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Edwards Is Upset

Usually I take all the questions from the Q&A post and put all the answers into one post.  There is one question, however, that I would like to dedicate a post of its own to.

Fran the Man recently asked:  “What do you think the chances are that the Vikings would not match an offer for Ray Edwards, if another team were to make an offer?  I realize we would get a 1st round pick for him but is it worth it?  Our history in drafting DE’s is pretty poor. Edwards performed well last year, especially in the playoffs.  Could Robison take over?”

First, Edwards recently made his stance known to Judd Zulgad of Access Vikings.  He is not happy that he is a restricted free agent instead of being unrestricted as he was scheduled to be.

“My frustration is that I signed a four-year contract, I didn’t sign a six-year contract,” Edwards said. “There’s nothing you can really do about it, so I’m just waiting my time, see what I can do to better my situation. I do need to take care of myself and my family. Don’t get me wrong, we definitely get paid a nice amount of money but let’s be fair here. So that’s my thing about the whole situation.”

“I’m not mad at the team, not at all. They gave me a chance to live my childhood dream of playing in the NFL, so I can’t really be mad at them. In part they can do what’s right on their end. But it’s a business decision. They are doing their best to [make] the business decision that they feel is best so we’ll see where that goes.”

On April 15th (less than a week away) the deadline for other teams to give Edwards an offer sheet will come and go.  The Eagles and Saints were primarily the names mentioned as having interest in Edwards previously, but they have since brought in Daryl Tapp and Alex Brown respectively to seemingly fill the need.

Edwards, however remains hopeful that somebody will come forth this week. 

“I hope so,” he said. “I think it’s a strong possibility. We still have a couple of days left so hopefully something happens and we can make a move.”

Is there a possibility that the Vikings sign him to a long term deal anytime soon?  Well, it doesn’t sound like Edwards has any reason to believe so.

“I’m not talking to any of those guys,” he said. “If they want to talk to me they talk to my agent. For the simple fact, we want to get the deal done. I worked my four years here, the length of my contract, so we just want to get our market share.”

Teams are, for the most part, shying away from extending long term, big money contracts to players if they have any other choice.  With a new Collective Bargaining Agreement yet to be decided on, teams do not know what rules they will have to play under in the future, and thus do not want to risk a long term investment in a player if it could come back to bite them when/if a salary cap returns.

Edwards made it known that he will not participate in the Vikings offseason training activities until he has to.  The “hold out” will not last long, however, as Edwards’ 2010 salary will shrink from $2.521 million to $1.1 million if he doesn’t show up and sign his tender by June 15th.

I can empathize with Edwards… seriously.  When you are a fourth round draft pick in the NFL, the success rate is minimal and the odds are stacked against you.  He has worked his tail off to become a productive football player and for four years thought that 2010 was going to be his chance to land a big contract. 

For fourth round, low profile players, the NFL is a one shot deal and most fail.  Edwards has not failed and last month he should have received a very sizeable contract.  In the absence of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, however, Edwards may not get that pay day until 2012… if ever.  One major injury could keep him from ever achieving the goal in which he has worked so hard to accomplish.

On the other hand, I think Edwards has a misguided sense of “fair.”  The Player’s Union agreed to the current rules that are keeping him from getting his payday.  This is not an instrument of the NFL or the Vikings, but rather just playing the game under the rules that were agreed upon.

Does it suck?  Sure.

Edwards has to understand, however, that the current agreement and the Union and the NFL and the Vikings have paid him more money than most people will make in 10 years with great perks and benefits and a life many of us would kill for.  With unions, just like anything in life, comes the good and the bad.  Edwards can’t mope around dwelling on the bad without at least acknowledging the blessed life he has.

Edwards and I do not see eye-to-eye on this sentiment as evidenced by his recent quote after being asked if he wanted to stay in Minnesota.

“I want to get paid what’s fair. If it’s here or somewhere else.”

Now, to get back to Fran’s question.

I do not think that Edwards will receive an offer sheet at this point, but if they did I would bet you the Vikings do not match it.

I think Edwards has made it clear that he is a business-first type of player and the Vikings do not see a long term deal in his future because he will doubtless want to either be over paid or want to be able to test the open market.

So what would you rather have?  One year of a pissed off, bitching-and-moaning defensive end that doesn’t want to be there?  Or a first round pick signed to a six year deal and is eager to prove himself in the NFL?  I think I know what the Vikings prefer.

As far as Fran’s question about Robison being able to fill in… I have 100% confidence that Robison could fill Ray’s shoes quite well.  He is a starting quality defensive end with a knack for getting to the quarterback, hands down I think he would do just great.

The question is whether or not the Vikings could find a versatile lineman to fill the backup role occupied by Robison in recent years on all positions of the D-line.  They signed Mike Montgomery for a reason.

Five days from now, we will know for sure whether or not the Vikings get a first rounder for Edwards.

After that, however, do not expect the trade talk to die down.


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28 Responses to “Edwards Is Upset”

  1. krugjr says:

    once again Edwards has lowered his over all value by opening his mouth……right on, Adam, Edwards IS more punk than player!

    GO VIKES!!!!!

  2. bigjohnny84 says:

    Ray Ray is not a team player and never will be. We all know he was the main idiot behind that whole schism fiasco. Adam makes a great point that you have to weigh the good vs the bad.

  3. Purple Charlie says:

    Ya know, I can’t think of anything Brian Robison has done or said, That hasn’t been good… I Really hope he ends up Starting!!!

  4. Fran the Man says:

    Adam, you answered my question exactly how I had hoped you would.
    As Krugjr and Big J say, he’s a punk and not much of a team player.
    He’s had a couple years playing on the same D-line with 3 pro-bowlers and hasn’t taken advantage of that except at the end of last season and especially the playoffs.
    I wonder how much of his play at the end of last season had to do with it being a perceived contract year? Kind of funny how that worked out for him. Nope, don’t like the guy at all and if we could get a 1st rounder for him it would be a real plus.

    And just to clarify something, I believe Robison was trying to advance a already fumbled or muffed kick off, that he in turn fumbled, right?
    It sort of sounds like you mean he was the actual return man. . .

    • Adam Warwas says:

      Actually, if I recall correctly, it was a short kickoff (trying to avoid Harvin) which Robison caught and tried to advance.

      All things being equal, there are not many bad things to say about robison.

  5. Fran the Man says:

    By the way, is there any sort of prize that goes to a guy that asks such a good question that he gets a “Post of his own”
    How about changing my name from Fran the Man to “Post of his own”

    Wait, that’d be POHO for short.
    Isn’t that what Mckinnie calls his girlfriends?

    Aw, forget it.

  6. coolio says:

    What do you guys think of Clausen after his pro day

    • Fragile Freds says:

      Really didn’t learn a great deal from his pro day. He followed the script, no one covering receivers, no one trying to tackle him. For Clausen it was all publicity. Just keeping his face out there. See Brady Quinn. Actually Quinn did more during his pro day than Clausen. Clausen will be better than Quinn, but I don’t think we learned much that we didn’t already know.

      Colt McCoy was a different story, he had an injury during his last pro game, he needed to show he still could deliver.

      There is more than enough tape of the QBs for the scouts to make a judgment. QB pro days are garbage.

      At the pro level, so much of being a high end QB is intelligence, ability to operate under pressure and toughness. The combine nor pro day addresses any of the three. TJax, great arm, great body, can run well. How does he handle the three attributes above? Not well.

  7. Fragile Freds says:

    AK –

    Nice entry on Edwards.

    Fred doesn’t like Ray Ray either, but the only thing this guy is guilty of is speaking what is on his mind. Every other player in the NFL thinks the exact same way. They couldn’t give a rats ass about the city they play in. We would all like to think they do, but none of them do. We want to believe that Minnesota is the place all these guys wanted to get drafted by all along. It’s just a job. Sorry to say, but it’s true. They know they have a limited number of years and who ever pays the most, gets their service. Do you think Jared Allen gives a crap about Minnesota? They paid him the most and here he is. As long as they pay him top dollar, he will stay, if not he’d be happy to play in Denver, Philly or Tampa Bay as long as they are the high bidder.

    As Ray Ray said, he’s not mad at the Vikes, but he’s knows his most important job is making money playing football. All the other crap, tackles, sacks etc. is just a vehicle to make more money.

    They want to win on game day sure, but as soon as the whistle blows on Sunday to end the game,it’s all about business.

    Ray’s only crime is not having enough sense to say, ” I love Minnesota, I want to finish my career here, I want to be part of a Championship team in Minnesota.” Everyone else thinks just like Ray (show me the money), but they have enough sense not to say this stuff out loud.

    Someone needs to tell this clown about the romance of the game, even if all he is looking for is a one night stand.

    • Adam Warwas says:

      Unfortuantely, there is a lot of truth in your comment, Freds.

      However, the fact is that Edwards is not bound to play football int he NFL for the Vikings. He can do whatever he wants. He can join the UFL, CFL, MCDonalds, or whatever.

      But thanks to actions taken over the years by the NFL, Players Union, and the Vikings… playing for the Vikings in the NFL will pay Ray more $$ than he is going to make elsewhere doing anything else. Does he appreciate that? No. He bitches.

      Moreover, he set the market for himself. If he had played better than he did then maybe the Vikings tender him at a higher level. Maybe they don’t risk losing him and sign him to a long term deal. If he had played better, perhaps he would have an offer sheet right now. None of those things are happening for him becuase of his level of play… and b.s. sessions with the media like this one do NOT help his case.

      Yes, football is a business and there are many fingers in this soup… but Ray needs to stop the “poor me” b.s. and get out there with his teammates and prove why he might be worth signing to a long term deal. Staying away from OTAs until the last possible moment just reinforces the Vikings (and every other teams) decision not to sign him for the long term.

      What you said about Jared Allen might be true. But based on his performance and his dedication to his team… I don’t think Jared would be without a contract right now if he were in Ray’s shoes.

  8. MarkSP18 says:

    I have to side with Ray on this and I do believe he will be traded for a 3rd round pick this year and another pick next year. There has only been one or two other RFAs signed by new teams. Why is that? Smells like some collusion to me. You can say it is not true but I say if it is not, then why would the Vikings not redo Ray’s contract before this year began? They risked letting him be a UFA unless the slapped an expensive tag on him which you know they would not. All of the owners KNEW BEFORE this past season began that they would not enter into a new agreement and that all of these players would be RFAs.

    The Vikings are the ones responsible for his attitude. They never let a player that they supposedly would like to keep hit free agency in any form. They signed EJ to a new deal in December of his 4th year. DO you think they will let Rice & Greenways contracts EXPIRE this year and then talk to them about an extension. There also are other players signing long term deals even with the uncertainty of the new CBA rules like DeMeco Ryans for one. So any talk of tthe Vikings not knowing what will happen with a new CBA doesn’t hold water.

    Ray has played his behind off and is now an above average DE. He deserves to be paid at least half of what a franchise DE gets. If the Vikings really wanted to keep him they could have given him a one year deal for 5 mil while they work ona long term deal. As Adan said, he is one injury away from his career being over.

    The Vikings also just signed Montgomery. If they wanted to keep Ray why sign Montgomery? Something is already in the works IMO and Ray will be traded on or before draft day.

    The Vikings should not be the kind of organization that low balls it’s players. If I was Ray I would consider holding out longer. He can stay out until the 10th week of the year and still get a year of service accrued.

    The Vikings will trade him for picks.

    • Fragile Freds says:

      Mark,

      Fred doesn’t agree with everything you’ve said, but interesting post. Let’s hope they get more than a #3 and change.

    • Adam Warwas says:

      Yes, Mark, very interesting post.

      I agree that the Vikes will not let the April 15th deadline stop them from looking at moving edwards, and it may end up being a draft day trade.

      Collusion is an interesting topic, and you could very well be right. I do agree that the teams knew the uncapped year was coming… just like everyone else did.

      Your points about him being lowballed, them risking him becomming a UFA, the level of tender he recieved… they all point to their dissatisfaction with him. All things being equal, if he didn’t have two great post-season games, us fans probably don’t care. The Vikings see something in Edwards that screams expendable and they are possibly thinking his stock will never be higher.

      Ray can hold out longer if he likes (as I said before, it isn’t like he doesn’t have options) and take the financial hit. But i will tell you what will happen, Brian Robison will steal his starting job and Edwards will NOT get a long term deal if he does that.

      We can preach about favoritism all we want… but I find it interesting that no media or fans really give two craps what Eric Frampton feels about all of this… and he is in the same boat.

      Very interesting conversation here… the Man Vs. the Working Man. Love it.

      • MarkSP18 says:

        Fred says he wants more than a 3rd and Adam says the Vikings are dissatisfied. So what should we believe?

        I believe the Vikings actually do like Edwards and feel he is just reaching his potential but I think that Ray wants what is fair and that is just too much for the Vikings. It is really simple to me.

        The Vikings do not want to tie up that much money on the defensive line and they also need to see what Robison can do before deciding to give him a new contract after next year. Otherwise he will go somewhere that he gets a chance to compete.

        Couple that with the fact that they better give Rice & Greenway new deals and maybe even AP and you are where we are. Unfortunately you just cannot pay everybody top dollar.

        I think the first round tender was done on purpose to let some teams make a decision on a contract for Ray. It tells teams that he is available for a reasonable price.

        I think that with the deep draft this year a 3rd round pick is like a 2nd and we have to take what we can get at this point (within reason of course). A 3rd this year and a 3rd next year would be OK by me as opposed to nothing next year.

        And with a HUGE free agent class next year we should sign a player or two so if Edwards goes elsewhere we can forget about a compensatory pick in 2012.

        Frampton is not a starter and may not be on the team next year especially if we draft a Myron Lewis, Brian Jackson, Kam Chancellor, Robert Johnson, or Jeromy Miles. So yes, no one cares about Frampton and no one wanted him last year when he was available for a 5th if I recall correctly.

        But we aint talkin bout Frampton, we talkin bout Edwards.

      • Fragile Freds says:

        A third rounder is like a second? Huh? Is that like 40 is the new 20?

        Let’s hope the Vikes don’t use that logic when making a trade.

    • c.carterhof says:

      I think Vikes already know what Robison can do. I mean I do. He is a hi energy guy, plays hard all the time. I believe he is better than Ray right now. So do the Vikes.
      The Vikes like Ray, but not that much.

      I agree with Mark on this-
      Bye Bye Ray Ray.

  9. Fragile Freds says:

    Interesting.

    Looking at the other side of this coin. I don’t think the Vikings give a rats ass about any of their players either. You are correct, Ray set the market and the Vikes respond giving him just enough to hold the value of who he is. They don’t value him any higher than his play warrants. As far as the Vikes are concerned they might think Ray may be on the way up, or they might think he is damn lucky to be on a good D line. Either way, they aren’t going to pay him top dollar until his play shows he’s a star. The difference is that the Vikes would never come out and say that. Dumb ass Ray clearly would come out and say something stupid.

    As far as the jibber jabber coming from Rays mouth, it will have ZERO impact on his ability to get a big contract here or elsewhere. Ask Randy Moss, Al Haynesworth….the list could go on and on. The teams may hate them, but the money will flow if they produce.

    Your comments about Jared…his dedication to the team means little, his sacks mean a lot. If he had Rays stats (and all other factors, years of service, contract timing etc) he’d be in the same position as Ray.

    • c.carterhof says:

      Maybe Freds, just maybe the reason his sacks are so hi, is because of his dedication to his team. Whatever team he is playing on gets all he has. Sometimes thats the difference in good and great. Plus being crazy.

      • Fragile Freds says:

        Carters,

        I don’t think we can always equate hard play with dedication to a particular team for which they currently play. Maybe, just maybe Jared Allen is dedicated to football and winning and he doesn’t care if its the Vikings or for example the Chiefs (were he had a couple sacks there too). My point was that these guys don’t care who they play for they want the most compensation they can muster.

        Carters I suspect you and anyone else on here would want the same or would you take a home town discount because Minnesota is such a great place to raise a family? It’s a short career in football.

      • c.carterhof says:

        Being dedicated to football and winning is being dedicated to your team, IMO.
        Your teamates see that and respect it.

        It doent matter the team.

        As far as a home town dicount, it depends on how much the discount was. I dont blame guys for taking the money. But when a guy doesnt want to be on the team because he thinks he is underpaid, he needs to go.

  10. Fragile Freds says:

    As Ramon, Freds old custodial guy at his office used to say… “Beeniz is benniz…”

    Smart man that Ramon.

  11. […] One of the few items of interest recently has been the future of Defensive End, Ray “Romo Hunter” Edwards. Because of the lack of Collective Agreement leading to among other things an un-capped 2010, Ray, who was meant to be a UFA is now an RFA, and thus in limbo land with regards his future as a Vikings. We don’t need to improve his contract, unless someone else makes an offer for him (and I think they need to do it in this next week), then we can either match it and keep him or not and lose him. But if there is no offer he stays a Vikings. This kinda puts Ray somewhere between a rock and a hard place, but he’s elected to turn down a nice sun lounger while he waits there. There’s a good overview of the situation on the Gab this week. […]

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