The Peyton Hillis contract saga, which should essentially be a non-story but, typically, has been blown completely out of proportion, was given a new wrinkle this week. Hillis’ agent, Kennard McGuire, told the Associated Press that he advised Hillis not to play against the Miami Dolphins due to his strep throat and the fear that not playing at 100 percent could make matters worse.
Matters really were made worse on Sunday, conveniently right before the Browns’ game against the Tennessee Titans, as ESPN reported (citing unidentified sources) that players in the Browns locker room wondered if Hillis’ decision not to play had anything to do with his contract situation.
As always, pure speculation has ruled the week and given the media plenty of fodder. Reason has seemingly lost its place in Cleveland ever since Hillis was unable to play against Miami, and the situation became more volatile when people questioned the way he was utilized in the 31-13 loss to the Titans.
Obviously aware of what was being said about him, Peyton Hillis took to Twitter to offer up his side of the story:
I love the fans of Cleveland..the city that gave me a chance. I play hard in every play of every game.
if I could have physically played against the Dolphins I would have. I love this city and hope to retire here.
Who knows if Hillis’ own words will calm the storm that has been circling the Browns organization in recent weeks. It’s impossible to know what has been going on behind closed doors, and it’s especially presumptuous to say that Hillis is in any way upset that other players – players like Chris Gocong - have been getting paid before him.
Browns fans and the media should be giving Hillis the benefit of the doubt in this situation, but where’s the big story in that?