It can’t have escaped the most discerning fans of the NFL that there still remains one unsigned draftee of an NFL team. Now we can merely speculate as to what the problem might be concerning the San Francisco 49ers and their unsigned first round draft pick Michael Crabtree.
Courtesy of NFL.com:
NFL Network’s Jason La Canfora has confirmed a Santa Rosa Press Democrat report that 49ers president Jed York has offered to hold a face-to-face meeting with holdout Michael Crabtree.
York has yet to hear back from the rookie wide receiver or his agent, Eugene Parker.
Crabtree was the 10th overall pick in the April draft and is the only first-round selection without a contract. He caught 231 passes for 3,127 yards and 41 touchdowns in two seasons at Texas Tech.
Now don’t get me wrong, I do love a good suspense thriller . But in all honesty when it comes to suspense within sports. Then I expect to see it on the field of play during a totally riveting game.And most certainly not by way of an out of control college player who’s yet to play a down in the NFL. Crabtree from what we’ve been led to believe is at an impasse between he and the club over his compensation package. Now I know that when it comes to the first round draft picks . The premium is in the price that one signs a pick to. And while I understand that there’s an allotted slot system as to the amount paid from the first pick on down. Whatever is now taking place between and Crabtree is unwarranted.
The Niners and their hierarchy ought not to be dealing with either Crabtree or his agent Eugene Parker at this juncture. Crabtree forewent that right, the moment he started his holdout ,as to his demands for more money. At this moment in time, it becomes a complete distraction within the organization. And for 49ers’ coach, Mike Singletary , it makes his job somewhat harder. A great deal of time and effort by the coaching and scouting staff had been put into place- with regard to obtaining the player to begin with. Never-mind the fact that upon his arrival at the NFL combine he was ‘allegedly injured’ and refusing to participate in many of the prerequisite drills. If that wasn’t enough of an indicator as to his temperament, character and demeanor. Then they were certainly there for all to see, in his time with Texas Tech. A precocious talent but someone who could be easily distracted by off the field issues with regard to his personality and personal problems.
Courtesy of Yahoo Sports :
By Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports
Two days after San Francisco 49ers team president Jed York opened the door for a détente with unsigned NFL draft pick Michael Crabtree(notes), the standoff still lingers between the team and agent Eugene Parker. And as the clock ticks, the lack of sympathy from the rest of the NFL only becomes more apparent.
On the heels of York’s offer, Yahoo! Sports reached out to highly placed personnel men from seven NFL teams, polling them on whether they’d support the establishment of draft pick protection. Crabtree has become the fourth top-10 pick in the past eight years to hold out into the regular season. Cornerback Quentin Jammer signed with the San Diego Chargers after the team’s week 1 game in 2002. Offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie didn’t sign with the Minnesota Vikings until Nov. 1 that same year. And quarterback Marcus Russell missed the season opener for the Oakland Raiders in 2007. So a simple question was posed: In light of threats about Crabtree re-entering the draft in 2010, would personnel men be in favor of adopting some form of Major League Baseball’s practice, which awards an additional draft choice to franchises which failed to sign a first- or second-round pick the previous year.
The answer? A resounding no, with all seven men coming out strongly against the idea.
“We shouldn’t become a league that rewards failure,” said one NFC North executive. “Why would I want to end up with a lower pick in [a subsequent] draft because another team couldn’t sign a player? … We’ve had very, very few [holdouts] like Crabtree, and fewer times where a player actually went back into a draft.”
The last first-rounder to sit out an entire season was Kelly Stouffer, drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals (now the Arizona Cardinals) with the sixth pick in 1987. The former Colorado State quarterback had his rights traded following the season to the Seattle Seahawks, where he spent five seasons.
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Year in and year out , once the NFL Draft has taken place . It seems teams take an indeterminate period of time for them to get their picks signed and off into training camp. And with suggestions now being made by many within and outside of the NFL . That there ought to be a rookie salary cap. It does merit the argument that something like this ought to be part of any discussion between the NFLPA(Players’ Association) and the NFL. But with the upcoming collective bargaining agreement about to be a matter of contentious negotiations. Whether or not, this will become a part of any discussion between Roger Goodell and chief union executive DeMaurice Smith, remains to be seen. And one doubts that will be atop of either party’s agenda.
The inner sanctum of the NFL is so distrustful of the union and it’s also vice versa with regard to union and its feelings towards the NFL hierarchy. Certainly one would like to think that there is some common sense within this sea of uncertainty. But the way that the NFL and the union conducts their business at times does leave a lot to be desired. One would like to think that there’s room for negotiation wherein they can resolve their issues. But with both party’s not prepared to give ground at least on appearance . It’s hard to see a welcoming outcome that would befit all.
At this juncture for the San Francisco 49ers and their dealings with Crabtree and his agent. If they’ve not been able to sign the player before the start of the season . Why would they still want to sign him now with the season already underway ? It is not as if he’s of any benefit to them – having not been at all of the team’s training sessions. At the same time one has to look at what his once supposed potential teammates are thinking of this whole scenario. Is he in-fact a team player or more about himself ?
The thought was that with the acquisition of Crabtree the organization would be back on track make some sort of a showing within the AFC West division. Where the likes of the Arizona Cardinals , the reigning NFC champions alongside the Seattle Seahawks and St Louis Rams make up a division that’s often thought of as the last outpost of the NFL. Seemingly there , but not everyone is enamored with what’s taking place there.
As to the scenario now being played out between the player , his agent and the San Francisco 49ers. One can’t help but feel that this all could have been avoided had the lines of communication really been clear from the beginning. But from where I sit, the whole thing is beyond belief and remarkably stupid. Whether or not one can apportion blame on one side or the other can be determined by what has taken place so far. But for all sense and purpose this has been of the NFL’s making from the outset. It’s just that they’ve failed to take note of what has been happening with regard to NFL rookies and their never-ending demands by way of their salary needs. Somehow, somewhere and at some time in the future they’ll have to say ”….enough is enough !”
What proposals if any would you like to see concerning this matter ? And how best do you feel that it can be resolved ?