An Agent Just Gave Devonta Freeman the Johnny Manziel Treatment
The NFL is littered with bad breakups. Andre Rison’s mansion was torched by his hip-hop star on her way out of the relationship, and LeSean McCoy’s girlfriend suspected him of being behind her vicious beating. Meanwhile, there’s no love lost in the breakup between running back Devonta Freeman and Kristin Campbell for the simple reason that there was no love to begin with.
Their relationship was strictly business, and she has finally decided that he’s bad for her business.
Devonta Freeman’s career is in a free fall
Devonta Freeman’s journey from highest-paid running back in the NFL to the unemployment line is just about complete. The former Atlanta Falcons star has gone from a man without a team to a man without even an agent in the span of four months.
Freeman was only a fourth-round draft pick coming out of Florida State in 2014, but he developed into a workhorse in his second season when he rushed for 1,056 yards and a league-best 11 touchdowns. He also caught 72 passes that year.
Another 1,000-yard season followed in 2016, a season capped by a trip to the Super Bowl. His second straight selection to the Pro Bowl translated into leverage for the budding star, and agent Kristin Campbell scored $41.25 million over five years for her client.
But Freeman’s production fell off to 865 rushing yards in 2017, he was injured for almost all the following season, and he averaged a measly 3.6 yards a carry last fall. The 656 rushing yards and two scores convinced the Falcons that Freeman’s best years were behind him, so they cut him in March.
Devonta Freeman wore out his agent’s patience
Kristin Campbell has been a certified agent since 2010 and originally co-represented Devonta Freemen with two others. He later dropped the others and signed exclusively with Campbell, who was the force behind his $41.25 million contract with the Atlanta Falcons.
Freeman’s decline in productivity since the Super Bowl season put his career in a precarious position once he was released this spring by the Falcons, who decided that Todd Gurley and his recent history of knee trouble is a better risk.
Campbell had found him an opportunity with the Seattle Seahawks, who offered one year at $4 million. But Freeman shot it down at the last minute, resulting in the Seahawks signing Carlos Hyde.
According to NFL Network’s Mike Silver, Freeman has made noise about sitting out the 2020 season unless he gets a contract more to his liking. The problem with that is that Freeman doesn’t get paid unless he plays. And his agent doesn’t collect a fee unless Freeman is getting paid.
With that being the reality, Campbell revealed her decision to drop Freeman, 28, as a client.
Johnny Manziel knows all about being fired by agents
Devonta Freeman is hardly the first NFL player to be dumped by his agent. In fact, a big-name quarterback was fired not once but twice not long ago.
Johnny Manziel was drafted 22nd overall by the Cleveland Browns, yet his career was a complete dumpster fire two years later. With a 2-6 record and a starter, accuracy issues, and a lengthy string of problems off the field, Manziel never played again after the 2015 season.
He still technically had a career as of early 2016, but agent Erik Burkhardt dropped Manziel in February of that year following an investigation into allegations of domestic violence reported by then-girlfriend Colleen Crowley.
Agent Drew Rosenhaus, hardly hurting for players to represent, took a gamble by agreeing to work on behalf of the former Heisman Trophy winner. That deal fell apart less than three months after Burkhardt’s exit as Rosenhaus said Manziel failed to abide by an agreement to enter a treatment program.