I am not a big fan of players holding out when they have signed a contract but Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson is doing the right thing. Careers for backs like him are very short, he is an elite player, and he is making far below what even other mediocre backs in the NFL are being paid. Finally his running style is such that when he loses half a step, his career will be over.
On the other hand, the Houston Texans can not renegotiate Andre Johnson’s deal with five years left on it. He signed a seven year deal and wants a new deal after two years? That’s three contracts in five years and it would set a horrible precedent for the Texans and the rest of the league. I know what he means to the franchise but to cave in could cause chaos. I predict that Andre Johnson will be traded before they renegotiate this deal.
Before thee Atlanta Falcons start to demand a new stadium, they have to ask themselves what kind of market there is for NFL teams? I can really see the Minnesota Vikings going to the Los Angeles market and while San Antonia has the Alamodome, it’s an aging stadium as well. Can South Florida handle another team? I don’t think it can as Jacksonville could be on the move as well. You quickly find yourself looking at places like an additional team somewhere else in New Jersey, a second team in Los Angeles (that worked out well last time), or trying to get a stadium built in Toronto. After that you have Portland, Vancouver, another team in Chicago (can’t see that happening although the market is big enough for it), or a market that has been vacated or soon will be. I would love for a team to sit down with the state and try to come up with long term plans to maximize stadium revenue (think Arrowhead) and grow their market (and revenues) than go for the short term fix of a new stadium every 18 years. You never hear about a team saying, “we are going to grow this team’s fan base by being a dominant team in the NFC South by investing heavily into scouting, player development, drafting high character players who will connect with the community, and by lowering ticket prices so our fans can attend more games.” No, NFL owners treat their markets like crap and the can’t understand why they don’t get what they want. If billionaire Arthur Black wants a new stadium, build it yourself.
I hate to say it but I feel a bit for Albert Haynesworth. It’s easy to look at his MASSIVE contract and say, “do whatever Dan Snyder tells you to do” but if he signed the contract on the assumption that he would play in a 4-3 defence and now he is playing in the 3-4 and would not have signed in Washington if he knew he would have been moved to nose tackle, I can understand his point.