Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis didn’t flinch a week ago, when his decision to boycott the launch of training camp stripped the guarantees from $20 million that he’s due to earn in 2011 and 2012 combined.
The next question is whether he’ll flinch on Tuesday.
Under the terms of the labor agreement, Revis will forfeit a year of service toward free agency, if he fails to report for training camp at least 30 days before the start of the regular season. With the 2010 regular season beginning on September 9, it means that Revis must show up on or before August 10 or lose a year of service.
The rule, which applies only to players under contract, means that, if Revis doesn’t show by Tuesday, he’ll finish 2010 with the three years of service that he already has earned.
But it’s unlikely that Revis will show up without a new contract; Revis’ motivation flows in large part from his desire to nail down a second contract with the kind of truly guaranteed money that will set him up for life. (And, as we’re learning more and more all the time, the only truly guaranteed money is a signing bonus.) Unless the two sides can bridge their differences in 48 hours, Revis will have to decide whether he wants to give up a year of service toward free agency.
Then again, the fact that he’s under contract for three more years makes his years of service less important. A guy doesn’t become a free agent until his contract expires; even if Revis holds out until Week 10 of the 2010 regular season, he’ll be on track to have five years of service once his six-year contract ends.
Our guess? If a deal isn’t reached by Tuesday, Revis will continue to stay away.