In the end, it was an argument over semantics not practicality.
In the end it was an argument that tight ends in today's football are looked at as weapons in the passing game and whether or not that made the a tight end. And it doesn't, it really doesn't. Should rushing quarterbacks be considered running backs if they run a certain number of time a season? Should a QB who spends 66% of his time in a shotgun be paid like a running back since that's where a running back lines up? Of course not. Those ideas are ridiculous. But apparently this ridiculousness stops when a tight end goes in motion and ends up wide of the line? These concepts about players at a specific position lining up different places and whether or not it constitutes changing the players position isn't an issue.of semantics. It's an issue of common sense. Graham was drafted as a TE, he earned the starting TE spot, he's identified on the depth chart and in programs as a TE, opponents call him a TE and spend time trying to plan out how to stop Graham as a TE, Graham accepts honors and accolades as a TE. The man even called himself a TE in interviews and on his own personal social media accounts.
Jimmy Graham is a Tight End. This is a fact. One with overwhelming evidence saying so while the only things against are some ambiguously worded legalise.
Now let's get something else out of the way: the Saints are not a cheap organization and do not nickel and dime players. The actual FACT is for the last five years or so, the Saints have consistently been in the top three in regards to real money paid for salaries. That's the opposite of cheap and if you've bought into the cheap meme, well you know it's a lie, one likely spread by bitter Atlantis fans since they know their team is Sean Payton's bitch. Then there's the further proof of this team dancing a tightrope act with very slim cap space. Again, the opposite of cheap. Feel free to make yourselves seem like football geniuses by debunking that meme "just off the top of your head. But know this: this team will and does treat players right and pays the better than almost anyone else today.
This whole "change my TE social media bio to pass catcher," is a cute if a totally meaningless gesture. What happens when someone decides to try this approach only to find out that since NFL teams have no position named "pass catcher," they're not even entitled to be IN the NFL. Whoopsie.
Now let's talk about the bones of this (cheap pop for the dawg pound,) the actual money. People like Albert Breer are forgetting basic economic theory. The short version is there's cost and demand. Those two simple concepts drive the whole of economics. Before negotiations stopped and the grievance filed, the team had an offer on the table that worked out to $10 mill a year. Look at the two tags, TE is at 7 something million and WR is a bit over 12 million. Gee, looks like the Saints have already put WR money on the table. So take that ten million and recrunch the tag # for a TE. Watch it go up and up to WR levels as the demand for primarily receiving TE keeps rising. This is microeconomics 101 covered on day one stuff. Look at running backs, at one time they were bringing in more money than anyone besides QB's and LT's. Now, they're a dime a dozen. The position changed radically like (if in the opposite direction,) TE's. Nowadays, teams are trending toward RB platoons over feature backs. It's an easy thing to understand. If you have one stud all down back and use him as such, what happens when he gets injured? Check end of season IR lists if you get a chance, it's beyond absurd how many guys end up there. Now if you have three or four specialists at one or two all-purpose back responsibilities, if one gets hurt, there's a huge FA talent pool to find another specialised runner. Like TE's the RB position evolved and the salaries followed. First Graham gets ten, the Vernon Davis scams 12 million from someone, then reverse Cameron Jordan commands 15 million annually. Again, this is all basic economics. The issue of whether or not receiving tight ends should command wide receiver salaries is already correcting itself and so long as teams put higher and higher priorities on having a receiving TE the more money they'll command.
This is not something to start banging your shoe on the table over, Mr. Khrushchev. Settle down.
Now the rest about Jimmy should hold out and negotiations being a smoking crater, the Saints don't run the Browns Three Stooges methods of management. (Hey, you wanna toss off some unsubstantiated claims to paint my team as the big bad ebil cheapskate trying to ripoff poor Jimmy, don't be surprised when something flies back at ya, and ask around here, I'm being nice right now.) Our guys run a tight and professional ship. I can understand how a fan of a franchise that's been run like the Browns have been might not much perspective into how well run teams operate. There won't be a protracted (if at all,) holdout unless the NFLPA eggs Graham into it...but I'll hit that in a second. You'll notich Graham hasn't made a comment. He knows what's up. He knows everyone in the building knows it's just business. Graham knows he's gonna be the highest paid TE in football very soon. He knows he's gonna be somewhere in the neighborhood of $10 million a year. What again should he get disgruntled about? There's absolutely no reason to hold out. Barring an appeal (and frankly, a miracle,) his tag number is set in stone by the NFL. (*Another important but ignored fact is that New Orleans never tagged Graham as a TE, the NY offices did that. Teams inform the league any names they're using a tag on and then the NFL comes back to say what the player is tagged as and what the $$$$ amount is. So NO there is NO bad blood from Graham to the Saints franchise over being tagged a TE. Any bad blood should be aimed at the Ginger with a Napoleonic complex. But Payton testified against Graham, you say? More like Payton was told to testify was a TE by the NFL. I think everyone would understand that our coach wants as little to do with the little ginger prick as ppossible. Payton probably would choke Goodell harder than Peyton chokes come playoff/superb owl time.*) At the end of all this, Graham will be catching TD'S from Brees again this season and happy to do it while collecting a $10,000,000+ paycheck to do it.
Now let's talk about who the plaintive and who the defendant of this case really was because it wasn't Graham vs Saints. This was yet another NFL vs NFLPA pissing contests. The union botched the last CBA pretty royally and management laughed the whole time they were ripping the PA a new orifice. Goodell managed to con even more dictatorial powers, instead of a new focus on safety they got more Thursday Night games. The various tags a team has almost assures that most of the guys seeing FA are benchwarmers, over the hill guys, never-heard-of's and never-heard-of-em's and the union did nothing to change any of that. They even loom like bad guys over HGH testing by dragging their feet until Goodell gives up a big chunk of his power (newsflash: that powerhungry twatwaffle won't,) because they're dragging their feet. The NFLPA needs a win somewhere somehow before all new faces are running the show and none of the old faces will be around to meet them. So, they pull up a longshot, that maybe they can convince someone that some not really ambiguous ambiguous wording on franchise tags could mean something it doesn't. It started with Terrell Suggs and whether he should be designated a linebacker or DE. That turned into a compromise that established a hybrid DE/LB tag designation. Suggs had the strongest case since he actually DID play DE in 43 sets. He was listed as a DE, worked out with the DE's, yadda yadda yadda, I'm pretty sure I don't need to tell Browns fans that Ravens ownership and management are perfectly willing to pull some ultra-shady bull°°°°. Next case was last year when a Titans TE looked like he was going to challenge but after an unofficial meeting between his agent and the PA, the whole bit died away and the player signed a rich TE deal. Now it seems clear why that happened, the union wanted Graham in particular for this because of the various ways he's used. Here's the rub and here's where the NFLPA's (and your,) argument fell apart. Tight ends have been going in motion both across the line or into the slot since Mike Ditka was playing. The case was pretty much done at that point. Tight ends are frequently sent in motion for pre-snap coverage reads. TE's will line up off the tackle, in the backfield in a fullback's spot, in a regular or tight slots, in stack (front and back,) and so on. The only times Jimmy was lined up as a reciever is when he was lined up in the X or Y. We now see runningbacks line up in the slot, do they get WR money too? This was a hail mary. We've got a even better explanation in the comments of the "Jimmy Graham is a TE," article. Basically, the media took one very narrow possibility of what the legalise might mean, one probably spoonfed the nimrods since they really aren't that bright. So they did what the always do, figure out how to sensationalize the hell out of it and squeeze the maximum amount of ad money out of it.Cow's gotta moo, duck.s gotta quack and ESPIN's gotta lie it's ass off for money. (You notice me naming names, giving historical, verifiable facts and logical deductions to support my views oninstead of nebulous warnings? Neat, huh?)
What else was there...oh yeah, something about salaries directly affecting teams on field performance. Nah brah, that don't fly around these parts. You wanna make that claim, it's on you to prove it beyond reasonable doubt. And no no no, you don't get to pick just anyone. You have to show a team similar to the Saints (tightknit locker room, consistent winning, a coach who's well respected by his players (and everyone involved with the franchise for that matter.) Also, JG is not a TO. He isn't anything near close to locker room poison, he doesn't whine in front of the media that he should be getting more passes, nada, zero, zip. If anything you just insulted JG by suggesting he act like some primadonna turd. JG has been quiet about all this from the get-go only saying he's confident a long-term deal will get done. And like the local media reports said, the Saints had $10 million on the table. Shouldn't take long, there're only a few teams that meet the requirements as to provide an example from similar situations and similarly run teams.
The general thought around here from the smarts is that of course Graham should definitely took it to arbitration to try for the bigger paycheck. What kind of idiot wouldn't at least try to get a higher salary? Duh. Again, this is from the non-knee jerk smart elements, but now that that's done, Graham's agent will soon be presenting his client with a contract that makes JG the highest rated TE in the NFL, a paycheck I'll remind everyone, is right there with top WR's in the game (because again, 10 mill is very respectable compared to a position who's tag number is 12 mill plus change.) Bottom line is that you didn't even bother to look up if the team actually offered Graham a contract and if so, how much $$$$ was offered. Too much like work, huh?
This has all been a bunch of background noise. The only reason it's front page news instead of a blip on a teams area is that we're in a dead zone of sports. There literally is almost nothing else to try to beat into the ground except maybe the World Cup but since the USAUSAUSAUSA, is done, so's our attention spans. Though everyone over here will remember you calling for Graham to hold out, get disgruntled in the locker room and for our team to implode while your team goes through it's annual factory of sadness Greek tragedy thing it calls football. Though, there might be a wee bit less empathy for your pain this go around in these parts. Johnny Manziel should hold out until he's named starting quarterback. Your GM and Head Coach should hold out until they're guaranteed to keep their respective jobs for at least six months. You still enjoying the game?
So how about next time you decide to make our team a front page story over on your playpen, you look a few things up and maybe ask a question or two before you write a sermon littered with inconsistencies and half-truths? I understand you must be disgusted with your team, (what did your former LB now with Denver say? Something about how great it is to be with a winner?) but watch out where your flailing along. It's not like y'all can afford any more bad karma.
...oh, and that's an interesting name your sporting