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  • Fred

NFL Contracts (are a Scam)

On November 10, 2018 I read this article on Bleacher Report:

I was angry, not at Bleacher Report per se, but at the concept of the article. In the NBA, contracts are guaranteed, so you're stuck with bums (like JR Smith), but in the NFL contracts are 1 sided toward the owners, you can't even debate that fact. There are very few NFL teams really "stuck" with bad contracts.

After I read the story on BR, I said to myself "I bet half of those poor NFL guys are cut by Spring. They'll never see the value of their contracts." Then I remembered that I have a Blog and, well, let's see if I was able to see into the future.


Arizona Cardinals: TE Jermaine Gresham

Released by the Cardinals: March 11, 2019

Atlanta Falcons: DE Brooks Reid

Released by the Falcons: February 6, 2019

Baltimore Ravens: CB Jimmy Smith

One of few Ravens left from their 2011 Super Bowl.

Roster Status: Active

Buffalo Bills: TE Charles Clay

Released by the Bills: February 15, 2019

Carolina Panthers: LT Matt Kalil

Released by the Panthers: March 14, 2019

Chicago Bears: TE Dion Sims

Released by the Bears: February 21, 2019

Cincinnati Bengals: WR John Ross

Cleveland Browns: CB TJ Carrie

Current Roster Status: Active

As a Browns fan, I must admit that I'm not very familiar with Carrie.

Dallas Cowboys: DL Tyrone Crawford

Current Roster Status: Active

Check that status again after the Draft: Cowboys Captain Shoves Cops in Crazy Bar Brawl.

Denver Broncos: LB Brandon Marshall

Option Declined on Contract: February 15, 2019

Detroit Lions: S Glover Quin

Released by the Lions: February 15, 2019

Green Bay Packers: LB Nick Perry

Released by the Packers: March 12, 2019

Houston Texans: WR Demaryius Thomas

During the 2018 season, Thomas was traded from the Broncos to the Texans for 3 late round draft picks. December of 2018, one month after the Bleacher Report article, Thomas tore his Achilles.

Thomas had played 3 games for the Texans before his release.

Released by Texans: February 12, 2019.

Indianapolis Colts: DT Denico Autry

Current Roster Status: Active

Jacksonville Jaguars: WR Donte Moncrief

Signed with the Steelers as a Free-Agent

Kansas City Chiefs: WR Sammy Watkins

Current Roster Status: Active

Los Angeles Chargers: WR Travis Benjamin

Current Roster Status: Active....

Check that Status again after the draft.

.....Then again, his words could all be a cover up and Benjamin may get released before or after the draft depending on how they value the (WR) position. - USA Today

Los Angeles Rams: FS LaMarcus Joyner

Signed with the Oakland Raiders as a Free-Agent

Miami Dolphins: DE Robert Quinn

Traded to the Dallas Cowboys for a 6th round draft pick on March 28, 2019.

Minnesota Vikings: OL Mike Remmers

Released by the Vikings: March 11, 2019.

New England Patriots: TE DeWayne Allen

C'mon now. What do you think?

Released by the Patriots: March 9, 2019

I'm surprised Bill Belichick didn't release him on the flight home from the Super Bowl.

New Orleans Saints: WR Cameron Meredith

Current Roster Status: Active, but....

....Meredith took a $2.1 million pay CUT to stay with the Saints. -Fansided

New York Giants: OL Nate Sodder

Current Roster Status: Active

New York Jets: CB Trumaine Johnson

Current Roster Status: Active

Oakland Raiders: OL Donald Penn

Released by the Raiders: March 16, 2019

Philadelphia Eagles: DT Tim Jernigan

Option Declined on Contract: March 4, 2019

Pittsburg Steelers: S Morgan Burnett

Released by the Steelers: April Fools Day, 2019

San Francisco 49'ers: LB Malcolm Smith

Current Roster Status: Active

Seattle Seahawks: WR Doug Baldwin

Current Roster Status: Active, but.....

......He has no guaranteed money in his contracts over the next two seasons, and Seattle could save $10 million against the salary cap if he were released before the 2019 season but after June 1.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: DE William Gholston

Current Roster Status: Active

Tennessee Titans: CB Malcolm Butler

Current Roster Status: Active

Washington Redskins: WR Paul Richardson

Current Roster Status: Active

What's the scorecard for 32 players with "bad" contracts?

Active Status with Same Team: 14

Released: 12

Option Declined: 2

Left in Free Agency: 2

Active (with Pay Cut): 1

Traded: 1

So about half of those players are "gone." With Baldwin, Benjamin, and Ross still candidates for summer releases.


Tattooed J.R. Smith won the hearts of Cleveland Cavaliers fans with his hustle in the 2016 NBA Finals and charmed the city with his shirtless antics at the Championship parade. The Cavs front office then penned Smith to a 4 year - $57 million contract that was a bad, bad idea before the ink even dried on the paper.

Smith's blunder in the 2017 Finals, helped send LeBron packing out of town. Then in 2018, Smith didn't want to play for the Cavs, he wasn't having fun. Armed with a guaranteed contract, he was paid $14.7 million to play 11 games and then work out at home as a healthy scratch for the remainder of the year.

Smith doesn't want a buyout, he wants to be traded to another team. With still $15.7 million due to him next year, he needs to find a team that wants to pay him. The only teams that are sniffing around aren't looking for JR - the player, they're looking for JR - the uniquely-structured contract.

Could you even fathom Smith's situation existing in the NFL?

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