NFL Offseason: 2/17 – 2/21
I won’t lie, I was pretty nervous on Monday/early Tuesday. There was zero NFL offseason news to discuss. What am I going to talk about on the podcast? What am I going to write about on Friday? It’s going to be a short post! Well, needless to say, I have plenty to talk about now!
When Tuesday afternoon/evening hit, the news started pouring in! I am going to let you know about all of it, wrapped up into one beautiful blog burrito. BBB. Beautiful, Blog, Burrito. I might use that going forward. Let’s get to it!
NFL Free Agency:
This is a pretty large blanket, to just state “free agency” but we have a couple of small moves. These moves are pretty much cap casualty moves.
- Nigel Bradham, the veteran, 30 year old linebacker for the Philadelphia Eagles has been released, saving the team $8M in cap space. That kind of money can help the team in the bidding war for Darius Slay or Josh Norman. That secondary needs so much help. They played well down the stretch to get into the playoffs, but the teams they played would show you, you don’t need top tier talent to lock down those WRs. With the release of Bradham though, they are left with a hole at another defensive position: LB. Nathan Gerry and Kamu Grugier-Hill are the only LBs left that are considered starters. Gerry was their leading tackler last season and played lights out at times. Even if you play Nickel a lot, you will need 3 LBs that know what they are doing. Maybe they have an unknown stud on their practice squad or they are banking on the draft, but there is a lack of veterans on the free agent market. The Eagles defense is a huge question mark right now. As for Nigel, I am sure there is a LB hungry team that is desperate to overpay for a 30 year old, injured LB. He will be fine.
- Speaking of injured old players, Greg Olsen has found a home for the 2020-2021 season. He has signed a 1 year, $7M, $5.5 Guaranteed, contract with the Seattle Seahawks. Seattle has had a major gap at TE with Will Dissly having season ending injuries two years in a row, Ed Dickson lives on IR, and they have survived with Jacob Hollister. Greg will provide a veteran TE presence in the Seahawks locker room that is full of younger players. As a Seahawks fan, I expect very little production on the field, but hopefully he can teach Will Dissly how to stay healthy and bring up a TE the Hawks might draft this season. A little expensive, but a smart move.
- Everson Griffin has declined the player option (last three years) of his contract and will hit free agency. This did save the Vikings $13M in cap space, which is beautiful for them! They could try and bring him back at a lower price, but my guess is Griffin is ready to join another, more competitive team. He has spent his entire 10 year career with the Vikings and is 32 years old. He needs a “win now” team and apparently he did not think that was the Vikings.
- I am going to bundle Jordan Reed and Josh Norman together because this is the Redskins completely starting over. Ron Rivera came in here, got rid of the pool table, the ping pong table and the dead weight. Reed was going to take $8.5M in cap space and Norman was going to take $12.5M in space. The Redskins are going to be looking to create a new family under River Boat Ron. The old Redskins are dead as far as Ron is concerned. Unfortunately, that means Dwayne Haskins role as the starting QB is not set in stone. Ron did not draft him, so maybe he doesn’t want him there long term. That will depend on his play and maturity. So, it might not behoove him to take selfies with fans before the game is even over.
- Damon “Snacks” Harrison was released by the Lions, leaving their defensive line with absolutely nothing in terms of pass rush. His release did save them $6.7M in cap space, so rebuilding the line can start with one free agent signing and praying the draft works out. They have the 3rd overall pick, and although Chase Young will be gone, there is plenty of Edge and DL talent in this draft. Some Mock Drafts have them going OL though. This team has holes everywhere and no one expects them to win anytime soon.
- Drew Brees did announce he will be back for the 2020-2021 season. He is here for maybe one last ride with the Saints to try and capture one more Lombardi Trophy. However, that means someone has to go. It is not realistic for the Saints to hold onto Drew, Teddy Bridgewater and Taysom Hill. Someone out there is going to offer Teddy a boatload of money. He went 5-0 as a starter when Drew went down and showed everyone he is healthy and ready to compete. The Patriots, Bucs, Bears, Raiders, and many more teams have potential holes at QB that Teddy could fill immediately. But, if Teddy wants to sit another year and wait to become the starter of the Saints, then Taysom might get his wish of “being a starting QB”. No one will pay Taysom starter QB money, but if he really wants to give it a try, a team might offer him backup money, but the opportunity to get starter snaps throughout the season. He is a great gadget player and a lot of teams find that attractive. He has only thrown 12 passes though and no one is going to sign that up as their starter.
CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement):
From the owners perspective, this is a great deal. They are looking to add a 17th game to the regular season, drop one preseason game, and add two playoff teams (one per conference). That means one thing to them: more money. That 17th game would means one team would get one extra home game or away game which is unfair, so, that could result in a consistent stream of international games (Mexico, London, China) or any other neutral site. Expanding the league to other locations though means reaching new fans and again, more money. When the playoffs come around, that first weekend will feature 3 games on Saturday and Sunday. That means they will need to sign a new TV Contract with a station to play that game. Again, more money. You will see a constant theme here with the owners.
For the players, this deal sucks. J.J. Watt has already came out and said absolutely not. This might result in more money for the players, but it is also more risk for injury. For a guy like J.J. Watt who already can’t make it through an entire season, this is not what you want. The owners tired to fool they players by saying “hey, you are going to get $100 million more in revenue with this extra game!” Well, they are smarter than that because with $100M in extra money between 32 teams is $3M a team. Not as attractive when you break it down. Also, the deal as is, would last 10 years! That is 10 years where the players have no control over what happens in the future. If currency changes, for better or worse, they are stuck and cannot go on strike for 10 years. At your job, would you want to be stuck at your position for 10 years without being able to negotiate a raise, promotion or be able to ask for a new office space? Probably not.
There are a lot of details that go into this new CBA that lawyers look at and people much smarter than I am. But one last detail I need to bring up is Eric Winston is the current head of the NFLPA. This is his last year at the helm though. Once he is gone this year, the new head of the NFLPA won’t be able to make changes to the CBA for 10 years? That’s like bringing in a new president after Trump and telling him/her “sorry, Trump’s policies are stuck for 10 years, can’t change them at all!” That’s bull! For everyone!
The owners have already signed this new CBA proposal, but the NFLPA has not. I do not expect them to sign it as is of course. They will make their changes and I am sure those changes will be not be signed by the owners. No one wants to talk about a holdout, but these are massive changes to the league. If they cannot find a compromise, we could see one.
To end this post on a fun note, Greg Robinson, Cleveland Browns former 2nd overall pick offensive lineman, was arrested on charges of marijuana possession and intent to distribute. Well, that is normal for the league. Players have been found with weed before and some even have meth/crack. He will be fine, pay a fine and maybe be suspended for a couple games.
Oh, I forgot to mention, he was caught at the Mexican border with this weed in the total amount of 157 POUNDS OF WEED! “Excuse me sir, your car seems to be riding a little low, can we take a look in the trunk?” They expected to find maybe a dead body, but instead found an average mans body weight in weed. He could face up to 20 years in prison.
157 pounds of weed could make a lot of brownies!
That’s all I have for you this week folks! Keep an eye on this site for more bog posts, new episodes of On and Off the Field, and general changes to the site. We are forever making updates to give you the best NFL/XFL experience possible. If you have any suggestions, drop us an email on the homepage from the “Contact Us” Section. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for hot memes and the latest news from around the sports universe. As always, All Hail the Jock Strap King!