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The Bad Guy
07-29-2001, 10:37 PM
http://www.kcstar.com/item/pages/chiefs98.pat,sports/3accdb58.729,.html

Crockett brings skills and wisdom to Chiefs secondary

By IVAN CARTER - The Kansas City Star
Date: 07/29/01 22:15

RIVER FALLS, Wis. -- The uniform is different and the teammates are new but everything else is pretty much the same for Ray Crockett as he goes through his 13th NFL training camp -- and first with the Chiefs -- this week.

For five seasons with the Lions and seven with the Broncos, Crockett established himself as a solid, if unspectacular, corner who lined up every Sunday and played his position with skill and savvy.

Crockett has also been willing to lend an ear and offer words of advice to younger, less experienced teammates, and that is exactly what the Chiefs were looking for when they signed him to replace James Hasty in April.

With 157 career starts, Crockett, 34, is by far the most experienced member of the Kansas City secondary. Having played in defensive coordinator Greg Robinson's system for several years with the Broncos, Crockett is in the perfect position to share his knowledge with younger corners Eric Warfield, Pat Dennis and William Bartee.

"My role really is to help on the field," said Crockett, who has 33 career interceptions. "You have off-the-field coaches but coaches don't play the game. They're going to help you with schemes and technique but when it really hits the fan, when the lights come on, they're not in the huddle. That's when maybe I can point something out or they can ask me a question.

"I look at it like I've been in this system, I know this defense in and out and my job is not only to play but to help these guys learn. The quicker we can get this system together, the better we're going to be."

Crockett opened camp at Hasty's old left corner position opposite Warfield, who has four career starts and is being given every opportunity to become a full-time starter this season. Backing them up are sophomores Dennis, who started 13 games last season and Bartee, who started three games last season.

With a lack of game experience surrounding him and a new system for his teammates to learn, Crockett has taken it upon himself to speed up the developmental process.

Following the Saturday evening practice, Crockett stepped off the field with Dennis and third-year corner Corey Harris in tow and headed straight for a blocking sled.

As the old-school veteran and two young guys worked on their bump-and-run skills -- skills that will be needed in Robinson's man-to-man schemes -- recently signed wide receiver Derrick Mayes smiled and nodded his head.

Having lined up across from Crockett several times in his career, Mayes is well aware of his new teammate's abilities.

"He's going to help these young guys every step of the way," Mayes said. "I mean, if he's out here hitting the bags after practice when it's hot and he's tired and he's already proven that he can play, what are these young guys going to do? Ray Crockett is a guy who is going to make you work. In that way, he's like a James Hasty, because you know as a receiver that you're going to have to plan for him when game day comes. His peers respect him for that."

Such respect meant little during the off-season when Denver coach Mike Shanahan made wholesale defensive changes by firing Robinson, not re-signing Crockett or cornerback Terrell Buckley and releasing defensive linemen Keith Traylor and linebacker Glenn Cadrez, who also signed with the Chiefs.

For Crockett, the season was frustrating not only because his defense ranked last in the NFL against the pass but also because he was forced to miss five starts because of a torn hamstring. The injury snapped Crockett's string of 50 consecutive starts and contributed to his eventual departure from Denver.

When Robinson came to Kansas City, he was more than happy to see one of his former players join him. And if starting the season with a 34-year-old corner has him nervous, Robinson isn't showing it.

"I believe in Ray, I trust him," Robinson said. "This guy has played a lot of good football over the years and I know he can still play. It's good that he's in an environment here where people appreciate what he's doing. I don't worry one bit about him."

For his part, Crockett is simply eager to get ready for another season and can't wait to get his first look at Arrowhead Stadium from the home team's perspective.

"I'm going to be honest, since about my third year in the league, Arrowhead has been my favorite place to play, because if you can't get up here, you've got a problem," Crockett said. "That's just the bottom line. When you walk into that sea of red, it doesn't matter if you're playing with them or playing against them. Actually, I've had my son practicing that `Home of the Chiefs' so he is looking forward to it as well."


To reach Ivan Carter, Chiefs reporter for The Star, call (816) 234-4744 or send e-mail to icarter@kcstar.com


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All content 2001 The Kansas City Star

dtebbe
07-29-2001, 11:31 PM
I never really seemed to hear the real reason Hasty left? or was let go. I know he had been talking about retirement for sometime, but I never heard that he had retired. He sure seemed pretty solid last year, especially compared to Warfield and Dennis. I have been watching for him to pop up somewhere, and unless I missed it he has not. I like Crockett, he is not afraid to hit, and along with Wesley should make for some good snot knocking down the middle.

DT

Chiefs Pantalones
07-30-2001, 12:12 AM
Good article, and I like the Crockett signing as well, mainly because he knows the system and will teach the younger players as it says in the article.

CG

8-12-01...The New Kansas City Chiefs...I can't wait to see that game, and I can't wait to see Blaylock either, I think that kid is going to be something else in the future.

keg in kc
07-30-2001, 12:18 AM
I never really seemed to hear the real reason Hasty left?

Salary.

He was due to be paid 6.5 million dollars in 2001, and we just couldn't afford it. He wasn't willing to restructure. It's that simple. We saved about 4.5 by cutting him, and even with that we're still only a few thousand under that cap.

Chiefs Pantalones
07-30-2001, 12:26 AM
Kyle,

I thought they let him go because he was a cancer, too? Didn't he always try to get more money, by threatening to retire?

Saggysack
07-30-2001, 12:37 AM
Physically I would have rather have Hasty as CB but mentally Crockett is the better player. Hasty had become a BIG "me, me, me" player. Hasty knew KC could not afford to pay him the money he was supposed to recieve so he forced his own release. What I don't think he was anticipating was the lack of desire for teams to p/u a corner with 1 to 2 years left. Hasty could be getting paid what Crockett is right now but it was his stubborness about what he wouldn't be recieveing that got him to this point. Crockett on the other hand was and had to accept change, while Hasty only accepts/wants pocket change. Crockett may not be as talented physically and has lost a few steps but he is still better in my eyes than Hasty, esp. with the younger players

Chiefs Pantalones
07-30-2001, 12:42 AM
Well put, Cooter.

I think Hasty being released was for the best for these young CBs, the D, and the team.

keg in kc
07-30-2001, 12:47 AM
I think that's a fair statement to make Cody, but some people will argue that, which is why I generally just say "salary". There's no real dispute anyone can make about that answer. I think there's little question that Hasty would be here if he would have been willing to accept the same sort of salary stipulations that Crockett signed for, but he wasn't willing to negotiate down from 6.5 million, which is nearly as much money as Aeneas Williams (a better CB IMHO) is making in the next 2 years combined for St. Louis.

He may or may not have been a locker room cancer. I think he was, but other people think he wasn't or think his play on the field offset whatever effect that may have had - I dispute that loudly, as well. Either way, in the end, I don't think anyone can make an argument that the Chiefs were in a position to pay any player the sort of money James was due. The two highest-paid players on the team right now are Trent Green and Will Shields - Green's making less than half of Hasty's number, and Shields is making less than a third.

And, again, even without him we're still just barely under the cap.

As for the retirement question, he's been talking about it for a couple of years, so I'm not surprised to see it happen. No team has shown any interest in him, either, to my knowledge, which may mean that he's either really not interested in playing or he's asking for a ridiculous amount of cash. Out of respect for an ex-Chief, I'll lean toward the "not interested in playing" side of things...

Saggysack
07-30-2001, 01:53 AM
D.Williams has a substantial cap hit(I think 4mill this year), D.Alexander and D.Edwards as well, T.Gonzales isn't too bad off himself while making $1,342,500 last year, Marvcus Patton and V.Riley were both over a 1mill cap hit each last year. John Tait's hit is more this year. D.Clemons this past off season recieved a 6yr contract, that hit will gradually increase in coming years. Jerome Woods has to be making more than 1mill a year also. T.Green's hit from what I understand is 1.0 or 1.5 mill this year, St.Louis has a 500,000 cap hit from Green too. KC has alot of players that make extreme large sums of money. Shields deal from what I hear is cap friendly for the 1st 2years.

Chiefs Pantalones
07-30-2001, 01:55 AM
I see what you're talking about, Kyle.

I just can't wait until the season starts!!! I'm pumped! I just hope some fans will accept these New Chiefs. It was for the best(the change). I hope some of the veteran fans will accept this offense (because you know they hate it:D ). They'd rather see the old Chiefs, because they hate all the shifting, etc. They'd rather see the Chiefs run, run, run. (BTW Kyle, I was watching the local sports, and they were showing some clips from practice today, and they showed Gonzo lined up at H-back, but they cut the tape off there-just an example of how much shifting, formations, etc, that is going on). I hope that some of our good ole Chiefs fans (the ones that are against the change) will think of, "sometimes the last thing you want, is the one thing that you need."

CG

night Kyle, etc.

Saggysack
07-30-2001, 02:13 AM
I remember Gonzo last year during T.Camp lining up in the backfield as well, I think every coaching staff would try it.

keg in kc
07-30-2001, 02:54 AM
Cooter, your numbers are a bit off if the information I have is accurate:

Green is making $2.4 million in base salary which all falls upon us (we'll owe him $3.9 in salary and bonuses in 2002) and Shields signed a 6 year deal worth $26 million, including a $7 million signing bonus, which means he is making about 1.7 million this season, that including base salary and bonus.

Concerning Gonzo or Donnie Edwards, I don't have access to their bonus numbers, but I do know their base salary numbers, which are $620K and $500K respectively. I doubt seriously either player is making much more than a million in bonuses, but again, I don't know that for a fact. The Chiefs are very closed-mouth about contract numbers and I only know for certain contracts that were signed this offseason (except for Edwards' - I never found any numbers for his extension/restructure).

Marvcus Patton is due exactly 1 million in base salary, but has a smaller bonus number (@ 500K I believe).

Victor Riley is due $527.5K in base salary. Bonus numbers unknown, probably less than $1 million.

Dan Williams is a complete mystery, because he restructured yet again (he does it every year). He's making $500K in base salary but his bonus numbers are anyone's guess. I suppose it's possible he's getting $3.5 million in bonuses...

John Tait is due $389K is base salary. Like the aforementioned folks, I doubt his bonus is much over 1 mil.

Duane Clemons is due exactly $1 million, including base salary and bunuses. His contract is 6 years for $33.875 million, but only includes a $3 million signing bonus

Woods is due $500K in base salary. Bonus numbers unknown. Probably not much over 1 mil.

We really don't have any players making a lot of money: no player on the entire roster making over $1 million in base salary in 2001 with the exception of Trent Green and Tony Richardson. See it for yourself: do a search for the Kansas City Chiefs on the NFL Players Association website (http://nflpa.org/members/main.asp?subPage=Active+Player+Search).

We also are fortunate to have a younger roster, so the bonus numbers are generally pretty low.

The reason for all this is the $19 million in dead cap money we're dishing out to several players, most notably and most recent being Elvis Grbac, James Hasty and Chester the digester. We were quiet in the free agent market because we literally had no money to spend, so we got cheap veterans signed at the minimum with small bonuses.

Saggysack
07-30-2001, 04:04 AM
this is a link for 2000 salaries and bonuses


http://www.theredzone.org/salaries/chiefs.htm

I do not have the exact figures upon who is making what this year but I do know someone that does, I will post when I recieve them from him

Saggysack
07-30-2001, 05:10 AM
Rams | Playing the Waiting Game - from the KFFL (nfl.kffl.com)
March 10, 2001 23:14:12 ET Jim Thomas reports for the Post Dispatch the St. Louis Rams are playing the waiting game with the Chiefs, who are the only team to discuss a trade for QB Trent Green. The Rams know they don't have to trade Green and they also know the QB market gets smaller every day. The Chiefs are planning to meet with QB Troy Aikman before they make a QB decision. The Chiefs are aware that Green will come for $500,000 less after March 15, when the Rams must pay him a $500,000 bonus if he's on their roster. It can also be a double edged sword because the Rams have even less incentive to trade Green after they pay him his bonus. The cap savings by trading Green after they pay him his bonus would drop to about $1.4 million from about $1.9 million. It's all expected to play out soon for Green, the Rams and the Chiefs.

keg in kc
07-30-2001, 06:17 AM
Cooter, you're not getting the fact that the cap savings for the Rams and the cost for the Chiefs are not the same number. I'll explain it as best as I can:

1) Trent Green's entire contract with the Rams (this is from 1999) was a 4-year, $16.5 million deal.

2) Following the trade, the remaining amount of signing bonus owed to Green by the Rams was accelerated against their cap. Saying the Rams "saved" 1.4 million means that the entire amount of his remaining signing bonus is 1.4 million less than his 2001 cap number would have been for them were he on the squad
(base salary + signing bonus).

3) Following the trade, Kansas City is responsible for paying Trent Green's base salary, but not any of his signing bonus - remember the Rams paid that.

Trent's base salary in 2001 is $2.4 million (http://nflpa.org/members/playerProfile.asp?ID=19967), and that number is his cap number for Kansas City.

Furthermore, his cap number for us in 2002 will be $3.9 million, that's his $2.9 million base salary plus a $1 million roster bonus (not a signing bonus, so the Rams weren't responsible for paying it).

Anyway, again, it shapes out like this in the end:

The Rams have to pay the entire remaining signing bonus money, but aren't responsible for his salary. Now that he's a Chief, we pay him his salary, but aren't responsible for any of his signing bonus.

keg in kc
07-30-2001, 06:35 AM
Maybe Len Pasquerelli will make more sense that my last post:

(This is from March 11th, but the original article is no longer on CBS Sportsline, or at least I can't find it - remember that Len has moved from CBS to ESPN...)

Acquiring Green in a trade, while carrying a potentially lofty price tag in terms of draft choices, would certainly be a cap-friendly move. Base salaries for the final two seasons of the four-year, $16 million contract he signed with St. Louis in 1999 are $2.4 million for 2001 and $2.9 million in 2002. There is a $1 million roster bonus in '02, as well.

Also muddying the trade talks is a $500,000 roster bonus due Green on Thursday. If the Chiefs were to acquire Green before Thursday, they would be responsible for that bonus. If Green is still on the St. Louis roster at that time, the Rams must assume the bonus on their salary cap.

Here's a link, although it's not to the original article, but to a copy of it: http://lists.rollanet.org/pipermail/rampage/Week-of-Mon-20010305/000438.html

Saggysack
07-31-2001, 02:20 AM
You are probaly right keg, I am extremely cap illiterate. I was under the impression that Green had a base salary of either 1.9 or 2.4mill this yr, St.Louis did pay the 500,000 roster bonus to Trent so I am sure that is counted against the Rams cap and not the Chiefs.