pwbowen wrote: votingmachine wrote:
Tennessee wants to sign Jared Cook or franchise tag him. But his franchise price might be a bit too high if the league re-classifies Cook as a WR.
The Nashville Tennessean suggests the Titans could hit a "big snag" in contract talks with free agent Jared Cook over whether he should be classified as a tight end or wide receiver.
Cook played over 60 percent of his snaps as a slot receiver/wideout in 2012, and this could become contentious if the Titans try slapping Cook with the tight end franchise tag. The franchise number for receivers is roughly $10.5 million. The tight end franchise number is just under $6 million. Per beat writer Jim Wyatt, Cook and the Titans are "nowhere close" to a long-term agreement.
I qame always amused by the language ... "slapping Cook with the tight end franchise tag" ...
If you play professional football, you are represented by the NFLPA, which has negotiated a fantastic salary cap system, including a tag system that lets players get paid quite a lot. If you are important to your team, they will want to sign you to a long term contract. If you want to quit the team they can still keep you on a 1-year deal, paying you as about the #3 at your position (the average of the previous years top-5 salaries is about #2.5). Yeah, that is a slap in the face. It is tough when after 4 years, you've accounted for 1717 receiving yards, and they want to pay you as a top-5 TE.
It is a legitimate question though whether he is an underachieving WR or an underachieving WR. The NFL is going to have to consider this carefully. TE's should be allowed to be lined up from somewhere other than tight to the end of the line.
So Cook's agent figured out a loophole for his client to make more $? Then good for him.
With the 'slap in the face' comment are we supposed to be mad at Cook for trying to maximize his salary because you haven't deemed him worthy?
You get what you can get. My comment is that the franchise tag is a sweet deal. It is a 1-year deal and of course players don't want that uncertainty anymore than anyone else. But it is a SWEEET deal, not a slap in the face. The pay is at the top-level for the position.
Here are the 1-year salaries:http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/nfl-franchise-tag-window-opens-monday-130931912--nfl.html
Jared Cook will receive almost $6 million for 2013 as a franchise tagged TE. If he can get classified as a WR, he will make more, and I also applaud the agent for the representation. My comment is not that Jared Cook isn't worth $6 million ... that is a Titans' decision of value, and he seems potentially worth that. My comment is that a franchise tag is not an insult EVER. It is a pay that is in the top-10% of your position, and a designation of you as a player that the team would rather pay at the highest level than lose you.
To me being told you are too important and too critical to allow to leave, and being told you will be paid at the top level is a complement. It may be that you want to be an unlimited free agent, but the you know when you go to work for the NFL that the franchise tag is part of the NFL contract. The players agreed to that.
I really don't know if Cook is worth the money or not. I don't think much of his accomplishments, but those also reflect the team. My guess is that the Titans want to either sign him for several years at a lower salary, or pay him the max, but not guaranteed. I don't recall ever seeing him play, so I would be ill-prepared to actually evaluate him. I'm sure I must have seen him in a Colts-Titans game but I don't recall it.
EDIT: The franchise tag is at the average of the top-5 salaries for the previous year. I said that was top-10%. Really it is closer to top 5% for TE's. If the 32 teams all have 2 TE's that is 64 total. If they carry 3, that is 96. If the average of the top-5 is the 4th highest in the new year (say a new contract, rising salaries in contracts by year) ... then the #4 salary is in the top 5%, if there are 80 NFL TE's.