Report: “No middle ground” for Cardinals, Cooper


Some would say that there are no holdouts under the new rookie wage scale.  Reminded that, yes, there indeed are some holdouts under the new rookie wage scale, some of the some would say that it’s not really a holdout unless the guy misses a week of training camp.

Even under that expanded standard, Cardinals guard Jonathan Cooper could end up being a holdout.

The seventh overall pick has yet to work out a contract with the team, and Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic reports that there currently is “no middle ground” between the two sides.

The sticking point is, as we’ve reported, offset language in the fully-guaranteed contract.  Without it, Cooper can (if he’s cut in the next four years) collect the full amount of his Cardinals contract and keep every dollar he makes elsewhere.  With it, the Cardinals would get a credit for any money Cooper earns from a new team over the balance of contract with Arizona.

Part of the problem is that the Cardinals waited a long time to engage Cooper in serious talks.  Up until a few days ago, there had been no discussions.

For Cooper to ever blink on offset language, he’d need the kind of structure and payout received by other top-10 picks who have agreed to offset language in the past two years.  If the Cardinals are going to insist on offset language and refuse to structure the deal in a more favorable way to Cooper, the rookie could miss a significant chunk of his first training camp.

36 responses to “Report: “No middle ground” for Cardinals, Cooper

  1. This is really getting ridiculous! The owners have won a significant battle lowering the Rookie wage scale, now they are essentially looking for an out in the event they fail miserably in their draft selection. They need to figure this out sooner than later! Making these sticking points on these contracts more & more common, what is the remedy? If I were the player & agent I would hold off indefinitely.

  2. I don’t understand making a future franchise player mad just to possibly save a few hundred grand a few years down the road.

  3. Arizona should just give in to the offset under the condition that the player arrive for a solo practice on March 18 from 3am to 6am.

  4. Cards making a mistake playing games with Coop. Kid is a clean cut stud. I’ll bet the house this kid becomes an NFL hall of famer.

  5. Instead of being able to say “Brand new, forward thinking Cards,” we are stuck with saying “Same old stumble bum Cards.”

    Seems the curse of the Cards overwhelms everyone, especially the new GM Keim who is repeating, just as his predecessors did, to march to the same old curse of ineffectiveness.

  6. Sign the damn contract and then earn your damn money. Seriously what is so hard about that. If you think you are good enough to play in the NFL then why do you need the “guarantee” that you will get your money. If you are as good as you think, then there should be no question you will get your money.

  7. Hey Coop, just be grateful some team picked an interior lineman that high and sign your deal. I’m not sure I feel too good about a guy who’s worried about what happens if he gets cut during his rookie deal.

  8. It was reported that DJ Hayden’s contract with the Raiders was structured like a top 5 pick. Perhaps the 3 remaining holdouts (all picked ahead of hayden) want something similar.

  9. Here we go Cardinals….lets let your top rookie fall behind by missing camp. I thought you had changed

  10. I just don’t understand why teams insist on the offset language. They get 4 year deals and a top ten pick isn’t getting cut until at least after year three, and if a top ten pick is cut after three years he probably isn’t getting more than the league minimum if another team picks him up. It doesn’t seem worth it to have a guy missing reps in camp so you can maybe save a few hundred thousand a few years down the road

  11. Usually i’d say something mean about these players being greedy and should be happy just getting a chance to play in the NFL but over the last couple of years I have seen so many rookies get sucked into and take bad deals which 2 or 3 years down the road end up haunting them and then they have to fight with the team to re-structure the contract! So good for him for taking his time and making sure he gets a deal he wants or at least one he agrees with!

  12. Cards need to kick him to the curb and move on. Letting him get by and “hold out” is sending a message to future rookies and setting a dangerous presedent. This is a fantastic opportunity and apparently Keim missed on this guy, underestimating his desire to play professional football as opposed to making the big bucks. They are not mutually exclusive as evidence by players like Patrick Peterson and Calais Campbell.

  13. Nothing but greed from a team with one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL last year.

    He should stand his ground, and either force a trade or sit out the year, with his agent making a stink the whole time that Cooper WANTS to play, but only wants what is fair, like the other players got.

  14. Cooper ain’t gonna miss the season over this, of course there’s a middle ground. Just give it a couple of weeks and he’ll be signed.

  15. I don’t get the big fight over offset language. I think a team has bigger problems if a top 10 pick doesn’t make it over 4 years. Sure, it is greedy by the player and his agent, but how often does that really happen???

  16. Is Bill Bidwell being stingy? I find that reeeeaaally hard to believe. The “middle ground” is exactly what Dion Jordan and Lane Johnson, etc got by getting their entire guaranteed signing bonus in 15 days. I guess Tightwell wants to hold Coop’s money to earn a few dollars in interest before he reluctantly cuts the check. Some people never change.

  17. It would seem that this young man’s agent is giving him seriously flawed advice if it leads to missing training camp time. Few people would endorse his holdout to secure the right to “Double Dip”. The whole thing could lead to a bad taste in management’s mouth which could be costly down the line. I remember that Terrell Suggs injury was suspicious in that he probably suffered his injury on his time, not the team’s. If so, the Ravens could have docked his salary. The same for Big Ben. But both teams ponied up. Perhaps this kind of holdout would motivate the team to go strictly according to the contract and deny payments to the player.

  18. How many first rounders that came in under the wage scale were ever cut before their contracts are up? These cheap owners are not cutting their indentured servants so why is this such a big deal?

  19. I hate backing the billionaire owners, especially on with Bidwell’s rep. But the whole offset language issue needs to go away. Just like the salaries are slotted, so should the O.L. It shouldn’t be up for negotiation,

    Picks 1-3 get it. Or 1-5. Period. It’s an extra incentive for the player, and a small additional deterrent from teams being so bad that they get a top 3-5 pick.

  20. justintuckrule says: These cheap owners are not cutting their indentured servants so why is this such a big deal?

    Uh yeah… you’re never going to get me to believe that an athlete making millions of dollars a year to play a game is an “indentured servant”. That’s just a ridiculous statement… smh.

  21. Nuts to him.
    All this guaranteed money BEFORE showing anything.
    Go down to the jail and get Bubba instead of this slob

  22. Uh yeah… you’re never going to get me to believe that an athlete making millions of dollars a year to play a game is an “indentured servant”. That’s just a ridiculous statement… smh.
    Try firing up that one brain cell and respond to the substantive argument instead of making the same tired response that you don’t make anything stocking grocery store shelves.

    These players can make tens of millions more on the open market. A “few million” makes them underpaid servants. The owners are gilding the lily. Go look up what that means and you’ll get my argument.

  23. Ridiculous… Cardinals are just protecting their investment… NOT being cheap. How can you be cheap with a slotted wage scale? Put yourself in the their shoes and you would want to do the same. They’ll get him signed and he’ll be in camp soon enough.

  24. People need to remember the cards have offers the max under the CBA all they asked was of cut and picked up by another team they would pay the offset from his contract. So if he is owed 100000 by cards and the new is paying 50000 the cards would pay him 50000. He still makes his rookie sallery. To me it sounds reasonable. Can’t be cheep if your paying top filler. 1st overall pick has the same thing

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