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Alex Mack still getting no interest


Alex Mack’s agents believe that an offer sheet for the transition-tagged center can be crafted that the Browns won’t match.  Alex Mack’s agents have yet to find any takers, even though getting Mack would entail no compensation to Cleveland.

A full week into free agency, Mack has had no visits and by all appearances has generated no interest.  And for good reason.  With the poison pill eliminated under the 2011 labor deal, there’s no way to craft a long-term deal that puts the Browns in a corner without putting the team that signs Mack to an offer sheet into that same corner.

As a result, the still cap-rich Browns would likely match the offer, unless it grossly overpays Mack even more than his $10 million transition tender would pay on a one-year deal.

That said, there are ways to ensure that Mack would make it to the open market in 2015, if a team would be interested in pursuing him then.  For example, Mack could be signed to an offer sheet that pays him $10 or more for 2014, with an enormous option bonus or roster bonus due on the first day of the 2015 league year.  If the Browns were to match the deal, they’d have to cut Mack before, for example, $50 million is owed in March of next year.

The offer sheet also could consist of a one-year deal with a commitment to not use the franchise or transition tag in 2015.  This would ensure that Mack hits the open market next year.

Any team that signs Mack to an offer sheet like that risks creating the perception that it’s not happy with the current starting center or that it anticipates pursuing a new center in 2015.  There’s also a risk that the freedom the team helps finagle will blow up on that team next year, if Mack signs with another team in the same division.

Regardless, Mack’s best play would be to sign the transition tender before the Browns realize that they’re offering to pay $10 million for one year to a center and rescind the offer.  If no offer is going to come from another team, Mack needs to realize that, if the tender is yanked in April, May, or June, the money on the open market won’t be anywhere close to $10 million per year.

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65 Responses to “Alex Mack still getting no interest”
  1. realnflmaster says: Mar 18, 2014 9:42 AM

    Looks good on him!

  2. squinn21 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:45 AM

    Maybe cause nobody wants to pay Tackle money to a center?????

  3. opinevain says: Mar 18, 2014 9:46 AM

    Ravens are in need of a reliable center, however, they wont jump at Mack because no one is going to craft a contract that the Browns wont match.

  4. isphet71 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:46 AM

    Look at the NFL’s sanctions on the Redskins after the uncapped year. They didn’t break any official rules, since there was no cap, and yet they got hammered for not “playing fair.”

    Any NFL franchise that even tries something like what you mention regarding a 50 million dollar roster bonus would almost certainly get punished for it, in spite of it being “within the rules” now. The precedent has been set.

  5. dws123 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:47 AM

    Alex Mack is starting to get on my nerves. Tell your agent to shut up and sign the offer sheet. This silly game has gone from a business ploy to a joke.

  6. chc4 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:47 AM

    Or maybe it’s the fact that paying a center $10mill in any season is nuts. I don’t care how good Mack is. Any deal his agent puts together won’t be for less than the transition tag so teams are scared off. As they should be. Let the sorry Browns may him the $10mill and see what happens next offseason.

  7. thebirdsareback says: Mar 18, 2014 9:48 AM

    I would love the Ravens to yank him from the browns. But he is going to be over paid and I think the Ravens address the Center position in Round 2 of this years draft by picking Travis Swanson (if he’s available) or Weston Richburg. Either way. The Ravens will still be better then the Brownies

  8. lukedunphysscienceproject says: Mar 18, 2014 9:50 AM

    When you posted the article where Mack’s agent said he could get a deal elsewhere that the Browns couldn’t match, I posted “good luck withe that”.

    It was never going to happen, for all of the reasons you wisely point out now that you for some reason left out of the previous article.

    People posted all kinds of outrageous contract ideas on here that the Browns wouldn’t match without taking the time to consider why on earth anyone would ever pay a center that much. So you craft a huge contract that the Browns won’t match, and what? Congratulations- you’ve just set the NFL record for overpaying a CENTER?

    The $10m Mack will make this year from the Browns represents the most he will EVER make in a single year. Whatever contract he winds up getting, whenever he winds up getting, will have a significantly lower yearly average.

    He’s a center, people.

  9. manilarizzo says: Mar 18, 2014 9:51 AM

    Not sure any team wants to pay $6m or more to a center, let alone $10.

  10. teal379 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:51 AM

    I just don’t see a center getting 10 million or more a year.

    Important position for sure and a good one is a thing to have but 10 million for a center is just too much.

  11. chicagosports2014 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:53 AM

    sounds they there really trying to get out of ” ” “CLEVELAND.” ( NOAH).

  12. southpaw2k says: Mar 18, 2014 9:54 AM

    If there’s any team who wouldn’t realize they were paying a center $10 million for one year, it would be the Browns.

    Still, I would love to see this guy in Baltimore. Major upgrade at the position, and if they also sign Eric Winston like I’ve been screaming for weeks, the entire offensive line would be worlds better.

  13. kneelbeforesod says: Mar 18, 2014 9:54 AM

    Return of the Mack.

  14. chicagosports2014 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:54 AM


  15. spiffy1001 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:56 AM

    He is the only player I know who can turn himself into ooze and slither along the field. Surely that is worth something.

  16. kingmj4891 says: Mar 18, 2014 9:56 AM

    If I was the browns I would yank the offer now before he signs it and offer him a multi year contract worth 7-8 mill a year or tell him to go jump in a lake.

  17. kwjsb says: Mar 18, 2014 9:58 AM

    The $10m transition is 20% higher that the next center, he should sign a long term deal with the Browns, he won’t get any more money.

  18. Lev says: Mar 18, 2014 9:58 AM

    So Alex Mack is living in a Secret World?!?!?

  19. macbull says: Mar 18, 2014 10:00 AM

    I would say Mack has a lot of interest…from the Browns.

    The Browns need him…they want him…now they have to pay him like he is a Pro Bowler.

    Too bad that Joe Banner and company didn’t get Mack signed before last season…now it’s up to the Browns new GM, Ray Farmer…to clean up the mess Banner left behind.

  20. ronketonk says: Mar 18, 2014 10:01 AM

    I really like Mack and he’s a stellar center but if he and his agent want out of Cleveland so bad as to craft a goofy deal like that, then I might just say, “Bye, bye” if I were the Browns.

  21. realdealsteel says: Mar 18, 2014 10:03 AM

    Now is the time to low ball him while he has no interest on the market and he may be feeling desperate.

    I’d offer him 3 mil a year and say take it or leave it. He has nothing else so he and his agent will take it.

  22. urbusted2 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:04 AM

    You have to love agents. Don’t you need to have been contacted by an interested party prior to developing the theory of the unmatched contract? That mythical contract would entail plenty of compensation to Mack (and said agent). Hence the non interest.

  23. theycallmescavenger says: Mar 18, 2014 10:04 AM

    I’m surprised the Broncos haven’t jumped all over this guy. Seems like Peyton Manning could use a competent center to help run the show.

  24. dryzzt23 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:04 AM

    The Steelers should sign Mack, then move Pouncey to RG. This would weaken the Clowns and strengthen the Steelers at the same time.

  25. seatownballers says: Mar 18, 2014 10:04 AM

    What center keeps pushing for more then ten million a year?
    The one with the greedy agent

  26. ✦ Pittsburgh is the City of Champions ✦ says: Mar 18, 2014 10:10 AM

    Someone should offer a exceptionally large, yet matchable offer just to drain the Browns for as much as they can. You know they’ll match anything.

  27. 52lightsxout52 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:12 AM

    Wouldn’t a sign-and-trade also be an option???

  28. mrbigass says: Mar 18, 2014 10:14 AM

    If Dallas would draft a center number one than maybe they would pay a backup 10 mil?

    Yeah, I know but they just signed Weeden so don’t say it ain’t possible….

  29. toybkshr says: Mar 18, 2014 10:15 AM

    If they yank that offer now, he becomes UFA and not likely to sign with the Browns.

  30. thefiesty1 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:16 AM

    His career was over when he went to Cleveland.

  31. r8rsfan says: Mar 18, 2014 10:20 AM

    I just keep thinking back to the superbowl debacle and how much damage was done when Barrett Robbins went awol. Adam Treu was a decent backup, but not having the guy who made all the line calls and had chemistry with Gannon was a huge factor. Center is the ONLY position which touches the ball on every play.
    But $10M isn’t happening.

  32. shinedown37 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:21 AM

    Packers have cap space and need a center. Would be nice to send a pick in a trade for him say a 4th or 5th. Cleveland would get a pick, and the packers fill a much needed need!

  33. logicaldawg says: Mar 18, 2014 10:23 AM

    Mack coming back + Draft = Browns have best OL in NFL in 2014.

    (Still can’t believe Lauvao and Cousins were picked up… LOL.)

  34. chrisbermanpleasegoaway says: Mar 18, 2014 10:26 AM

    Meanwhile Mack has successfully transformed himself into the ultimate non-team guy to all of his previous fans in Cleveland. It’s one thing to expect proper compensation for your dedication and past effort but it’s another thing to demand Tackle money for a Center and hold your team hostage in the process.

  35. kingfish2013 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:30 AM

    His agent has a close connection with St. Louis who is high up on the food chain. Probably sold him that St. Louis is eventually moving to California too. Alex came from there. Went to school there.As far fetched as it sounds this agent is selling him on something big other than cash which he has sitting at his feet right now.

  36. richkotitte says: Mar 18, 2014 10:30 AM

    The Jags could make a move on him.

    Their starting center of 14 years ( Brad Meester) retired this offseason and they still have a ton of cap space.

    Because of the huge need, I could see Caldwell overpaying to try to get him…..

  37. dcapettini says: Mar 18, 2014 10:42 AM

    $10m is twice what he is worth for one season. Who, in their right mind, would come up with a deal that would pay him enough not to sign the franchise tag? If he signs it now, he automatically gets $10m this year and next year would cost the Browns $12m.

    His agent is an idiot. Sign the tag Alex! Run, don’t walk! Don’t be stupid! It is a Can’t Lose offer.

  38. ubepunkedagain says: Mar 18, 2014 10:48 AM

    Mack grew up an Oakland fan so sign the tender and trade him to Oakland for a 2nd round pick.

  39. maddog111 says: Mar 18, 2014 10:54 AM

    After seeing there’s no interest in him anywhere else, he’s going to sign the tender and say “Cleveland’s where I always wanted to be anyway.”

  40. solnosky says: Mar 18, 2014 10:57 AM

    There are 2 very viable Centers in this years draft. Farmer should take a stand against a player and agent who clearly don’t want to be here for $10M and rescind the offer.

    Let him walk for far less than the $10M and simply draft the next Alex Mack in the 2nd round this year and pay him about 10% on the $.

    Use that extra $ to add the recently released Washington center and a few more free agents.

    It’s just not worth the $ to keep him at that price.

  41. joemammy says: Mar 18, 2014 11:00 AM

    Trade him to the Jags. That would teach him.

  42. DawgPound83 says: Mar 18, 2014 11:05 AM

    I hope we pull the tag on him after we draft his replacement. Punk.

  43. raidermike34 says: Mar 18, 2014 11:10 AM

    Excellent Piece to our Raiders front line.. He plugs the middle and we scoot Wiz to the left side of him. It doesnt get any better than this.. I Understand what Reggie is doing however..I like the idea of him signing and getting traded.. Lets face it he wants out and wants to play closer to home.. Hope we can make it happen for you Alex we here @ Raidernation continue to root Reg to bring you home!

  44. nuclearwarfare says: Mar 18, 2014 11:11 AM

    The only team on the league with more money than Cleveland is the Oakland Raiders. And Reg isn’t going to outbid Cleveland for the guy, so he’s more than likely staying a Brown. Now if Al Davis were running the show still….

  45. bnwpnw says: Mar 18, 2014 11:12 AM

    Did you say poison pill?

    Somewhere, Tom Condon’s ears are burning.

  46. nativeraider says: Mar 18, 2014 11:23 AM

    Could a team sign him to a 5 year deal worth $25 million contract? And pay him the $10 now then the $15 through the last 4 years. Or a heavy incentive based contract after the $10 million 1st year. If we could Id like the Raiders to give him a shot.

  47. oldcracker says: Mar 18, 2014 11:27 AM

    I’m sure that a pro-bowl center is getting interest, just not in the current situation. Why would another team offer $10 million, or more, per year, only to have the Browns match it? If another team wanted him that badly, it makes sense they would work out a sign & trade deal, behind closed doors.

    These billionaire owners may enjoy competing with each other but, they hate agents and what they’ve done to their modern-day version of Gladiators. Even if you have the father of the agent (or whatever connection) working in your FO, the owner still signs the checks.

    I would think Truckstop Jimmy will have the Browns set up in a favorable light with the fans, before spending next year in his orange jump suit.

  48. ronin36 says: Mar 18, 2014 11:28 AM

    No team wants to waste their time. Any negotiating they do is ultimately on Cleveland’s behalf.

    Say a team does come up with a reasonable long-term deal. And Mack signs it.

    The Browns would swoop in and match it, and viola, Mack can’t argue. The Browns would say, “Hey you were willing to play for such-n-such team for this much, now you’re going play for us instead.”

    The Players Union should have really tried to get the RFA removed during last negotiation.

    This is a perfect example of a player wanting out of an organization, but having no way to do so.

    I suppose he could say he was going to retire, and sit on his retirement papers, like Gonzolaz, and force Cleveland to release him. Then he’d might be free to go elsewhere.

  49. telldatruth says: Mar 18, 2014 11:57 AM

    Damn this guy would look awesome in at Detroit Lions uniform

  50. gerwinke1985 says: Mar 18, 2014 12:00 PM

    He’s still bitter that Nickelodeon cancelled his 90s TV show

  51. neemdaddy13 says: Mar 18, 2014 12:33 PM


  52. billsfan1 says: Mar 18, 2014 12:36 PM

    those poison pill contracts were about as unethical as anything in sports. I am glad they are no longer allowed.

  53. shibacle says: Mar 18, 2014 1:02 PM

    Wake up all you morons talking about sign and trade. This isn’t the freakin’ NBA. Sign and trade is not impossible in the NFL but it is HIGHLY unlikely because any signing bonus given would immediately escalate upon trade to the salary cap for the team that signed him! The only way a sign and trade works in the NFL is if the player agrees to no signing bonus or a very small one and what player in the modern era is going to agree to that?

  54. mattytwoshoes says: Mar 18, 2014 1:04 PM

    Who is his agent? Drewusional Rosehaus?

  55. radrntn says: Mar 18, 2014 1:16 PM

    look at it this way….out of all the UFA’s signing this year….Mack is top 5 in compensation. (revis 12 million, Orakpo, 11 million, and then the 10 million guys….and he is a center….lol

  56. steelerdeathstar says: Mar 18, 2014 1:53 PM

    I think that some people are undervalueing centers, just because they think that you’re supposed to.
    Ask the Steelers how much they have valued Ray Mansfield, Mike Webster, Dermonnti Dawson, Jeff Hartings, and Maurkice Pouncey over the decades?
    A center oftentimes ties the whole line together, as well as makes the line calls, and can be invaluable if he can handle a NT 1-1, or pull and block at the 2nd level. Don’t put down centers too much…

  57. rc33 says: Mar 18, 2014 2:02 PM

    Leave it to the Browns to have their best player (not one failed drug test from a years suspension) be a Center. Sorry Alex, but that’s simply not a position worth spending that kinda money on.
    The Jets paid similarly to lock up Mangold, and he’s very good, but it’s simply not worth it in a salary capped league.

  58. emmac13 says: Mar 18, 2014 2:11 PM

    Seems his agent it blowing smoke up Macks rear. The agent should tell him to sign the tender and get out next year. He might shoot himself in the foot if he waits to long to sign. Secondly this was his first pro bowl. If Pouncey could stay health he would be there instead. Fact is Mack is good. Maybe even a little better than good. But he is no D. Dawson.

  59. nickinneohio says: Mar 18, 2014 2:14 PM

    This is all agent-speak trying to line his own pocket. Alex, fire this guy, sign your tender, re-negotiate with the team that wants you. Or, play the year, make your $10m. and test the waters and find out the deal you get won’t be as good as the one you could have negotiated this year. By then, the Browns will certainly have your replacement in waiting.

  60. sportsnut101 says: Mar 18, 2014 2:37 PM

    This guy is pretty dumb if he gets hurt tomorrow crossing the street they will yank the offer for sure

    Why turn down 10 mill for a yr

  61. mayfieldroadboy says: Mar 18, 2014 3:19 PM

    Just a question about Jimmy Haslam: didn’t the Federal Government announce that any indictment of Haslam would come before the end of February? Maybe the Feds need the tax monies from Haslam’s Flying Magic Carpet and Carwash as well as from all the income taxes his free agents will have to pay on all that cap money he’s going to pay out in salaries.

    I think Jimmy’s orange jump suit will hang in the cell for the next unfortunate and misguided soul. Jimmy will still wear silk suits. The only orange he’ll wear is his Cleveland Brown tie.

  62. 2qswing says: Mar 18, 2014 3:30 PM

    For those of you calling out Mack for being greedy etc, please consider. This isn’t his fault. This is the fault of the previous regime failure to work out a long term deal at the end of the previous year. He didn’t demand the transition tag and he has no control over what the number is (10 mil) That is the negotiated process. This is the fault of Banner and a screwed up process that allows left tackle money to be mixed in with center and guard money when franchising or transitioning a player. He should take his 10 mil next year with Cleveland and either work out a long term deal or hit FA at seasons end.

  63. nobby821 says: Mar 18, 2014 3:39 PM

    Shelby Woo is flabbergasted

  64. jbird056719 says: Mar 18, 2014 5:28 PM

    Only a lawyer and agent could make politicians look good. In your scenario – the proposed deal is effectively a poison pill, not to garner the services of a player but to ensure he would have to be cut. Not in the spirit of the game or any sense of fairness. Not that a lawyer would understand that.

  65. brownsfan39 says: Mar 18, 2014 8:45 PM

    Rescind the offer. This guy is so full of himself.

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