Before the disturbing “you need to be terrified of me too, bitch” Tyreek Hill audio emerged in late April, the Chiefs and Hill reportedly had been talking about a contract extension. They possibly could be revisiting those discussions, soon.
Terez Paylor of Yahoo.com offers this assessment, which includes layers of condition and supposition: “Provided Hill rejoins the club for the start of camp — and the investigation ends with a positive outcome for Hill — the Chiefs and his representation could potentially re-engage in contract negotiations for an extension in the not-too-distant future, a league source told Yahoo Sports.”
Let’s take a closer look at this. First, Hill needs to rejoin the team for the opening of training camp, something that seems to be more likely than not at this point. Second, the investigation needs to end with “a positive outcome for Hill,” which is a broad and vague description. Does it mean no suspension? Does it mean only a short suspension for threatening the mother of his child? Does it mean anything less than the full-year suspension that not long ago seemed inevitable for Hill?
Third, the phrase “could potentially” doesn’t really advance the ball. (A lot of things “could potentially” happen.) And, yes, if Hill ends up with a full and complete nothing-to-see-here exoneration, the team “could potentially” re-engage in contract talks.
Then again, it could be better for the team from a negotiating standpoint if Hill receives a suspension in the range of four games. That would surely knock down his prior financial expectations, which may have exceeded $20 million per year — and which may have sparked the trade rumors that percolated earlier this year. If the Chiefs could buy low at a time when Hill is rebounding from weeks of fear that he’d never play again, and if the contract would contain sufficient protections in the event he crosses the line again, why wouldn’t the team take full advantage of those circumstances?
So, yes, contract talks “could potentially” happen. And the atmosphere for negotiations “could potentially” become much more favorable to the team depending upon the extent of the punishment that Hill eventually receives, if any.