Stat of the Week
My new BFF and radio partner on Sirius NFL Radio, Randy Cross, had an interesting observation on the air the other day about how football players feel about the money they make. "At any given time,'' he said, "I'd say about a third of all players are unhappy with their contracts.''
It left me wondering what the Minnesota Vikings players, particularly on defense, feel about the six-year, $73.3 million contract Jared Allen signed after being acquired from the Chiefs. Check out the stat box to the right.
So Allen will make $16.2 million in 2008. The combined 2008 salaries of the six best incumbent Minnesota defensive players -- cornerback Antoine Winfield, linebackers Chad Greenway and E.J. Henderson, safety Darren Sharper, and tackles Kevin Williams and Pat Williams -- is $16.9 million.
Two other points about the contract:
By all appearances Allen appears to have tamed the off-field problems that resulted in his two driving-while-impaired arrests while in Kansas City. But if Allen, who has two strikes against him in the NFL's substance-abuse program, has another slipup, it will be tremendously costly to him -- depending on when it occurs.
His 2009 contract is injury-guaranteed, meaning if he can't play because of a football injury, he'll get his money. But if he can't play because of an off-field problem, the team can cut him and be off the hook for the rest of the contract. His 2010 roster bonus is guaranteed for injury only, but will have to be paid if he is on the Vikings' roster on opening day 2009. So the key for Allen to be a very rich man is to be a Viking in Week One of 2009. If he isn't, it could cost him $57 million.
Moral of the story, in a quote from Kansas City president Carl Peterson: "The Chiefs are happy with the deal, the Vikings are happy with the deal, and I'm sure Jared Allen is very, very happy with the deal.''
Factoid of the Week That May Interest Only Me
If you're a nerdy/curious guy like me, and you saw the terms of the Kansas City-Minnesota trade for Allen last week, one weird thing stuck out.
The trade: The Chiefs sent Allen and a sixth-round pick (187th overall), to Minnesota for a first-round pick (17th), two third-rounders (73rd and 82nd) and a sixth (182nd).
The weirdness: Why the totally insignificant swap of sixth-rounders?
"Because I wanted to get the real value according to our trade chart,'' said Peterson, "and with only the one and two threes, we were a few points short.''
The draft trade chart -- some teams use it, some think it's outdated -- provides a point value for each of the 252 picks in the draft. When Team A is trading with Team B, often Team A's general manager will consult the chart to see if he's getting the correct value in the deal.
In this trade, Peterson wanted Minnesota's first- and second-round picks. Minnesota's first, the 17th overall, is worth 950 points on the chart; the second rounder, 47th overall, is worth 430. That is 1,380 points of value on the chart.
Minnesota offered instead to trade the 17th (950 points), 73rd (225) and 82nd (180). That's 1,355 points of value on the chart.
The two teams were 25 points apart. So Peterson, just wanting anything to narrow the gap in his mind, settled for a swap of sixth-rounders. The 182nd pick is worth 19.6 points, the 187th pick valued at 17.6.
So Peterson, a nut for the trade chart, got two points closer to his goal of an even trade.
Aggravating/Enjoyable Travel Note of the Week
Ever stayed at a W? It's a nice hotel chain, an upscale, groovy-chic branch of the Westin, but quite O.
For draft weekend, I stayed at the W Perimeter, the Atlanta-beltway W near a big mall and the swank places they don't let people my age in. At the W, when you go to work out, you go to W Sweat, which, by the way, is a pretty barren workout room for a hotel that is pretty E.
Anyway, the light on my phone was blinking Saturday, and a computer voice told me I had a message at the front desk. The pleasant fellow I was connected to told me, "You have an envelope waiting for you at Whatever, Whenever.'' I asked where that was, and he said, "You know, reception. The front desk.''