Roger Goodell has been an advocate for the NFL owners since the whole labor negotiations process began. He scheduled three meetings with the NFL Players Association last Tuesday. The owners clearly want to know what's up with free agents and a salary cap. The NFLPA is also eager to know what is going to happen and it is seeming more and more likely the two sides will come to an agreement well before the NFL draft in April.
Free Agency is supposed to begin during the first week of March whenever there is a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) in place. It may have to be put off for a hypothetical “minute or two” until the two sides can agree on things. But one thing that almost everyone agrees on is Nnamdi Asomugha is the biggest name on the list this year.
One of the more important issues during the negotiations process for Asomugha is going to be his severely sprained ankle. It was enough of an issue approximately three months after it happened to cause him to miss the 2011 Pro Bowl. Perhaps Nnamdi is bigger than the Pro Bowl – too good to waste his time – or perhaps it is going to be an issue for him moving forward; maybe an issue that would require surgery.
It has become perpetually clear that neither Al Davis nor head coach Hue Jackson will mention Asomugha's name with regards to either the “leaders of the defense” or with regards to what the 2011 Raiders defense will look like. While Jackson makes a point to say that he “hopes all our players come back,” at the same time he says, “We have a plan” for moving forward. Thus far the name Nnamdi Asomugha has not been uttered from his mouth.
I don’t think the reasoning behind this careful non-name dropping approach is that the Oakland Raiders want him to go away. I do, however, think that the Raiders do not expect the man to accept what they will be willing to offer him to stay. Thus, the Raiders are preparing for life after Nnamdi.
Ultimately, it will be up to Asomugha to decide whether he is in it for the money or in it for his love and undeniable commitment to the organization that made him into the product he will be on the market this year.
Really, who is going to offer him a ton of cash to come and play for their team? The Detroit Lions or the Cleveland Browns are among the first teams that pop into my head. Asomugha has made it clear to his fellow players that he wants to play for a winner though. More than likely, teams like the New England Patriots, Baltimore Ravens, and Pittsburgh Steelers are not going to pay bucko bucks, even for a player of his caliber.
For that reason his best option may be to stay put in Oakland. And when you consider that he is from California and that the Raiders are actually on the upswing for the first time since he has been a member of the team – well, it becomes less of a question and more of a given.
It is purely my opinion that the Raiders will offer him a contract in the neighborhood of 6-8 years for $80-$100 million with most of that coming at the end of the contract. It is Al Davis’ history to keep the players that are truly Raiders with the team. He wants Nnamdi to stay with the team. So even though Nnamdi’s contract was voided by his missing two games this year, the option of remaining with the Raiders in 2011 still remains in Nnamdi’s court.
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Early rumors talked about Green Bay. I know you guys want to keep him obviously, but he is great friends with Charles Woodson, and we have something you guys rarely ever have: a good team. We have 2 advantages over everyone else with having Woodson and winning the super bowl. Prepare for your best player to leave that hell hole in Oakland.
They are wanting the defense to be as ONE. One unit working together to accomplish their goals. Everyone on defense has to be a leader, they have to take care of their own and if one guy isn't holding their part of the defense, everyone should let him know, not just one person. I do believe that Aso will be back with the Raiders. Once we are back on top, all the struggles, trials and tribulations he went through during our low point will make the celebration that much sweeter.
Our defense does NOT know what its like to play without a shut-down corner. EVERYTHING changes on defense without that...need more pass rush, need to drop safeties back more, biting on play-action becomes much more destructive requiring much more discipline preached at a defense level, blitzing needs to be more cautious...etc etc.
Pay the man.
I really hope Asomugah will accept less to stay with the Raiders. The teams I think that will try hardest to get him is Green Bay and the NY Jets. Asomugah has expressed interest in playing for a team that is a proven winner, and the Packers and Jets fit that bill. The Raiders are definitely a team on the upside, but they still have a lot of proving to do, and Asomugah will have to decide if his love for the Raiders is greater than immediate gratification. Al Davis obviously cannot offer him a huge contract, as he has a lot of other free agents that are just as important to the team, Zach Miller and Robert Gallery just to name a couple, so Nambi will have to understand this. Hopefully, we can retain his services for a lesser price, as Asomugah has put in his time, and deserves to be a part of WINNING Raider football, which I believe is very close to happening...
Bret, I respecfully disagree with your claim that NA's going to get a 6 year, 80 million offer.
Source I've spoken to, says that Al has no intention of offering him a record deal. And if he is the highest paid CB in the league, it will only be marginally more than Revis. As I said though, guy I've spoken to says Al has no intention of investing big money into keeping NA.
Revis is on $11 million a year. Deal you're speaking of is twice as long, and $13 million a year.
Aint going to happen.
Again, what I've heard, Al's going to let NA walk, if he wants record money. And invest the money in other free agents
Not to mention he means A LOT to these inner-city kids. He has done a lot for the City of Oakland, and i don't expect him to turn his back to them now. You're right Bret, Al Davis was the one that believed in him and turned him into the man he is today. Rod Woodson can take a lot of credit for that as well... him and Nnamdi studied night and day on how to become a true shutdown corner. This is his home and here is where he'll stay.
As for the new CBA, i'm willing to bet it will look similar to the past years.. maybe with a higher salary cap involved.
we need that cap room if we want to snag some good FA Olineman and re-sign our core players... Seymour will get the tag, then you have Nnamdi, Zach, Bush.. those are priority!