Ex-Browns linebacker pleads guilty to insider trading, faces 25 years in prison

Former Cleveland Browns linebacker Mychal Kendricks faces up to 25 years in federal prison after pleading guilty Thursday to insider trading charges.

Kendricks admitted in a Philadelphia courtroom that he illegally used inside knowledge to earn $1.2 million in profits on four transactions. Prosecutors accused Kendricks of soliciting private stock tips from investment banker Damilare Sonoiki in exchange for $10,000 in kickbacks, NFL tickets and other perks.

"I'm making the decision because it's the right thing to do," Kendricks said when asked to explain his guilty plea, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. "I know that I made the decision to accept information, secret information, and it wasn't the right thing to do."

The Browns released Kendricks on Aug. 29, hours after federal authorities indicted the NFL veteran. He had signed a one-year contract with the team last June.

Kendricks will be sentenced on Dec. 18.

A 27-year-old linebacker, Kendricks won a Super Bowl as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles last season. He earned more than $20 million during his six seasons in the NFL, according to Spotrac.

Sonoiki is also expected to plead guilty to insider trading charges, the Inquirer reported.