A league source has raised an intriguing concept with us.
It’s established, via Peter King of SI.com, that former Patriots defensive lineman Richard Seymour is “angry” about the trade that sent him into football’s literal and figurative Black Hole.
A good friend of Seymour’s told King on Sunday, “I would not be surprised if he doesn’t report.”
We’ve heard the same sentiment. So the source posed a great question.
What happens if Seymour doesn’t show?
It’s not completely out of the question. Seymour held out not once but twice from the Patriots during his time there, and Seymour’s agent is — you guessed it — Eugene Parker, who currently is embroiled in one of the nastiest rookie holdouts in recent memory, as the agent for 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree.
So, if Seymour refuses to report to the Raiders, either because he doesn’t want to play for the Raiders or because they’re not offering him the kind of contract he wants, what happens?
Because all trades hinge on the player showing up and passing a physical, Seymour wouldn’t become a Raider unless he enters the building. Thus, it apparently would fall back to the Patriots to take action against Seymour aimed at coaxing him to honor the last year of his current contract.
Under that contract, he’s due to earn $3.685 million this year. That’s more than $216,000 per game he’ll lose if he doesn’t accept the trade, in addition to any other potential fines that could be imposed.
If he stays out past Week Ten his contract will toll for a year, keeping him from becoming an unrestricted free agent in what looks to be an uncapped year. But this situation can’t linger for two months. At some point, the Raiders will reel in that first-round pick, and the Pats will be forced to slay the fatted calf for a son who was made involuntarily prodigal.