When Browns coach Eric Mangini appeared on Monday’s edition of The Dan Patrick Show with a certain Internet hack with whom you may be familiar, Mangini expressed optimism that the team’s top three draft picks — cornerback Joe Haden, running back Montario Hardesty, and quarterback Colt McCoy — would sign their contracts in time for camp. (We forgot to mention second-rounder T.J. Ward.)
But the rookies report Friday, and camp opens several days later. And while it’s possible that Hardesty and McCoy will be signed, Haden’s deal presents a couple of challenges.
For starters, Haden is represented by a relatively inexperienced agent, Malik Shareef. Then there’s the fact that Haden is operating out of the same No. 7 overall slot occupied in 2009 by receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, to whom the Raiders paid a whopper of a deal — five years, with $23.5 million guaranteed.
The floor for Haden’s deal will be set by another Raiders’ top-ten pick, linebacker Rolando McClain. It would be foolish not to wait and see whether the Raiders do another foolish deal.
That said, Shareef said in June that Haden has no intention of holding out. To avoid a holdout, however, Haden and Shareef may have to leave a nice chunk of money on the table.