View Full Version : Something to talk about other than our QB

03-15-2001, 12:54 PM
I saw a poll on NFLscoop.com asking about what the fans thought should be done with free agency/salary caps. The choices are to keep it, get rid of of it, or restructure it. Right now about 56% of the respondents think it should be restructured. I have to say I agree. I think this thing called "parity" is destroying football as I know and love it and think we need some changes.

So for the sake of a non-QB thread, I'd like to know what y'all think of the current free agent/salary cap systems and how you would improve it. I have some pretty off-the-wall ideas, and I know they wouldn't fly, and I'm interested to see what everybody thinks about it.

03-15-2001, 01:01 PM
I'll start with my crazy ideas.

As I see it, the way signing bonus are spread out over the life of the cap, really causes a lot of problems. Not just for the Chiefs, but for all NFL teams. (I think I read where the 'Boys have something like $23 million counting against the cap for the players who are gone). A player is signed, and then turns out to be a bust, but you can't get rid of him because of the prorated signing bonus being accelerated. (I know, you shouldn't have paid him that much money in the first place, but that's another argument on another thread).

A couple of easy fixes would be to either A) get rid of signing bonuses (Yeah Right, NOT!) or B) count all the signing bonus immediately in the year the contract is signed. (Not gonna happen either and I know that)

What do you think of this idea? What if the NFL were to establish a set of performance parameters for every position in the league, and each year, each team could use what I call a "get out of jail free card." By that I mean they could target one player on their roster, and if that player didn't meet the pre-established performance parameters, the player could be cut without the hit to the salary cap.

I know it's sound crazy but this is a over simplified explanation of my idea. Besides I'm bored. :)

03-15-2001, 01:01 PM
You think parity is RUINING football? Why is it then that the NFL is strong, healthy, and RICH, while the NBA and baseball die slow deaths? Parity is not ruining football, LACK of parity is killing every big-money sport BUT football.

Because a hard salary cap, revenue sharing, and structured free agency are required in this day and age of big sports BUSINESS.

Without the collective bargaining agreement that is currently in place, the Broncos and Packers wouldn't have won Super Bowls, teams like St. Louis wouldn't have made enough money to survive (there's a reason the Cards went to Arizone), and we'd be forced to watch the big money teams like the 49'ers win year after year after year.

Is that really what you want? A football version of the New York Yankees?

03-15-2001, 01:04 PM
The second idea I had would be to discount a percentage of a contract against the salary cap when you resign your own unrestricted free agent as opposed to taking one from another team.

The idea behind this is to make it more palatable to sign one of your own guys rather than take one from another team. One of the things that I HATE about FA is the constant revolving door of players between teams.

OK, that's it for now. Have fun telling me I'm nuts. :)

03-15-2001, 01:08 PM
I'm talking strictly from fans viewpoint and not necessarily from a business viewpoint Parker. I think you are taking my comments to the other extreme, of course I don't want that either, I'm not for a moment suggesting to get rid of the salary caps, just tweak the process a little bit.

Mark M
03-15-2001, 01:09 PM
It needs to be re-structured. Teams need to not get screwed by having to keep and/or pay for players they no longer need/want (i.e. Chester, Dan Williams, et al).

The salary cap hit for accelerated signing bonuses needs to be re-done so teams can pay just a percentage of it rather than the whole thing.

And sign and trade deals (kinda like the NBA) need to be able to be done.

Also, there should be something similar to the Larry Bird exception: a player who has been with a team for a number of years is exempt from the cap. Aikman, Favre, Shields, Tim Brown, etc. could then be paid well without screwing the team's cap. Being rewarded for loyalty, as it were.

I could go on and on ... but I won't.

~~Wishes he could sit in on the owner's meetings.

03-15-2001, 01:13 PM
I really like that last idea, it's similar to my second proposal. At least it accomplishes the same things, rewards loyalty.

03-15-2001, 01:17 PM
I know what you're saying about the fan's point of view, unfortunately it's just not that simple. It IS a business and you can't get rid of that aspect.

To do things like both of you suggest (loyalty clauses, etc.) destroys the business "essence" of the collective bargaining agreement. Unfortunately, it just CAN'T happen. The NFL is one of the few THRIVING pro sports out there, and the only big money sport that is thriving. They won't change. Not only that, but if the NBA and MLB want to at least survive, if not make more money, they'll adopt the NFL's method of business.

03-15-2001, 01:23 PM
To answer from purely the fan perspective as you asked though, I'll say this:

Teams need to not get screwed by having to keep and/or pay for players they no longer need/want

Sorry, but I believe people should be held accountable. You signed some lazy fatass to a 6 year deal based on 1 PB season? Deal with it.

And sign and trade deals (kinda like the NBA) need to be able to be done.

Absolutely NOT. The NBA is dying and fast. The NFL should totally avoid doing anything that even resembles the NBA.

a player who has been with a team for a number of years is exempt from the cap.

No way. We'd be right back with one or two teams winning it all every year.

I like parity. I like the idea that ANY team can compete on ANY Sunday, and possibly win it all ANY year.

03-15-2001, 01:28 PM
For the purposes of this thread, we can seperate them, because this is all fantasy anyway. No matter what we all say here, no matter how brilliant, or how stupid, it's not going to affect the NFL one way or another. I'm just looking for people's ideas of how they would tweak things.

03-15-2001, 01:34 PM
Well, as an avid fantasy football player and someone who plays alot of football sims and Madden franchises, I would say this:

I love the salary cap. Makes it a challenge. Makes everyone a contender at some point in time.

As a fan, I wouldn't change anything.

03-15-2001, 01:34 PM
We need parity in football or any other sports for that matter. It's the compition that accelerates the fans at the gate.Dominate teams,(big $$$ teams) makes it hard to play at the same level,ref....ROYALS .

The Players are the one that is making it hard on the teams. I'm worth this,I'm worth what he has...etc. It's killing all Pro Sports. It's a Job now that you can make big $$$ in,not like the old days where you played for the joy of the game. This is why loyalty is a faint subject in Pro Sports.

IMHO.....The league needs to set a maximun dollar amount for each player...PERIOD. Doesn't matter who you are or what position...When a player has maxed out...he can't get more! You still have a cap limit on teams.

This would allow the teams to be more competitive and easier to work their cap problems.

Bottom line is it's the Players in Pro-Sports that are ruining the Games !

[Edited by ROYC75 on 03-15-2001 at 01:43 PM]

03-15-2001, 01:37 PM
I think it is only killing football if you are a team currently facing cap problems. Meanwhile it's thriving for people who are in good shape. And in a year or so when we are back in good shape, we'll be loving it again.

Frankly I think the problem is that the cap is so new, that these guys are still figuring out the neuances of it and how to use it correctly. Contracts have to be structured better on both sides. Owners have to be more responsible. Players have to be willing to accept a little less in order to stick it out longer instead of signing contracts full of phantom money. I think this thing will get better as it matures.

I do feel it may be appropriate to have some kind of a veteran exemption where if you want to resign a guy like Aikman or Smith or Rice, a portion of their slary should not count as high aganst the cap, thus enabling them to stick it out with their teams instead of being cut due to a hard cap number...

03-15-2001, 01:38 PM
The single best item to consider is to outlaw the signing bonus. This will enable teams to cut loafers and would greatly simply the salary equations.

03-15-2001, 01:43 PM

I'm thinking I should have started a thread titled "Parity: Good or Bad." LOL

Apparently I misread the mood of this board, I thought most of us didn't like parity. My bad.

(Personally when I see the two Super Bowl teams being QB'd by the likes of Collins and Dilfer, I think something is BAD wrong, but that's just me.)

Mark M
03-15-2001, 02:33 PM
Don't misunderstand me here. I think parity is a beautiful thing. The reason I hate teams like the Cowboys and the 49ers is because they always won and, for me, it got old. I also hate the NBA, but think that they have some intruiging rules.

The Larry Bird exception is one of them, but I think it is too easy to use in the NBA. To clarify my thoughts on this: The NFL should have something called the Matthews rule (in honor of the Oilers/Titans OL) that is set up like this: If a player stays with a team for more than 8 to 10 years, then they have a cap exception of a certain percentage of their salary, with a limit on how much the salary can be (to avoid ridiculous contracts like baseball has ... just look at what A-Rod got in TX). Example: Troy Aikman. As much as I hate the Cowboys, he should be able to retire as a Cowboy. He is the main reason they turned the franchise around. If he was cut for cap reasons only, then I find that kind of sad. He should always be a Cowboy.

When one considers that the average NFL player's career is only around 7-9 years, I think you should reward a player for staying with that team their entire career. I also don't think that it would be used as much as people think. Since most players have an "out" clause in their contracts, or are only signed for 4-5 years, the chances of them becoming a FA are great. Also, some players just don't want to stay in certain cities, so they will leave.

As far as the rest of my proposals go, well ... they were just ideas. This is the only one I feel strongly about.

I also agree with ROYC ... there should be a limit on player's salaries. The problem is that the owners make so much damn money off of them, they deserve a piece of the pie.

Again, these are just my opinions ...

~~Just throwing out ideas.

03-15-2001, 03:20 PM

Good point to as the owners making so much money...The league needs to put a cap on the profit too! Any team making over that amount should donate the rest of the money to charity!

Money $$$$$$ "the root of all that is evil".

Players want more and more all the time,will always be that way unless something is done to preserve the integrity of the game!

[Edited by ROYC75 on 03-15-2001 at 03:23 PM]

03-15-2001, 03:51 PM
Well this thread a different direction than what I thought but that's okay. Clearly I'm in the minority of the posters thus far, I don't think parity is a good thing. To me, when it gets to the point where all the teams are equal, it's going to come down to pure luck, and when you win, what have you really won?

I do think the FA/salary cap system is flawed. It doesn't need to be thrown out. I wouldn't for a moment propose that the NFL do things like MLB, but when it gets to a point where you have to keep a non-peformer on the roster, but yet have to cut one of your solid performers all for salary cap reasons, something is wrong.

03-15-2001, 05:57 PM
My first suggested improvement would be that if two teams wanted to make a trade, the other team could inherit the liability for the remaining portion of the signing bonus.

The second improvement would be that a team was allowed one exempt release where only the single upcoming year signing bonus must be a hit against the cap (remaining years for that one exempt drop would not count).

Third I would like to see an exemption that only half of the signing bonus for a player retained would by the original team would count against the cap, but only 3 players per season could be used under that exemption (those players would have come from a pool of 5 key players to be named at the end of the season by the team. If a player on that list of 5 is named Franchise player the exemption could not be used on them and the team could only use the exemption on two players not three.

Not a complete fix, but what I believe would be three steps to make the Salary Cap more equitable for both players and management.