The Coin ... and a
Exactly what is the purpose of repeating Joe Blow's name ad nauseam ... followed
by the value of his contract or how much he makes ... and how much guaranteed
money he's entitled to. You might not realize why you squirm or get that
uneasy feeling about such statements ... or God forbid, feel the need to reach
for a beer ... so allow me to paint you a picture. For the number of times
that these statements are published in a Viking related article, or it's restated by
commentator ... it is as if there is some sort of conspiracy afoot.
It wasn't so long ago,
when I was sitting in a graduate level Theory of Exchange class ... where the
topic moved to "Sunk Costs" (assets). For example, if you bought
a piece of machinery, regardless of whether it makes you dime or not, or whether
it ever works, or if it enables the most profitable sector of your business ...
the amount invested in that asset is Sunk and is generally not
recoverable. Yes it can be resold, but imagine trying to recoup the value
of a new piece of machinery because it doesn't work. A player is an asset
... and that players contract ... should be treated in the same manner as any
other asset ... excluding incentives and stipulations.
So once again ... what is
the purpose of repeating a players name followed by the details of his
contract ad nauseam. The first or second time its repeated it's news,
after that ... its purpose becomes sinister:
- The intent is to reemphasize
either poor or superior judgment of an organization. For example, the fortuitous
pick up of Cris Carter for $100 was a brilliant Viking move (to the detriment
of Buddy Ryan), but the rehashing of large contract values waves quite
another flag ... see, your guys or your organization are idiots.
Said another way ... we can interpret Prime Time saying ... if your a player
looking for a change ... this organization doesn't know how to spend it's
money wisely ... your better off playing for my team ... or certainly, some
other team (not the Vikings). If they are fiscally irresponsible ...
they are destined to fail.
- Another intent is to
consistently remind a player that he's been overpaid and that he can never
measure up to the value of his contract. What this does is place a
monkey on that players back ... and I don't know about you ... but I'm not
happy about any monkey consistently crapping all over my back. Isn't
it bad enough that we all have the IRS, state and local governments, as monkeys
on our backs, to have to carry around, and we all know what they do
every time we cash a check. I have
enough to worry about ... namely coaches, the other team, my mates, and of
course the zebras. I need to play ... you're trying to make me into being
the unattainable super human! If I were a player ... I'd clearly catalog these comments
and remember them ... and I'd call you on it. Get off me buddy ... I'm
trying to earn a living here! Really ... there is no amount of money
to have to put up with this type of pettiness and we all don't appreciate
your intent as these are the men that I go to war with. They need me
... and I need them ... and let's not forget that my play is instrumental in
getting great reviews for my embattled brothers!
- Another more sinister
intent is to continually remind a large contingent of a team full of
players, that are playing at a very high level, that they are
underpaid and therefore under-appreciated, and should be deserving of
more. Commentators have the luxury of applying an immediate grade to a
players performance versus a contract value ... the later, of which, is
measured in years. In other words ... shut the hell up
smart-small-donkey. Once again, the intent is to divide the nation amongst
Dude! I have a gift
... all I want to do is help me mates!
For Prime Time ... or the
highly touted butt plug Raider Madden, for that matter ... these views are both
understandable and expected. They crap all over us Viking fans and then
help us by showing us beer commercials. On the other hand ... for someone
that appears to be writing for the enjoyment of Viking fans, or is acting as an informational source
for Vikings fans ... well ... maybe these writers just might reconsider their views
as to what is news ... and what is journalistic anal prodding. Enough
In the day of the poison pill ... yes, that is right ... poison pill ... it
would appear that there needs to be a significant overhaul to the leagues system
in regard to contracts. Wasn't it just a few short years ago that the
Vikings were ostracized league-wide for the Hutchinson Deal, followed by the Burleson
reaming, which was hushed by the league, only to witness the Packers poison pill
in regard to the Brett Farve trade (if the Jet's tried to trade Brett to the
Vikings ... the poison pill of lost #1 draft choices would take effect).
Funny ... how no one said boo ... when it comes to applying the nasty to the
From this is would appear
to be a no-brainer ... where a players guaranteed money should be parceled out
per season (in the amount equal to the value counted under the cap) with
stipulations. The first stipulation should be in regard to actions
detrimental to the team, which directly affect every aspect of the organization
... including the pocketbooks of fellow players. The second should also
stipulate that any player that returns to his prior organization forfeits the
prorated guaranteed coin ... where it has now become apparent that a teams cap
number can be supplemented by a player securing guaranteed money from one team,
only to return to his prior team. Ouch! All a player has to do,
after obtaining an organizations commitment (signed contract), is to behave
badly or play poorly and bam ... that player finds himself released and on his
way back to a familiar home (where he doesn't have to be on that learning curve)
... a little heavier loaded down by some ill gotten coin. This little bit
of indiscretion has to be tied up by the owners.
Owners have to be vigilant
in that they should never reward bad behavior!
To be direct, no one
wants to even discuss guaranteed rookie contracts, but it is out of control and it has to be
addressed. Agents point to it as precedence ... the league .... both
players and owners ... needs to hammer out corrective action for the
collective good of the league.
The Viking Ghost