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Wednesday, March 09, 2011

One hurdle cleared

According to some reports, NFL owners and the NFLPA have agreed that a rookie salary cap will be a part of any future CBA.

Under the agreement, first-round picks will be given four-year deals, while all other rounds will get three-year contracts.

This is the first step – albeit a small one – in getting a new CBA completed.

As we've seen with the escalating rookie salaries handed out over the past decade or so, the owners have been unable to help themselves in giving ou the big deals.

Every year, the pick in a particular first-round slot wants more money than the guy taken with that selection in the previous year.

And the owners have paid it.

Though there were some players who did not want a rookie cap in place, most veterans saw the need for it. They saw players getting more money – some of it guaranteed – than established players and saw how backward such a situation was.

In fact, the only people who don't like a rookie cap are likely the agents.

But even they'll make out. Once a player establishes himself, he'll get that big second contract after three or four years. And that's when everyone cashes in.

© In his latest mock draft, Mel Kiper has the Steelers taking Danny Watkins, the overage guard from Baylor.

I don't see that being the pick, unless a lot of crazy stuff happens ahead of them.

A pick of Watkins, who will turn 27 during the 2011 season, would fly in the face of everything the Steelers have done in the first round of their drafts under Kevin Colbert.

Colbert has expressed a desire in the past to pick players who are not only good, but good and young. Not only are they still getting better, but you also max out on the years they can play for you.

That's why the Steelers love to take underclassmen.

Watkins doesn't qualify.

Good player, but too damn old. By the time his first contract is complete, he's already in his 30s. And then what? If he doesn't start his first season - or even his second - you've wasted a good sum of money on a guy who's already almost over the hill.

And don't give me this "football age" stuff. As we've seen with James Harrison this offseason with his two back surgeries, old age is old age.

Quite frankly, you just don't heal as quickly from injuries the older you get.


KMax44 said...

"the owners have been unable to help themselves in giving out the big deals." This doesn't sound like a player problem it sounds like an owner problem. Not sure why the players would cave on this. Hey owners do your home work!!

adamg said...

Simple, the more money paid in ever escalating guaranteed money for rookies, the less there is available for established players. It is kind of backwards when you think about it. A new, unproven player getting millions of dollars. It's not like the draftees will be making poverty wages even with a cap in place.

Dale Lolley said...

Believe it or not, the players don't want guys making millions of dollars for busting out. That's less money they can make.

DrFred said...

What seems to be happening is the politico-economic forces in motion are stirring the pot for the NFL. Except that labor and management here, all involves millionaires. Or those trying for that. There's nothing wrong with any of it. But notice how intense the pressures on that system are right now: look at Wisconsin. Nobody knows what's happening and very few are willing to admit it. Go Steelers.

Steve-O said...

I tend to agree with you Dale, the Steelers draft for the long term and a 27 year old rookie, even a talented on at that isn't a long term plan. The kid might have value at the end of the 2nd round at the earliest but certainly not a 1st round pick. If Mike Pouncey isn't available in the first round I see the Steelers going OT or CB/Safety.

Vaflyer said...

I have been saying for a few weeks that this team has a few areas of need, and all others are luxury picks.

In the first round, what needs do we have. You don't take a QB. You don't take a RB, WR, TE, or C. We need Offensive Line, every position but Center.

When I look at D, I see the same kind of situation. The Dline is older, but Keisel, Hampton, and Hood will make a good starter group. Eason is suitable as a replacement, and Smith is well....Smith. Unless we are not happy with the young guys we have on the roster right now, I don't see us going LB. Timmons and Woodley are both young. Farrior and Harrison are older. Worlids and Foote are workable replacements, and Sylvester looks like he could contribute as does Fox. I could see us taking one later, but not necessarily in round 1.

CB and Safety are other issues. We need guys who can cover, and we need more speed at the S position.

OL, CB, S - 1st round and later
LB and NT - 3rd round and later
K and P - 5th round and later

That is how I see the draft.

Dale Lolley said...

I would agree with that assessment. I think a late round RB or QB is also always something to look at as well.