Early last season, there was some discussion about why veteran safety Kerry Rhodes was unemployed while several teams were looking for secondary help.
Some focused on rumors about Rhodes’ sexual orientation as a reason why he was left unsigned, although Rhodes denied he was gay at the time those rumors originally surfaced. Rhodes maintained that denial this week while saying that he didn’t believe the league shunned him because of concerns about his sexuality.
“I don’t think I was blacklisted,” Rhodes said to Jane McManus of ESPNNewYork.com. “Especially with the NFL I don’t think they would do that … to me it was a product of me wanting to do other things and not finding the right opportunity.”
Rhodes pointed to money as the reason for his unemployment last season, something that meshes with reports that he turned down a reduced salary from the Cardinals before his release and offers in the veteran minimum range after he was cut loose. Rhodes told McManus that he hasn’t retired and would be open to a return to the field “if an opportunity that’s good for them and also good for me” came along.
With Rhodes another year older after spending a year away from the game, it’s hard to believe that such an opportunity will offer better compensation than what Rhodes turned down last season.