Wednesday Morning QB (Week 10)

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There has been a battle in every professional league between the players and the team staff since professional leagues began.

The division is long-lasting as it has been the players versus everyone else and has taken plenty of forms.

Sometimes players go after their head coaches or the owners, always claiming that the best interests of the players are never really in the minds of everyone else.

The claim is not entirely untrue as players are a part of a much larger system and nobody really cares that much about them.

The league has often concentrated on the bottom line regardless of what it has to do with the players.

Coaches see players come and go without much care for most of them as they simply need to win games without thinking about the players that they have.

Meanwhile, the players are the main part of the entertainment and they put their health on the line every time they step on the field.

They may get heavily compensated for that but with an average career of around 2.5 years that compensation tends to weight out when many players have finished around 30-years old.

The arguments between these two sides have been many and they have led to some big changes in the league including free agency.

There have been any number of complaints from the players and some lead to those big changes while others just lead to strange circumstances.

The NFL saw one of those strange circumstances this week when the Green Bay Packers released Michael Bennett.

Bennett has always been an outspoken player and one of the top tight ends in the league coming off of a Super Bowl season.

The Packers needed a tight end and so they signed him to a three-year deal in the off-season hoping that he could provide another target for Aaron Rodgers.

The season didn’t turn out the best for the team and for Bennett who has spent the majority of his time on the sidelines with a shoulder injury.

Heading into Week 10 it seemed like Bennett was weighing his options and potentially ending his season.

He had reportedly considered season-ending surgery on his shoulder and the Packers were not very happy with the decision.

They essentially signed a player to sit on the sidelines and according to them Bennett never disclosed that his shoulder would be a problem.

The injury was a pre-existing condition and from the Packers’ end, he never disclosed the injury before signing with the team, a violation of the CBA.

So the Packers released Bennett and began the process of taking back the signing bonus that he received for lying to them during the free agency process.

In response, Bennett claimed that the training staff for the Packers had encouraged Bennett to play through the injury.

He went on record to state that the team didn’t seem to care about how he felt but were trying to force him to play.

The other players on the team refused to back up his story stating that they had never received the same pressure to play from the group.football-sidebar

It was a strange breakup but things only got stranger a few days later when Bennett was signed by his former team, New England.

All of a sudden, that injured shoulder seemed to be healed as surgery wasn’t even talked about before Bennett suited up and played on Sunday.

All of the claimed from Bennett seemed to take a serious hit after he took no time off as soon as he changed teams.

The injured player that spent weeks on the sidelines was healthy again and seemed like he simply wanted out of Green Bay and found a way to do that.

His claims that the Packers staff tried to force him to play don’t seem too relevant anymore because he seemed healthy enough to play.

Some claim that it is Bennett simply gaming the system and getting what he wanted which is to return to the Patriots.

There is no way for a player to get out of a contract that they sign and so doing this might be the only way.

To not disclose an injury isn’t best practice but to sit out for weeks with an injury and consider season-ending surgery only to sign with a new team and seemingly be good enough to play the same week is not the best way to go about things.

Then to claim that a training staff tried to force him to play with an injury that didn’t seem to affect him the same week just doesn’t sit right with a lot of people.

It is another chapter in the constant battle between players and everyone else but not one that makes much of a convincing case on the player’s side.

 

Fifth Quarter

No Change in New York

The New York Giants are not having a good season and for the players, there is one simple answer. Reports surfaced in the past few weeks that Ben McAdoo has lost the locker room and that the players simply don’t want to play for him. A team that was expected to be great is one of the worst in the league and if it is the coach a change is usually in the future. That won’t happen this year though as the Giants’ owners have claimed that McAdoo will remain their coach for the rest of the season with their full confidence.

Contract Talks Continue

Roger Goodell has been in contract talks to remain as the commissioner of the NFL since the season began but things have gone sideways. After the player protests, Jerry Jones has reportedly put a halt to the contract talks due to his anger at how the protests were handled by Goodell. Now the other owners are fighting back as they have threatened legal action should Jones continue to hold up the contract talks with some rumours even beginning to rise that they have threatened to remove him as the owner of the Cowboys.

Getting a Payday

NFL contracts can sometimes be interesting as the base salaries are only the start with incentives built into the contracts that can get players some quick money. These incentives are basic like Super Bowl bonuses or achievement bonuses that come into effect if they reach a certain number in their stats. Adrian Clayborne saw these incentives come into effect but a lot sooner than anyone would have thought. After five sacks this week, Clayborne reached 8 sacks on the year activating a bonus that will pay him $750,000.

week10-standings

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