Tag:Brandon Underwood
Posted on: September 25, 2011 10:05 am
Edited on: September 25, 2011 10:57 am
 

Report: Benson files unfair labor practice charge

BensonPosted by Josh Katzowitz

In a somewhat weird story, CBSSports.com’s Ryan Wilson wrote Saturday about the supposed deal the NFLPA struck with the NFL in which the union agreed to allow the league to suspend eight players for actions that occurred during the lockout.

Among the names that Yahoo Sports reported that the league could suspend: Aqib Talib and Kenny Britt (though Roger Goodell, thus far, has not punished either), Cedric Benson, Albert Haynesworth, Brandon Underwood, Clark Haggans, Johnny Jolly and Adam Jones.

Apparently, Benson -- who already served only a few days of his 20-day jail sentence after pleading no contest to a misdemeanor charge of assault -- isn’t a fan of that deal.

According to Pro Football Talk, Benson has filed a charge of unfair labor practice against the NFLPA.

Apparently, Benson didn’t know about the agreement between the NFL and the NFLPA -- which was signed, sealed and delivered in early August.

Benson is arguing to the National Labor Relations Board that the NFLPA wasn’t a union during the lockout -- the NFL and a group of retired players all have made the same claim in various lawsuits because, in fact, the NFLPA decertified before the lockout began and took great pains to announce that it no longer was a union -- and Benson also says that he wasn’t an employee of any team during the lockout. Benson reasons that he shouldn't be suspended for actions that occurred when he wasn't an employee of the NFL or of the Bengals.

It just goes to show that even though the lockout has ended and the union has reformed, not everybody is feeling such a sense of solidarity.

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Posted on: September 24, 2011 5:11 pm
Edited on: September 24, 2011 5:36 pm
 

Report: NFLPA agreed to let NFL punish 8 players

Talib and Britt were two of the eight names on the NFL's suspension list. (AP/Getty Images)

Posted by Ryan Wilson


Earlier this week, the NFL suspended Bengals running back Cedric Benson for three games for player-conduct violations that happened during the lockout. It seemed peculiar that Benson would face sanctions while Buccaneers cornerback Aqib Talib and Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt -- two players who found plenty of trouble this offseason -- had avoided NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell's wrath.

Turns out, Talib and Britt aren't in the clear yet. According to Yahoo.com's Jason Cole, "Talib, Benson and Britt are among eight players who the NFL and the NFL Players Association agreed could be suspended under the league’s personal conduct policy for incidents during the NFL lockout."

The other names, according to two Yahoo.com sources: Albert Haynesworth, Clark Haggans, Brandon Underwood, Johnny Jolly and Adam "Pacman" Jones.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello declined to discuss the report with Yahoo.com. NFLPA spokesman George Atallah said in an email that “I don’t believe any of those players received any discipline, correct?” but Cole writes that Atallah didn't answer when pressed about the NFLPA's involvement.

But Atallah tweeted Sunday that "[S]tory that De(Maurice Smith)/NFLPA agreed to a list of players being disciplined for stuff during lockout is false." Which prompted ProFootballTalk.com's Mike Florio to tweet in response, "@GeorgeAtallah..., George, I have the letter. De's signature is on it. He agrees to allow 8 players to be disciplined."

During a July radio appearance, former NFL safety Darren Sharper was asked whether Steelers linebacker James Harrison should be suspended for disparaging comments he made about NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, even though those comments were made during the lockout. Sharper said the NFL Players Association "would have an issue if (Harrison) were suspended or fined."

While Harrison wasn't one of the eight players listed above, we're guessing Sharper's general point still holds: the NFL's overreaching its authority when it starts disciplining players during a lockout.

PFT.com's Florio wrote in July that "one source with general knowledge of the dynamics recently suggested that Goodell and NFLPA* executive director DeMaurice Smith already have come to an understanding on the point."

Two months later, that now appears to be the case.

Florio added: "But we’ll have trouble understanding any understanding that allows the NFL to punish players for arrests occurring during the lockout. Indeed, a decision by the NFLPA* to expose players retroactively to responsibility for violations of the personal conduct policy could open the door for a fairly potent lawsuit alleging breach of the duty of fair representation, which could open a fairly significant can of worms given that the labor deal will have been negotiated at a time when, technically, the NFLPA* has the power to represent no one."

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Posted on: July 22, 2011 7:39 pm
Edited on: July 22, 2011 8:08 pm
 

The NFL's legal roundup 7.22.11

N. Webster has been accused of having a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl (Getty).Posted by Josh Katzowitz

We’ve already told you about one NFL player who’s in trouble with the law -- Broncos CB Perrish Cox on sexual assault charges -- so we might as well get the rest of the NFL players facing the legal system all together for one post.

1) Nate Webster -- a former LB with the Buccaneers, Bengals and Broncos – has been indicted on seven charges, including five counts of unlawful sex with a minor, and after pleading not guilty in Hamilton County (Ohio) Common Pleas Court on Thursday, he’s being held on a $1 million bond.

Webster, 33, is alleged to have been having sex with a 15-year-old girl, and he’s also accused of threatening the girl with guns in order to keep her quiet. Supposedly, Webster told her he would kill her and her family if she revealed their relationship.

“It’s a disgusting thing to live under the threat of this,” Hamilton County prosecutor Joe Deters told the Cincinnati Enquirer. “This conduct occurred dozens of times. … In his car, his home, a park nearby.”

When the sheriff’s office served a search warrant on Webster, they apparently found four guns and a small amount of marijuana.

2) Ottis Anderson, who apparently was one of 75 former players who are suing the NFL for intentionally hiding the effects of concussions from players for the past 90 years, said he was never involved in the lawsuit.

Retired player Ottis Anderson says he's not suing the NFL (US Presswire)."I support the NFL and NFL Alumni Association, and as the New York alumni chapter's former president, my concern is with the players. I think there are more constructive ways of finding solutions to the issues we face than litigation," Anderson said Friday, via USA Today.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in L.A. County Superior Court, and NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the NFL “would vigorously contest any claims of this kind."

Other former players supposedly involved in the lawsuit are former Giants RB Rodney Hampton and former Dolphins WR Mark Duper.

3) Packers DB Brandon Underwood has pleaded not guilty to a count of disorderly conduct for an incident with his wife that occurred the night Green Bay received its Super Bowl rings, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Underwood -- who pleaded no contest earlier this year to one charge of prostitution non-marital sexual intercourse -- is accused of ripping a necklace off his wife and pushing her to the ground June 16. His wife, Brandie, filed for divorce in May, but the two are living together and trying to reconcile.

He will face trial Sept. 26.

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Posted on: July 7, 2011 9:12 am
Edited on: July 7, 2011 9:38 am
 

Who we want to see on Hard Knocks '11

Hard Knocks (Getty).Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Throughout the lockout that seems neverending -- now at 114 days and counting!!! -- we’ve seen players get arrested, we’ve seen the NFL and the NFLPA come together and then bicker and then come together and then bicker, and we’ve seen players sue their girlfriends for their engagement rings.

Most disturbing, we’ve seen the signs that Brett Favre might want to return for another season.

We’ve also heard plenty about how a lost preseason would cost the NFL $800 million if the lockout continues through August and into September.

But when it comes to the preseason and how much is on the line, you know what we haven’t heard about? We haven’t heard which squad will be the subject of the annual highlight of August –- HBO’s "Hard Knocks."  

Oh, we know which teams have already declined the invitation (or supposedly, declined the invitation). Among them are the Buccaneers, the Broncos, the Lions and the Falcons (who might be open to doing it in the future), and at this point, it seems as if nobody wants to be on the show. Making matters tougher are those who say cooperating with Hard Knocks is a mistake.

Assuming we’ll see a preseason this year that would provide a platform for the Hard Knocks crew to start filming -- and CBSSports.coms’ Mike Freeman writes that it’s getting close --here are five teams we’d like to see featured on Hard Knocks. Many of them might not be interested for one reason or another, but if we have a fantasy roster, this is it.

Panthers


NewtonThe big storyline: Simply put: the entertainer and the icon, Cam Newton. We want to see how he learns the offense; we want to see if his teammates rally around him; we want to get an early idea of whether Carolina made a bad decision last April. Or maybe he’s the next superstar in the game. Either way, he’s one of the biggest storylines of the preseason, and we want to be inside the locker room to see what happens.

The foil: Jimmy Clausen. How is he going to react to Newton? What happens when Newton badly fakes out some defender destined for the practice squad and gains 30 yards on a broken play? Will the director then cut to Clausen as he raises a fist to the sky in anger? And what happens if Clausen, um, actually outplays Newton?

Two other compelling reasons: 1) NFL.com’s Gil Brandt has mentioned in the past couple of days that Favre has offered to help mentor Newton. Can you imagine the video that could come from this, especially if the camera caught Favre alone in the locker room sending a text message? 2) WR Steve Smith: is he going to play for the Panthers or not?

Patriots


The big storyline: The same guy who makes sure this show would never feature his team on his watch. That would be coach Bill Belichick. How fascinating would it be to see how Belichick builds a team and how he relates to his players? Would we get to see Belichick’s team meeting in which he implicitly tells his team how to answer questions from the media (in the most uninteresting way possible)? Kidding aside, we want to see a future Hall of Fame coach behind the scenes and uncensored.

The foil: Rex Ryan. Is there any way to get a split screen of the Jets coach talking trash about Belichick -- hey, he’s not here to kiss anybody’s ring! – while Belichick coldly goes about finding a way to make Ryan pay for his words?

Two other compelling reasons: 1) Danny Woodhead: he was on Hard Knocks with the Jets last season, and though he’s not in danger of being cut with New England, I still want to know why Woodhead, all of a sudden, is so freaking good. 2) G Logan Mankins (and his agent) has said some not very complimentary things about the Patriots management, all in the name of landing a large contract. Will he be kinder and gentler this preseason?

Packers


The big storyline: Obviously, the Lombardi Trophy. Hard Knocks has never followed a team the preseason after it won the Super Bowl, so it’d be cool to see the ring ceremony the public wasn’t allowed to witness a few weeks back (I’m assuming Hard Knocks wasn’t actually there, but it’d be cool nonetheless) while watching the Packers attempt a repeat.

The foil: Charles Woodson vs. Tramon Williams. Woodson is the bigger name, but he’s older than Williams and there’s a pretty good chance Williams is the better CB these days. Maybe we’d really get to see if Woodson is close to the end, and if Williams can replace Woodson’s outrageous production.

Two other compelling reasons: 1) Would Aaron Rodgers sign autographs for the fans at training camp? Because, as we all know, he doesn’t like signing for cancer patients (I kid, I kid). 2) Last year, little-used cornerback Brandon Underwood had a sexual assault charge hanging over his head all season (he pleaded no contest to a lesser charge). Now, he’s been charged with disorderly conduct after an alleged physical altercation with his soon-to-be ex-wife. Underwood isn’t a great quote, but his story might make for an interesting change of pace on the show.

PhillipsTexans


The big storyline: The will-they-or-won’t-they-fire-him as it relates to coach Gary Kubiak. I’m kind of surprised he’s still coaching in Houston actually, and the last time Hard Knocks featured this kind of storyline, it was Wade Phillips with the Cowboys. Now, Phillips is Kubiak’s defensive coordinator. How hot can that boiler room get anyway?

The foil: The secondary. This is what I wrote in the Texans offseason checkup: “The secondary (Kareem Jackson, Glover Quin, Bernard Pollard and Eugene Wilson) were just tremendously bad. If the Texans can’t get this fixed, it doesn’t matter who’s coordinating the defense, because Houston simply won’t win.” I don’t disagree with that.

Two other compelling reasons: 1) Though he came off a bit bumbling in Season 4 with the Cowboys, Phillips is a sympathetic figure. And the man has proved he can coordinate a defense. I want to see how he transforms a 4-3 sieve-like defense into a 3-4 defense that potentially could save Kubiak’s job. 2) Will QB Matt Schaub ever get into the playoffs? He’s the best quarterback in the league who hasn’t gotten there.

Raiders


The big storyline: Obviously, Al Davis, and the one question I want to know. How hands-on is he these days?

The foil: Nnamdi Asomugha: Just like Darrelle Revis last season with the Jets, we’re not going to see too much of the talented free agent cornerback on the TV. Unfortunately, we won’t get to see any of Antonio Cromartie either (psst, see video below).

Two other compelling reasons: 1) New coach Hue Jackson finally gets his chance at running a team. Forget that Tom Cable went 6-0 in the AFC West last year without making the playoffs -- still a pretty damn impressive feat. Davis got rid of him, just like he gets rid of everybody after a couple years. Will Jackson be an exception? 2) Al Davis: Seriously, I want as much Al Davis as possible.



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Posted on: March 3, 2011 9:24 am
 

Packers Underwood pleads no contest

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

During the Super Bowl media day, I tracked down Packers DB Brandon Underwood to talk a little about what it was like playing the entire season with a sexual assault charge hanging over his head.

I didn’t end up writing anything – and he was on the Super Bowl’s inactive list, anyway – but he told me, “It’s behind me. I put that in the back of my mind. I’m not focused on that, because to take that between the lines would just make you unfocused.”

Now, the charges truly are behind him.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Underwood has pleaded no-contest to one charge of prostitution non-marital sexual intercourse. Which probably doesn’t sit well with his family, but hey, it beats spending time in jail.

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Posted on: June 30, 2010 1:11 pm
 

Not much new with Underwood case

Packers DB Brandon Underwood remains stuck in limbo.

His attorney, Richard Kaiser, told the Associated Press that Underwood is the target of a sexual assault investigation by the Sauk County district attorney’s office, but the prosecutor in the case still hasn’t made it clear whether he’ll charge the second-year player.

Two women told police that Underwood sexually assaulted them earlier this month, but their statements, police have said, contained inconsistencies.

Right now, there doesn’t appear to be a timetable for this issue to be resolved.

--Josh Katzowitz and Andy Benoit

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com