When Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson proclaimed that Andy Dalton and A.J. Green are the best quarterback-receiver combination in the NFL, the reaction in some circles was that owner Mike Brown should insert a sock in Jackson’s mouth.
With Brown, however, it won’t matter.
Brown is regarded as the least likely owner to yield to negotiations fueled by a key member of the coaching staff talking up the player. Brown will pay what he wants to pay, and if that won’t get the deal done, so be it.
As a league source pointed out on Monday, Brown once said after an agent made his argument in a negotiation, “That was an excellent presentation. . . . But I’m not giving you another penny.”
For Green and other 2011 first-round picks with two years left under contract, the question becomes whether the team will put enough pennies on the table to scare them into taking the deal. For each player, there’s a number that will get the player to commit for the long term, even if it’s less than the player currently wants.
The smart teams will figure out that number and get it on the table and let the player ponder the possibility of never getting that bigger payday if he suffers a serious injury.