The Seattle Seahawks have signed linebacker Mychal Hendricks to a one-year deal a week after he pleaded guilty to charges of insider trading.
Last month, Kendricks was released by the Cleveland Browns after he was indicted on charges related to insider trading. The allegations stated that Kendricks illegally used material non-public information acquired from a friend at Goldman Sachs in order to make approximately $1.2 million in profits on four major trading deals. Kendricks pleaded guilty to the charges and faces up to 25 years in prison. His sentencing hearing is set for January 24th.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy has stated that Kendricks is still eligible to play in the NFL while his case is under review. Kendricks may still be suspended by the league based on the NFL Personal Conduct Policy which includes “crimes of dishonesty such as blackmail, extortion, fraud, money laundering, or racketeering” as offenses that may be punished by the league. The investigation and ruling by the NFL as well as any subsequent appeal such ruling would likely take at least several weeks to complete, allowing Kendricks to continue playing until the process is completed.
In the past, the NFL has utilized the Commissioner Exempt List, which places players on paid leave in order to prevent them from playing during criminal investigations. However, the Commissioner Exempt List only applies to players who violent crimes rather than financial crimes such as those committed by Hendricks.
This article was written with contributions from Tim Piscatelli.