When is a player morally entitled to be let out of his contract?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Fencer, Jun 15, 2010.

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  1. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    There seems to be a sentiment that if a player outperforms his contract sufficiently, he's entitled to have it torn up and be given a new one.

    I don't agree.

    I DO agree that he's entitled to use his leverage to try to negotiate a new one, but that's not quite the same thing. For one thing, I also agree that he's entitled to use his leverage (such as it is) even when he didn't play particularly well (not that it's easy to think of an example when that would work).

    Employees, in my opinion, are only entitled to "favors" from employers when:

    1. Employers have excessive power.
    2. It's a well-understood custom that they get those favors.

    Neither case seems to apply, given how much leverage the players as a group have when negotiating the CBA.

    Opinions I have that are exceptions or close to exceptions to the foregoing include:

    A. The retired players are entitled to pension increases.

    B. Guys on short salaries who get a lot more reps than anticipated deserve may more money, as their body gets used up by the hits. (The bonus program whereby guys get extra league money in such situations may suffice to cover that.)

    C. When a team makes a very specific verbal promise, it should honor it.

    But for example, I don't think any of the exceptions apply to Mankins; he's out of line. Ditto Ty Law before him. Seymour wasn't a bad guy for getting what he could, but he wasn't entitled to it either. Ditto Branch.
  2. JMarr

    JMarr In the Starting Line-Up

    Good post, but it's a pipe dream to think that employees can expect to get favors only when their employers have "excessive power." If anything, the opposite is true. This is one of the reasons why I don't like to make analogies between professional sports and the typical work environment.

    And the NFLPA may have a lot more power than your typical union since these players aren't fungible, but it's probably the least powerful union is sports, and rightly so. Like it or not, the way NFL contracts are structured is one of the reasons why there is parity and NFL is by far the most popular sport in this country now.
  3. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

    Mankins has no contract with the patriots. He has played out ALL the years of his rookie contract.

  4. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    In response to the title of the thread, I'd say the situations are analogous to grounds for annulment of marriage. For instance, if the team made false representations to the player. If the team is "unable to perform" (i.e. doesn't pay his salary). Etc.

    Mankins' situation is complicated because the issue isn't a contract between him and his employer at all, it's a collective bargaining agreement between his union and an umbrella organization. So there can't be any moral principle that would release Mankins and Mankins only from his commitments; it would have to release ALL of the extended RFAs. And since they, collectively, negotiated this condition and received concessions in return, that's very hard to argue for.
  5. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    He doesnt have a particular contract with us but their is a contract (the CBA) that binds him to this team for at least this year and possibly longer.

    His choices are Play for the Patriots at the tender level or don't play and he can complain about the Patriots all he wants but he really only has the Union to complain about for not taking into consideration the 200 or so players that would be in this position when they negotiated the last CBA.

    IMO this puts the Union in the tough position of having to stick to its guns and insist they don't take any less because if they do agree to less than what did they win last negotiations a 3-4 year increase in pay followed by hosing 200 guys who didn't get to take advantage of the increase and then have it decrease back to what it was.
  6. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

    The few (those with extended RFA terms) were screwed for the good of the many as in many union negotiations.

    Mankins will simply do the best he can under the circumstances, not signing or reporting until the last minute and participating to the minimum extent possible thereafter. After all, that is his right. He will do the minimum possible to secure his free agency in 2011. As soon as he is forced to sign or lose a year, the patriots will likely trade him and tell us all how great a deal we got for a declining player, perhaps getting us an oh so valuable 2012 first. And we will seem he play for whoever and say that he wouldn't have mattered much if he had stayed with the patriots. We've been there before, and very recently at that.

    Or perhaps the patriots will do better this time and sign a new one year contract with Mankins for this season as they did with Samuel.

  7. cmasspatsfan

    cmasspatsfan In the Starting Line-Up

    He got screwed the way things played out and I think the Patriots went above and beyond by offering him a respectacle 7/35 contract, if in fact they did.
  8. capetide

    capetide Practice Squad Player

    If players feel that their contracts should be renegotiated if they "outperform" it, then they should be fine with teams demanding to negotiate for the return of monies when players "underperform" it.
  9. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Teams demand that players take pay cuts. Same thing.
  10. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    His claim seems to be that he was entitled last year, and that for foregoing that entitlement he is now entitled to something in return.
  11. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Not really, because when they give a "Take a cut or else" ultimatum, they don't whine about maltreatment if the player refuses.

    What IS the same thing is when teams complain about players not showing up at VOLUNTARY workouts.
  12. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    That's because they cut them. The decision to demand that the player take less money is the same as the player demanding more money, however.

    That's not the same at all.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2010
  13. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

    #87 Jersey

    Contracts are two way streets.
  14. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    The Patriots didn't sign a new one year contract with Samuel no matter how many times you persist in claiming they did. Samuel signed his franchise tag tender after the team reportedly verbally agreed to do something they never would have done anyway, tag him a second time...at a prohibitive cost.

    Mankins can holdout and protect himself and still secure his UFA in 2011 until week 10. The trading deadline in the NFL is in week 4-5, mid October. Maybe you're one of Logan's advisors...
  15. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

    You understand the Mankins situation as well as almost anyone. The situtation we are in could have easily been predicted by team management months ago. It is is clear (and should have been clear to all long before now) that the patriots were not going to make an offer acceptable to Mankins.

    The options open to Mankins have been clear for a long time. I don't need to be his advisor to point them out. I suggested them immediately after the season ended.

    Why wasn't Mankins traded before the draft? It would seem that he would have been worth more then than now. As you say, there is no reason for Mankins to play much this season for $1.5M per year.

    Why didn't we draft a guard just in case Mankins wasn't part of the future? Isn't this a similar situation to Wilfork last year (and the drafting of Brace)? Or is management really OK with our choices at guard? After all, it has been a long time since the team thought that guards were worth much. We have done well with wrestlers, street free agents and sheep herders.

    The patriots can try to work out a trade or not. Teh only variables are what compensation the patriots get and how many games, if any, Mankins plays for us this year.

    My suggestion is that the team negotiate a one-year deal with Mankins. What is your suggestion?

  16. eom

    eom In the Starting Line-Up

    morally entitled....?

    lolz -- is this a joke thread?
  17. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    That they simply stand their ground, which is pretty firm. Again, nobody negotiates these mythical one year deals you keep proposing, let alone with an RFA. Players who have been franchise tagged occasionally get a promise to not be tagged a second consecutive season in exchange for reporting. A couple have gotten that in writing, i.e. the one year deal. Only one I know of got more than his tag price in his one year deal. Both I can think of went on to resign with teams who in hindsight wish they hadn't...

    Mankins is the worst kind of malcontent...the closet malcontent. Says all the right things publicly and even privately while apparently internally fuming and working himself into an emotional dither from which he can't see straight only to then dig in his heels and behave irrationally and lash out emotionally once he finally achieves the opportunity he supposedly longed for to negotiate a change in the circumstances that fueled his latent discontent.

    I don't fault them for misreading this guy because of all the mixed messages he was sending. Personally I'd have hedged my bets on draft day, and I said so at the time. Vince was upset when he was franchise tagged. He calmed down once he was reassured it wasn't to be traded and was merely a formality on the road to a long term deal. I always had faith that Bianca would do the smart money thing. I think the FO did as well... Brace was brought in not as Wilfork insurance but because the FO knew that one of Wilfork or Seymour, and preferably the latter, wouldn't be here beyond 2009 at best.

    Samuel and Branch were another whole kettle of fish. Each had been jawing about their 2nd and 4th round contracts almost since the day they were drafted. When on the heels of a lackluster 2005 season he opted to train on his own heading into his contract year and expressed insult at the generous offers they made him at a time when his percieved trade value was nil - I'd have begun to fromulate a plan to trade Asante's ass at the first sign of value. That he was insulted by their matching his earlier demands at the end of that season because his demands had now increased exponentially would have just validated that strategic decision for me. Asante was never a leader and always a loner so he never projected as a team first guy. Branch should have valued the opportunity playing for TFB afforded him. But WR's seldom view themselves realistically. Each of them clearly had ego issues tied to their contractual demands. Both should have been traded pre emptively in hindsight. Branch because the specter of his ego inflating Superbowl MVP trophy hovering over growing durability concerns was going to make him impossible to sign to a realistic deal. Didn't take Seattle long to realize the mistake they'd made. Philly is rapidly approaching that realization now as well...

    You always suggest players take their ball and go home and safely await freedom. It's not generally sound advice, which is why none of them has ever taken it. There is a first time for everything, though, and this one just might because he's not the sharpest tool in the drawer... If he does and he's forced to report in week 10 to retain his year of service, he better hope Bill isn't shorthanded on ST. And he better hope there isn't a lockout in 2011 or his union doesn't decertify. Because unless there is a new CBA in place by March 2011, he is screwed no matter what he does. Which is why what he just did, let alone the way in which he did it, makes no sense unless he's as dumb as those cows he wrestles in the offseason.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2010
  18. IllegalContact

    IllegalContact Pro Bowl Player

    except that you have no clue as to the real details of what the pats offered.
  19. Synovia

    Synovia In the Starting Line-Up

    incorrect. Mankins contract stipulates that this year he is a restricted free agent. He is still bound by the contract in this way.
  20. IllegalContact

    IllegalContact Pro Bowl Player

    no, you are incorrect. mankins is currently not under contract with the pats. he is restricted by the rules of free agency in the NFL, but ther is no contract right now between mankins and the pats.
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