NFL players make a lot of money. Even those making the league minimum earn more than the average American. With great salaries come great responsibilities. They must avoid off-field issues that could endanger their ability to play. Chiefs cornerback Bashaud Breeland has played in the NFL for several years.
Last offseason, the 28-year-old made two major mistakes that suspended him for the first third of 2020. It didn’t just cost him time on the field, however. It also cost him plenty of money. Let’s look at what Breeland did and how much it impacted his finances.
Bashaud Breeland’s off-field problems and return
According to Arrowhead Pride, the NFL suspended Breeland following the Super Bowl last season. Breeland played a pivotal role in that game, recording two tackles and an interception. On top of this substance abuse violation, ESPN reported that Breeland was arrested on marijuana possession charges in April as well.
Seeing as how the transgressions were stacking up on the talented young defender, Breeland was clearly feeling fortunate to return to action after missing significant action this season:
“I was excited … The adrenaline rush from them, I was just ready to get back and join those guys. I knew during camp those guys were going to do something special. I knew that they had all the talent and the capability to hold that spot down and help make this team something great. They shocked me with what they’re doing right now but it’s a long road to go, I’m just happy to be a part of it so we can continue.”
Breeland rejoined an already talented defense, giving them one additional playmaker as they attempt to defend a Super Bowl championship. It would seem that Breeland is back in the team’s good graces after an unfortunate run during the offseason.
Bashaud’s performance since returning
Breeland has been a contributor this season, even if his presence on the defense isn’t quite a major one. In three games since his comeback, he’s totaled the following stats, according to RotoWorld:
- 10 total tackles (eight solo, two combined)
- One interception
- One forced fumble
- One pass defended
Without training camp, preseason, or even the opportunity to play the first four weeks, Breeland may still be getting back into game shape. But one thing’s for sure is that the penalty he paid added up quickly and was rather costly for him.
Bashaud Breeland’s punishment and how it compares to his salary
The weight of Breeland’s actions doesn’t fully become clear until one considers just how much money he lost in relation to his current salary. According to Spotrac, he forfeited more than $713,000 due to his off-field issues. To put that into greater context, Breeland’s 2020 base salary was over $764,000. That means that he nearly lost an entire season’s worth of base salary due to a couple of non-football related blunders.
Now, that’s not to say Breeland will starve. He’s still set to receive more money beyond his base salary in the form of bonuses. But there’s no way around it: Breeland had a very costly 2020 offseason. He’s back and playing relatively well for the Chiefs, but Breeland has to be kicking himself for some poor decision-making this offseason.