After weeks of baffled curiosity, Saints fans now have one tiny bit of insight into that age-old question, “what the heck is the holdup on the Brees contract?”
It seems there was an arbitration going down over the NFLPA rules regarding franchise tax salaries. The question was whether the franchise tag slapped onto Brees by the Chargers meant that the Saints’ tagging him next year too, would result in a $23.5 million salary on his “third” tag, or a $19.4ish salary on his “second.” We can imagine now that negotiations were going about like this:
Tom Condon (Brees agent): “You may as well give us $20 million a year cause you’d have to give $23.5 next year.”
Mickey Loomis (Saints GM): “Nuh-uh.”
So, now that that’s over, we’re hoping for something this week. The Saints have upped their offer to $19.5 already. Here’s hoping the next million or so (which would be half of our cap space), is offered soon and is enough.
Brees also did a spot on Letterman discussing concussions, bountygate, etc. In the interview he reiterated the position of players and their lawyers that the NFL has failed to provide any credible evidence (read: your case would not hold up in court, which I said months ago) that a pay-to-injure – as opposed to a pay-for-performance – system was in place. The NFL has been relying on evidence consisting of tapes of players talking where you can’t see their heads, or ledgers the NFL actually created from “composites” of other stuff they found.
In rejecting the players’ appeals, Goodell made a point to say that he welcomed the players presenting any evidence that proved no such system was in place. Well, there’s another judicial fail for Mr. Goodell: the prosecution has to carry the burden of proof first, before the defense is burdened to counter it. How can the players give you evidence refuting yours if your evidence doesn’t say prove a pay-to-injure in the first place? We’d just be giving you your evidence right back. So, the players are off to court, and I desperately hope that the court will hear their claims in an expedited fashion, and that the trials will occur in New Orleans courts…