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Blackmon’s arrest could impact the guarantees in his contract

Justin Blackmon AP

It would have been worse for receiver Justin Blackmon to be arrested for aggravated DUI before the draft.  It would have been better for it to happen after he signed his rookie contract.

It would have been best, of course, for it to never happen at all.

But happen it did, and now the question becomes whether it will have an impact on Blackmon’s contract negotiations.  As the fifth overall pick in the draft, Blackmon previously was in line for a fully-guaranteed four-year deal, with a value falling south of Matt Kalil at No. 4 and north of Morris Claiborne at No. 6.

In theory, the Jags could decide to stand firm on the requisite four-year tender offer for the minimum salaries.  That approach, however, inevitably would prompt Blackmon to hold out for the entire season and re-enter the draft in 2013, given that rookie contracts now can’t be renegotiated until after three seasons.  [Editor's note:  A prior version of this article explained that the Jaguars could tender Blackmon a one-year deal worth the rookie minimum of $390,000.  The new CBA has changed that requirement to a four-year offer.]

The problem for both sides is that there’s not much the Jaguars can do to set the stage for the recovery of money, if Blackmon has additional issues in the future.  The CBA provides for a partial forfeiture of a player’s signing bonus, if he is suspended for violating the substance-abuse policy (which covers DUI convictions).  But the days of recovering large chunks of money in the event of an isolated act of misbehavior are long gone.

Given that the extent to which a rookie contract is guaranteed represents the only real item for negotiation in the fully-slotted first-round deals, it could be that the Jaguars insist on language that would extinguish any remaining salary guarantees, in the event that (for example) Blackmon has any future arrests or other violations of the substance-abuse policy.  Article 4, Section 9(g) of the CBA expressly permits teams and players to “negotiate the circumstances under which the guarantee of any unearned Salary . . . may be voided.”

So while the top 16 players now each receive fully-guaranteed four-year deals, Blackmon may have to agree to language that permits future guarantees to go away, which in turn would give the Jaguars flexibility if they decide to move on from Blackmon before he finishes four full NFL seasons with the team.

Still, apart from recovering money already paid or erasing the guaranteed nature of money to be paid in the future, the Jaguars have a much greater interest in nurturing Blackmon into a great player and an even better citizen, especially since they moved up in round one to get him.  They need to make their next decisions regarding Blackmon with that important overriding objective in mind.

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43 Responses to “Blackmon’s arrest could impact the guarantees in his contract”
  1. kevinwi says: Jun 3, 2012 2:07 PM

    Can’t be held to CBA rules if you haven’t even signed a contract yet. He’s not subject to league rules yet.

  2. dalucks says: Jun 3, 2012 2:10 PM

    Another OK State WR with legal problems. I hope this is not Hartley Dykes all over again. Stop drinking dude.

  3. thekiller678 says: Jun 3, 2012 2:13 PM

    Stupid decision but he’s young. Hopefully he’ll learn from it. Everyone killing him needs to chill out

  4. thegreatgabbert says: Jun 3, 2012 2:19 PM

    He has been crappy in workouts and an embarrassment off the field. As a Jaguar fan, I would definitely be in favor of guaranteeing him NOTHING. Had a bad feeling about this pick from the moment it was made.

  5. skoobyfl says: Jun 3, 2012 2:20 PM

    Strike 2.

  6. buttpioneer says: Jun 3, 2012 2:34 PM

    I actually met Blackmon at a bar in Tallahassee about 2 months before the draft. He seemed friendly, posed with a friend in a picture (who kept telling him how great he would look in teal). He did seem to enjoy his drink though.

    There is no excuse for a DUI for anyone under any circumstance and hopefully this will be a learning and humbling experience.

  7. jtdapit50 says: Jun 3, 2012 2:34 PM

    Is anyone else getting sick of NFL players and off the field problems?? Goodell should focus on this more than the hitting, in the real world if a normal person gets a DUI its hard for them to keep a job let alone find another one. James harrison may hit illegally on field, but when has he had an off field issue with drugs/domestic violence/theft/bar fights?? Never. Get your mind right Goodell, look around.

  8. lawyermalloy says: Jun 3, 2012 2:37 PM

    He’s probably spent at least the 390,000 min. anticipating a big deal. Unless his agent will continue to lend him money during a season long hold out, he’ll sign!

  9. cowboyscanada says: Jun 3, 2012 2:41 PM

    Young and stupid…. If he keeps his nose clean from now on, not a big deal for his career down the road. These guys need have babysitters it seems.

  10. covercorner says: Jun 3, 2012 2:42 PM

    Great talents need to be nurtured. Scrubs get flushed.

  11. Neftali Ramos says: Jun 3, 2012 2:48 PM

    What a dumbass

  12. eaglessuperfan says: Jun 3, 2012 2:49 PM

    Good lord don’t they have cabs in Oklahoma? Stagecoach? Bikes maybe?

  13. swagjag says: Jun 3, 2012 2:51 PM

    The only guarantee is that Jerry Sullivan is gonna ride him into the ground when he gets back to Jax.

  14. truthfactory says: Jun 3, 2012 2:54 PM

    I don’t understand how these guys have an opportunity of a lifetime and manage to do such stupid things off the field…

  15. giantssb42champs says: Jun 3, 2012 2:57 PM

    Bengals are now scouting him for a trade.

  16. lscoop13 says: Jun 3, 2012 2:57 PM

    He’s 22 years old give the dude a break he’s likes chasing the dragon he will learn his lesson soon enough (hopefully after this) I see him at the ritz(jax bar) every weekend dude deff likes to party but I’d be doing the same thing if I were him so I can’t really blame him that much

  17. bunjy96 says: Jun 3, 2012 2:59 PM

    buttpioneer says: Jun 3, 2012 2:34 PM

    I actually met Blackmon at a bar in Tallahassee about 2 months before the draft. He seemed friendly, posed with a friend in a picture (who kept telling him how great he would look in teal). He did seem to enjoy his drink though.

    There is no excuse for a DUI for anyone under any circumstance and hopefully this will be a learning and humbling experience.

    *****
    This twice in 2 years-if the info is correct. Guess he hasn’t learned yet.

    First one was a misdemeanor. This one is a felony because of the .15 on the meter. Might be more difficult to get out of this one.

    Agree 100%, there is no excuse for a DUI for anyone.

  18. jvibottomline says: Jun 3, 2012 3:18 PM

    Another Big 12 skilled position player bust, when will NFL learn?

  19. thetooloftools says: Jun 3, 2012 3:22 PM

    Per Oklahoma law, an “aggravated” DUI occurs when the driver has a blood-alcohol content of .15 or greater.
    You have got to be kidding me. He could have killed someone and maybe woken up the next morning and not even have known it. I thought this guy was the total package. He’s not. He has no brains. STUPID. Go get drunk out of your mind with your buddies and sleep it off at their apartment or your but NEVER EVER get .15 drunk and drive.
    Remember all that good will you had coming out of college Mr. Blackmon? Well it’s all gone. He gets a 1 year contract and better earn it.
    HOW COULD YOU BE SO STUPID !
    I was screaming for Cleveland to draft you to help out Colt McCoy (who is getting shafted with no one to throw to). Now I’m glad we didn’t.
    I will pray for you .
    It really is now or never to get it together.
    The choice is yours.
    Best wishes.

  20. londonfletcher says: Jun 3, 2012 3:32 PM

    I love all of the “He’s only 22, give him a break” comments. I’m 28 and when I was 22, I was partying just as much as the next “recently released from college” kid, and I didn’t get any dui’s. As a matter of fact, none of my friends have had dui’s. Being young isn’t an excuse. Drunk and stupid is drunk and stupid, pro athlete or not.

  21. kane337 says: Jun 3, 2012 3:32 PM

    I am glad he didn’t kill anyone.

  22. steeelfann says: Jun 3, 2012 3:46 PM

    Big 12 defenses are laughable.

    Colt McCoy
    Vince Young
    Blaine Gabbert
    Michael Crabtree
    Limas Sweed

    I could go on and on regarding the QB’s and Wideouts from this fraud conference.

  23. EJ says: Jun 3, 2012 4:09 PM

    He’ll either learn his lesson now or he’ll learn it when he wakes up in a jail cell and finds out he has just killed a family with 4 kids. Hopefully he puts this behind him now, so that he doesn’t put anyone else in danger in the future.

    The Jaguars should take away anything guaranteed and make him earn his keep. We all know thats not what will happen but, it might be smart for Jacksonville to cover themselves incase he doesn’t learn from this.

    Its just sad that these kids are born physically gifted and have much of their future paved only to destroy it all in the end. For Blackmon’s sake I hope this wakes him up.

  24. rabbi187 says: Jun 3, 2012 4:09 PM

    I thought this kid was gonna be a bust. He might not even get that chance…

  25. txtuff says: Jun 3, 2012 4:12 PM

    You want to know what’s sad, Jags will sign him with same contract he would have gotten otherwise. The new owner wants a good team so he won’t waste that number 5 pick. would could be awesome is he could become a no BS owner and play hard ball with him, but won’t happen.

  26. quirtevans says: Jun 3, 2012 4:19 PM

    “Can’t be held to CBA rules if you haven’t even signed a contract yet. He’s not subject to league rules yet.”

    Uh, no. This isn’t about being punished under league rules or the CBA. This is about what provisions are permitted in his contract. And the CBA governs what provisions are allowed, and not allowed, in a contract. In other words, even rookies … people who aren’t subject to league rules yet … cannot enter into a contract with a team, and thereby become subject to league rules, if the contract itself violates the CBA.

  27. urcrap says: Jun 3, 2012 4:23 PM

    .024! Hey JB! The combine is over!

  28. proudliberal85392 says: Jun 3, 2012 4:24 PM

    Hope it was worth it, meathead.

  29. denverscott says: Jun 3, 2012 4:34 PM

    jtdapit50 says: Jun 3, 2012 2:34 PM

    Is anyone else getting sick of NFL players and off the field problems?? Goodell should focus on this more than the hitting, in the real world if a normal person gets a DUI its hard for them to keep a job let alone find another one. James harrison may hit illegally on field, but when has he had an off field issue with drugs/domestic violence/theft/bar fights?? Never. Get your mind right Goodell, look around.

    How did this come back to the commish? You probably have a key bound for the word Goddell.
    That said, all you morons saying “he’s young, give him a break. Stupid mistake, give him a chance…” I say this. SECOND DUI, at 22 yrs old. .24 BAC! That is 3 times the legal limit and casual drinkers would most likely be on the floor before that level.
    That level screams alcoholic, and yes, there are 10s of thousands of younger alcoholics out there. Slap him in the wallet and career instead of making excuses for him when he came home plastered in high school and beyond. Or maybe wait until he or someone like him kills YOUR Grandparents and walks after a year.
    Punk had multiple chances while aging. And no, I didn’t mean while growing up. Stop the exuses for these over paid, over privileged pieces of garbage. It might save someone you know.

  30. threedeep1998 says: Jun 3, 2012 5:07 PM

    I literally don’t get why NFL players even drive when they go out. Get a cab. If Kalil comes into my bar in MPLS I will take his keys

  31. oldbyrd says: Jun 3, 2012 5:14 PM

    I ask myself, who guides these kids? I don’t know his family siuation but, I guided and talked to my kid all thru college. His occupation enforces strict conduct, alcohol, not to mention drugs Rules. One mistake like Blackmons and he’s finished. He also does not have a Union to help him. Blackmon is a Great player but, very very poor decesion maker.

  32. inthezone4 says: Jun 3, 2012 5:21 PM

    Call a friend, cab, limo! What an idiot!

  33. steelerer says: Jun 3, 2012 5:54 PM

    thegreatgabbert says:Jun 3, 2012 2:19 PM

    He has been crappy in workouts and an embarrassment off the field. As a Jaguar fan, I would definitely be in favor of guaranteeing him NOTHING. Had a bad feeling about this pick from the moment it was made.

    ——————————————————–

    1) not true at all
    2) How much are you expecting from a guy who has had like 3 days of practice and hasnt signed a contract yet.

  34. rajbais says: Jun 3, 2012 7:04 PM

    Why were teams worried about Malcolm Floyd???

    Sorry, but many of those who do not get arrested in college like those who do should NOW get the same treatment!!!

  35. rushmatic says: Jun 3, 2012 7:16 PM

    threedeep1998 says: Jun 3, 2012 5:07 PM

    I literally don’t get why NFL players even drive when they go out. Get a cab. If Kalil comes into my bar in MPLS I will take his keys

    ____________________

    The NFL has a “don’t ask don’t tell” system in place for players who get drunk. Literally just a phone call away and they’ll take your drunk ass home for free.

    Too bad a few think they’re above it all.

  36. justrunit11 says: Jun 3, 2012 7:48 PM

    I thought this guy was one of the “SAFE PICKS’ in the draft.

  37. chandler1 says: Jun 3, 2012 8:59 PM

    Look at this guy’s face… he looks like a moron and now acts like one… who thought… lol

  38. metrocritical says: Jun 3, 2012 10:33 PM

    Sadly, there is no shortage of stories where these physically gifted ingrates ignore all forms of common sense, putting their career and the public well being at risk. This behavior should not be excused on the basis of being “young.” One DUI is a mistake. Subsequent trouble suggests incredible arrogance, stupidity, a substance abuse problem or a combination of all three. The timing of this is fascinating because it gives the team great leverage in negotiation for a change and, if handle correctly, might serve as a reminder to others that such reckless disregard will hit these guys where it hurts most-not pride, self respect or public image-but in the wallet. The one thing they might value over getting their drink/high on.

  39. jpittell says: Jun 4, 2012 12:29 AM

    In regards to “potential” language in Blackmon’s contract, it is my understanding of Article 4, Section 9(e) of the CBA that “Player contracts may not contain individually negotiated provisions for forfeiture relating to…Substances of Abuse, or for failing any drug test.” Given this, it appears that the Jags could NOT impose a void in his contract for failing a subsequent drug test, or taking substances of abuse.

  40. jnova80 says: Jun 4, 2012 1:01 AM

    You’re getting paid MILLIONS of dollars! Don’t do stupid stuff!

  41. xavier46 says: Jun 4, 2012 2:40 AM

    jtdapit50 says:Jun 3, 2012 2:34 PM

    Is anyone else getting sick of NFL players and off the field problems?? Goodell should focus on this more than the hitting, in the real world if a normal person gets a DUI its hard for them to keep a job let alone find another one. James harrison may hit illegally on field, but when has he had an off field issue with drugs/domestic violence/theft/bar fights?? Never. Get your mind right Goodell, look around.

    ***************************************

    Except, you are incorrect! This coming from a Steeler fan – James Harrison was arrested in March 2008 for domestic violence. Thanks for playing…

  42. rmzthefirst says: Jun 4, 2012 10:30 AM

    No excuse, I know we all probably have been dumb to drink and drive but some of us haven’t had the chances or opportunities as these blessed atheletes… Wonder what he was driving, probably not that shinny new car because he hasn’t signed a contract yet, I guess he’ll be able to still by the car but might not be able to enjoy driving it…

  43. riverdog1988 says: Jun 4, 2012 10:37 AM

    Why would any of you question the logic of this guy choosing to drive while blowing a .24. When you make a decision after you’re that drunk, it’s inherently flawed. If you’re going to party, the ‘ride home’ decision has to be made and planned in advance. Glad the Bucs didn’t pick this guy, we’ve made our quota of these bad decisions.

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