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Sean Lee Turned Down 2 Million Dollars Because He Didn't Want To Disrespect His Teammates By Playing A Little Hurt

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(Source) Linebacker Sean Lee did not play for the Dallas Cowboys in the season finale and the decision was a costly one, likely a $2 million bonus. After the game, Lee told the media that the decision to not play was his. He had been listed as questionable with a hamstring injury. The $2 million bonus was tied to playing time. He is in the second year of a six-year, $42 million contract. His $2.5 million salary would have been bumped to $4.5 million if he played in 80% of the Cowboys’ defensive plays this season. Entering Week 17, he had played in 82.1% of the defensive snaps this season, according to Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News. By not playing, Lee’s percentage of plays dropped to about 77%, falling below the cutoff for the bonus. “It was me who decided to not play,” he told the media. “It didn’t feel like I was going to be effective enough to help the football team … If I had a couple extra days I probably could’ve played, but it was completely my decision I felt like I was not going to be effective and not going to be able to help the team.” In making the decision to not play, Lee said he didn’t want to “disrespect” his teammates and coaches by playing at less than 100%. “I’m not going to disrespect my teammates and my coaches and be out there not playing the right way,” Lee said.





What a class move by Sean Lee here. In a league where it seems everyone is out for themselves, it’s so heart-warming to hear about a guy who does the right thing and saves his employer two million dollars by turning down an 80% raise (don’t check my math on that, I’m dumb). Everyone knows Jerry Jones checks his couch cushions for spare change every night and would absolutely never cut a player’s non-guaranteed contract if it was a smart business decision, so Sean Lee sacked up and said “You hang on to that two milli,” because he is a man of honor and respect. Sure, you can’t write checks with the honor and respect of your teammates and I guess you could argue that playing through injury has long been an act that warrants the appreciation of your locker room, but today Sean Lee can look himself in the mirror in the house that’s two million dollars less than what he should be able to afford. Would you be able to do the same if you went out there and played a football game for your 4-12 team on a kind of tight hammy?



PS – If I was a teammate I’d text Lee this morning and say, “Hey you know if you really wanted my respect you could have played, gotten paid, then given each of us like 25k, right?”