Rhodes may have rejected offers in March, but he’s still getting no interest now

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So why isn’t safety Kerry Rhodes currently on an NFL team?  The fact that there’s no buzz at all about Rhodes coupled with Internet rumors regarding Rhodes’ sexuality (Rhodes strongly denies he is gay) creates the impression he has been shunned by the NFL after eight years of service.

But there’s another side to the story.  After we posted our item regarding the Deadspin article highlighting Rhodes’ absence from the league, multiple league sources reached out to explain that Rhodes could have been on a team for 2013, but that he wanted too much money.

It started with the Cardinals, who were due to pay Rhodes $5.5 million in 2013.  One source claims the Cardinals offered Rhodes a reduced contract before cutting him on March 13.  Rhodes, however, wanted more than the Cardinals were willing to pay.

Mike Jurecki of 910-AM in Phoenix reported Friday that Arizona actually offered Rhodes a one-year, $3 million guaranteed deal.  Per Jurecki, Rhodes wanted to “roll the dice” in free agency — and only the Bengals were interested.

Another source told PFT that one team other than the Bengals contacted Rhodes in the offseason.  The team in question viewed Rhodes as a player who deserved to earn a contract in the one-year minimum range, but the team learned that Rhodes wasn’t interested in playing unless his compensation was “significant.”

Yet another source said the Rhodes is “just really OK and doesn’t really like football.”

Other sources have characterized these claims as “he said/she said” contentions, pointing out that, regardless of the events that resulted in the Cardinals cutting Rhodes, there’s been no interest since the early days of free agency.  One source explained that, in recent months, there have been and continue to be no opportunities or interest even at the minimum salary level, which for Rhodes would be $840,000.

No matter how the dominoes fell for Rhodes in Arizona, the end result is that Rhodes currently is drawing no interest, and that he apparently didn’t draw much in the first place.  If the Cardinals truly deemed him to be worthy of a one-year, $3 million contract in March, why would no one offer him anything in May, June, July, August, or September?

Coincidentally, the rumors regarding Rhodes’ sexuality hit the Internet in April.

Based on the timeline, it’s possible that Rhodes priced himself out of the market in March, and that the market otherwise decided after April to avoid him for reasons other than his contractual expectations.  The reality of situations like this is that the employers who are steering around a given employee will never admit that they’re doing so for reasons that aren’t legitimate.

For Rhodes, the reality is that the Cardinals reportedly wanted to give him $3 million guaranteed in April, and that no one wants to give him anything now.  And so the end result continues to be that, like the Chewbacca defense, Rhodes’ ongoing unemployment does not make sense.

40 responses to “Rhodes may have rejected offers in March, but he’s still getting no interest now

  1. As the saying goes, it is better to have one bird in hand than two in the bush. Especially in a finite career like NFL football.

    Besides, aren’t we all underpaid?

  2. It blows my mind that the Eagles didn’t take a chance on this guy. He certainly can’t be any worse than the garbage playing on the back end of their defense right now.

  3. well after seeing the pics, just go ahead and be free rhodes and come out, teams want u for yr playing skills not the type of rainbow fans u bring, and im sure other players arent afraid of your lifestyle, if they are mature enough to handle it

  4. Hope there is an underlying reason. If this is because of his sexuality then the league should just fold up and die off.
    i mean, Trent Edwards keeps getting jobs, how is this guy not

  5. He overplayed his hand and now no one wants him. Am I supposed to feel sorry for someone who turned down 3 mill for 1 years work?

  6. So the original sentiment was false? Teams have been interested he’s just wanted a few million and teams aren’t willing to pay it for a safety his age. The league minimum means nothing if he’s not willing to accept it. Maybe Deadspin will post an update to the article.

  7. It is telling that Ray Horton, who was his defensive coordinator in AZ last year is now the DC of the young, inexperienced Browns – who have a need for an experienced Safety, but have shown zero interest in Rhodes.

  8. Nothing else to stir the pot up about? I hope he is black balled for being gay just because I’m getting sick of hearing about it.

    And if they force Snyder’s hand to change the name of the Redskins, I’m done with the NFL.

  9. It makes perfect sense. He wanted more money than NFL teams want to pay. If he wants to play for the veteran minimum, he’ll be signed when someone gets hurt. If not, then you can add this and the Redskins name change as filler stories when there is nothing else going on in the NFL besides games.

  10. That last line ruined the article for me. It is week 2. Coaches and teams want guys in camp and getting some game time in preseason. Kerry Rhodes is simply not good enough to command the money he wants. I don’t think this has anything to do with his “persuasion” as much as it does that he priced himself out of the market. SF let Goldson go for that reason. They just weren’t willing to pay for what the player thought he deserved. End of story. That last line throws an implication out that’s a bit dangerous and in my opinion you should be a little embarrassed. I think the league would embrace a player of that “persuasion” and I’m not even of the opinion that it is an acceptable lifestyle. However you do not have to agree with it to accept it.

  11. James Harrison learned this the hard way last year and cost himself about $4M bucks.

    Tim Tebow is costing himself at least $1M or so by his stubborn insistence he’s a QB, when all of the evidence overwhelmingly says he cannot succeed in the NFL as one.

    Honestly, players still have next to no leverage in this game. The owners will cut them and ask them to take salary cuts at will, all while these players keep making them billions of dollars and increases their teams value.

    I’m not saying NFL players are “poor”. But there is some synergy between college players not getting paid and making multi-millions for their colleges, and NFL players making billions for their team’s owners, yet the salary cap is probably about 1/2 of what it COULD be, except the owners claim “oh no, I’d lose too much money!”. Yeah, right.

  12. How is not wanting to have an expensive distraction in your locker room not a “legitimate” reason to avoid hiring someone? If he’s openly gay, that’s a major distraction from the focus on winning football games.

  13. Sounds to me like he just wants more money than he’s worth and he doesn’t feel like playing for less than that. I know you desperately want there to be some conspiracy against gay players, but that isn’t the simplest explanation here.

  14. If he wants more money to play football than any team is willing to pay, there may be no other factors in play here. Lots of veterans ended up taking one-year minimum deals trying to prove they are worthy of more lucrative longer term deals–Rhodes chose otherwise.

  15. I’ve yet to read a story this week that even mentions his agent. That speaks volumes both about Rhodes’ career and the current state of journalism. I’m not sure which is in worse shape.

  16. we are the steelers says:

    Rhodes could have been our third stringer and been around a real trophy case. Too bad.

    how, you guys are broke..

  17. “howiefeltersnatch says:
    Sep 14, 2013 8:33 AM
    Nothing else to stir the pot up about? I hope he is black balled for being gay just because I’m getting sick of hearing about it.

    And if they force Snyder’s hand to change the name of the Redskins, I’m done with the NFL.”

    Well, for me, I’m much more concerned about rule changes, the constant subjectivity in referee decisions, and specific team bias than the two things you mention. Those are certainly more damaging to the long term integrity of the game than a name change and the closet opening.

  18. Yeah…Probably just a coincidence that no team has shown interest in Rhodes after those photos came out. LOL. The NFL & it’s players are trying to be politically correct in what they say publicly about this but the reality is that teams are afraid of how a gay player would be received in a locker room.

  19. I still can’t believe Riley Cooper wasn’t cut from the Eagles. If Cooper can get a job in the NFL after what he said which was insane & inexcusable it’s pretty sad if no one is willing to take a chance of Kerry Rhodes.

    Talent is supposed to trump everything but apparently not in the case of a player being gay. However if it’s racism & the team needs a 3rd or 4th WR badly enough then it’s okay to keep the player. Just a bizarre decision by the Eagles organization with no punishment from the league??? This is the same NFL that fines players for wearing different color socks right??? Goodell should wear a Ronald McDonald costume on Sundays b/c he’s a freakin’ clown.

  20. Maybe it’s “D.” all of the above.
    Plus the fact that he wouldn’t be game ready for several weeks because of being out of shape and not knowing another team’s defensive plays.

  21. Okay, so now that I have actually read the entire article (tsk tsk), I think Kerry Rhodes was crazy not to take the one year $3 million deal. I mean, for a defensive back over 30 years old, a $3 million guaranteed income is fantastic. Geez Louise.

  22. Ghost26… Go back and read your post and see if you can spot the glaring contradiction. Talent trumps all? Yeah, there’s your answer to why Cooper still has a job.

    Rhodes isn’t unemployed because he’s gay, either. He’s unemployed because he thinks he’s worth more than he is. He gambled and lost.

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