All Articles Tagged "nfl"
We’ve Got Our Eyes On You: Jay-Z & Roc Nation Agency Under Investigation For Signing NFL Rookie Geno Smith
Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Agency is picking up clients every time you turn around. But he recently gained a client in the NFL and that is raising many eyebrows.
Geno Smith, a rookie quarterback picked up by the New York Jets during the NFL draft, recently signed to the Roc Nation Agency. The signing immediately raised eyebrows and there are reports suggesting that this was not on the “up and up.”
According to Yahoo! Sports, Smith almost immediately fired his former agents, Jeff Nalley and Erik Burkhardt of Select Sports Group, after he fell out of the first round of the draft and was selected 39th overall. Players do sometimes part ways with agents when things like this happen, thinking that they aren’t doing their jobs. However, its what happened next that has Jay- at the center of yet another investigation.
Smith then signed with Kimberly Miale, a lawyer who only has two “B list” sports clients. This is a little odd because although Smith may have dropped out of the first round, he is still considered a major force to be reckoned with during the 2013-2014 NFL season; in fact, he’s fighting for the starting quarterback position against Mark Sanchez. So one would think that he might want a stronger agent, right?
Representatives of the National Football League Players’ Association (NFLPA) have decided to investigate to see if Jay-Z was directly involved in negotiations with Smith. In 2012, the NFLPA banned the use of “runners,” which are people without appropriate credentials used by agencies to recruit potential clients. Jay-Z doesn’t have any of those credentials and many are wondering if Miale was basically used as a smokescreen while Jay is the real negotiator.
Adding fuel to the fire is John Thornton, an advisor to Smith. He said that he was in the meetings and “Jay-Z connected with him on so many levels.” Of course, he says was misquoted.
A rep for the Jigga man says he was not involved in negotiations and was in London while all the meetings were happening.
It’s obvious why many athletes, especially a young rooke like Geno Smith, would want to sign with Roc Nation Agency. Jay-Z has crossed over into so many facets of business and is able to gain marketing and sponsorship for athletes as soon as they want to diversify. He’s still totally connected to the music world and many find that life appealing. Plus, he’s still seemingly a really cool guy that people like to be around.
It’ll be interesting to see what the outcome will be of the investigation. There’s been no word on what the fine or punishment is if it is found that Jay-Z and Roc Nation agency broke the NFLPA rules.
Homophobia And Masculinity: The Real Problem With Russell “Hollywood” Simpson Allegedly “Outing” NFL Star Kerry Rhodes
Russell “Hollywood” Simpson speaks to Bossip about his alleged relationship with NFL free agent Kerry Rhodes:
“Kerry paid for everything. We had a very good life together. I always got any and everything I ever asked for. Vacations, red bottoms, the private jet in my video was us going to training camp together. I had a driver and he even gave me his Aston Martin. He later bought me my own car and because I’m not a dumb bi**h I made sure to get it my own name and he paid the whole thing off! He treated me very well. I will never talk bad about him in that way because he was really good to me.
And yet you put him on blast.
Listen, I am always down for the shenanigans. But I also know that if this was a woman doing this, her name would probably be all sorts of synonymous with the term, “bitter jump-off” right now. And I’m not saying that he is. Actually, I’m not saying anything because I don’t know for sure who is or who is not telling the truth. Right now, it is Simpson’s word against Rhodes’s word – as well as some very suspicious pictures. We can infer all we want, but with this week in the media, with supposed reputable news sources getting their facts completely wrong, it has taught us that it’s best not to draw conclusions too quick.
Not that what these two consenting adults do is any of our business anyway, which is why I am happy to read some of the pushback to this sort of sexual outing. To me, it amounts to bullying. And I know certainly this would be the attitude if Simpson had been born with female chromosomes. If Simpson was a woman, we would be questioning where his self-respect and self-esteem had gone for daring to be so tacky as to go public with their intimate details. We would be calling girl Simpson a bird and accusing her of breaking all sorts of side-jawn codes. We would be testifying about how these cluck-clucks “do the most” and pondering about what he hoped to gain from exposing such a relationship. Money? Fame?
If Simpson was a woman, we most certainly would we imploring her to take responsibility for the role she played in this situation and verbally flogging her for the part she was playing in trying to ruin this man’s reputation. And then a friend on Facebook shared this link from Funky Dineva with me and I began to think about the nuances of the If-Simpson-were-a-woman comparison more fluidly:
“There are also certain segments of the gay community who are using this story to promote their anti-feminine ignorance. Sites like Discreet City have been exploiting the story to further their own agenda. The Twitter account for the site sent out a tweet implying that Kerry Rhodes is in this situation because of feminine gay men, and that the actions of feminine gay men like Kerry’s alleged ex-boyfriend are why masculine gay men don’t like to mess with feminine gay men. It amazes me that people will use any situation as an excuse to scapegoat a group of people. Instead of looking at the ways that homophobia prevents all gay men from being viewed in a nuanced light, sites like Discreet City promote the ignorant view that the problems of gay men are rooted in the fact that some men are feminine. It’s as if the site thinks that homophobia would cease to exist if only all gay men were masculine–never mind that a significant chunk of homophobia rests on a overall hatred of men being with other men.”
Simpson gets a pass because what he says is not only scandalous but it also helps to stoke already existing paranoia around gay men, particularly gay black men. However, he does not get a pass from being on the outskirts of what is considered normal and acceptable masculinity. And in a lot of ways, his limp wrist, shrill voice and hip switching while walking are more uncomfortable and threatening than his actual loose lips. And why is this? Probably for the same reasons some call these men, “pu**ies” or “mitches” as a way to demean them.
Of course, the inference here is that anything associated with femininity and womanhood should be considered as weak, inferior, or less than manhood. And over the years I have learned that regardless of sexual orientation, there is nothing more important among men than maintaining “manhood” – or at least the perceived characteristics of what manhood is supposed to mean. It’s probably the reason why AP.9, the unknown rapper whose claim to fame was outing Ice-T’s wife Coco, can still maintain his “dignity,” despite his gossiping. And it is probably part of the reason why Rhodes doesn’t want to come out the closet – allegedly.
Yet and still, I am tired of the kiss and tell genre of gossip. Everybody is trying to be the next Karrine Steffans, but they come up looking just starved for attention. I don’t know enough about Simpson to make that determination, but anyone clamoring to get on reality television has to be looked at in a fishy manner. And unless Rhodes was some sort of right-wing, anti-everything nutjob preaching hate and intolerance while living this secret lifestyle, I don’t really see the relevancy in discussing who he is sleeping with. Honestly, if not for his connection to the NFL – and the homophobic connotation that is associated with the league – most folks wouldn’t care anything about who Rhodes was screwing. Most of you are probably even saying, “Who??” Plus, sexual snitching is just the worst, just think about Ray J.
Listen, I understand his feelings are probably hurt. Nobody – woman or man – likes to be viewed as a secret lover. I can imagine how it must feel to hold hands behind closed doors and once someone comes along, be shoved into the proverbial bushes – not that this has ever happened to me, but I do understand the feeling. With that said, did he not seem perfectly fine and cool with being shoved into the proverbial bushes prior to this very public outing? Maybe he had his money cut off. If you were conscious enough to accept that position before when he was tricking you off with red bottoms and car notes, you can’t quite claim victimhood now that you two are – allegedly – no longer together.
Don’t Mess With A Man’s Wife: NFL Star Vince Wilfork Slams Former Teammate For Calling His Wife Ugly
People really don’t have any filter these days, huh? Or maybe they’re looking for “shock value.”
According to USA Today, former New England Patriots linebacker Ted Johnson appeared on a Houston radio station earlier this week to talk sports. One of the hosts decided it’d be fun to ask Johnson, retired since 2005, which player he thought had the ugliest wife. Instead of laughing it off and not answering the question, Johnson replied:
“This is a big, big man and this guy had his way with the Texans this season,” Johnson replied. “He won’t hear this. Vince Wilfork.”
Now, did you really just call out a man’s wife because you didn’t think he’d find out? Wilfork is a pretty popular player but even if he weren’t, something like this is bound to get back to a person. Not only did he hear it, Wilfork had something to say about it. After first directly tweeting to Johnson that he’s barking up the wrong tree because he sees and hears everything, he then tweeted a picture of a note he wrote on his phone:
Although he did snap on Johnson, and rightfully so, it was also great to see Wilfork immediately defend his wife. The comment was absolutely unnecessary. Disrespecting a man’s wife just because you have nothing better to do will result in you catching a beatdown.
Johnson, who has seemingly deactivated his Twitter account, apologized before doing so:
“I just made a huge error in judgement and want to apologize to Vince and his wife for comments I made earlier today on a Houston radio show. Vince and his family are outstanding people who I have admired since they arrived in NE.I learned a big lesson today and feel terrible.”
Question: Would he have felt as bad had it not gotten back to Wilfork and if people weren’t attacking him on Twitter about his rudeness? The answer would probably be “no.”
You just cannot let some people get near a microphone.
When The Money’s Funny, Improvise: Former Football Star Terrell Owens Signs Modeling Contract To Pay The Bills
Anybody who owns a television or computer for that matter already knows that it’s been a rough few years for Terrell Owens. He’s been released from many an NFL team, including the Seahawks who were the last NFL team to let him go, he’s had personal mess shown in public, including going on Dr. Phil to do battle with three of his baby mothers, and he’s basically been very open about the fact that he’s broke. Hey, it happens to a lot of people, but there was something so messy about Owens’ downfall that it was kind of sad.
But don’t shed no tears for this guy right here (not that you were going to anyway) because he’s got some opportunities coming his way, including the chance to be a model. According to his publicist, Diana Bianchini, he’ll be giving good face for Next Model Agency: “Terrell has had a modeling contract in the past. Most can see why this would be a natural fit for him. NEXT approached him. He signed about a month ago and we are all very excited by this deal.” And he already has fans! His former personal assistant took to Twitter to congratulate her former boss saying, “@adriennemw: Congrats to @terrellowens for signing w/ Next Models LA…coming to a billboard near you! #werk http://instagr.am/p/WkGiOxM8TK/ ” Thanks
On the website for the Next Model Agency, they already have a profile for him with a few fancy photos, and no lie, he looks good. Despite what you might think of Owens, you can’t say that this isn’t a smart move. He’s got the height and the body for such an opportunity, and some pretty nice bone structure too. We’ll see how this all plays out, but congratulations to him for getting such a chance, because he knows just as much as we do that a check from doing just about anything (legal) at this point is better than no check at all…
If you’re not into NFL football, Super Bowl parties or even Beyonce for that matter, Sunday’s big game might not be a highlight for you, but the multi-million dollar commercial advertisements might be!
You might have already seen a few ads here or there gearing up for the Super Bowl between the Baltimore Ravens and San Fransisco 49ers and the record-breaking audience it will receive, including Beyonce’s Pepsi ad for her sponsored halftime show, but there are many more to come. From big household names like Toyota to smaller, but well-established products like Mio drinks, we are anticipating some of the biggest Super Bowl commercials ready to premiere this coming Sunday evening. Are you?
Parents Of Both Jovan Belcher And Kasandra Perkins Stuck In Custody Battle Over The Late Couple’s Daughter
At four months old, the familial life of baby Zoey seems to be in turmoil. Her father, Jovan Belcher, shot and killed her mother after a very ugly argument in December, but now her grandparents are at odds over who should take custody of her. After the tragedy occurred that took the lives of both of her parents, according to the Daily Mail, authorities handed little Zoe over to Belcher’s mother, Cheryl Shepherd, who was actually present at the time when Belcher shot and killed Kasandra Perkins. But when Shepherd let Perkins’ family take the little girl to Texas so that she could attend her mother’s funeral, they decided NOT to bring her back. They’ve also stopped communicating with Shepherd, and it’s been drama ever since.
Shepherd is now seeking full custody of Zoe, and with that responsibility, she would also get to be conservator of the child’s estate, while Zoe’s maternal grandparents and other family members are also filing suit, asking to care for the girl, that her residence be in Texas, and that a guardian ad litem would be appointed by the courts to handle her benefits. As we told you before, as part of the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement, under the new Surviving Child benefit, Zoe will be able to collect $108,000 each year from now until she is 5, and after that she will receive $48,000, and then $52,000 until she is 18 or 23 years old, depending on whether or not she goes to college. But we’re going to just assume the intentions of both of these families are good, that they just want to have this child around because they love her, and that the battle between them has nothing to do with the money she will receive at all.
The couple had many issues while together, and reports say that Belcher was seeing another woman, Brittni Glass, who claimed that Belcher made threats of violence about Perkins before the murder-suicide. But according to the New York Post, it is alleged that the argument that took place between Belcher and Perkins on that fateful night had less to do with Glass, and had a lot to do with whether or not Zoe was his daughter at all, which was confirmed as an issue between the two by a Kansas city police officer. Because of all this, some have asked why Shepherd would try and seek custody of a child that might not be her son’s. But I’m sure all the confusion with that will be cleared up soon enough, because according to the Daily Mail, hearings are scheduled to take place on the subject of who Zoe will go with, as well as specifics regarding her Surviving Child Benefits, starting later this month.
I know this is a very terrible and touchy time for both families. I’m sure Shepherd has a bond with the child after helping take care of her while her son and Perkins were alive and after their deaths, and at the same time, after losing Kasandra, I’m sure her family, who lives all the way in Texas would like to hold on to a little piece of their daughter through their grandbaby. I’m sure they both have good reasons to take full custody of Zoey, but for the child’s sake, it would be nice if they could just share custody in a civil manner. How that would be done with everyone living far away from one another, I’m not sure, but it would be nice. However, it’s up to a judge to figure out what’s not “nice,” but what’s best for this little girl.
I’d be giving that look too if I were you, T.O.
Since it doesn’t look like former football player Terrell Owens will have another high paying, full-time job anytime soon, he’s had to figure out a way to save some of the money he has left. So, he’s sold yet another one of his homes.
Owens already sold his condos in Dallas, Miami and Atlanta for way under the asking price and unfortunately for him, this was no different. According to TMZ, the mansion went on the market in 2010 (T.O. bought it in 2000) at an asking price of $1.5 million but apparently he didn’t get any offers or thought the offers were were too low.
Whomever bought the home got an amazing deal because the mansion sold for less than half the asking price at only (and I use “only” because it really is a great deal) $694,000. At 7,694 square feet, the home has six bedrooms, 8 bathrooms, a home theater, a basketball court, gym, rec room, decks and a big swimming pool. Do you now see why the buyer got a great deal?
You’ve got to wonder what made Owens even bought all these places in the first place. What does a person need with, at a minimum, four homes, two in close approximation to each other? Further, where in the world is he staying now?
What a mess. If he has more, he probably needs to sell them too and rent a two or three bedroom apartment (I would say one but he has a gang of children who may come to visit and they need somewhere to stay).
Someone should have called your girl about this sale!
In light of the murder-suicide by Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher of his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins, and himself, the National Football League is stepping in to provide financial assistance to the couple’s now-orphaned child. The league has agreed to pay for funeral arrangements and provide their three-month-old daughter, Zoey, with at least $1 million throughout her life span.
According to TMZ, the NFL agreed to pay for funeral arrangements to relieve the families from massive funeral and memorial service bills.
Baby Zoey, who is now in the custody of the Belcher family, will be taken care of through the league’s Surviving Child Benefit and health care plan. According to USA Today, she will receive $9,000 a month for the next four years and at least $4,000 a month until she turns 18, or 23 if she decides to go to college.
You can get the story in its entirety over at ESSENCE.
For the second week in a row, the NFL is dealing with the loss of a player. Unfortunately, the death comes at the hands of one of their own.
Dallas Cowboys defensive linesman Josh Brent was charged with intoxication manslaughter on Saturday morning after he flipped his car in an accident that killed his teammate, Jerry Brown.
According to Irving police spokesperson John Argumaniz, Brent was speeding when his Mercedes hit the curb and flipped over at least once. There were multiple 911 calls made with callers saying they could see a car on the road upside down. The road they were on has a 45mph speed limit and Argumaniz said that while Brent’s exact speed was unknown, investigators are almost certain he was driving considerably faster than that. When officers arrived on the scene, Brent was pulling Brown from the car which had caught fire. Police were able to quickly extinguish it.
They suspected Brent had been drinking and gave him a field sobriety test. He was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated but when Brown was pronounced dead, the charge was upgraded to intoxication manslaughter.
Police also say Brent was completely distraught, as he and Brown were not only Cowboys teammates, but friends who played football together years before at the University of Illinois. He released the following statement through his agent:
”I am devastated and filled with grief. Filled with grief for the loss of my close friend and teammate, Jerry Brown. I am also grief-stricken for his family, friends and all who were blessed enough to have known him.
”I will live with this horrific and tragic loss every day for the rest of my life. My prayers are with his family, our teammates and his friends at this time.”
While Brown was a practice squad player and did not travel with the team, Brent was to be on a team flight to Cincinnati later that day. Cowboys’ coach Jason Garrett informed the rest of the team of the traged on that same flight and Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple described the flight as “quiet, more than normal.”
Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones released the following statement:
”We are deeply saddened by the news of this accident and the passing of Jerry Brown. At this time, our hearts and prayers and deepest sympathies are with the members of Jerry’s family and all of those who knew him and loved him.”
The NFL Players Association offers a safe-ride program to all players, the phone number of which is provided to each player on his union card. The service is available anywhere in the United States or Canada, with an hourly fee of $85 paid by the player. However, many players still do not use the number as an option and DUI/DWI incidents continue to happen.
Understandably, there has yet to be any word from either family. Our prayers go out to both families in the wake of this tragedy.
MEET Melissa Dawn Johnson: As the President of Atlanta headquartered, Velvet Suite Marketing Consulting Group, Melissa Dawn Johnson has worked with professional athletes, including NFL players, corporate executives and influential leaders. Her clients she have included Common, NBA-All Star, Carmelo Anthony, World Cup soccer star, Oguchi Onyewu, Mary J. Blige, MillerCoors, and more. This brand strategist has also had her own segment on CNN and contributes to Essence and The Huffington Post.
MN: What did you dream of becoming when you were a young girl?
MJ: I had about 15 careers as a little girl. I wanted to be a dancer and a doctor. I also wanted to do hair and makeup. One thing that remained constant was my love for people. This passion is what attracted me to marketing. However, it was a book I read when I was 14 years old that changed my life… written by Myles Monroe [and] titled, Understanding Your Potential. In his book, Myles talked about the importance of knowing what you want to be. He said the greatest discovery you can have is to learn why you are on Earth. Miles also wrote the forward to my book, Brand Me: Make Your Mark, Turn Passion Into Profit.
MN: What types of services does Velvet Suite Marketing Consulting Group offer?
MJ: We… specialize in elevating the influence of leaders through consulting, curriculum and coaching. We show clients the power brand leadership method. Our overall mission is to change the world one leader at a time. We work in the business and sports spaces. My job is also to help our clients think about the “what ifs” that could occur and threaten their brand (i.e. lawsuits, negative media coverage) and help them develop strategies so they can continue to move their brand forward should unfortunate events occur.
MN: How do you ensure you focus your marketing efforts to suit each individual client’s specific needs?
MJ: That’s a great question. The universal challenge leaders face is understanding how to take what is valuable about them and making it invaluable to the world. What I tell my clients is that every great company is built one leader at a time. Understanding human motivations, understanding what drives humans to succeed as well as getting in tune with our clients’ needs is how we achieve our goals. We take a holistic lifestyle approach with our clients, challenging them to look at their leadership skills in every facet of their lives.
That said, we have turned clients away. Many who want success don’t understand the process… to achieve the success they want. I’ll tell you this, when you get clear about what you want, opportunity will come to you.
MN: What resources did you use to finance your business?
MJ: I started my business three years before I actually opened the doors in October 2006. I got a roommate to make it easier to pay off debt. I also started a business plan. I thought about the people I knew who could be potential clients, and I started developing relationships with those people. I studied the industry. I did my best to pre-sell my business before I left my job.
Regarding the money I initially invested in my business and a friend from high school gave me a couple of thousand dollars to start my business. It was enough to get me through the first two months until I got clients. I started my business in my home.
MN: Is it easier to get results while working with celebrities and top firms than it is with lesser known artists and businesses?
MJ: It’s not easier to get results working with celebrities. Celebrities are about 20 percent of my business. [C]lients need to be open to feedback. It’s important to be open to grow as a leader. Mindset is more important that status (i.e. celebrity).