You can't keep both of them going forward. Cro is making around 10 mil this season and next. Then you're going to give Revis 16 mil a year? It's just not going to work. You people are living in fantasy land if you think we should commit that much cap to just that position. nyjetscap.com has a couple of articles that explain the situation pretty well. I'll post them in a second.
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http://nyjetscap.com/2013_Articles/positionalvalue.htmlPositional Values in the NFL
Positional Value. That’s really the crux of what we are talking about when we are talking about Darrelle Revis. It’s not about the Jets not having the money to pay Revis. It’s not about Woody Johnson feeling slighted that his star corner constantly is making a push to earn more money. It’s not about the Jets not being able to fit Darrelle Revis under their current salary cap structure. It’s about positional value.
I’m not going to delve deep into statistical analysis or anything else, I’m just going to talk in generalities about the game and the way it has been reflected in salaries at the positions. I think we can all agree that the NFL is now a passing league, something very different than what it was 8 or 9 years ago. There is only one player that touches the ball on every offensive snap and that is the QB. QB’s are the primary ballholder on about 60% of the snaps and are responsible for nearly 70% of all yardage. They are irreplaceable on the field and thus get paid the most money. As you cycle through everything kind of builds off that point. The Left Tackle is expected to keep the player upright and in general is paid more than an average starting Wide Receiver. The WR catches the ball from the QB and would logically get paid a lot of money. Running backs generate the next level of yards and then they are followed by Right Tackles, Centers, and Guards, who are all closely paid.
Defense kind of builds on that point as well. The 43 Defensive End and 34 Outside Linebacker earn the most money. Why? Like a QB they can factor in every play. They pressure the primary offense generator in the QB. They also are expected to contain the running game. Cornerbacks would rank next because they stop the wideouts. You can follow that with the interior defenders who are expected to stop the run and potentially pressure the QB, albeit to a far lesser extent than the outside rushers. You then have your safeties and the 43 OLBs and 34 DE’s that are seen more as pieces than difference makers.
In general almost every team follows the model when it comes to positional spend. The only strange one is Right Tackle where basically nobody is paid to be a Right Tackle (the top 10 is only around $6 million per year and the average starter makes less than $3 million a year and that includes two players originally paid to play the left side) even though at this point they are nearly as important as a Left Tackle due to the numerous shifts defenses use with their pass rushers. But again that has been the market that the league has determined. In Revis’ case he fits into a grouping where the highest paid player makes $12 million a year (Nnamdi Asomugha) and the 10th highest paid player, who I think is Dunta Robinson, makes 9.5 million. So it’s a narrow spread. Drew Brees makes $20 million a year while Mark Sanchez makes just under $13.75. Mario Williams makes $16 million while Tamba Hali makes $11.5 million. Yes there is a premium to be paid for great talent, but the question becomes how much.
There are a handful of players that come to mind that were able to “break the system”. Those players on offense were Larry Fitzgerald, Calvin Johnson, Chris Johnson, and Adrian Peterson, where I think its an easier sell because you produce yards. Defensively the only player that would be close is Calais Campbell who plays 34 Defensive End and makes a great living doing so. N’damukong Suh also fits the bill at DT, but his salary was based on draft status rather than positional value, so he is someone we won’t really count. Campbell earned his money as a pass rusher who just happens to play in a 34 set and really fits the normal salary allocations when you consider his pay is based on a scale given to the pass rushers.
It should be noted that Calvin Johnson and Peterson were follow the leader deals in that the high market was set before they signed their contracts so the real groundbreakers were Fitzgerald and Chris Johnson. The only real defensive player in recent memory to break the system was Nnamdi Asomugha when he played with the Oakland Raiders, who probably have the worst cap management in the history of the NFL. As soon as the Asomugha contract ended he immediately was recycled back into the normal ranges when he signed with the Eagles in 2011.
As always I may have a few numbers off here and there in my own player database I keep, but in general here is the difference in spending between the number 1 and number 5 player at each position, keeping in mind that we are using the position at the time of signing not where they play now (i.e Jerod Mayo is an ILB not a 43 OLB, Dave Diehl not a RT, Richard Seymour a DE not a DT, etc…). I don’t think errors in my record keeping will make a large material difference, but if you notice something feel free to email me about it. The average increase was 35.6%.
Position High Salary 5th Highest Salary Percent Increase
WR $16,207,143 $9,700,000 67.1%
RB $14,213,333 $8,619,500 64.9%
34DE $11,000,000 $7,100,000 54.9%
DT $12,227,000 $8,009,000 52.8%
43OLB $8,120,000 $5,716,250 42.1%
S $9,886,667 $7,000,000 41.2%
C $8,186,000 $6,000,000 36.4%
G $9,500,000 $7,200,000 31.9%
43DE/34OLB $16,000,000 $12,666,667 26.3%
QB $20,000,000 $16,000,000 25.0%
TE $9,000,000 $7,235,000 24.4%
CB $12,000,000 $10,000,000 20.0%
RT $6,510,625 $5,500,000 18.4%
LT $11,500,000 $9,762,500 17.8%
ILB $10,000,000 $9,000,000 11.1%
Revis is certainly looking to be a trendsetter at the position and hit those Fitzgerald and Chris Johnson ranges. In fairness to Revis if he wants to sell himself as a difference maker there are those 4 deals to point to. I don’t think the Campbell deal holds any relevance because if he was in a different base defense the pay would be somewhere like 10th or 11th at the position if he continued to be a rusher and 2nd or 3rd if they moved him inside. If I were advising Revis I would change my public message to discuss those contracts rather than the Mario Williams one because it is not a battle he can win, IMO, because like a WR and a RB a guy who sacks the QB makes noticeable contributions that a corner can not match unless he picks off 8 passes of which 4 or 5 go for scores. The PR move is look at Fitzgerald and Calvin Johnson and state that if teams are paying WR’s this much its only logical that a corner get paid the same to hold him in check.
From the Jets point of view a few things need to be noted. The constant in many of these cases is that the teams stink. The Cardinals are a bad football team and for all of that salary Fitzgerald gave them 798 yards because the QB situation is so bad. Calvin Johnson put up incredible numbers on a team that won 4 games and was force fed the ball to put up those statistics. The Lions won 4 games this year. Chris Johnson was in danger of being cut last season and will likely be cut sometime next week from a 6 win Titans team. The Raiders were a complete joke when Asomugha took up all that cap room. The lone exception is Peterson who deserves the MVP this year and carried a bad Vikings team into the playoffs. Peterson, in my analysis, contributed over 350 yards of offense over an average player. Would Revis do the same?
Based on Revis’ asking price of $16 million a year he is looking to be paid at a rate that is 60% higher than the 5th highest player at the position. That is asking to “break the system” like Fitzgerald and Johnson were able to do. Complicating matters is that Revis is supposedly asking for $60 million in guarantees. While guarantees do not necessarily mean anything that number puts him in a different stratosphere than anyone else. Fitzgerald received $20 million in full guarantees and $45 million in virtual guarantees. Chris Johnson only received $13 million in full guarantees and maybe $21 million in virtual guarantees. Peterson had a full guarantee of about $24 million and a virtual guarantee around $37 million. Calvin Johnson received the best deal with $48.75 fully guaranteed upon signing.
If Revis is looking for $60 million in full guarantees or even virtual guarantees, which to me are skill guarantees, it is completely out of whack with what anyone received. If you go back to 2010 when Revis was in a bitter holdout with the Jets and there were plenty of stories written about the bad deals signed by other players on the Jets, even though they were signing deals in line with what other teams were doing, I can give you 3 guesses as to who was leaking the stories on those deals. At one point Revis’ business manager took to Twitter to compare a certain players agent to Master P, who, for anyone who follows the business side of the NFL, was the biggest joke of an agent of all time. So when I hear $60 million I have to think $60 million firm, not injury only or of the rolling variety.
So that is really the story we have with Revis. The average markup for greatest at the spot would be $13.56 million with about $33.9 million guaranteed. Putting him in the reasonable range would be a contract around $14.5 million with $36 million guaranteed. Remember that this would not include the current year at $6 million so the real numbers would be 6 years $73.8-$78 million. Revis likely wants 6 years for 96 million and $60 million in firm guarantees. It completely blows up the positional value and “breaks the system”. That’s the real story that we should all be considering. Not the fact that he is home grown and we love to have his jersey on gameday. If he is worth “breaking the system” we should join the ranks of the Cardinals, Titans, Vikings, and Raiders. If not we shouldn’t hold it against him for trying to get it from another team nor against the Jets for not giving it to him. That’s the decision that the Jets are facing. Completely disregard the rest of the league and go all in or make the tough decision to let a Hall of Fame talent go away in his prime and get whatever you can back from another club. It will be an interesting month to say the least….
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http://nyjetscap.com/2013_Articles/r...tie-trade.htmlRevis vs Cromartie: A Trade Discussion...
Of the feedback I have gotten from last nights post on Revis the most common question coming out of Twitter is why Revis and not Cromartie. I think that’s a very fair and very valid question so I’d like to examine both sides of the issue here. I do think that with the Jets cap situation and the fact that last season the Jets pass defense was as good as it had ever been most would agree that Revis and Cromartie is a luxury that the team no longer can afford. Both, in my mind, clearly have trade value, so I think it’s a healthy argument to have on the subject.
I just wanted to get this out of the way right up front. Assuming that Revis is completely healthy there is no comparison between the two and I say that as someone who is a huge Cromartie fan. Cromartie is a Pro Bowl player who deserved to go at least twice in the last three years before finally getting the nod this past season. Revis is a first ballot Hall of Famer. Revis is something completely special when he is healthy. If Revis told the Jets that he would be willing to sign for $11-12 million a season for the next 5 years with over half of the deal guaranteed and no holdout clauses you would sign up in a heartbeat even taking into account the actual value of a corner to the overall team performance. But I don’t think that is an option. His camp has made it clear for two years that he wants $16 million a year and you know if he doesn’t get it that and agrees to a market deal that two years from now we are right back in the same place with the threats of holdouts and all the drama associated with it. But talentwise he is a superior player.
There are three angles we need to look at here. The first is the short term finances associated with both moves from a cap perspective. Both players have roster bonuses coming their way this season so the decision has to come quickly for both players. Cromartie’s bonus is due the 3rd day of free agency and Revis’ the fifth, so all assumptions are based on trades before the due date. If we look at the short term it’s a no brainer who goes. Trading Cromartie saves the Jets $8.25 million in cap space in 2013 while trading Revis results in a $3 million dollar cap loss for the Jets. Even from a PR perspective when certain reporters trample the dead money allocations one is $2.5 million while the other is $12 million. One looks genius while one makes the cap management look incompetent. Trade Cromartie now, get that money in here and earmark it to improve the team.
The mid range perspective is our two year cap window. In Revis case we take a $3 million dollar net loss in 2013, but assuming he is not re-signed in 2014 we avoid the $9 million in dead money we would have on the books in 2014. That’s $18 million in cap allocations that goes to Revis if he stays and only $12 million if he goes. That’s a net $6 million gain over the two year window. In the same scenario Cromartie saves you the $8.25 million in 2013 and $1.25 million of dead money in 2014 so the net gain in his case is $9.5 million. Again that’s a benefit to trading Cromartie but the gap narrows considerably.
The long term plan is where I want to look at my options of the position itself. Above we are talking about moving on from the players but I am not taking into account the fact that there is a longer term cost associated with one staying. Cromartie is set to count for $10.75 million against the cap in 2014 in what would be the final year of his contract. If you were to trade Revis you would extend Cromartie. Now Cromartie will likely not be as cheap as he was on his last contract where he was paid as a low level number 1 or high level number 2. I’d imagine you are looking at close to $10 million a season. Realistically, if extended in 2014, that probably means cap numbers around $8 million in 2014, $9 million in 2015, $11 million in 2016, and maybe $11.4 million in 2017 if he was to get that far. Beyond that it’s the dead money costs which would be between $2.5 and $5 million.
On the other hand if you trade Cromartie you have made the decision to go all in on Revis, which for the sake of argument, lets say means you go towards Julius Peppers money at $14 million a year. At that point your cap numbers are more of the magnitude of $10 million in 2014, $12 million in 2015, $14 million in 2016, and $15 million in 2017. Revis also has existing prorations on his deal that would complicate those numbers because you would add $3 million a year to the 14-16 numbers or you would significantly increase his dead money in 2018 compared to Cromarties. So the cost is probably going to be, on average, around $5 million more a year over the 2014-2017 seasons. That is pretty significant.
I think both players trade value is impacted by the fact that both would likely get a new contract if traded. This isn’t a one year on the cheap rental like the Jets could have had with Cromartie back in 2010. This is a team that is going to invest either $50 or $70 million in a cornerback that is either 29 or 28 years old at the time of signing. Both also have certain issues that impact their value. In Revis’ case it’s a knee reconstruction and he has missed 17 games in the last three years. I think there are concerns with how well Cromartie fits in with other teams. He can be very outspoken, apparently both on and off the record. On top of that I do think there is more of a concern with his style of play which is based highly on athleticism holding up the way most elite corners games hold up when they make the turn past 30. I'd also note that the short window to trade Cromartie could be much more difficult than the short window to trade Revis simply because of the reputations of the players. Teams will always bite when you dangle an elite player, but not some much on a very good one, especially one owed a $2.3 million dollar bonus almost as soon as you make the trade.
My feeling is that Revis, under any circumstance, will eventually get you a number 1 draft pick. Those picks are like gold. If you can uncover the next DeMarcus Ware or Jason Pierre Paul with that pick and have that player at cap charges of $2-4 million a year you are taking a great leap forward. If you can package two picks to grab a QB and hope for an RGIII you have moved your team forward far more than it would go with Revis. Of course the negative is that you can end up with the next Vernon Gholston as well. That’s the risk you take. Cromartie I doubt gets more than a 3. While there are gems to be uncovered there the hit rate is significantly less. You are reaching at that point and hoping to be the team that beats the odds. It doesn’t usually happen. You have a far better chance in round 1.
If the Jets were to trade Revis though, they have to spend that pick or the saved money on quality replacement talent. Trading Revis and then using that first round pick on a cornerback is silly. So is using it on some high risk position like WR. You have to have a plan to use that asset in ways that do not miss. If you look back on the John Abraham trade as Abraham for Nick Mangold straight up it’s a bad trade. The worst starting center in the league is not that much less effective than the best. But the money that was saved on Abraham was more or less what allowed the Jets to pursue players like Damien Woody and Bart Scott, players that were instrumental in the Jets getting to those AFC Title games. Safe positional draft picks and money on safer free agents won’t cause the stir of “I cant believe we traded him for this…”. Trust me that would have happened if Abraham turned into Joseph Addai or Chad Jackson even if the team brought in a guy like Woody.
Keeping Things Intact
I do think that this is an option that a lot of fans favor. I think its important to note the hypothetical of both staying leads to the Jets earmarking $19.75 million for both players in cap dollars in 2013. That’s a huge amount of money. Factor in the fact that if you do not re-sign Revis its another $9 million in dead money in 2014 and that’s essentially $28.75 million in cap spend for 1 year of two grade A cornerbacks on the Jets. If you feel that this is worth it then by all means you keep both players.
The thing is I just don’t know what more you can get out of the secondary by putting Revis back into the mix. I go back to 2011 when the Jets had so much invested in corner that they completely neglected Safety and pass rush and the big pass plays skyrocketed because Eric Smith and Jim Leonhard could not cover for that period of time. The 2012 version of Cromartie and Wilson was almost just as effective as Revis and Cromartie the year before. I think we also need to look at just what it brings to the Jets.
The Jets were an 8 win football team in 2011. They were a 6 win football team in 2012 against a ridiculously easy schedule. They lost 7 games by double digit points, 6 of which were by more than 17 points. That’s not a player away from being relevant. That’s a team going nowhere fast. You never say never in the NFL, but if the short term plan is to just stay intact what would make you think that Revis with Cromartie is the difference between 6 and 10 wins, which is the number teams really need to strive for?
I don’t think any logical argument could be made that the team is significantly better with both players on the field. I can buy the argument that Cromartie saving them money makes them better in 2013 as long as its spent somewhere and I can buy the argument that a short term loss in cap will make the Jets a better club in 2014 and beyond. But I just cant buy the argument that the Jets are in a position where they should keep this spend happening in the secondary. This isn’t a team that lost in the AFC Title game and needed a new corner like what happened in 2009 when Peyton Manning picked on Lito Sheppard and Drew Coleman and everyone else not named Revis in the second half of that game. This is a 6 win team with no Quarterback and no offensive talent whatsoever in a league where offense is dominating the sport.
I guess things really depend on your preferences for the Jets. Each decision comes with a tradeoff. If you believe that the Jets can compete in the short term and that Revis’ contributions are that far superior to his peers then the logical move is to trade Cromartie and keep Revis. While it hampers your ability to sign players in the future it locks up the best corner in the game. If you see more of a long term plan in place then its Revis who should go and Cromartie is the person who takes over the full time role as corner number 1. Revis brings you better draft picks and more money in future years to spend but to fully realize it you probably are sacrificing some short term cap room. A difficult choice but one the Jets need to make pretty quickly as they overhaul this roster for the future.
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Its about positional value but also opportunity cost -- how much money and how and what guys are the Jets missing out on RIGHT NOW that we have to trade either one of them. Because at this point its just subtraction. If you have a big FA on the hook then go trade Cro. Til then why?
I want to see who restructures their contract to keep a guy who has held out 2 twice and you havent gone to the big game yet.
I would be very surprised if Sanchez stepped up and said he would restructure his contract in order to sign Revis. You know Holmes wont.
It's a mess but Idzik says its not that bad. He knows better than me.
We will see
If I was his agent, I'd tell him not to agree to anything this year. If he restructures, the team will most likely trade him to another team where he'll be buried on the bench. Why should he help the team that has already screwed him, and will do it again if he lets them.
Yeah that's pretty much what I was saying. I meant he should restructure because he sucks and doesn't deserve that money (similar to when Gholston took the pay cut or w/e because he knew he wasn't performing to the contract) but if I was him I certainly wouldn't especially when his future here is pretty much done unless a miracle happens in the offseason. He's gonna take the money we give him and be gone.
How much did Mark's restructure help with our cap situation anyway? I feel like it didn't do much but I could be wrong.
On offense, every starter is under contract except Woody, Bray, and Greene, but with Holmes returning and MM's offensive system we already have potential starters at every position except RG. A backup QB will be about $1-2MM, an O-Lineman and RB should be drafted, and with Holmes, Kerley, Hill, and Gates as the WR's, the team can easily afford to sign a WR. If they trade either Revis or Cro, they will get any combination of picks, WR, OLB, etc. I think they should give a look at Greg Jennings since he's most likely done in GB.
However, the fact that the money wasn't used is irrelevant from Sanchez's perspective. He was asked to do something to help the team, and he did it. In return, he's was given an extra 3 years after 2013 that are not guaranteed.