Tag:CBA
Posted on: April 23, 2011 12:18 pm
 

Vets' character ?s could (should) impact rookies

The end of the Collective Bargaining Agreement has put the 2011 (and future) NFL seasons in doubt. It has eliminated free agency and veteran trades (to this point) and put a damper on the enthusiasm that many fans have about next weekend's draft.

Perhaps the most unfortunate consequence of NFL teams not being able to communicate directly with their veteran players, however, has been the sudden rise in off-field problems for too many of the league's players.

The NFL world is buzzing this morning about the apparent stabbing of Miami wide receiver Brandon Marshall . This, of course, comes on the heels of Tampa Bay Bucs' cornerback Aqib Talib being charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and for Dallas' wide receiver Dez Bryant's silly controversy regarding he or his friend's inability to wear their pants at a level deemed appropriate by police working inside a shopping mall.

The troubles from these veteran NFL players are as wide-ranging as they are predictable.

As many draft fans know, each of these players was plagued by character questions when entering the NFL.

The actions of these (and other) players since the end of the CBA should serve as a reminder to NFL teams that for some players -- even if they don't like trouble, trouble seems to like them.

Others in the media have highlighted specific instances of criminal activity or character concerns with prospects. I, too, have reservations about many prospects in this draft, which is why I've consistently referred to intangibles as one of the primary factors when ranking players on my Big Board.

I (and more importantly, NFL teams) know of prospects being given first round grades from some with multiple arrests, multiple failed drugs tests (including some who failed at the Combine and/or team administered tests since the Combine), and even multiple abortions.

Wake up NFL teams considering these players. These guys aren't holding up red-flags -- they've planted brilliant scarlet banners on their front lawns.

Does anyone believe that players with these mistakes in their past are likely to improve when given a million (or multi) dollar contract?

Some NFL veterans are proving the opposite to be true -- which could (and perhaps should) be all the more reason to proceed cautiously with any and all prospects with legitimate character concerns -- regardless of their athletic talent.

Posted on: April 10, 2011 3:54 pm
 

Teams looking to trade? More complicated in 2011.

Much has already been made of how the lack of a CBA will restrict teams from adding veteran players through free agency and trade.

Though teams will still have the ability to trade picks from the 2011 class (as well as future classes), they may be less willing to do so, according to league sources.

That's because teams don't know the contract parameters of the players they'll be selecting.

Put simply, under the old CBA, teams have the option of offering a six-year deal to players drafted among the first 16 picks. This isn't to say that every team would get their player to sign a six-year deal, but the team has that option. Players drafted from No. 17-32 can be offered only a five-year max deal. Any players drafted after the first round can only be given a four-year maximum contract.

With no CBA in place, it is anyone's guess if the old rules will apply to this year's draft class.

That fact might make it less likely that a team drafting in the top half of the first round would want to drop into the second half... or lower.  Teams aren't going to want to give up the extended time in which they hold a player's rights -- especially in a year when rookies may not be able to contribute much early. Rookies, like every other NFL player, won't be allowed contact with their new coaching staffs until after an agreement is forged between the union and team owners.
Posted on: December 7, 2009 6:22 pm
Edited on: December 7, 2009 6:25 pm
 

No surprise -- Clausen, Tate, Briscoe leave early

The news that Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausen and wide receiver Golden Tate and Kansas wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe have elected to come out after their junior seasons and head to the NFL is not at all surprising. Each is gifted enough athletically to warrant at least second round consideration and, more importantly, none have a head coach in place to try to convince them to return for their senior season.

In fact, as I pointed out in last week's issue of Draft Slant , you can expect more -- perhaps a record-breaking number -- of underclassmen to come out early. There are several reasons to expect such a large exodus.
  • If no new agreement is made in the Collective Bargaining Agreement, as is widely expected, we can expect that the new one will contain a rookie cap. NFL owners have long grumbled (publicly and privately) that too much money is being spent on unproven rookies. Agents are telling underclassmen that if they want the big rookie contract they'll need to leave now -- and in some examples, they're right.
  • As has been widely reported, the NFL has had an ongoing battle with many of college football's BCS conferences and companies XOS Technologies and DVSports, two companies that digitalize the teams' game film from these conferences. The SEC, Big 12 and Pac-10 are among the conferences that have not yet provided NFL scouts with film. Underclassmen have until mid January to decide if they want to leave school early. Unless an agreement is made soon, NFL scouts simply won't have enough time to grade junior (and redshirt sophomore) film. Therefore, the NFL Advisory Committee, as we've come to know it, may not be able to exist properly. Players with marginal pro grades, but inflated media hype, may come out soon only to fall stunningly far on draft day.
  • Finally, the high profile injuries of Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford and Jermaine Greshman is certain to push out some players. Some, for example, will make the argument that a player like Cal junior running back Jahvid Best should go for the "guaranteed" money now, rather than return for his senior season. One more concussion, some would argue, could ruin his chances for a Top 100 grade.
Expect to see as strong an influx of underclassmen entering the 2010 NFL Draft as we've ever seen... an influx that should make this a uniquely talented class.



 
 
 
 
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