draft BUST from Texas. Thanks for the bulletin board material see you at Ford Field on 11/18. Maybe by then you’ll get called up from the practice squad!!!!!

  6. pakmanjones says: Aug 15, 2012 9:02 AM

    This is what you get with Ced Benson. He’s an above average back, but a lot of his comments indicate that its more about him than anything. If his team is successful because of his individual success, all the better. But that doesn’t seem to be his focus.

  7. pskotte says: Aug 15, 2012 9:10 AM

    Are the Packers so desparate? For the last two years his performance dwindled and he griped that he wasn’t getting enough carries (321 and 273!). This guy comes off the field on third down because he can’t catch or block and on the other two downs he leaves the ball on the ground. Surely there must be another back available.

  8. jaimelh02 says: Aug 15, 2012 9:12 AM

    Benson chose the Packers because he knew he had a chance to get a lot of playing time.

  9. The Prophet says: Aug 15, 2012 9:17 AM

    Maybe if the 15-1 Packers spent more time talking about winning that ONE playoff game instead of the Super Bowl, last year, they might not have had their arses handed to them by the Giants.

  10. binkystevens says: Aug 15, 2012 9:20 AM

    Really funny to me that all these Lions fans are so butt hurt by Benson’s comments that the He turned down the Lions and that, more importantly, the Lions aren’t contenders.

  11. dlionfan says: Aug 15, 2012 9:34 AM

    Sure CB now the offers were just pouring in for you that is why you were in tears at the end of your interview on sirius xm about 2 weeks ago and saying you just want to play football & would accept any role if a team would call. well you got your shot now so break a leg CB.

  12. joetoronto says: Aug 15, 2012 9:37 AM

    This is one of those cases where the “winner” is really the loser.

  13. thankheavenfornumberseven says: Aug 15, 2012 9:47 AM

    Oh, do they talk about Super Bowls in Green Bay? I never noticed that. The Packer fans on this site are always so quiet and unassuming about that.

  14. torturedraiderfan says: Aug 15, 2012 10:25 AM

    Cedric seems a bit full of himself today because he signed a contract. Before we believe how he turned down two team before signing with the Packers, let’s look at some recent news clips.

    Cedric Benson recently appeared on Sirius XM to discuss his future in the NFL with hosts RIch Gannon and Adam Schein. Benson was a little choked up when he began to talk about the lack of NFL interest in his services. No team has seriously pursued Benson, but the Packers, Jets, and Raiders have all had rumored interest.

    According to Adam Schefter, Benson remains on the Raiders’ radar but they don’t seem to be in a hurry to sign him despite losing Michael Bush (Bears) in free agency and employing an injury-plagued Darren McFadden as a feature back.

  15. broncosnative says: Aug 15, 2012 10:35 AM

    News flash CB, heard on the Collin Cowherd radio show, he chose the bears to win the superbowl, I guess he doesn’t think the packers have what it takes just yet

  16. rayguyreturns says: Aug 15, 2012 10:46 AM

    So says the player who didn’t get a contract offer until the middle of August.

  17. purpleguy says: Aug 15, 2012 11:12 AM

    Come on, even as an oposing fan, choosing between the Pack, Lions and Raiders is a no brainer. 15-1 team with the MVP QB, decent O-line, grass field, and strong coaching versus teams with lousy O-lines, RBs that are injured every year, artificial turf or baseball fields, and questionable coaching. Real tough call.

  18. raiduhdude says: Aug 15, 2012 12:57 PM

    That’s why your agent called the Raiders asking for one more offer, and they straight rejected you. bahahahahahahahahaha bitter washed up football player is bitter.

  19. East Coast Raider says: Aug 15, 2012 1:15 PM

    The guy crying on the radio weeks before now makes it sound like he was in control the whole time?

    Notice how Benson didn’t say how MUCH he was offered by either team. I’m sure the Raiders and Lions did offer Benson contracts, but it was probably at a low amount that both teams figured to be risk-free. If Benson signed, great, but if not, they weren’t going to break the bank.

    Green Bay was probably more appealing to Benson, but if anyone thinks that money wasn’t his top concern, think again.

  20. radrntn says: Aug 15, 2012 3:09 PM

    yep he turned down the raiders right after he put the kleenex down after drying his eyes when he was crying about not being offered any jobs….makes complete sense that he had multiple teams offer him a job……..seems to me he must have wanted to play for the lions or the raiders, but neither team offered him a job.

  21. raiderapologist says: Aug 15, 2012 7:59 PM

    spellingcops says: Aug 15, 2012 8:43 AM

    Hahaha, even Cedric Benson realizes the Raiders are a freaking joke.
    Unemployed veterans in August aren’t sifting through offers. They’re waiting for the phone to ring.

  22. stellarperformance says: Aug 15, 2012 9:26 PM

    Players want a ring. His best chance for that was Green Bay. Try to imagine how many “Favres” are out there…wishing they could go to a team they feel would give them the best chance for a SuperBowl ring. The only difference is Benson didn’t abandon any teammates.

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