Kevin Mawae thinks he's being blackballed

NFL_mawae2.jpgVeteran center Kevin Mawae became a free agent on March 5.  Nearly two months later, he still doesn’t have a team.

So what gives?  Mawae thinks that he possibly is being held back not just by his age (39), but also by the fact that he’s the president of the NFL Players Association.

I am unemployed and hoping someone will call,” Mawae told 104.5 The Zone in Nashville, via Paul Kuharsky of  “It’s kind of befuddling to me that I just
came off my eighth Pro Bowl and a 16-game season and I can’t get one
phone call.

“Alan Faneca gets cut two days ago and yesterday he signs a contract with
another team,” Mawae said.  “And not to take anything away from him, we have the same
agent, we’re friends.  But something tells me that there is something
going on beside me just being 39 years old.

“I’ve said in the past that I hope our management and the owners can
look past the fact that I am president of the PA.  But right now it’s not
looking that way.  I’m looking for a job.  I’ve made no secrets about
wanting to be back here in Tennessee and I’ve yet to receive a call from

The problem in Tennessee is that he’d be returning as a backup, and the Titans possibly are concerned about having the new leader(s) of the offensive line undermined by a backup who’d potentially try to run the show.  Then there’s the issue of money; Mawae hasn’t said that he’s willing to take the veteran minimum.  Thus, there’s a chance that he wants more than what anyone is willing to offer.

Still, we’re not prepared to rule out the possibility that Mawae is being blackballed.  We’re not sure, however, that publicly complaining about the perception helps his cause.  Indeed, we think it’s now less likely that a team will offer him a contract.

That said, the better approach for the union would be to elect as NFLPA president a guy who is young enough and good enough to be indispensable to his current team, and irresistible to any other.  In hindsight, then, maybe Mawae’s better move would have been to let Ravens cornerback Domonique Foxworth take over.  And we wonder whether NFLPA Executive Director De Smith or Mawae’s agent explained to the player the risk that securing a second term as NFLPA President could make him less attractive as a free agent.

Then again, Mawae likely is smart enough to figure that one out without having to be told it.

62 responses to “Kevin Mawae thinks he's being blackballed

  1. Thats a croc…He said it in the first sentance. He is 39… No one is going to sign him unless someone gets hurt..

  2. Well he’s the president of a club that is trying to cost the owners millions of dollars and rape the fans of their biggets passion by being rather unreasonable. I hope nobody calls him.

  3. Him and TO are being blackballed!! Big Ben can rape women and he’s not blackballed..TO should be on a roster!!

  4. He can always go into extreme cage fighting since most of his best moves as a center were borrowed from that “sport.”

  5. Idk all the players personally so idk who the smarter guys are but I’m sure there are some young smart players that are to good to cut. Brandon Marshall perhaps? haha jk. How about Nnamdi Asousomuga (I am sure I spelled that wrong)? He is a really sharp guy and any team would love to have him.

  6. Faneca is 33…a huge difference. There are not too many 39 year old OL in the history of the NFL…especially OC, where you typcially have to be mobile. Move on with your life Kevin…the end comes for all of us in football.

  7. It actually sounds possible, but I doubt the GM’s all got together and made the decision.
    He’s 39. He’s very powerfull, both as a player’s rep and as a locker room influence. Is it collusion when the teams are all just plain scared of you being a disruption to the team and/or coaching staff?
    But if he had to come somewhere… come home Kevin.. the Seahawks need you to teach our center how to do his job. Spencer doesn’t exactly have it yet.

  8. Florio actually wrote something that doesn’t sound like its coming from the mouth of a 5th grader

  9. He only made the probowl on name
    recognition he’s done as a starter. The more intriguing question is if he doesnt get signed does he lose his Position as NFLPA president?

  10. He’s got too many things going against him:
    1) Age
    2) Union Honcho
    3) Dirty Player
    4) Diminished skills
    Kevin, your career is in the rear view mirror.

  11. I’m praying the Eagles sign him with Jamaal Jackson likely to land on the PUP List.
    I do like backup C/G Nick Cole, but I don’t trust Stacy Andrews yet, so I’d like Cole to keep his backup role.

  12. Maybe he’s not being signed because he’s 39, maybe it’s because he’s the NFLPA president and thus being blackballed. Either way, complaining about it to the media sure as hell isn’t the way to fix the situation. He’s old enough to know better.

  13. Paging Dr. Who Gives a Shit.
    Dude, if you don’t like it quit, line up and play ball. If no one wants your old ass join the club.
    And by the way, if you were someone that a team thought they could win just one additional game with… just one. You’d be on a roster.
    I’ll take “Millionaire’s Who Whine” for a hundred Alex.

  14. Dude, you’re 39 years old. Wait’ll you see the stuff starting to come in the mail from AARP.
    It happens.

  15. I’d love the Eagles to sign him. With Jackson coming off a torn ACL, he’d be a huge help. With no cap, they could sign him for two years and cut him next year if Jackson returns 100%.

  16. GoBrowns19 says:
    April 28, 2010 10:03 PM
    Well he’s the president of a club that is trying to cost the owners millions of dollars and rape the fans of their biggets passion by being rather unreasonable. I hope nobody calls him.
    What are you talking about? The players have openly said they’d sign today to extend the current CBA that has been in place. The owners meanwhile have refused and are threatening a lockout. The owners have also refused to open their books to show just how much they really are making.
    Sorry, but I’m not breaking out my violin for the billionaires in management. When in doubt, trust the union any day.

  17. Raiders should definitely sign him. Cable may be worried though that Mawae knows more about o-line play even when that’s Cable’s specialty. Could undermine his authority.
    But of course you’ve gotta think Al’s calling the shots anyway. Get this guy in here. He’d be an upgrade at center and the perfect leader for our mostly young group.
    Usually Al tells the other owners to stick it. Wonder if he’s playing ball this time figuring it may be the only chance to alleviate the deluge of ridiculous officiating calls that go against the Raiders every year.

  18. “He said it in the first sentance. He is 39… No one is going to sign him unless someone gets hurt..”
    So there are 30 centers that are better than him in the league? I doubt that.

  19. Dude. THIRTY-NINE.
    Alan Faneca isn’t 39. He’s not 37. He’s not 35.
    He’s only 33.
    Six years difference is a big difference.
    Even Bruce Matthews only made it to 40.
    What Mawae needs to remember is that the NFL doesn’t have a minor league. There’s no farm system. All teams have are their roster spots. A roster spot eaten up by a 39 year old linemen is a spot *not* being used to develop a new 23 year old lineman.

  20. He’s freaking ancient! Who in the hell think it’s a good idea to sign a center for one year, because I seriously doubt he plays much longer than that.

  21. Had to fire off a second comment about this. WHY WOULD HE BE BLACKBALLED NOW? He said it himself, he had a job with an NFL team last year. Why wasn’t he blackballed last year or the year before?
    He’s no more blackballed than LaDainian Tomlinson will be blackballed next offseason when nobody will sign him.

  22. Well he did say he has had 1 phone call. If thats true it has nothing to do with him not wanting be a back up or money because no one has talked to him yet to here that.
    So its either no one is interested in him as a player or hes being black balled. Or of course hes lying about not getting a call.
    I think he would be a good fit in Philly if he was willing to take the minium and be a back up. The Eagles right now have 9 o-linemen who will probably be on the opening day roster. I think going in with 10 is ideal.
    Jamal Jackson is the starting center but might not be ready until after the season starts. So it looks like Nick Cole will be the center in week 1. I think he can do it but I would be more comfortable if Mawae was on the roster incase Cole struggles.
    I dunno thats just what I think.

  23. he’s not getting a job b/c he’s been a weak point on the Titans OL. Yeah, he’s still great and calling the shots and finding the blitz and all that. Those are things he did very well for the Titans but when it came to flat out blocking… he was getting blown up a lot.

  24. He’s 39 and making the “popularity bowl”, or Pro Bowl for short, is irrelevant. Who doesn’t make the Pro Bowl these days.
    What does he have left in him? 1, maybe 2 years. Not too many teams need production like that, especially from center where you are normally responsible for line calls. That’s a heavy investment in of itself.
    One team that could use him is the Steelers. He’d be an upgrade over hartwig and he could mentor Pouncey to take the role over in a year or two. Beyond that a situation like that, no one is going to bite.
    As for T.O., yeah, he’s being blackballed all right – wouldn’t have anything to do with his attitude, declining production, advanced age for a WR, the dropped balls, the general misery he brings to a team and the fact he isn’t a game changer player (wasn’t at the height of his career and certainly isn’t now). Beyond that, it’s crazy to think no team wants him!

  25. He’s probably right that his position as union president puts some teams off that might otherwise be interested.
    But this should hardly be a shock. If you asked any manager in a large company (off the record) if they would want the local union leader on their team I doubt you would get many positive responses either.
    Muwae needs to realise that there are many perks that come with the job, not least of which for a 39 year old is a far easier transition into post-playing employment, and this is one of the downsides.

  26. @GoBrowns
    How are the players being unreasonable? They are the one’s who get hit and suffer substantially shortet lifespans than the rest of society

  27. Dirty dirtbags sometimes have to deal with dirty things…like being dirty dirtbags.
    I hope this guy doesn’t get a job… but I suspect he will. Hope it ain’t with with one of the teams that I love.
    Please go away, Kevin Mawae… stomp a real person.

  28. Listen, I watched nearly every TN game last year…the reason Mawae has not been signed by the Titans is because he is long in the tooth and simply got beat WAAAAYYYY to much by younger, stronger talent. The Titans rarely could run in the middle when he was in….Very smart and articulate; will make a great commentator on Sunday afternoons. But, he needs to hang it up or wait for an injury.

  29. Yeah. Somebody should be willing to put him and Favre together so they can discuss the time they spent together in the Civil War.

  30. Blackballed?
    How many 39 year old players are in the NFL who aren’t kickers or Brett Favre?
    What a moron. With this guy’s sharp insights, it’s no wonder the union is doing so well 🙂

  31. Obviously he isn’t smart enough to figure it out that no one wants a 39 year old starting center. I respect that he is in great shape and has had a hell of a career, but maybe it is time to accept a role and become a mentor.
    Of course, it’s obvious I am being blackballed from my burger flipping job because I demand 100K for my skills. Not a single fast food restaurant in town will hire me. Must be collusion.

  32. i saw this almost exact article like 2 weeks ago from you same guys…you just added a few things

  33. mike_311 says:
    April 29, 2010 6:19 AM
    i wish the leader of every union in america would get blackballed.
    You do remember the mine accident in WV that killed a bunch of people, right? You do know that non-union mines have substantially greater mortality rates than union mines, right? You do know that unions are responsible for a lot of the basic workers’ rights that we have today, right? I’m not saying they’re perfect, but only an ignorant dope would make an idiotic statement like yours. You might as well walk around with “dumbass” tattooed on your forehead.

  34. He would be a great position coach.
    If he’s convinced being the NFLPA president is holding him back, then he can resign. And still watch no one sign him.
    Him and Faneca have both been making the pro bowl on name. Most o-linemen do.
    I wouldn’t mind the Steelers signing him. I can’t believe he’d be worse than Hartwig.

  35. maybe Tony Dungy will campaign for him to get a new team. Oh thats right, Mawae is white so Dungy wont care

  36. So its black balling if your smart enough not to want a union big wig making waves in your locker room?
    No its good business to keep his ass on the outside looking in
    These players and there union are out of there minds
    Did a single player pay for the new Staduim in NJ or the practice locations for the jets or giants?
    No the owners did yeah with fans money but they took the risk they put there money on the line lets stop acting like these players are Doctors that are risking there lives they are gym teachers if not playing footballs.

  37. mike_311 says:
    April 29, 2010 6:19 AM
    i wish the leader of every union in america would get blackballed.
    I’m not in or never have been a part of a workforce union. But I’ve been around long enough to know that they do more good than bad…and the WV minor accident is one of a million examples. You fail at life.

  38. Is he saying Vince’s hands are dirty, or that the black just washes off them? That photo is priceless…with that headline.

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