NFL Rookie Contracts – There are NO GREAT BARGAINS

Last year I wrote a post on the importance of keeping an open mind when it came to what you watched, read, listened, and otherwise absorbed from the media covering the National Football League.  If you didn’t get a chance to read it, here’s the link – NFL Articles.

The more things change

A year later nothing has changed.  In fact at times it feels as if it’s getting worse, as many so-called “Insiders” have lost their competitive edge with the NFL agreeing to release the daily Player Personnel Notice, aka – Waiver Wire.  For many years there were those in the media that made a name and a pretty good living as “Insiders” by obtaining the wire through leaks in NFL clubs.

The competition is brutal out there.  Seems everyone’s got their own version of the NFL “Insider” and the funny thing is that the real “Insiders” don’t make it a habit of revealing anything to the media “Outsiders”.

Top 10 Great Bargains?

I was recently reading an article about the Top 10 Great Bargains in the NFL this season.  This one focused on ten very productive players that are seemingly being underpaid in relation to their performance on the field.  “At some point later this season, or possibly shortly after it, teams will have little choice but to pay full price for these players.”  True, but right now they don’t have to.  The player knows it, the agent knows it, the team knows, the League knows it, and the Union knows it.

What’s not mentioned is that it’s not the beauty of the deal made by the General Manager over some inexperienced player rep.  It’s not the fact that the club is stealing dollars away from a player who clearly is deserving of a new contract.  No, these players fall into a category that just about every NFL veteran has had to endure over the course of their own career.  In fact the system is set up this way to allow more dollars to be funneled to the very veterans we’re talking about.

It’s the Rookie Pool

Nine of the ten players listed on “the list” are working off their rookie deals.  The guaranteed money pushed up into the Signing Bonus put plenty into their checking accounts for every block, tackle, pass, and catch over the course of their original NFL contracts.  What’s listed is the minimum paragraph 5 (base salary) for the year the player is currently in.  This is as standard a “deal” as there is in the National Football League.  It’s EXACTLY what all agents work to negotiate.  It’s exactly what was negotiated in last summer’s Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) between ownership and the players.

Except for Tim Jennings (the only free agent of the group) all nine are compensated off their rookie deals.  Yes, some may outperform their contract in relation to other players on the roster, but that’s just the system.  Don’t feel sorry for the player, don’t genuflect at the alter of the club, don’t “F” bomb the agent.  Their time will come and in due time.  No GM magic, no contract gurus – no great bargains.  This “Insider” article makes absolutely no outside sense.

Seriously, be careful as to what you watch, read, listen, and BELIEVE.

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