This year’s season finale of ‘Hard Knocks’ on HBO should certainly be an entertaining one and especially now that it will likely include the Cleveland Browns decision to release linebacker Mychal Kendricks on Wednesday following him being charged with insider trading by federal prosecutors to make nearly $1.2 million in illegal profits on four major investments four years ago.
Browns general manager John Dorsey released a statement Wednesday evening in which he addressed the reason why the team decided to terminate the contract of Kendricks, a former second-round draft pick.
Prior to signing Mychal, we were informed that there was a financial situation that he had been involved with in 2014. We were told Mychal had fully cooperated with investigators as a victim. From what was communicated at that time and based on the numerous questions we asked and further due diligence on our part, including checking with the league office, there was no information discovered that conveyed otherwise.
Recently, we were provided an update on the matter and the circumstances have changed. We are now dealing with a different set of facts and the additional information we’ve gathered has led us to the decision to release Mychal from our team. Due to the ongoing legal nature of this situation, we will have no further comments.
Kendricks, who signed a one year, $2.25 million contract with the Browns on June 5, 2018 after spending the first six years of his NFL career with the Philadelphia Eagles, released a statement Wednesday morning admitting to insider trading and saying he accepts “full responsibility for my actions” and that he “knew it was wrong.”
Damilare Sonoiki, a television writer, has also been charged with assisting Kendricks in his investments. William McSwain, the U.S. Attorney for the District Court of Eastern Pennsylvania, said on Wednesday that both Kendricks and Sonoiki face “substantial prison time” if convicted.
Prior to him being released by the Browns on Wednesday it appeared as though Kendricks was slated to be the Browns primary backup inside linebacker behind starters Joe Schobert and Christian Kirksey.
The Browns will open their 2018 regular season against the Pittsburgh Steelers at home a week from Sunday.