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Andre Johnson is committed to his position, but would he retire for it?

Andre Johnson AP

Veteran wideout Andre Johnson already has forfeited a $1 million roster bonus by not participating in the offseason program. It’s a no-brainer that he’ll risk another $70,000 in fines by not reporting for mandatory minicamp.

The far more important question: What comes next?

If Johnson stays away from training camp, he’ll risk $30,000 per day in fines and, eventually, the loss of bonus money he previously received.  If Johnson retires (and he might), he faces no fines — but he may have to surrender $8.694 in previously paid bonus money that was prorated for cap purposes.

That’s the biggest difference between Johnson’s potential retirement and former Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer’s decision to call it quits in Cincinnati three years ago. With all previously paid bonus money earned, the Bengals were unable to recover any cash from Palmer. If Johnson retires, the Texans could play hardball.

At a certain point, it would be unfair to make Johnson pay back money. Last September, he agreed to convert $5.5 million of his base salary to signing bonus for cap purposes. That created $4.125 million in space that the team needed, at a time when Johnson could have insisted on his full salary.

Unless his contract exempts the unearned portion of the bonus from forfeiture, Johnson could be required to give back $4.125 million.

In hindsight, Johnson possibly wishes he had. For now, his gratuity gives the team extra leverage, if his commitment to his position ends in a retirement.

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54 Responses to “Andre Johnson is committed to his position, but would he retire for it?”
  1. percyscoredasmuchasdenver says: Jun 16, 2014 2:07 PM

    Andre Johnson will be a member of the World Champion Seattle Seahawks by the end of summer. He is tired of mediocrity and ready to win NOW. BOOK IT.

    #ANOTHERADDITIONTOTHEDYNASTY
    #REPETETHREEMORETIMES
    #ABOVEREPROACHUNLIKETHOSEWHINERS

  2. donterrelli says: Jun 16, 2014 2:08 PM

    What is he unhappy about? Does he want to be released or traded?

  3. bestbadteamaround says: Jun 16, 2014 2:08 PM

    Well having to pay $8.69 isn’t bad…

  4. Punk says: Jun 16, 2014 2:12 PM

    You mean to tell me Johnson makes less the $5m a year and the Texans are balking about paying him?

    That’s petty by the Texans. Real petty.

  5. thepftpoet says: Jun 16, 2014 2:12 PM

    Top 5 WR’s in the NFL :

    1. Calvin Johnson
    2. Cordarrelle Patterson
    3. Dez Bryant
    4. Julio Jones
    5. Greg Jennings

  6. 8to80texansblog says: Jun 16, 2014 2:13 PM

    This could get ugly… I really hope it doesn’t.

  7. jjrs89 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:14 PM

    forfeited a million dollars?

    Can’t get used to that

  8. thebirdsareback says: Jun 16, 2014 2:14 PM

    Just trade him to baltimore already you freaking texas looneys! No houston player does anything until they end up in baltimore, everyone knows this jeezzuz

  9. silverandblack052099 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:18 PM

    Trade him to the Raiders!

  10. andrewluck12 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:18 PM

    He isn’t going to retire. Where do you come up with this nonsense. He wants to play for a contender after spending his entire career in a second rate franchise. Can’t blame the guy.

  11. scw37 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:19 PM

    I love Andre. He deserves to be on a winning team, but this is not the way to make it happen. He will always be a Texan, but his legacy will deteriorate the longer this goes on.

  12. watermelon1 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:20 PM

    If the texans want to play hardball, Johnson can simply “show up” but become “injured.” Pretty simple solution.

    Texans ruined this situation and now have no choice but to either get Andre. QB worthwhile… Even if it’s FAVRE. OR… Trade him. Those are the options.

  13. rodneyharrisonstruckstick says: Jun 16, 2014 2:20 PM

    Pats 2nd rnd pick

  14. eaglesnoles05 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:21 PM

    Cut him.

  15. kneelbeforesod says: Jun 16, 2014 2:26 PM

    Seattle? Why would he join that squad? Their bandwagon is about to have its wheels fall off faster than the Heat’s did.

  16. udkidd says: Jun 16, 2014 2:27 PM

    Johnson wants to win this year. He won’t have much of a chance with rebuilding Texans team. What about a trade to the Eagles? They have plenty of cap room.

  17. jjb0811 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:29 PM

    “Be Fair”? The guy is holding out. In no way does the team need to be ‘fair’ and release/trade/or not demand payment.

    The Texans have bent over backwards during his career and shown him everything (including giving him a new contract after he wrote & signed a terrible one a year later) and when there isn’t a QB he likes then he stays away. What an ungrateful, petty man he is. Showing his true colors.

  18. bostonfrogs says: Jun 16, 2014 2:29 PM

    Choosing whether or not to forfeit a million dollars just for showing up and doing your job is stressful enough, but now this? You’ve really got to feel for the guy–tough to lead that life and grapple with such weighty issues.

  19. misterfuji1982 says: Jun 16, 2014 2:40 PM

    When a player leaves one team for a better offer from another, it’s “all these guys care about it money”!

    When a player gives up money when taking a stand, he’s stupid and doesn’t understand the value of a dollar.

    Gotta love sports fans!

  20. jimjcleveland says: Jun 16, 2014 2:54 PM

    Attention Ray Farmer….please pick up the phone.

  21. 6ball says: Jun 16, 2014 2:57 PM

    .

    I can think of 53 guys living in Houston who would be very disappointed if the first year NFL coach decided to make an example out of Johnson.

    .

  22. pkrlvr says: Jun 16, 2014 3:15 PM

    Such divas in the NFL. Your being paid millions a year to do something most of us would do for free, and your whining like a baby. How out of touch with reality these idiots are. Giving up a million dollars just so you don’t have to show up for otas!? If he didn’t have that athletic ability he wouldn’t make that much in a lifetime!

  23. touchdownroddywhite says: Jun 16, 2014 3:17 PM

    What if he goes the Vincent Jackson route and sits out til week 10 to earn his year of service?

  24. wewantmoretebowandfavrearticles says: Jun 16, 2014 3:20 PM

    Just trade for a quarterback and stop being stingy, Houston. All Andre wants is a chance to win. Give the Patriots what they want for Mallett already.

  25. kevpft says: Jun 16, 2014 3:23 PM

    This may be only the most public reaction from the team to a group of team leadership who has consciously decided to go in to the season with a sub-par, at best, QB lineup in a division where that will spell disaster.

    It’s not that the QBs they have are terrible, or I dislike them. But nobody believes they’re going into the season with a true #1 QB, and that puts them in stark contrast to almost every other team in the league.

    Even a year away, does this look like “we’re going to give our high draft pick next year, and as much else as it takes, to move up and draft one of the two big QB names in next year’s draft” to you?

  26. capitaosuecia says: Jun 16, 2014 3:26 PM

    The Texans franchise might be thinking about retirement. Andre Johnson is all their history.

  27. Bull Rush says: Jun 16, 2014 3:29 PM

    Houston is rebuilding and it will take time. This guy deserves an opportunity to make a run for some titles in the few years he has left. He did Houston a financial favor and busted his butt for years prior. Thank him and do him one back and let him go.

  28. ariani1985 says: Jun 16, 2014 3:30 PM

    Trade him to green bay, he likes likes mediocrity

  29. pillowporkers says: Jun 16, 2014 3:47 PM

    I’d be upset too. The Texans had Clowney and Bridgewater on the doorstep. They have no QB, again.

  30. tedmurph says: Jun 16, 2014 4:06 PM

    I don’t think Houston is trying make an example, it just doesn’t make sense for them to pay a 33 yr old receiver 30+ mil over the next few yrs considering they have no QB in a QB league and they have a player that doesn’t want to be there and is trying to shoot his way out of town. I think Johnson has already made about 70 mil, so he has that retirement leverage. Unless he’s been stupid with his money. They might as well get something if they can find a team willing to take on the contract or get a promise of a restructure. Wouldn’t be suprised if they decide to just cut him, which many teams may be waiting for. He could definitely put a team near the top of the heap over the top.

  31. jtnguy39 says: Jun 16, 2014 4:14 PM

    $8.694 isn’t a lot of money.

  32. jsala02 says: Jun 16, 2014 4:31 PM

    They are not going to trade him. I am sorry Pats, Seahawks, Panther fans but it will not happen. They are in a pissing contest and the Texans have more to lose as in cap money. I love AJ, he is a great WR and a better person, but he needs to show up and play the contract that he signed out for the next three years.

  33. daltonsdumptruck says: Jun 16, 2014 5:14 PM

    Stevie Johnson put up big numbers with Fitz as his QB. He’ll chock and throw picks in the 4th to lose the game, but at least he’ll have decent stats

  34. tedmurph says: Jun 16, 2014 5:15 PM

    Once again, they don’t lose cap money. They owe Jounson 15.6 mil this yr. If they cut or trade him, the cap hit is about 4 mil this yr and with accelerators about 7 next yr. They’ll save about 20 mil on their cap over the next 2 yrs if they cut or trade him, with 11 mil in dead money. I don’t know why people don’t get this.

  35. tae323 says: Jun 16, 2014 5:18 PM

    Look at all these idiots that trying to bash Andre Johnson, the NFL is a cut-throat business that the players have to look out for theirselves. Andre wants to play for a winning team and Houston will not be that for the foreseeable future they were in a position to get a quarterback early in the draft but the passed on that, so now they are depending on Ryan Fitzpatrick and rookie Tom Savage at quarterback good and Arian Foster who couldn’t stay healthy the last couple of years luck with that.

  36. jimthebuilder27 says: Jun 16, 2014 5:35 PM

    He’d be the best receiver on the Vikings pitiful roster!

  37. teek77 says: Jun 16, 2014 6:04 PM

    Andre has made significant money through the years. What he really needs before he retires is a Big Ring on his finger. Andre joining the Panthers could be the solution for both him and Carolina. He is a No. 1 Receiver that they need and they have the Defense and the offensive potential (with him) to go all the way. Depends on what Andre really wants while he still has gas in the tank.

  38. mediasloppy says: Jun 16, 2014 6:06 PM

    For the sake of Fantasy football, TRADE him!

  39. sandersmarcus10 says: Jun 16, 2014 6:22 PM

    Trade this guy and get something for him and get rid of your distraction! Bottom line he doesent want to play for Houstan anymore so Houstan get your money and draft pics for him

  40. dtr3e says: Jun 16, 2014 6:33 PM

    I don’t blame Andre at all, he knows he’s time is starting to run out and wants to win a SB. I also believe he’s done enough for that organization, for them to grant his wishes, and trade/cut him. Houston knows they’re not winning a SB this year or next year with or without him.

  41. mackcarrington says: Jun 16, 2014 7:15 PM

    Such divas in the NFL. Your being paid millions a year to do something most of us would do for free,
    ========
    Speak for yourself, Slick. I sure wouldn’t play pro football for free. The NFL owners would like to have a roster full of rubes like you.

  42. djaehne says: Jun 16, 2014 7:48 PM

    Easy for most people here to say, AJ has been a great player and person so, yeah lets let walk for]
    nothing, or trade and get under valued just because he’s a great guy. Honor your contract.

  43. casurferho says: Jun 16, 2014 8:48 PM

    Lol, he should retire, he is 33 washed up like Moss and Owens and chad Johnson , it’s time, smart player would just take the money and run

  44. mkricks1 says: Jun 16, 2014 9:39 PM

    1. Dead Money
    2. The size of his contract
    = Absolutely untradeable

    I am a die hard Texan fan and I would love to see Andre get a ring even if its not in Houston but this is absolutely unrealistic to expect the Texans to eat the amount of dead money trading him would involve especially considering they just did the same thing by trading Schaub

  45. seahawkfanfrom1970s says: Jun 16, 2014 10:02 PM

    Whatever you do Texans, by any means DON’T let the Pats lowball you if you decided to trade him. They’re experts at FLEECING inexperienced or small-market general managers. Simply tell them that anything less than their 2015 first-round draft pick and a third is an absolute non-starter and hang up the phone.

  46. schaub2dreallday says: Jun 16, 2014 10:05 PM

    WAKE UP PEOPLE IT HAS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH MONEY. HE WANTS TO WIN, and SOON

  47. kissbillsrings says: Jun 16, 2014 10:16 PM

    1st & a 3rd for a 33 year old WR… Not a prayer especially with his salary…
    Mallet & a 2nd rounder is as high as I’d go if I were BB
    Maybe throw in a WR like Amendola to create cap space

  48. edavidberg says: Jun 16, 2014 10:38 PM

    His original deal only had a 2.8 million dollar signing bonus. I can’t imagine his converted salary would be recoverable by the Titans. Even if the language somehow allowed it, if he did not receive a benefit the provision would not be enforcable, plus he could potentially sue his legal advisors, plus I can’t believe the Texans would be petty enough to do that to a future Hall of Famer.

    I can’t believe he gave up a million bucks by not showing up for mandatory minicamp, but then again I wouldn’t want to play for Ryan Fitzpatrick either. That guy is pretty horrible.

  49. sopadegato says: Jun 17, 2014 12:07 AM

    I can’t blame him. The organization basically lied to him when they said they weren’t rebuilding, and then did the same old song and dance once it came to free agency and draft time. Nothing.

    The Texans organization as a whole has a tendency to undervalue the QB position to insane degrees, when everyone else is scrambling to find their franchise. Why? Because they failed a grand total of once. With David Carr. A man who even the GM admits it was his fault for not giving Carr an offensive line.

    The Texans haven’t drafted a QB in rounds 1-3 since 2003. It’s been fourth or lower, and the failure rate of late-round QBs are pretty insane.

    And yet, they keep drafting high profile defensive ends after having multiple fail-or-bail cases.

    Mario Williams, left for Buffalo. Connor Barwin, left for Philly. Jason Babin, a man Charlie Casserly traded five picks for. Did nothing for Houston and was later traded. Sam Montgomery – a third-round pick who had so many attitude issues and work ethic problems that he makes Jadeveon Clowney look like JJ Watt.

    So why won’t they give QB a real try?

  50. lawyermalloy says: Jun 17, 2014 4:46 AM

    Unfortunately, over the last 10 years or so, the terms “hold-out and “renegotiation” are, with team cowering to an already under contract player, are accepted terms that no other industry needs to deal with. These 2 new terms would NEVER have the force they do today had the owners of franchise simply said NO years ago. The NFL made this bed and they must, therefor, sleep in it. Another term that constantly comes about after the first two are successful is” the waiver of all fines” Again the league’s acceptance of these terms, on a consistent bases, as negotiation tools, will continue until the league says the’ve had enough and put the” toothpaste back in the tube” and no longer capitulate to overpaid athletes walking away from their contractual obligations.

  51. patsdrukker says: Jun 17, 2014 5:52 AM

    It just makes too much sense to send him to the Pats for some picks and Mallett. Even Mallett, some WR and some picks. Then NE can restructure his contract. There is the link between BB and Bo’B too.

    This is so obvious that for sure it won’t happen. The Great Hoodie never pulls off something which is this obvious, he has to maintain his own legacy. :)

  52. Big Ant TV says: Jun 17, 2014 7:03 AM

    id be un happy too if my qb is Ryan Fitzpatrick and u had chance to draft a better qb in bortles or somebody else but didn’t and with clowney who is hurt b4 his 1st camp
    he’s seen the tea mdraft mostly defense since he’s been there besides last years WR they brought in

  53. goodguy11991199 says: Jun 18, 2014 4:17 PM

    No doubt the Texans will have some tough goings this year. But, Johnson will be back with the Texans because when the going gets tough, the tough get going!

  54. rfedorick says: Jun 23, 2014 6:37 AM

    The Texans are gonna be garbage for the next 10 years with or without him! Their 14 game losing streak is hilarious after their fans were touting them as a SB champ? ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! ROFL

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