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I'm sure every front office saw the possibilities. But only few have the resources to take advantage of it.
Aren't the Cowboys taking a pretty big risk buy paying him his money now instead of later anyway?
What was the point of the cap free year then? If it wasn't really a cap free year?
I guess it was just something that sounded good to the players and the owners, less two, decided they weren't going to screw the market as they headed towards the collective bargaining agreement. It's a bunch of BS.
Seriously, does anyone know what the point of the cap free year was?
If winning was easy even losers would do it.
What's the risk? Outside of wasting millions of dollars...which I'm not sure Jerry Jones really cares about anyway. We know Dan Snyder doesn't care about blowing tens of millions on whoever.
As far as I can tell, the point of the cap free year was to motivate the owners to get a CBA done (note that the original CBA wasn't intended to give a cap-free year - it was only implemented because the owners thought they were getting screwed and thus struck down the last CBA). Just like the extended years necessary for players to become free agents would help motivate the players to get a deal done. That's actually what happened in 2006 - the potential for an uncapped year helped motivate the extension of the CBA.
The risk that you pay a player a ton of money on the front end instead of waiting for the back end to come up and either get the deal restructured again or release and take a smaller cap hit.
Either there is a cap or there isn't. Many teams "restructure" contracts when they have cap space open this year but may be in a crunch next year or swap salary dollars for a signing/roster bonus to defray the cost over a series of years. Moving your expenses into a front loaded contract in a year where there is no cap only makes sense.
For the people saying these two rich owners what the hell do you think the rest of the NFL owners are?
But since they didn't get a deal done and there was an uncapped year, they have to live with the consequences.
One of the classic examples used by a prominent law professor at Penn State who still teaches today is:
"Hey (Student A) how much money do you have in your wallet?"
Student A: "about 20 dollars"
Professor: "I say in the spirit of democracy... let's have a vote, who votes that Student A must give us all of his money?"
(Everyone raises hand)
That is still against the law and violates Student A's rights. Just because the rest of the class (owners) agreed that it is better that they take Student A's (Cowboys and Skins) money doesn't mean that they are in the right because "majority rules."
That is essentially what is happening in this case: The owners voted/agreed/whatever that they wouldn't spend a lot during the uncapped year. That way, players salaries were kept low, and market value of the players wouldn't increase as much in the future. Apparently 4 teams said "to hell with that" and did what was perfectly legal and 100% within their rights to do, by front-loading contracts, getting rid of players, etc.
Just because a bunch of people essentially raised their hands to some agreement doesn't mean that there was a rule regarding the action. The fact is that there wasn't any. And therefore, the Cowboys and Redskins haven't broken any rule at all.
The only entity that has actually done anything wrong is the rest of the NFL owners themselves who illegally colluded to not spend so much money on the players in the uncapped season.
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It makes sense if you're trying to circumvent the salary cap in the future, which the NFL expressly warned against.
There's a reason other teams didn't do it, and it's not because they were too stupid or "didn't have the resources."
You can "warn" someone all you want, unless there is a rule stating they can't do it, then you can't punish them for doing so.
If 4 local gas station owners come together at dinner one night and all agree to keep their gas prices under $4 per gallon, and then 1 month later, two of the owners price their gas at $4.15 per gallon, what are the other 2 owners gonna do? Sue them?
No. The 2 owners priced over $4 dollars didn't break any rules or laws.
"Within their rights" - as deemed by who? The government? It's the NFL and the owners that determine if competitive balance has been breached.
"Illegally colluded"? How is it illegal to determine that other teams did what was expressly warned against by the NFL?
Like I said, if you're talking in legal terms, a similar situation was seen in the NHL with Kovalchuk's contract. It broke no rules, but arbitration ruled in favor of the NHL. I'm not sure where anyone gets off talking about "legal" or "illegal." We're not talking about robbing someone of money, like the first example.
And it's not about spending less on players. It's about how the money is allocated relative to the salary cap.
The 2 owners priced over $4 probably wouldn't get much business either, but that's besides the point. It's kind of moot because the NFL itself isn't just a loose agreement between owners. It's an organization that, among many other things, has a purpose of maintaining competitive balance among the teams. They warned that circumventing the salary cap will have consequences and it did.
The NFL and owners are well within their rights and power to determine if a competitive balance has been reached.
That is why they have people approve and sign off on each and every contract signed between a team and player.
The contracts in question were APPROVED by the NFL at the time.
Furthermore, it is absolutely collusion if the owners have a wink wink handshake deal amongst themselves to not "spend too much money" during an uncapped year. The year was uncapped. Period. Therefore, the teams could've done whatever they darn well pleased with their money during that time. The fact is that the NFL is retroactively punishing these two teams when they did not break any rule.
Agreeing amongst each other to not pay players a lot of money during the uncapped year is a direct example of collusion.
The CBA's are done to ensure fair competition. That is a legally binding agreement, for which punishment can be brought against those who violate it's terms. And the uncapped year was a result of the previous CBA and failure to reach a new deal by a certain time.
But to bring punishment against a team for "violating" a handshake agreement when their actions were actually perfectly legal and within the legally binding rules of the league at the time, is absolutely unlawful.
And guess what, they can warn all they want, but unless they have rules against a certain action, they can't punish someone for doing it.
The CBA was the agreement for competitive balance, and the uncapped year was a part of that!
So the Cowboys and Redskins were in perfect compliance with the terms of the CBA. But a bunch of other owners b*tched and moaned, and agreed to "punish" these two teams.
I don't see how anyone doesn't see how messed up that is.
The key issue is, was there a contract, to not avoid frontloading, or not?
Reprots are that there was a verbal agreement.
Verbal contracts do exist, and are binding.
The alternative, of course, is that Jerruh and Danny the Greedy are the smartest owners in the NFL, and were the only ones to catch this "loophole".
Raise your hand if you think Danny the Greedy is one of the smartest owners in the NFL.
And then this
Basically, the Cowboys and Redskins were the only two teams/owners who actually played by the rules and didn't agree to illegally collude against paying the players a lot of money.
And no, a verbal agreement can not override the terms of a Collective Bargaining Agreement. That is absolutely ludicrous and simply not the case.
Seriously, there is no possible way you can read those two articles and conclude that the Redskins and Cowboys are in the wrong here with a straight face.
The NFL basically bribed Demaurice Smith and the NFLPA to accept their illegal collusion by punishing the Cowboys and Redskins in order to raise the salary cap number in an election year for Smith.
This can get very VERY ugly if Jones and Snyder stand firm.
Where was it said the owners had a "wink wink handshake" deal not to spend too much money? Even if there was one, that has no bearing because money was spent in general as normal. Like I said, it's not about how much money was spent, it's about when it was spent.
The teams can only do what they want within the framework of competitive balance.
You're using the "illegal" and "unlawful" terms pretty liberally. As pennstateI0 said, oral agreements can still be considered binding. Not sure where "unlawful" comes into play.
I've already given you an example of another sports league doing something very similar. The NHL rejected a contract because, even though it was "perfectly within the rules," it still circumvented the salary cap. The NHL's decision was upheld by arbitration. Competitive balance is held to be pretty important by most sports, and there is precedence for this sort of thing.
Yet what you fail to understand is that there was no salary cap to circumvent....
But to play along, even if there wasn't and the NFL still wanted to ensure "fair competition," they still APPROVED every single contract that was signed/restructured at the time.
Every single contract had to be approved by the league office. And these contracts were approved by the league office at the time of their agreements.
That is why your NHL example simply doesn't apply. If it was because of fair competition, then the NFL League Office would've shot down the contracts back in 2010, but they didn't.
This was done simply to add to this year's salary cap so Demaurice Smith can be re-elected next year as Head I the NFLPA. The NFL basically bribed the NFLPA into agreeing to this to raise the salary cap and is daring Jones and Snyder to sue and in turn hurt their own business (the NFL) in the process.
It wasn't just about contracts created that year. The Redskins used the year as a salary dump for a couple of the awful contracts they'd given out.
It's absolutely due to fair competition. Some teams (e.g. Washington and Dallas) make poor decision after poor decision. Then an unplanned, uncapped year comes along and they dump a huge amount of salary into it (Redskins cap number that year would have been 170 million compared to 120 or so it had been before - that's not egregious?).
The NFL did what it did in order to get the NFLPA's approval. As suspicious as it is, it's also what politicians do to get support - whether the idea is good or bad is another matter.
Interestingly, attached is an article in 2010 that predicts potential ramifications of using the year as a salary dump and talks about making the CBA retroactive.
"As I’ve previously written, given the uncertainty of what 2011 holds, clubs who take advantage of the uncapped year by incurring high team salaries in 2010 run the risk of possibly being penalized in 2011 as part of a new salary cap and CBA. Clearly, this is a risk the Redskins are willing to take -- or perhaps they know something the rest of us don’t."
Football Outsiders is the internet home for Innovative Statistics and Intelligent Analysis of professional and college football. Our writers, lead by Aaron Schatz, also write Pro Football Prospectus.
I look at it like this I commute to work and in a certain section i do 60 in a section I believe has no speed limit. The speed limit is not clearly posted but I believe it to be 55. I emailed my notion to drive over the speed limit to the state police who okayed it. Then the two guys that do 40, the ones I pass all the time they work in a building across the street. One day they bitch about my driving, all of the sudden I'm charged with 375 speeding tickets based on me commuting 5 days a week for two years. I have to pay those douche bags that drive slow. I was okayed to do what I was doing by the law but then they just decided they would backdate the enforcement of a non existent speed limit. Because a couple drivers couldn't keep up.
I'm fairly inebriated and that shit doesn't make sense.....that said its basically what happened!
Perhaps what you don't know is: in the latest CBA agreement this past summer, the NFL dropped their threat to penalize teams that used the uncapped year to "dump contracts" in order to hasten the deal and get the league started again.
But now that the salary cap was projected to be flat, the NFLPA leadership needed a way to raise the cap number this year, and the league was happy to oblige because the Cowboys and Redskins didn't go along with their little good ole big network "agreement," and the rest of the owners were happy to take an extra 1.6 million in cap space.
This was already mentioned in the links I posted above in a previous post.
Clearly you can when you're the NFL. When your dad tells you to quit misbehaving, and you don't stop, eventually your gonna get a foot in your ass. Granted if it was my team I'd be pissed, but if I was a Cowboys or Redskins fan I'd already hate my owner so this wouldn't make much difference.
I saw that in an article, but didn't see it supported anywhere in particular. Even if they did drop that threat, is that fair competition? I don't believe so.
Last I knew, Jones and Snyder were the ones who always instigate the "good old boy" agreements. They're the ones leading the charge on the "majority rules" attitude of the NFL owners. If they're getting punished because of "good old boy" agreements, they're the ones who created that attitude among the owners.
And by the way, going back to my comments about the precedent in the NHL. I was making a general point that this sort of punishment has precedent. The NHL did what it did despite no rules being broken, and its decision was upheld. The NFL is doing the same. Both are meant to maintain competition.
And to Huss: who said they couldn't keep up? People seem to be making that up without any support.
The REALLY interesting issue here is that this is only coming up the day before free agency opens. Sounds to ME like "people" knew this well in advance and kept their mouths SHUT until the last second and THEN put it on the table so there would be no time for the teams in question to react. Collusion? How about that for bending the rules?
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