Sports Agenda for Tuesday (4/30/13)
The sports world was set abuzz by Jason Collins coming out yesterday. Plus, Giancarlo Stanton goes down. And some more thoughts on Jeff Ireland’s moves heading into next season.
Quote of the Day:
“Do you believe a word what the good book says or is it just a holy fairytale and God is dead?” – John Michael Osbourne
NBA player Jason Collins came out yesterday in a very well done Sports Illustrated article.
It’s really a fascinating read and if you haven’t checked it out, you should.
I say good for him and it’s a watershed moment in sports.
Let’s not go overboard with the Jackie Robinson comparison, HUGE DIFFERENCE between the two.
Still, it’s a fascinating day in sports, not just for how Collins was received.
I was also fascinated with how quickly people tried to smack down Miami Dolphins receiver Mike Wallace.
What fascinated me was the very people who have been asking for tolerance and accepting of other people’s words/behaviors/actions were now the very ones calling Wallace a homophobe and other things.
That was considered to be okay, but what Wallace said was not.
If you didn’t know, Wallace said he didn’t understand being homosexual with so many beautiful women out there. That’s his opinion, that’s how he’s wired. Nothing more, nothing less.
He didn’t say anything was wrong, didn’t express hate, or anything else. He stated his opinion and he was smacked down.
He was forced to apologize for his opinion.
Really? That’s where we are now?
Was Wallace’s timing bad? Absolutely.
Should he have received the response he got, absolutely not.
It’s one of those great moments of irony like when those who are protesting war turn violent.
Miami Marlins/Giancarlo Stanton:
In case you missed it, and judging by the television ratings you did, the Marlins actually played last night.
Not only that, but they won too.
Yeah, I didn’t believe it either when I turned on the television this morning.
But more importantly, Giancarlo Stanton left the game with a strained right hamstring.
In other words, the Marlins only true Major League player may be out for awhile.
Let’s face it though, he wasn’t doing much in the lineup either, until the last few days.
The Marlnis are last or near the bottom in runs, batting average, slugging percentage, OPS, and home runs.
I’ve really wanted to compliment Jeff Ireland and the job he’s done in the offseason upgrading the roster.
And he has done a good job updating the roster.
I was even working on a longer story about it, but then I stopped in the middle of it and started thinking about next year.
Then things started to come into focus when I read about Aaron Rodgers’ 5-year, $110 million contract.
We can all agree Rodgers is a top-five quarterback in the league and was going to get paid like that.
But here’s where good general managers and bad general managers separate, also good cap managers and bad cap managers.
Rodgers’ salary cap hits go as follows, per the Green Bay Press-Gazette
2013: $12 million
2014: $17.9 million
2015: $18.6 million
2016: $19.6 million
2017: $20.65 million
2018: $20.9 million
2019: $21.1 million
Now, let’s look at the cap hits for Mike Wallce, not the best receiver in the league over the next few years with the Dolphins.
2013: $3.2 million
2014: $17.2 million
2015: $12.05 million
2016: $13.65 million
Now think about that for a second. Wallace will get paid roughly the same as Aaron Rodgers next year based on their respective contracts. I’m not knocking Wallace here, I’d have jumped on that contract without a question. But the Dolphins can’t cut him realistically until 2015 because over the next two years he counts up to $27 million in dead money.
But wait, there’s more.
Linebackers Dannell Ellerbe will have cap hits of $7.425 million in 2014, Philip Wheeler will have a cap hit of $6.4 million, and Brian Hartline will cost $6.25 million in addition to Matt Moore’s $5.5 million.
So in Wallace, Ellerbe, Wheeler, Hartline and Moore the Dolphins have tied up $42.775 million in cap space, that’s roughly 1/3 of the total cap space for just those five players. And let’s face it, none of those guys are exactly DeMarcus Ware or Peyton Manning here.
Plus, Randy Starks and Paul Soliai both see their contracts expire and will need to be resigned.
Assuming they want roughly $10 million per season, only one of them will likely get it. That’s possibly another $10 million against the cap so we’re up to $52.775 million, or 41 percent on six players, unless the cap management gets creative with a long-term deal for Soliai or Starks.
And the team has to look at signing Mike Pouncey long-term next year too.
What does it all add up too?
No one knows right now, because lots of things can happen between now and 2014.
But, remember, the cap likely won’t go up much, if any next season, which means some penny pinching will likely be required.
Ireland and Ross have gone all in on this season. Only time will tell if their bet will pay off.