Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Miguel, Apr 10, 2006.
Pretty interesting read.
This is Bob George speculation. He has no sources here. I think these writers make a mistake when they try to explain anyone's motivation by wondering what they'd do in the same situation. The Seymour grandfather thing has been made a huge deal but when Seymour's father died, the whole team attended including BB, and Bob Kraft.
I don't mean to say that I think that will keep Seymour here, just that he's leaving won't be because he was benched when his grandfather died.
A couple of comments.
First, the end game isn't discussed. How will he leave ? Certainly not as a UFA. He could be traded before 2006 or as a Franchised player in 2007. But he won't leave for nothing except a #3 comp pick. Write that down.
Should read "He instead will think more about his ego and greed" because the Patriots would offer him more than enought for his family, future and long term finacial security.
That would be disasterous, and would make saving all this money up this offseason worthless.
I like Bob in general, but this piece seems like a calm, low-key version of hysterical. The Patriots can get something done here, it's far from decided, and the next few months of inaction don't matter since they're simply not allowed to negotiate another deal until August. People need to breathe.
This incident in 03 to me has been misunderstood. I tend to think it was more of a non-communication problem between RS and the team; something that NONE of us know for sure. There's been plenty of speculation, but I don't think anyone knows all the details.
Is it just me, or did the Pats writers start taking classes from the Sox columnists on gloom and doom? Christ, it's April.
A very minor nitpick - Adam was franchised twice, not 3 times.
What is so important about NOT having the highest paid player at his position on the Patriots roster??
I agree. Since then several other players have had a death in the family (Faulk & Izzo come to mind) and all have said how they appreciated the Pats flexibility in allowing them to be with their families.
Where does that stop?
I don't know what happened and I think it is highly speculative to know exactly what did and why he was not allowed to start. Saying he went to his grandfather's funeral and saying that was the reason is certainly far from the real truth.
If you notice MB44, most writers and some posters are just player rump suckers, but the Pats always spend to the cap and over with bonuses. So I would like to know how the organization is cheap? And their model has worked, I guess some around here would rather take the approach and have the same success as the Redskins and Seahawks who seem to have won the free agency championship.
I agree. But I just can't believe Seymour is holding a grudge for three years
against BB who was following a team policy. To me that is absurd.
Can't believe it of Seymour. If Seymour goes it's because of money. IMO.
I keep hearing this statement from fans and the media that Seymour wants to become the highest paid at his position. Has anyone actually heard him say this? It seems like this is all gloom and doom speculation to me. Maybe he does or maybe he doesn't. I just wanna know where everyone is getting this from.
I mildly disagree with this being an "interesting read." With respect to the writer, it is, in my opinion, an infuriating read. While I can't argue with the possible financial incentives, the rest of it, which is clearly meant to provide salacious lipstick to this wrinkled story, provides only dusty speculation. We have, once again, innuendo being substituted for news and serious reflection. There is nothing new provided, neither quotes nor even rumours from "anonymous sources". The fact that Seymour was unhappy, or furious, or offended, in 2003, need not necessarily hinder progress on a long-term deal in the present.
The article keeps coming back to the primary issue of money, but even there provides nothing truly new, alas.
The secondary issue--involving loss, grief, and professionalism, and BB's often demanding (perhaps unsettling for some) standards of the latter--are interesting topics, and should, I feel, be worthy of a more sensitive and thoughtful treatment, and one separated from the issue of who gets the most cash.
I can understand that people don't want to dwell on potential negatives, or perhaps deal with potential problems that do not yet fully exist. But the handwriting has been on the wall in Richard's case for a while now. Most of the writers who routinely mention it do so because they have seen first hand or heard second hand from their peers that Richard is not happy. On a couple of levels. Financial is the one that matters most, and the one that still could carry the day if the Pats decide they want it too. Ditto with Adam, the sad thing there being it seems with a gun held to their heads they were willing to in his case. But it was likely those other underlying resentments related to past treatment that led to his not letting them. Those are likely the underlying reason Richard will not meet them half way where his contract is concerned.
I believe these players all respect BB, and even like him on some level. But he's not a touchy feely guy or one who believes that football players who really care about winning should need a level of emotional stroking from their HC just to keep their hearts in winning. Not that it would have changed things necessarily, but I think he misses RAC and Charlie on some level. I think to an extent they both brought a level of hands on passionate individual motivation combined with fatherly personal understanding to their dealings with some of these guys that just isn't BB's forte. And they were good sounding boards for BB and perhaps facilitators between him and his players. Mangini and McDaniels age and personas just didn't fit the bill in that respect either.
We can discount parting shots as sour grapes, but we keep hearing about a lack of personalized communication that I think is unfortunately just rooted in BB's personality. Givens saying he had his first really good talk ever with BB just before he signed anyway with Tennessee. Troy only rethinking his options only after after being informed (by the media) that BB spoke out publicly about how much he valued him as a member of the organization. They all have egos or they never would have made it in the NFL. I know Bob Kraft tries to fill in the blanks without stepping on football operations toes. But for some of these guys that simply isn't enough. They want or need to hear it from the football man. And they often communicate their needs to the organization quietly but firmly through backchannel off the record discussions with those in the media they have developed a relationship with. Even Brady used that tack to voice his frustration (Tom Curren's lone piece) when his contract negotiations had bogged down even while the spin emanating from Foxboro was it was a done deal.
If he truly wants to retain certain players without breaking a financial model he has also backchannel communicated to the media he is determined to maintain, he may have to learn to bend a tad on the personality model. If not the selection pool just shrinks and only thick skinned self motivators on all levels need apply. Guys like Brady who while momentarily devastated at the loss of his best friend Lawyer Milloy 5 days before a season opener, was able to move on because more than anyhting he wants to continue winning here. That's what matters to him, and it's exactly what matters to BB - and I think he just can't appreciate why the here let alone the winning part isn't sufficient to hold them all.
And I believe the reason the team is so reluctant if not determined not to have highest paid players on the roster is pretty self evident. BB sees it as the underpinning of the entire TEAM concept. No one player is valued above his teamates. He may be paid more or less already based on his individual position because of the overall value placed on a particular position within the game, but he will not be singled out as the most valuable on this team or in the entire league by virtue of his contract here. And it will be clear this is done not to save money for the franchise except to be spent on a higher caliber of teamate for you to play along side. It's part of his philosophy of the self policing team - players (particularly in leadership positions) are as responsible for what this team can be as he is.
If each of the top 10 players and leaders on this team demand another half a million or a million for themselves for whatever reason, just understand that's another $5-$10M the team cannot access to field a better deeper team across the board. It's a tough nut to maintain in a league where a guys career can be over in an instant. And it becomes even tougher to maintain when players in leadership roles openly balk at the concept when it comes time to do their deal. Leading by example is the only way to maintain it, because players are reluctant to ask or tell others to take less. All they can do is show them what they did and let them decide whether or not to follow. Richard just sounds like the typical guy who appreciates his surrounding cast on one level, but doesn't believe he should be expected to forego anything financially or emotionally on their behalf in order that they can continue winning here.
Thoughtful post. I have wondered myself whether the dynamic hasn't been negatively affected by the loss of two men who were, according to all reports, very different from Bill Belichick. They were more volatile, emotional, paternal, and, undoubtedly, garrulous. Good management requires, I suspect, both types--the genius, and the generous.
I admire the hell out of Belichick (being a fellow Wesleyan alum doesn't hurt), but I wish that the RAC and Charlie replacements had been more like them than they him. Perhaps Pees will bring more of that to the table this year, but time is needed for him to establish himself. Brady will be more on his own.
I think that if you approach the draft and free agency with this thought then you are doing your job properly as a GM.
- Every player wants the maximum guaranteed money possible.
- Every players agent discounts coaching as a reason for their players success.
- Hometown discounts are luck and should never be assumed.
- Trade players who are young and wish to play out their contract to Free Agency.
- These are athletes...they are athletes mostly because they strive to win and hate to lose...why fans assume a successful athlete will stay for less money is laughable...they credit their success with their hard work...no more and no less. Losing is not what they strive to do.
Tom Ashworth...if ever there was a player who owed most of their success to a team it was Tom...and what was it that he did??? I don't blame him...I would do the same...99% of those here would do it to.
So why would a winner trade their bishops and knights for pawns???
Football is chess...if you play chess then apply all you know about chess to football...they are mirror images of each other. I mean, when have you ever traded a bishop for a pawn with no strategic advantage to the move?
Emotion has nothing to do with it. Bob is right on or very close to right. I wouldn't be surprised to Seymour traded for draft picks at some point...trading similar pieces can give a great strategic advantage.
I have to say I am somewhat disappointed with several assumptions / opinions that Bob George seemed to be making and using as basis for fact in writing such a negative article.
Please find below a few points he raised followed by what seems to me to be very possible based on what RS has actually said, what others have said about RS that I have read as well as my own thoughts.
1) RS wont be back because he does not want to? - How could you possibly know this?
2) RS is content with 3 rings and doesn't need/want anymore?? - I think he was misinterpreting Richard Seymour and totally downplaying the competitive fire within him. He did not even consider the rapport RS has with certain teammates and coaches and most important - how much a championship really does mean to him.
3) RS must be the highest DL in the game? He has never said that, he has actually said he does not understand what hometown discount means and that Foxboro is not his hometown, but he has also said he is not looking necessarily to break the bank or be the highest paid, he simply seeks respect and money commensurate with his talent.
4) RS resents BB handling of his time off and return from his grandfathers funeral. Bob George seemed to make this into a situation of RS holding this as a three year grudge. I think this was a misunderstanding and has been cleared up long ago. I actually think, later on, RS was shown a great deal of respect by the outpouring of support from the entire patriot organization over the incident with his Dad. I feel that he must have very much appreciated everything that his fellow players, coach's and ownership did to show how much they care for him as a person.
5) "Either FoxboroughÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not SeymourÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s kind of town, or BelichickÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not his kind of coach. Or both." The article ended with that sentence, yet I did not find one shred of evidence to substantiate.
I am a little surprised that one aspect of re-signing players isn't talked about.
All of these players (except Tedy Bruschi) have agents.
Is it accepted protocol for the team (Belichick, Pioli, whomever) to talk directly to the player during negotiations ?? ?? ?? ??
Even if it is permissible for teams to talk to players, perhaps with the agreement of the agent and/or player, have any of these players/agents agreed that the Pats can talk directly to the player ??
If permission is not required, is it possible that the agents have told the players: "Do not talk to them - let me do all of the negotiation" ??
Is it in the interest of the agent (in the slightest) to take any kind of chance at having his player client be sweet talked into taking LESS money but stay with the team ??
Do you think any of the players did or will tell their agents that they will take any kind of discount just to stay with the Pats ?? Pardon me if I get the distinct impression that none of the players have been willing to take less guarantees or total money just to stay with the Pats. In fact, there is an underlying theme that some of them may have even turned down an equal offer.
Do you think there may be any personality issues on the part of the players who want to paint the Pats in a bad light and make themselves look 'OK' for valuing a bigger money deal more than staying with the Pats ?? You think maybe ??
And, on the other side of the coin:
There is AMPLE media reporting that Bill Belichick frequently demonstrates personable and even affable and entertaining interactions with non-NFL gatherings and peers in the NFL AND maintains personable relationships with folks outside of football.
One thing that, pardon me, I think is also universally recognized is that Belichick will cover aspects of coaching and preparing and staffing a team down to the minutest detail.
Now given these last two things, HOW can anyone REALLY give any credence to the idea that Belichick would not do whatever was possible to establish a rapport with these free agents if it were allowed and it meant retaining the player at a value that fit the teams overall salary model ??
To me it just shouts self-interest on the part of players and their agents and it is approaching ludicrous to attribute 'personality' issues to Belichick. I could make that statement in a stronger form, but I'm sure you get my drift.
#1: Anyone who owns a copy of "3 Games to Glory II" can see the "dislike" Seymour has for BB at the City Hall celebration (2.5 months after the Grandfather incident). C'mon Bob, that clip completely discounts your first premise.
#2 The other premises have more weight. However, for me to write that is pure conjecture since I don't have access to the team, stadium or personnel. My view (and most of everybody's) is from a living room couch. If Bob has a press pass or knows someone on the inside then he has incredibly good sources.
I tend to think you may be correct..I wonder if that follows that the fans should now almost assume that all FAs will leave when they can?? That to keep this structure in place..all will of the better players will leave. Not being frivolous or light, but is it turning out that leaving be more the "norm:..expected?? And hometown discounts and players signing..lucky...or not always part of the plan. I guess wondering about FAs as "planned obsolesence"...in a vague sense...BB planning for that possibility always. I wonder if that is part of the model?? Not at all saying rightly/wrongly but if you think that is possible. (AND of course all depending on money available and value etc.) Thoughts??
Instead of personal conjecture, what would be meaningful info to me would be if someone can track down the statistical percentage of FA's leaving their teams and whether the Patriots are average, below average or above average in that stat.
Great thougt...my guess is we are ahead of the norm in players STAYING. Of course the study must be weighed based on players that stay that the patriots WANTED to keep, not easy to do at all.
There's so much speculation in the piece that it's tough to evaluate, but i agree that it is interesting. i recall the benching and also recall that not a whole lot was made of it at the time, so this retrospective view is curious. however, the author does make a very good point when he observes that the last thing Seymour would do is jeapordize a big free agent payday. this would play to the Patriots' advantage.
Actually I did hear Richard with my very own ears say that if he is the best DL in the league he should be paid as the best. Now, that's a way of skirting the issue just a tad. He's not saying he is, but he's saying that if that is how he perceived inside OR outside of Foxboro, well then......
And again, reporters are often told things by players, or other players, or members of the organization in background or off the record that they are not to use with any kind of attribution. It's done to keep them in the situational loop by one side or another. They almost all long reported Richard was somewhat to very unhappy with his compensation, dating back to early 2003-2004. Richard held his own emotional locker room media session after the benching and made it clear just how hurt he was by BB's decision regardless of the rationale behind it. They were often slammed for even hinting at such herasy - and then oops, he held out of TC in 2005, a year when the team was dealing with the multiple blows of losing a DC, OC, and 2 starting LB. Some opined that perhaps RAC could have talked him down before it came to that, but RAC wasn't here any more.
Aside from Borges and Cafardo or a turd like Longo (who like the blind squirel occasionally still find nuts) most of these guys respect this team and the way it has operated and the success it has achieved. Some see it more from a player standpoint although most do amply acknowledge the coaching and management effect on the overall product. I don't think many of them are out to stir the pot since that usually causes them headaches down the road. But they are determined to be on potential or emerging stories like it or not. Felger may tend to be more confrontational in his presentation these days in an effort to build his talk show host persona. But he knows what he knows, and he ain't making it up. Sometimes their information may be a little off the mark because they too are being spun depending on whom they are talking to. If we expect them to just mail in the occasional all is well puff piece then perhaps what we really want is no Patriots coverage at all, unless it's positive.
Not counting franchised players the last 5: 02---4 kept 5 departed,03---3 kept 8 departed,04---5 kept 11 departed,05---3 kept 6 departed.06---8 kept 9 departed.
I don't think we're talking about communication during negotiation. It's more communicating with them on a personal level all along. Setting the table so to speak. I don't think anything in the CBA precludes a HC or any other member of the management team from communicating with a player about where he stands or what they are thinking/feeling about him throughout the course of a season. I can see an agent advising his client to not listen or be swayed by the stroking that goes on on many teams at many levels, but they can't stop it from occurring in the natural course of events.
Brady and BB spend many hours together going over film and plans and there is no reason for them not to develop a deep personal relationship that buys the organization some consideration. I think in that case both have happened. Not so apparently in several other cases. There can be logical reasons for that on both sides, but if changing that helps the team in the long run it is likely up to management to be the ones to persue some personal relationship expansion. Again, I think RAC and Charlie mitigated that to some extent in the past, but they are not here any more.
BB can be very engaging and even gregarious when it suits him. But he is not a schmoozer or someone who seeks out interaction but rather someone who can be drawn out when he is in a mutual comfort zone. Tomase, who coming from Sox coverage knew little of BB beyond some of his peers perceptions, seemed somewhat taken aback on discovering that at the Owners Meeting. We've gradually seen a little more emotion from BB over the years in select settings. But if you notice players he embraces other than Tom often look as much stunned as pleased when it occurs. And of course they also know that his occasional outbursts of emotion and even affection don't necessarily translate. I recall him heartily embracing Wiggie on a couple of occasions as the first magical season played out. Then he just let him go.
And maybe that is why on some level he subconsciously limits that sort of personal connection.
The reason you haven't actually heard him say it is that he HASN'T said it. In fact, he's SAID - on record - that he doesn't have to be the highest-paid, he just wants it to be fair, given the fact that he's among the best in the NFL. I, for one, don't think that's too much to ask, and I, for one, don't think it's too high a mountain to climb.
I think they can get this done. Will they? We'll see.
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