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Kraft explains his salary cap comments

Robert Kraft AP

Last week, Patriots owner Robert Kraft suggested that those who believe the new TV contracts will cause a spike in the salary cap as of 2014 are believing wrong.  Over the weekend, the NFLPA reportedly said otherwise.

Kraft elaborated on his view at the league meetings Monday.

People are assuming that because the TV spikes that’s all going to get paid,” Kraft said, via Ian Rapoport of the Boston Herald.  “The networks aren’t looking to pay us a lot of money right up front.  They also smooth out how they pay us out, so I would think the later years of the deals there would be higher payments.  So, that’s the reason for that.  They agreed to these long-term commitments but they also smooth out. . . .  Part of doing long-term deals allowed for payments that, they have to show their stockholders that they did a wise deal, so . .  I mean the good news here is that we have growth, we have it long-term and everyone’s going to benefit by it, but it’s not going to be spikes that will be not good for planning.  This way, people can plan.”

It’s hard to disagree with Kraft, and it’s even harder to reconcile the NFLPA’s promise of a spike with the important objective of managing the expectations of the constituents.

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27 Responses to “Kraft explains his salary cap comments”
  1. HitsDingers says: Mar 26, 2012 4:31 PM

    News to the rest of the league: If the Patriots and Eagles are doing/saying the same thing, you should probably do that too

  2. amaf21 says: Mar 26, 2012 4:56 PM

    News to HitsDingers – fat boy will be out on his ear next year and the Pats will be getting hammered for Spygate.

  3. bozosforall says: Mar 26, 2012 4:58 PM

    In other words, greedy owners like Kraft just need more time to figure out a way to cheat the players out of their share of the profits.

  4. gmsalpha says: Mar 26, 2012 5:13 PM

    HitsDingers says: Mar 26, 2012 4:31 PM

    News to the rest of the league: If the Patriots and Eagles are doing/saying the same thing, you should probably do that too

    =========================

    On the other hand, if the Cowboys and Redskins are doing/saying the same thing, you should probably NOT do that too.

  5. kane337 says: Mar 26, 2012 5:17 PM

    BREAKING NEWS: NFL owners announce there will be a smooth growth to the prices of season tickets.

  6. kacapaco says: Mar 26, 2012 5:22 PM

    Petty awesome Patriot-ish way of seeing things ahead wisely. It is blessing to have him as owner.

  7. quadya says: Mar 26, 2012 5:28 PM

    Hate the Patriots, but its hard to disagree with anything Kraft says. Dude is a class act through and through. He’s not only looking to do whats best for his team but whats best for the NFL as a whole.

  8. mylionsroaring says: Mar 26, 2012 5:31 PM

    I am not a Pats fan, but I do feel their owner is straight with people. He don’t sugar coat things even though it usually comes out sweet LOL.

    You gotta love the guy after what Jeff Saturday said. We would not be having football in 2012 if not for Mr. Kraft. Well Thank You then Mr Kraft!!!

  9. 513guy says: Mar 26, 2012 5:43 PM

    This guy is a genius.

  10. thraiderskin says: Mar 26, 2012 5:46 PM

    I give respect to anything Mr. Kraft says, he showed his sacrifice to the rest of us, just so we could have the NFL last season.

  11. therealjr says: Mar 26, 2012 6:10 PM

    Wouldn’t it make more sense to have a smoother cap and some sort of escrow system whereby the players are ensured they will get just the right amount regardless of if the cap was a little higher or lower?

    This year to year salary cap calculation makes things a lot messier than need be.

  12. backindasaddle says: Mar 26, 2012 7:20 PM

    Maybe the owners don’t have little devil ears and pitch forks after all.

  13. belicheckyoself says: Mar 27, 2012 12:34 AM

    At the worlds newest tebow fan- kraft corp and j&j both donate a ton to charity. None of its yours to dictate.
    The league and the networks bring a sheerly awesome product to us for free. I hope it stays so awesome.
    I think the owner vs player argument gets a little foolish as they both need each other. We, the market, obviously still get something from it or we wouldnt be here discussing it. I think if anyones underpaid its the coaches, who have innovated the game so much in the 90s and 2000s.

  14. patsfiend says: Mar 27, 2012 2:01 AM

    bozosforall says:
    Mar 26, 2012 4:58 PM
    In other words, greedy owners like Kraft just need more time to figure out a way to cheat the players out of their share of the profits.
    ———–
    You mean greedy in the way that he spent the whole day banging out the new labor agreement, with much appreciation from the players and owners both, in the days following his wife of 40 years death? The man looked like he was going to collapse from fatigue and grief when he was up there with Jeff Saturday at the podium.

    You’re such a trolling idiot.

  15. khuxford says: Mar 27, 2012 7:37 AM

    Patsfiend, you do realize that an argument could be made that Kraft being at business meetings, rather than mourning as most of us would expect, gives more credence to bozosforall’s opinion of the man, right? That it was so important for him to win money back for the owners (or, from some angles, screw over the players) that he locked himself in a room with them all day instead of being with family. Then again, I believe he had his son there. I do know he did some on-camera crying from the meetings, too, which isn’t to say I believe it was insincere, but that it could be spun for bozosforall’s opinion, too.

    But, whatever you think of his being at the meeting after his wife’s death, I am with bozosforall on Kraft’s salary cap statement. This is laying the groundwork for withholding as much of the new money from the players as possible, despite ownership already winning on the CBA.

  16. bcgreg says: Mar 27, 2012 10:12 AM

    @ khuxford

    Are you really that stupid that you believe what you wrote or that you agree with bozo? Did you even READ the statements of people regarding the end of the lockout? After the deal was done, Kraft explained that his wife told him to go get the deal done. It was important to her as well even on her death bed. Kraft flew back and forth every day to the meetings. He is one of the most powerful and influential owners in the league and needed to be there to get it done. Funny how in the middle of the process, Kraft said that if the lawyers got out of the room that a deal would be done. Ironically, that’s pretty much how it got done. When the players almost unanimously laud Kraft for getting the deal done and for having a fair deal, then greed obviously was not a factor. Bozo talks about ignorant Pats fans. Well, I’m here to talk about ignorant haters such as bozo and you because you obviously don’t understand what he’s saying about the salary cap in relation to the tv money.

  17. khuxford says: Mar 27, 2012 10:18 AM

    bcgreg, before your rush to thumbs down my comment and thumbs up your own, did you look up the nearest learning annex that offers a reading comprehension course?

    I said the facts could be used to back up Bozo’s assertion, specifying a few times along the way that it wasn’t necessarily one I agreed with.

    The only sentiment I agree with is that this “smooth” nonsense he’s talking about is just a way to start building up their attempt to play down revenue in order to keep the player share smaller.

    I can certainly see why Bozo talks about ignorant Pats fans…

  18. patsfiend says: Mar 27, 2012 12:41 PM

    Both are fair arguments. Kraft is a shrewd business man, and I’m sure he’s looking for the best deal for the owners. Maybe the players were all “fooled” by his sincerity, and his actions were just grandstanding and acting in order to screw them over. The skeptical viewpoint is valid.

    However… I’ll prefer, based on what I’ve read, to think that he’s a good, sincere man, and I’m quite happy to have him as the owner of my favorite football club.

    If that makes me an ignorant “learning annex” graduate in the eyes of a pompous wonk like you, khuxford, I can live with that.

  19. CKL says: Mar 27, 2012 3:18 PM

    @khuxford
    You are a pretty rational Jets fan so those pretty negative comments did surprise me a bit from you.
    Not saying Mr.Kraft is a holy man who doesn’t want to make any profit or anything but even the top union people agreed he was fair and cared about getting a fair deal, not just what was best for owners. And they had access to the TV deal contracts I would imagine, especially as one of their big arguments was that decision they won about the owners unfairly setting the terms of their new tv contracts to favor them (“lockout insurance”). I would also imagine they knew, if they cared to know, how the cap would be calculated. Unless DeSmith is/their union reps are a moron/morons, that is.

  20. khuxford says: Mar 27, 2012 4:28 PM

    @CKL: I don’t know what I said that was so overly negative as to be surprising, but I thank you kindly for the compliment.

    In fairness to Mr. Kraft and those who greatly admire him, I’ll modify my stance to his making these statements to put the league in the best possible position to avoid action by the players in the future.

    But, if the players saw the contracts as you indicate and aren’t morons, then they’d have seen the payout schedule and not have made these claims, yes?

  21. khuxford says: Mar 27, 2012 4:34 PM

    @patsfiend: since my earlier comments weren’t let through (and I really don’t know why), let me tame it down further this time.

    If you had acknowledged both arguments as valid previously, I wouldn’t have needed to point it out to you. Which would have deprived BCGreg the opportunity to demonstrate his difficulty following a pretty straight forward comment that led him to take verbal swings at me, where I took that “learning annex” jab at him in return. I made no such slaps at you, but you attempt to insult me by calling me a pompous wonk when this whole line of discussion came about because you couldn’t breathe, take two seconds and realize the same facts you used to “prove” your opinion could be used to “prove” Bozo’s?

    To recap: I politely point out your error, get slapped at by a third party, return fire and end with you acknowledging the truth to what I said but insulting me for the effort.

    I believe I see why some people have such problems discussing the issues with Pats fans.

  22. CKL says: Mar 28, 2012 8:37 AM

    @khuxford,
    Yes it makes sense that if the players saw the contracts they wouldn’t just now be up in arms but I think some of that is a function of the sheer volume of them along with their mentality. We saw this during the lockout where some players would rant and rave but what they ranted about was a misunderstanding of the real issues. I think it’s just tough when you have 2 reps/team and they have to try to educate all the guys on their squad about all the issues and it’s the offseason to boot. There’s bound to be some “playing telephone” type issues with passing of info. And also some players simply believe the basics of what they are told or what applies to them and are just happy to be back playing. To play sports one has to have a “living in the moment” type mentality vs a long term one so they get their career back, they’re still getting paid the same, they get less offseason stuff, they’re happy.

    Since we haven’t heard from DeSmith on this topic, I’m guessing he must have known what was up with the contracts. I would imagine had he felt some injustice was done, he’d (or Atallah would be, etc)be fussing about it publicly on behalf of his players.

    I don’t know anything for sure, just trying to surmise based on what’s happened.

  23. khuxford says: Mar 28, 2012 9:03 AM

    @CKL: it’s hard for me to respond to your first paragraph, as it launches with mention of unspecific moments where players ranted about a misunderstanding.

    What I can say in response, though, is that we’re not talking about players here, but the players’ side: their management and legal teams that have advised them the cap will jump up by a large amount. If they saw the contracts during the negotiations or as part of their lawsuit against the league having structured their TV deals in a suspect way to help buoy them for the anticipated lockout, then it seems less likely that they’re just wrong here and more likely that the owners are trying to manipulate things to their benefit in a less than forthright manner.

    Then, again, if you’d asked me a month ago, I’d have been adamant that no one running the NFLPA would consent to retroactively endorsing collusion for some short-sighted benefit.

  24. bcgreg says: Mar 28, 2012 11:09 AM

    @ khuxford

    The first thing you do is look at the negative side of any Kraft comment here. I’m not saying that Kraft was not looking out for his own best interests in these negotiations. What I am saying is that “greed” was not at the top of his list. We all know the money involved and couldn’t understand why the NFL would have a lockout to begin with (To us–the fans–it’s greed, but to the owners AND players, it was business. Most fans [Bozo] can’t distinguish between the two. These people–owners and players–live in a different world than you and me.) However, there was a lockout, and a new deal was signed. From ALL accounts, both sides are happy with the deal and think it’s fair. To imply that any of Kraft’s statements here represent any kind of “let’s screw the players later” comment is lame. If they really wanted to screw the players, there would have been no season in 2011. All he said was not to ASSUME there would be a huge jump in the cap in one year. That’s all.

    Bozo’s comment is weak and comes from a known Patriot/Kraft hater on this site. He has not shown to earn any “trust” with any comment made about the Pats because of his own, well-established reputation. For you to agree with his assessment shows your knee jerk ignorance of the situation and the man (Kraft). Then, for you to insinuate that Kraft thought the labor deal was more important than his wife further shows your lack of knowledge of the situation and the man.

    As for my educational understanding of your agreement with Bozo, I comprehended what you wrote, and it’s still effing stupid. You should read the context of Bozo’s original statement and then understand the source. Maybe you should find one of those “learning annexes” that you mentioned so that you can put 2 and 2 together.

  25. khuxford says: Mar 28, 2012 11:49 AM

    @BCGreg: You honestly believe that cancelling 2011 would have been screwing over only the players?

    You’re a fool and there’s no point in engaging you further.

  26. bcgreg says: Mar 28, 2012 1:07 PM

    @ khuxford

    Most owners were ready to sit out the season. Most owners make their “real” money outside of football (Kraft being one). So, yes, with no 2011, the players would be screwed more than the owners, and the owners would have gotten a MUCH better deal for themselves if they cancelled the season thereby screwing the players.

    And, yes, I’m done with you too if you can’t understand that.

  27. khuxford says: Mar 28, 2012 1:21 PM

    @BCGreg: it’s cute if you really believe that their posturing equaled a true willingness to cancel the season. Especially after the NFLPA was successfully suing them over how they renegotiated the TV contracts to give them an advantage over the players.

    In the future, you may want to know what you’re talking about before opening your “mouth” here. Unless, of course, you like looking uninformed regularly.

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