DeAndre Hopkins didn’t leave camp; he never reported

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The image created by the ESPN report that Texans receiver DeAndre Hopkins “walked out of camp” is jarring on the surface, inviting the visualization of Hopkins making a one-handed catch in the end zone, spiking the ball, and heading out the tunnel, Bo Jackson-style.

The truth, per a source with knowledge of the situation, is that Hopkins did not report for camp. While the result is the same (he’s not there), the procedures are much different.

For a player under contract who does not report, he is subject to fines in the amount of $40,000 per day and possible signing bonus forfeiture. For a player who shows up and then leaves, things can quickly escalate into the ultimate lose-lose outcome.

When a player reports for camp and then later leaves, the team has the ability to send a letter warning him that, in five days, the club has the right to place him on the reserve/left squad list. The standard “five-day letter” explains to the player that, if they do place him in that category, he can’t play again this season. After sending the letter and the expiration of the five-day period, the club does not have to place the player on the reserve/left squad list, but it may.

With a player like Hopkins, the idea that the Texans would shut him down for the full season is a little ridiculous. Still, if Hopkins didn’t report the “five-day letter” can’t be sent, giving the Texans significantly less leverage in the looming standoff.

37 responses to “DeAndre Hopkins didn’t leave camp; he never reported

  1. Problem with the Texans are they put all the eggs in one basket, they market, J.J. Watt! He is everything and everywhere from merchandising, advertising, face of the franchise. That rubs some players the wrong way and they want equal compensation and PR. They built a monster in J.J. Watts and it is getting out of hand. Than not top of it giving Osweiler $17 million, got to spread the love everyone.

  2. The Texans have a little over $1 million in cap space. After paying up for Osweiler and Miller, there’s virtually no way Houston can pay what DeAndre wants, (aprox $50 million guaranteed $15 million a year). Love ya Nuk. You’re the best player and focal point on our offense, but Houston has all the leverage and owns your rights for the next 2 years. The Texans always take care of their star players, sometimes to a fault. Suit up and join your teammates. You’re gonna get paid, just probably not til next year.

  3. I understand Hopkins frustration. JJ got paid top dollar before his rookie deal and now a QB who hasn’t done a fraction of what Hopkins has in the league walks in and gets a big contract. Last year Hopkins was the Texans offense. Now he’s expected to carry the offense again while making the inexperienced big money QB look good. Nah. Give me my big contract first. And with Bell and Bryant suspended for the Steelers Antonio Brown should have sat out also on a contract he too has out played.

  4. rabbi187 says:
    Jul 30, 2016 12:45 PM
    The Texans have a little over $1 million in cap space. After paying up for Osweiler and Miller, there’s virtually no way Houston can pay what DeAndre wants, (aprox $50 million guaranteed $15 million a year). Love ya Nuk. You’re the best player and focal point on our offense, but Houston has all the leverage and owns your rights for the next 2 years. The Texans always take care of their star players, sometimes to a fault. Suit up and join your teammates. You’re gonna get paid, just probably not til next year.
    ——-
    You do realize that by giving Hopkins a big contract this year that the Texans can actually LOWER his cap number this year by assigning a low base salary like 1$ million for this year and for cap purposes allocating the bonus over the life of the contract. Teams do this all the time.

  5. Don’t blame Hopkins one but. The new rookie wage scale was to stop giving lavish guarantees to players who haven’t proven anything. Well, we have a young player who proved that he is better than his peanuts rookie contract. He deserves the money.

    Until NFL contracts are 100% guaranteed like NBA/MLB I will always side with the players. NFL players earning potential is a small window and they beat their bodies non stop.

  6. Hopkins should honor his contract and report to camp. Another great season this year and his next payday will be off the charts. SHUT UP AND PLAY FOOTBALL!!

  7. The NFL is a different animal from any other sport when it comes to contracts. This IS the nature of the beast, so I’m always baffled when fans want players to honor contracts when teams aren’t required to.

    Is it jealousy?

  8. @ 6th sense

    Of course you can get creative with contracts, but that’s just gonna lead to problems down the road with massive cap hits. Houston shouldn’t mortgage their future when they have all the leverage. Like I said in my previous post, he’s gonna get paid, just probably next season.

  9. My nausea continues with the whining of these overpaid, arrogant and selfish and narcissistic morons like Hopkins.

    I like the NFL, but honestly, I am finding that there are more pleasant ways to spend my time as opposed to watching a bunch of drunken children in the stands with painted faces cheering for “their team.”

  10. ESPN is modern journalism at it’s finest: Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story, and be the first to “report” it regardless of whether it’s true

  11. No worries because they have Osweiler and he doesn’t need a wide receiver of that caliber at all

    Just look at all the money Brock is making he can just pay off opposing defenses all year and JJ Watt can play wide receiver if necessary anyways

  12. Pay that man!! I get that he has 2 seasons left on the contract but IMO he is already the 2nd or 3rd best WR in the game. His production with a plethora of lackluster QBs is nothing but amazing. Looking at the Texans they need all the weapons they can get to justify paying all that money for an unproven QB.

  13. What hypocrites. NFL can tear up a signed contract any time they choose, and yet a player MUST honor his signed contract. Double standard, unfair. The NFLPA is soooo weak!

  14. @6thsense10

    Hopkins’ cap number is roughly $2.5 million this year. There is no way whatsoever he would accept a new deal with a signing bonus and 1st year salary so low that the cap number stays at (or below) that number.

  15. If the worldwide joke of sportscasting reported it people with functioning brains question it.

  16. When you pay a guy like Brock who wasn’t even part of the locker room/team & hasn’t done a whole hell of a lot, what do you think a top flight receiver being paid a pittance by comparison is gonna do??!

  17. Hope he gets paid to offset the 40k per day in fines. When his time is u in the league and his years are going by ,he will just randomly catch himself saying, I gave up 40k per day…damn. I should have whooped my agents tail. 40k per day.

  18. Someone should ask the Obama about this, I’m certain he’d have an irrelevant comment!

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