Saints to Release Latavius Murray (1 Viewer)

Deuuuuce

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Contracts in the NFL only loosely fit the definition of what a "contract" is intended to be. Basically an NFL contract is a salary/payment structure and anything beyond the current year is essentially meaningless.

A really exceptional player has the ability to essentially void their contract every 2-3 years, regardless of the terms of the contract - the team also has the ability to release a player they feel isn't meeting their standards while only being on the hook for a portion of what was agreed upon by both parties.

It's a two-way street, in a sense. Because teams can release a player with little regard to what was agreed upon in the contract, players are more inclined to fight for more money when they have played to a level that exceeds the "going rate" for that position. As unsavory as a holding-out player can seem, it acts as a form of "checks and balances" for the player/team dynamic.

Where it gets a little muddled in the public perception is that for a team to use their leverage by releasing an "underperforming" player it can easily be explained away as "we are doing what it best for the team" - which makes fans happy because, that money will go to someone potentially better than the released player and equal more wins.

In order for a player to use their leverage, they have to withhold their services and force the team to give them more resources than were originally allotted for that player - which of course means that there is less of the pie to go towards resigning other players or brining in new players.

In the eyes of fans - that's a bad thing. So the player seeking more money is usually vilified.


The biggest issue is that it's all extremely unbalanced. Only the upper-tier players hold the negotiating leverage. Guys like Murray are in the "good, but very replaceable" area, so they have little leverage in negotiating for more money.

Often, as we saw with Murray, teams will balance the books on the backs of those players. They will essentially come with the ultimatum - "you are overpaid for your production level. Take a pay cut or we will release you."

The player can agree to that, if they agree with the assessment - then they play out the new terms and walk when the contract is done. Or they can say, "I don't agree with the assessment - or I do but would rather play somewhere else for less money than stay where I'm undervalued." Which is what Murray chose - and he will likely go to the Ravens where he will be on a good team.

This is a good explanation. I guess my point in my previous post was more a question of why fans vilify players for playing this game, but when the org does it, it’s ”just how it works”. I understand it’s a business and both parties are going to do what is in their best interest. It just seems like when a player does it, they are thrown under the bus.

In this case, i think the org could have handled this situation more professionally. You want players to feel like they are going to be treated better when they sign on with the Saints.
 
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The Saints traded for Roby...a move they may not have been able to make with Murray absorbing over $3 million/year to be RB3. You have to do what you have to do. The Roby could mean the difference between playoff and no playoff. I do feel for Murray and hope he catches on...but the Saints would have been stupid not to do so. I wish that they would have cut him immediately after the Jags game...but you have to imagine that they were still considering their options at that time and then the hurricane came along which threw a wrench into the situation.
 

superchuck500

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Contracts in the NFL only loosely fit the definition of what a "contract" is intended to be. Basically an NFL contract is a salary/payment structure and anything beyond the current year is essentially meaningless.

A really exceptional player has the ability to essentially void their contract every 2-3 years, regardless of the terms of the contract - the team also has the ability to release a player they feel isn't meeting their standards while only being on the hook for a portion of what was agreed upon by both parties.

It's a two-way street, in a sense. Because teams can release a player with little regard to what was agreed upon in the contract, players are more inclined to fight for more money when they have played to a level that exceeds the "going rate" for that position. As unsavory as a holding-out player can seem, it acts as a form of "checks and balances" for the player/team dynamic.

Where it gets a little muddled in the public perception is that for a team to use their leverage by releasing an "underperforming" player it can easily be explained away as "we are doing what it best for the team" - which makes fans happy because, that money will go to someone potentially better than the released player and equal more wins.

In order for a player to use their leverage, they have to withhold their services and force the team to give them more resources than were originally allotted for that player - which of course means that there is less of the pie to go towards resigning other players or brining in new players.

In the eyes of fans - that's a bad thing. So the player seeking more money is usually vilified.


The biggest issue is that it's all extremely unbalanced. Only the upper-tier players hold the negotiating leverage. Guys like Murray are in the "good, but very replaceable" area, so they have little leverage in negotiating for more money.

Often, as we saw with Murray, teams will balance the books on the backs of those players. They will essentially come with the ultimatum - "you are overpaid for your production level. Take a pay cut or we will release you."

The player can agree to that, if they agree with the assessment - then they play out the new terms and walk when the contract is done. Or they can say, "I don't agree with the assessment - or I do but would rather play somewhere else for less money than stay where I'm undervalued." Which is what Murray chose - and he will likely go to the Ravens where he will be on a good team.

That's not entirely true, or at least it's more nuanced than that - the guaranteed money and cap aspects do make some future years of NFL contracts effectively enforced.

But that's why it's always important to look at the guaranteed money first. If the is no future guaranteed money left for the team to pay and the dead cap doesn't limit the team's discretion, then it is true that the "contract" is just terms upon which the player will be paid should the team wish to keep him.
 

superchuck500

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Guess I don't understand the business side but it just look bad on our part. If I go by your post, then they should of talk to him before cut down.

I don't think we knew before cut down what kind of cap room we would need to put something together for a need. Clearly we got through cut down day with only 3 CBs, which meant that we were looking for one (or more). But at that point, we still didn't know if it was going to be through a trade (and at what value) or perhaps signing a released player or what.

We signed Trufant but then it seems this deal for Roby came together and the cap situation became much more acute - we had to find money to sign him. At that point, you look for expendability, and Murray was the guy.

We just didn't know how all of that would go down before cut down day. You make the move when you need to because you need the cap space, otherwise you keep him.
 
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saint_drago

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This is a good explanation. I guess my point in my previous post was more a question of why fans vilify players for playing this game, but when the org does it, it’s ”just how it works”. I understand it’s a business and both parties are going to do what is in their best interest. It just seems like when a player does it, they are thrown under the bus.

In this case, i think the org could have handled this situation more professionally. You want players to feel like they are going to be treated better when they sign on with the Saints.
If the Saints were the type of team that cuts veterans like this frequently then I could understand, but they don't. They aren't savages like New England. They usually give players every opportunity to catch on with a new team when they know that player isn't part of their vision going forward.

This was an unusual situation and I honestly think the Saints were blindsided by Murray's decline. It's obvious that he was part of SP's vision for the offense this season. With his contract I thought he could've been cut to get under the cap but they kept him. They didn't ask him to take a pay cut back then. But once it was apparent that he had lost some juice and was being outperformed by a younger (far cheaper) player, they had to make a decision. They still wanted him but at a pay level more commensurate with his current skill/value. If their cap situation was better then maybe they could carry his contract but the cap situation isn't ideal and they needed cap space to make some moves.

And by most accounts the Saints are a player friendly organization. The only negative things I've heard came from disgruntled ex Saints with an axe to grind.
 

boutte

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Everybody is talking about Murray's decline. We saw a couple of carries in a pre-season game from a veteran player who has been very productive for us. In fact he's been a standout in his role.

We just can't afford him and there's a new shiny object for us to fantasize about who's talented and cheap.

I'm going to miss him.
 

Taker597

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..or better yet we roll it into next seasons cap. Loomis has a lot of money to find in the next off season, I'm ok with us bargain shopping this year.

Exactly why I've been expecting this move for a while. Can't pay a #3 rb this kinda money.
Haha.. Or trade for a player
 

saintmdterps

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This is a good philosophy for great teams. we used to be one of those teams that picked those players up instead of letting them go.
*cough, cough* Wayne Gandy. Cut his locker room recliner, then cut him. Never should have signed him.
 

neworleanshoo

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No lies in this statement, especially when players ask for a raise and everyone is like "well, that's the contract you signed."

dead on! I have no idea how the owners have been allowed to have it both ways, but I can see this totally blowing up before the next CBA.
 

SystemShock

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Contracts in the NFL only loosely fit the definition of what a "contract" is intended to be. Basically an NFL contract is a salary/payment structure and anything beyond the current year is essentially meaningless.

A really exceptional player has the ability to essentially void their contract every 2-3 years, regardless of the terms of the contract - the team also has the ability to release a player they feel isn't meeting their standards while only being on the hook for a portion of what was agreed upon by both parties.

It's a two-way street, in a sense. Because teams can release a player with little regard to what was agreed upon in the contract, players are more inclined to fight for more money when they have played to a level that exceeds the "going rate" for that position. As unsavory as a holding-out player can seem, it acts as a form of "checks and balances" for the player/team dynamic.

Where it gets a little muddled in the public perception is that for a team to use their leverage by releasing an "underperforming" player it can easily be explained away as "we are doing what it best for the team" - which makes fans happy because, that money will go to someone potentially better than the released player and equal more wins.

In order for a player to use their leverage, they have to withhold their services and force the team to give them more resources than were originally allotted for that player - which of course means that there is less of the pie to go towards resigning other players or brining in new players.

In the eyes of fans - that's a bad thing. So the player seeking more money is usually vilified.


The biggest issue is that it's all extremely unbalanced. Only the upper-tier players hold the negotiating leverage. Guys like Murray are in the "good, but very replaceable" area, so they have little leverage in negotiating for more money.

Often, as we saw with Murray, teams will balance the books on the backs of those players. They will essentially come with the ultimatum - "you are overpaid for your production level. Take a pay cut or we will release you."

The player can agree to that, if they agree with the assessment - then they play out the new terms and walk when the contract is done. Or they can say, "I don't agree with the assessment - or I do but would rather play somewhere else for less money than stay where I'm undervalued." Which is what Murray chose - and he will likely go to the Ravens where he will be on a good team.

Contracts spell out the conditions for employment.

A player has the ability to void his contract before reaching the original term of the contract because it is a condition set forth in the contract.

A team has the ability to release a player before reaching the original term of the contract based on the conditions set forth in the contract.

Contrary to popular belief, "20 million for 5 years" is not THE contract. It's more like the title of the movie.

Is it unbalanced? Sure. But then, in every walk of life, the better performers will get better benefits, and the ones with the cash will get to write the rules in their favor.
 

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