OTAs a no-go for Gerhart

toby-gerhart-p1.jpgThe NFL calendar is, in many ways, predictable.  The month of May, for example, typically spawns a slew of stories regarding the rookies who are unavailable for offseason workouts due to an outdated and nonsensical rule that keeps them from participating until the schools they typically have long ago left conclude their spring semesters.

This year, the first story we’ve noticed in this regard comes from Minnesota, where second-round draft pick Toby Gerhart will miss out on Organized Team Activities (a 23-letter phrase for “practice”) because Stanford’s school year doesn’t end until June 9.

He’ll be back for a June 11-13 minicamp.  Per Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com, Gerhart graduates on June 13 and he plans to try to participate in as much of the minicamp as he can before trading pigskin for sheepskin.

Look for other stories along these lines to emerge over the next week or two.  We seem to recall Ohio State players and Washington players falling into this category.

And we definitely recall that these stories peter out quickly, and that no player’s struggles in his rookie year ever have been attributed to a rule that nevertheless is long overdue to be wiped off the books.

34 responses to “OTAs a no-go for Gerhart

  1. Wat’s the point of this rule, I don’t get it. Who cares if Standord is still in school?

  2. At least he is graduating, from Stanford as well. Have your son admire this guy Florio if you are so worried about Cushing.

  3. Saints 2009 Round 1 Pick Malcolm Jenkins was in the same situation, but as a smart guy – he caught up, and contributed as a Rookie…
    But there is no question he was behind, and that’s not good if you get an injury to put you further behind…
    NFL teams schedules are usually set in advance so other committments by both team and personnel can be scheduled and met; and so it’s going to continue to be an issue…
    Speaking of Saints, and keeping with Florio obessesive compulsiveness, there was this Vicodin story…

  4. So your going to make a different story about every player that won’t be able to participate in OTA’s?

  5. UCLA also has a quarters system and their players can’t report to teams until June 11.

  6. @ Larry David:
    Probably those who care whether or not they graduate from a prestigious school and still value their education.

  7. I think it is done to keep teams from preventing players from graduating due to forced rookie minicamps.

  8. If I played for the Vikings I wouldn”t attend any off season workouts either. The king doesn’t have to, why should the rest of the men. I’m proud of Toby for taking a stance against Lord Favre.

  9. He loaded up his fall semester and finished early to focus on football in the spring. He actuallybwill graduate.
    Moat of the idiots drop out anyways, so finishing the semester isn’t even a worry anymore.

  10. It could be that some don’t feel the NFL is that important. It can wait as this young man concludes his education.

  11. What is it with Viking draft choices and missing practice? Last year it was the pot smoking Harvin needing to clean out his system before subjecting himself to NFL testing (not that it mattered, this is Minnesota where the judges are friendly and the farm animals nervous).
    But then again, this is the franchise where attending training camp is optional, head coaches double as chauffeurs, and highway speed limit signs are just a suggestion. Maybe Gerhart just aspires to be like BrINT Favre.

  12. The rule is not nonsensical. It’s designed so that a student-athlete (remember, they’re students, too) will not be pressured by his NFL team or himself to miss classes or tests in order to compete for his place on the team.
    If a young player has a huge test coming up that will help him get his degree, yet that same week a batch of OTAs coming up for a job that could potentially pay him millions of dollars, well, even you can see the conflict, right? And Roger Goodell doesn’t want to be in charge of an entity that encourages kids to skip out on getting their diploma.

  13. DB26 says:
    May 14, 2010 7:31 AM
    @ Larry David:
    Probably those who care whether or not they graduate from a prestigious school and still value their education
    It should be up to the player to decide what they want to do, not the NFL. He can always go back whenever he wants and finish his degree.

  14. If their class work for their degree has all been completed at the end of the prior semester/quarter, why shouldn’t they be permitted to attend?

  15. Jimmy Smith is a scumbag! Oh Wisconsin, where the women are men and the dentists are out of work.

  16. For a high draft round guy, this is a non issue. But what about later guys and the undrafted free agents? They are fighting for roster spots and will be playing catch-up all summer. Seems like this rule should be changed quickly to put everyone on a level playing field.

  17. Right PULL&SEAL and JimmySmith, this young man’s choice to finish his commitment and receive a well earned degree from one of the most academically prestigious universities in the world is all about Farve and Minnesota. GET OVER IT!!!
    Only in America can such idiots find the freedom to reveal their prejudices and overwhelming ignorance before the world. When you guys share your idiotic garbage it makes a person question the wisdom of that.

  18. @JimmySmith
    Coming from the land where men beat their wives after a Packer’s loss and you’re trying to say that Minnesota (20+ Fortune 500 Companies) has farm animals that are nervous?!? Please, you can’t even have buildings taller than your capital. Backwards ass Packer fans. Probably very similar to Steeler fans. You take out the frustration from a loss on your dog or woman, lol. Pathetic.

  19. @ JimmySmith
    You are an idiot!
    Percy Harvin missed some practices, and I don’t think it turned out bad for him or the Vikings. Guess you didn’t see who won Rookie of the Year!
    Toby Gerhart is graduating from Stanford. This is a negative thing???????
    Wake up DOUCHEBAG!

  20. Yeah, they need to give the kids at schools like Stanford and UCLA a bit longer to learn the material. College is hard!

  21. He probably doesn’t want to be in Minnesota, anyways. Its a convenient, yet viable, excuse. Good luck with the Mosquitos, Toby. Hope you don’t get malaria, you’re a good dude that’s gonna be stuck in a filthy place.

  22. Primadonna!!
    I hereby dub thee Baron von Gerhart, vassal to Lord Favre, and defender of the short yardage situation.

  23. The “nonsensical” rule is an agreement that the NFL has with the NCAA. Players who have already graduated are allowed to participate in the off-season programs, beginning in mid-May. If they have not graduated, they may not participate until their school is officially ended (finals), even if they are not enrolled. The theory behind this is that it encourages the athlete to stay in school. In reality, most of them are not in school, so it is kind of asinine. But don’t blame the NFL. You can put the blame on the NCAA.

  24. I’ve never replied to JimmySmith… but that was a pretty lame comment. IDK if you enjoy riling up Vikings fans or what, but really, that was pathetic. Try again.

  25. I love how because it is Touchdown Toby, Hesiman trophy finalist, this is a non story, but when Myron Rolle has to miss because he is taking finals at OXFORD he is putting football second and doesn’t care about playing. Yea that makes a lot of sense…..

  26. These players are drafted and still cannot play for the team, but players get busted for roids and still become ROY, or Pro Bowlers. WOW, this makes alot of sense.

  27. Please people, Jimmy has never even heard of a school before. Of course he’s going to bash Gerhart about finishing school instead of going to OTAs

  28. Packers fans come to PFT daily to express their Minnesota envy. Kind of sad how plain it is for anyone to see except them.

  29. JimmySmith says:
    May 14, 2010 7:57 AM
    What is it with Viking draft choices and missing practice? Last year it was the pot smoking Harvin needing to clean out his system before subjecting himself to NFL testing (not that it mattered, this is Minnesota where the judges are friendly and the farm animals nervous).
    But then again, this is the franchise where attending training camp is optional, head coaches double as chauffeurs, and highway speed limit signs are just a suggestion. Maybe Gerhart just aspires to be like BrINT Favre.
    —————
    Well said Jimmy

  30. Who is bashing Gehart for finishing school? I was merely pointing out that Viking draft choices have historically missed OTA’s although this time it wasn’t drug related.

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