WEEI>On Demand>>Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk, on Wes Welker and the Patriots

Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk, on Wes Welker and the Patriots

Mar 11, 2013|

Florio joins Mut and Merloni to discuss NFL free agency and what the Patriots will do with Welker.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

-- -- -- Lou and ID three point seven WEEI if you're like me you spent all weekend hitting refresh. And pro football talk dot com and following pro football talk on Twitter and expected more -- get a -- tampering weekend and joining us on the AT&T hotline again IDC. They're pro football talk dot com and all over the place NBC sports as well on his own broadcast their pro football talk dot com Mike Florio Mike -- surprise this weekend that. There was that more buzz that was the goal from the NFL the creates a buzz today accomplish that goal in your mind this week. Well here's what happened. Several months ago the NFL decided to acknowledge that tampering runs rampant in the days weeks and months prior to the start of free agency. So they created a three day window where negotiations would be possible everything short of actually signing a guy who contract in it. Was supposed to be similar to what happened after the lockout ended there was a Tuesday. When everybody -- start talking to free agents Friday at 6 PM make it sign them throughout that week in late 2011 not late. Of the year late July 2011. Teams are actually announcing agreements in principle that would be signed later in the week. On Friday out of the blue the NFL sent out a memo from the commissioner Roger Goodell. Telling teams did during this three day window there are not allowed to enter into agreements in principle that not allowed to leak agreements are not allowed to make. Farm offers. And that scared the crap out of the teams who in turn. Bullied most of the agents and -- not saying any thing and as a result the information on where. Free agents will sign of the plane is about guys get -- guys resigning with their own teams but the information. And the and the access as it relates to guys who were gonna become free agents to -- 4 PM eastern time that the most part dried up. Is that fear in place because of the power Roger Goodell wields over this league -- wanna be on the other end of what's about gate but that type of -- implication here they did leaks and stuff like between the bounty gate and the arbitrary and incorrect stripping of 46 million in cap space from the Redskins and cowboys last year because they treated the uncapped year of 2010 like an uncapped year the figure. That has teams believing that the commissioner can do whatever he wants and there's no recourse and even though the threat as a tampering investigation. The irony is. The NFL never investigate stiffing it to -- NFL does anything about tampering which is rampant. Is when they catch a team with one hand pressed to the bottom of the cookie jar crumbs all over their shirt. And the other hand again in the league office the middle finger is yet expect more news from -- agents right trying to pump up their clients -- I expected to hear Wes Welker interest from three different teams -- -- exit saying teams are saying if you talk -- we -- now some agents are saying oh we're just working hard. Well that's baloney because in the periods in the past there's been plenty of information from the agents because it's an area interest. To build the market and I think part of it also is the agents -- shell shocked. Because they're not getting the numbers they thought they were gonna get is a little bit of desperation made -- -- -- and hard because there work and it -- create. Some type of interest at the level that they have been telling their client all and turn down that offer. We get to the open market the twice that amount they're finding out that those numbers are going to be there now with a way to Tuesday for clock but. What is the patriots not -- was -- Contra and what does that tell you. Well it tells me that they're not offering the kind of money that he wants and that there may be another team out there. That is willing to offer more and he ought to has to make the decision philosophical how much money do I wanna make how much more to wanna make and I set. Aside the fact that they got me for five years at a pretty low amount. And the patriots set aside the fact that they overpaid him in 2012. And help them together and trust each other. Now in the future. And aircrack that there are signs their dating back to early last season when walker was being phased out of that slot role Aaron Hernandez was playing that position -- injured his ankle against the cardinals. And I just get the feeling that. Everything just isn't right and it's almost like. The patriots are asking themselves. Is you know do we really want Welker over the next few years how much longer do we want -- we take you -- before one more year to one for two more years. And and I have to think that they're considering guys like Danny Amendola as as a plan B. Especially since he's a a lot younger than Wes walker and has a lot more a lot more gas in the tank what you expect the market to be like what is that like now for Wes Welker. Well I I would suspect that he's gonna want nine million. A year or thereabouts and I think the patriots probably don't wanna pay more than six million a year that's what Brian Hart -- got. On a five year deal from the Miami Dolphins so somewhere in that gap there's a deal to be done if the patriots are willing to do that and doubt. You know I think there's a certain. Let's go back two weeks to the date the Tom Brady news broke I think it was that the the specifics were leaked by the patriots. In a way that was aimed at creating an atmosphere where guys will take less money to be part of clause. And I think they're they're trying to get guys to take less money to be part of the cause and they believe that Wes -- wants to stay and play with Tom Brady and try to finish what. He started when he joined the team in 2007. Go bold and been in this league a long time that you learned some this week don't ever states ravens or retirement. Because that's come and ask for pay cut because you know he loved so much what is the latest there I think one -- and I know. You're a story about a thing got so close that. Almost a press release there on Friday where they stand now. -- and I hate. To use the term 5050 but I was told by a very good source who's involved in in the situation Saturday night that it is 5050 was then. And at and I think the ravens. Really took bold in his word and they assumed he wouldn't go somewhere else and the -- been in the middle of this Tom Condon and and there was a sense Friday that Condit wanted -- to get cut now maybe this was all part of putting the -- -- back in the tube. This idea that Bolden will retire if he doesn't play for the ravens but I think it forced the ravens back from the ledge I know what forced them back from the alleged they were ready to cut him on Friday. They realize that he wasn't going to blanket and now the question is. Can you work out a compromise that saves face for every one in May be dropped the base salary little bit that you allow -- earned that money back. With with reachable incentives based on playing time. Low. Low numbers for receptions and he can still make -- six million dollars and remain with the ravens and 2013 and you know when you've got -- quarterback out their publicly saying stick to your guns. Mean that's good from a locker room perspective if he's still on the team with the ravens have to be thinking oh my gosh we gave -- 120 million dollars last week in your work and against as we're trying to get guys sign a low cap. Numbers we're talking a Mike Florio pro football talk dot com we saw more sought a more cuts over the weekend Bolden. On Monday -- law also rumored to be in the mix here is this all. Ramifications here Mike of that flat cap and teams not being prepared. What was going to be eight -- number this year across the league ever remember last year Robert Kraft said this the cap is never gonna spike under this current deal that it's gonna smooth and the NFL PA resisted that for awhile when now the NFL PA saying the same thing a part of it is. They borrowed against future salary caps last year to keep the number -- from going down several million dollars per team because the 2012 cap. Was driven by the 2011 revenues which were affected by the lockout even though they only missed one game. There were months were people were by Jersey there or spend money they weren't interest in the NFL because there was no NFL Beatrice to that. So. Anything that what happened when the new TV deals kick in next year a lot of that. Jump has already been accounted for in the slow growth of the cap it's not growing very much. The expectations of the teams at a high at the players at the high end of the market keep growing at a rate much faster than -- And that squeeze a lot of guys in to getting cut or taking less money or for the free agents are on the market realizing less money is out there and at some point the players could revolt against the unions say hey guys I thought you got us a good deal -- 2011 this doesn't feel like a good deal for anybody. No -- but the safety situation in the market right now that's an error in the New England cornerbacks safeties but two guys in in Gholston. In under -- Adrian Wilson rather -- those two guys sit how much money they look for what Paulson is regarded as being the guy at the top of the market is gonna have the most options and you know -- look around seven million a year for high and safety or thereabouts especially in this market. Ed Reed made seven point two last year but. Golds and I think is the first domino to fall. And then after that the fall -- underneath Adrian Wilson wasn't expected to be on the market now he's older and there's a lot of defensive backs on the market look at just last Thursday and Friday. And into Saturday how many veteran corners and safeties were cut and that's -- what what's gonna happen is teams are gonna have options and this is what's going on during this tampering period. The teams are talking to multiple different players through their agents. And they are finding out who will take -- it's like a reverse auction. Who's gonna take less to com sign with me and they're finding the cheapest option and instead it should be the other way around. Where the agents are the ones who -- shopping offers and getting more and more it's the absolute opposite dynamic that teams are leveraging agents and players against each other. With a glut on the market. And when the deal start to come on Tuesday and Wednesday people go look at the numbers and they're gonna say. What happened that spending spree that we used to see in the first couple days of free agents are well Mike -- be part of -- that seems like all these reports have him to Miami in a pretty. Significant number Mike and eleven million dollars meant torn about of the door opens they locked the land this guy. Well look one thing that we learned back in January when it was reported it was 95% certain Andy Reid would coach the cardinals sent it to virtually certain that. The jaguars will land Tim Tebow. Any time we hear that kind of stuff before something is done there's a chance. That it's not gonna happen and there's still a chance that someone else swoops in and takes Mike Wallace. But you'd have to find someone who is motivated to pay more than the dolphins and because the dolphins have swung and missed. On so many coaches and players in recent years Jim Harbaugh Jeff Fisher Peyton Manning. And now that the dog the dolphins' first of all they need Mike Wallace from a football standpoint is you have a guy who can stretch the -- you open up everything else you try to do secondly. Look at. Sun Life Stadium on any given Sunday without sunglasses you can't do it because of all the orange burning your -- from all the empty seats. And start to gonna have a referendum at some point on public funding for stadium renovations down there. You gotta sell tickets and got to buy votes and one way to do that is to make the big play from Mike Wallace so. It's probably gonna take a lot to outdo the dolphins at this point -- Lester just some other team -- Wallace is willing to take less to play for. But it sure looks like the dolphins right now but I always get nervous when people are saying it's a done deal because it's not done until it's done. But it would be an upset right now if it's any team other than the dolphins and Mike Wallace and he's going to be one of the few guys. Who end up getting a ton of money out of this process. Might we look at all these guys have been cut how much of us to do with the -- -- in other words if if there -- quality wreck and they still work it out because he keep forgetting that some of these guys to have warts that's the reason why they could restructure their stupid players. Well some of the guys. Will know what's behind door number two before they tell their current team to take their best offer and -- and some guys don't James Harrison. By all appearances did not know what else is out there before he told the Steelers. He wouldn't take what I was told is a 30% reduction on his base salary of six point 57 million. Plus an opportunity to earn the money back I don't know what the incentives war I mean sometimes it's got to win the Super Bowl beat the Super Bowl MVP defensive player of the year whatever. But he could have earned the 30% back. Remember the lower Malloy such a situation ten years ago -- when he told the patriots know. He knew what was in his back pocket he knew he had something -- with the Redskins in the bills. It's tampering for teams to say that but it happens all the time the experienced agents know. How to go about finding out out what's out there -- some of these guys know what's out there some of them don't. And you know the reality is these base salaries on contracts that were negotiated. Pre 2011. These numbers just no longer they no longer fit when the cap goes up one point 9%. From last year to this year which is a heck of a lot better than the zero point 5% growth that we saw. From 2011 to 2012 like real quick tomorrow forge your expectation we get an explosion the minute that -- things can start to be announced across the league. Yeah I think so because what will happen is. There will be. You know plenty of deals that are essentially done now -- that memo from Friday. Back to scare teams into at least going through the motions of looking like they're nailing things down now I remember. In the old days. 12 o'clock on a Friday. 12 AM. The market would open and you have guys on planes minutes after that -- how did you set up the travel arrangements if there weren't tampered and then you have. The ability of these titans of industry to work out hundred million dollar contracts in two hours it was amazing so I I anticipate. That they'll be a lot of activity and a lot of movement. But these teams are so scared of what happened on Friday that you just never know what's gonna I gonna happen until they actually wave the checkered flag it's -- every year around addiction a pro football talk but this -- the time Jiri were fresh -- twenty times the -- can catch Mike at noon today. It is live webcast and 5 o'clock this afternoon one of our guys Ross Tucker is terrific on the NBC sports network at 5 o'clock eastern time. Mike thanks -- time they like a busy time a year look for -- all your coverage next couple weeks I think says Mike Florio pro football talk dot com joining us. Here is we get set for 4 o'clock tomorrow. Boy thought Roger Goodell had some power how about that out of the gate Florio says he's got so much -- teams are afraid of what agents leak. And obviously there's other reported thicker and that is insane that you know that they did democratic creating a stir -- and it scared the hell lot of teams. That they can't so it's like. Lol you know what do we do it felt like you do it with it was going to be buzz all week and the build up didn't get that Mike's right. On the -- the commissioner scare people off of that commission and it'll change that next year -- 92 break. We come back. Lot of free agents out there indeed -- sort of figure this out. Your dream scenario by asking that -- book -- -- what he wants to the patriots yes I do Bart for IDQ and as a team we'll talk about that in ninety seconds.

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