July 31st, 2010
by FootBasket

St. Louis Rams newest member, quarterback Sam Bradford, holds up his jersey as he is introduced to reporters at Rams Park in Earth City, Missouri on April 23, 2010, one day after being selected No. 1 in the first round of the NFL. Bradford played his college football at Oklahoma. UPI/Bill Greenblatt Photo via Newscom

Can words be used to describe for the largest deal in NFL history for a rookie?

And by that, I mean, in guaranteed money. If you thought the last few years were getting out of control (Matthew Stafford’s deal and JaMarcus Russell’s), then you have seen nothing yet.

ProFootballTalk.com has been told that the deal for the number one overall pick for Sam Bradford is legit. Yes, it comes with 50 million dollars in guaranteed money “That’s $8.3 million more in guaranteed money than the first overall pick received in 2009, an increase of 19.9 percent.”

I am by no means upset that Bradford and his agent went out and got him this kind of deal. A deal that has put me over the edge to the current situation.

A rookie cap is needed in the NFL.

Agents are taking advantage of these teams that have no choice but to give whatever it takes to ensure that their top selection signs.

Let’s reflect here. 50 million dollars to a guy who has never played in a pro system in college, has a very fragile body (injured his shoulder easily), and most importantly, has never taken a snap on the NFL level?

Something has to give. I mean, the NBA installed a hard rookie cap, and it has been one of the best ideas they have made in quite some time.

As the NFL looks toward 18-game seasons and harder penalties for NFL convicts, a rookie cap needs to be higher on the agenda. Many experts feel it is a top priority to put in a cap by 2011. I sure hope so.

For a moment, let’s ignore that Bradford’s new deal will make him more money then Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees.

How about the players that are attempting to get raises, but are getting different treatment from their front offices? Players such as Vincent Jackson, Chris Johnson, Andre Johnson, and Darrelle Revis are among the many stars who have delivered on the biggest stage. They deserve a raise over unproven rookies.

From my mock drafts, and seeing him play on the college level, I never got the impression Sam Bradford could be an elite quarterback in the NFL. The same could be said about last year’s top pick in Matthew Stafford. Stafford’s physical skills give me more confidence in him to succeed down the road.

Besides, Bradford enters a horrible situation. He has no offensive line and no receivers who deserve double teams. His biggest weapon, Steven Jackson, will face eight guys in the box every down.

Hate to put the burden on Bradford, but he seems doomed to fail. If he does, 50 million goes down the drain for a franchise that has gone downhill every year since their Super Bowl loss to the Patriots in 2002.

Also, the idea of rookie holdouts makes the situation much more demanding from the management standpoint.

This year’s crop of rookies haven’t forced the issue so far. However, JaMarcus Russell and Michael Crabtree had some of the more controversial holdouts in recent years. The threat of holding out the entire year, and then entering the draft the following year, becomes more of a possibility.

Today’s stars always feel they are better than the market value. With a salary cap put into place, less holdouts would occur. The player could get into camp and become familiar and comfortable with their teammates.

In a way, the deal of Sam Bradford and this years draft class does make this situation into a positive for the NFL. As the sport continues to change with the latest technology, a rookie cap needs to be implemented for the parity of the league. This is especially true with teams like the Rams that have struggled for quite some time.


Posted in National Basketball Association | Comments (3)

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