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Schefter: Teammates wonder whether Hillis contract was a factor last week

Cleveland Browns v Indianapolis Colts

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - SEPTEMBER 18: Peyton Hillis #40 of the Cleveland Browns carries the ball against Jerraud Powers #25 of the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on September 18, 2011 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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Earlier this week, I openly wondered whether the decision of Brown running back Peyton Hillis to skip last Sunday’s game due to strep throat had anything to do with the lack of a new contract. Some of you didn’t appreciate the implication.

Well, if you didn’t like that, you’re gonna hate this.

Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that there are whispers in the locker room that Hillis’ decision not to play was indeed influenced by a contract that currently pays him $600,000 for 2011.

Of course, it may just be that the teammates don’t understand why a guy chose not to play due to a condition that many believe is fairly innocuous -- even though it isn’t. But as Tony Romo said after returning to a game with a broken rib and a punctured lung, football players play football. And so it makes sense for other football players to wonder why a football player isn’t playing football.