League e-mail scolds teams for doing exactly what teams do

The NFL created the rabbit hole that is legal tampering weekend, and now doesn’t like the way teams are going down said rabbit hole.

Via Albert Breer of NFL Media, here’s the verbatim e-mail sent to teams today, scolding them for all the leaked deals (which can’t really be deals since there can’t even be offers).

“Clubs were advised of the rules for the three-day negotiating period in PP-23-15 (attached). These rules include limitations such as that a club cannot make an “offer;” or enter into a written or oral agreement of any kind, express or implied, or make promises or representations of any type concerning the terms or conditions of employment to be offered to any Unrestricted Free Agent for inclusion in a Player Contract after the start of the new League Year; or provide assurances of intent as to the future execution of an NFL Player Contract. Clubs were further advised that “Any attempt to undermine the purpose of this negotiating period may be considered conduct detrimental to the League.” At this time, the League office is beginning investigations into a number of reported agreements with clubs. Violations will be dealt with accordingly.”

Of course, this is just about the most ridiculous thing ever.

The league knew teams would do this, and now has to act shocked and threaten investigations when they do exactly what the entire world expected them to do.

The whole thing is a farce, and the only downside for the league appears to be that their made-for-TV special Tuesday is being diluted, since everyone has been talking about the deals to be announced all weekend.

Which, not coincidentally, is good for the business of the NFL.

But apparently threatening double secret probation seems like a good plan. I’m sure Marmalard is on it as we speak.

58 responses to “League e-mail scolds teams for doing exactly what teams do

  1. Thank you i’m sick and tired of legal tampering already. It allows teams to go against the rules and also ruin players chances of staying with their clubs

  2. What did they think would be discussed during the 3 day window? Under these guidelines, anything more than small talk about the weather or what the player had for lunch today would be a violation.

  3. The ‘legal tampering’ causes things like Torrey Smith announcing his goodbye to Baltimore before the actual date he can see or sign any contract, so I am betting the SF 49ers are one of the ones being nailed, since it’s hinted that he has already done everything BUT sign the contract they want to give him.

  4. Pretty sure the league office is trying to figure out how to catch the Pats doing this. Even though, it appears they might be the only team not doing it. Doesnt matter that teams have been anouncing the deals they are going to complete on Tues for the last 2 days, as soon as th ePats make a signing of a player who wasnt a Patriots last year, the investigation will come in swiftly, and clumsily…

  5. Miami thank you for your 1st round pick.

    -The Detroit Lions

    Eagles thank you for your 1st round pick.

    -The Seattle Seahawks

    Kansas City thank you for your 1st round pick.

    -The Philadelphia Eagles

  6. If you can’t enter into an oral understanding, what’s the point? Should the two sides get up and leave the table as soon as they feel that they’re getting close? And how do you negotiate without making an offer? Seriously, the NFL is run by morons.

  7. If the NFL really wants to ensure the rules are followed then they should refuse to allow the contracts for Suh, Maclin and Gore to go through.
    ITs real simple, you were told not to make offers and you did, so you will not be allowed to sign these players.

    Like that is going to happen !

  8. No surprise at all….what did they expect but my question is who is leaking all of the details? The Agents looking to fish for better offers I’m sure.

  9. For the NFL to be surprised that teams aren’t following the guidelines to the letter is like Captain Renault being shocked that gambling is taking place at Rick’s in Casablanca.

  10. You can submit offers but cannot have implied or expressed agreement on those offers in either a written or verbal fashion.

    So… when teams and players agree they just keep faxing (unless you’re last name is Dumervil) the same offer and back forth to each other until actual free agency opens? Oh wait… That too implies agreement.

  11. “I’m shocked, shocked to find that negotiations are going on here.”

  12. If they don’t like it, they should take away draft picks from teams that come to agreements before free agency opens. It’s the easiest thing in the world to determine and the easiest thing to stop if they really want to.

  13. Ah, so during “legal tampering” weekend, teams and players can’t make any offers, promises, suggestions, implications, requests, demands, or hints, either oral or written.

    So, what did the NFL expect teams to do, invite FAs to their facilities for hot dogs and shuffleboard?

    Just some dudes hangin’ out, you know? No pressure! We just want to spend time with you. Not the player. The PERSON.

    We even have a bouncy house rented for the weekend, but please don’t take that as any kind of improper incentive to lure you here.

    Hey, have we told you about Milkshake Mondays?

  14. Send them all to Ted Wells. Investigation reports, which Troy Vincent won’t read anyhow, will be completed in time for the 2024 Boston Olympics.

  15. Goodell has nonsensical rules just like this at his own household. Last year Roger Goodell told his son on the day before his birthday he could open one early birthday present. He son excitedly choose the present he had been eyeing all week and then opened it. Goodell then proceed to ground his son indefinitely and imposed a loss of a 2nd round birthday present for 2015.

  16. “TamperingGate” come on Goodell are you going to punish all these teams outside of NE who are cheating the Legal Tamoering Rules. What a joke this Legal Tampering Rule has become.

  17. I must add that I can’t believe this is how a multi-billion dollar organization, which has grown into a virtual license to print money, operates.

    The most maddening part of this: Goodell leads this group of Keystone Cops rejects, and earns $40 million a year.

    It’s like a heavy-handed parody of an overblown, clueless corporate bureaucracy.

  18. Did Harbaugh help Dolphins catch their Suhshi?

    Now that the league is investigating tampering with NFL free agents. Will phone calls and emails really tell the whole story. Case in point: Take a look at Suh reportedly going to the Dolphins. Suh was recently spotted at University of Michigan and met with Jim Harbaugh. This occurred on February 19th.

    I wondered why Suh oddly showed up at U of M to take part in Harbaugh’s spring team meeting and workout a few weeks ago. But now it is all too clear. Ross is a big U of M booster, and the Steven Ross Business School is named after him. Ross also attempted to recruit Harbaugh as coach for the Dolphins. So the connection is obvious.

    It doesnt take much to read through these tea leaves. Now the Dolphins have the inside track on Suh and have reportedly made the best offer. Just seems too coincidental that Suh paid visit to U of M and Harbaugh at crucial NFL free agent contract posturing time.

    Suh rarely has made public appearances and usually maintains a low profile. Harbaugh is too closely connected to Ross to not have knowledge of Ross’s interest in Suh, especially if Ross was planning to pursue him and spend up to 114 million.

    Just sayin…

  19. Did the same thing happen last year?

    Will those be investigated?

    Will the investigation include negotiations/offers that were ultimately rejected ?

    The investigation should conclude that a deeply flawed premise had yielded the expected results. Also, I would think someone in the league office noted the web traffic generated in these 3 days.

  20. stealthjunk
    Mar 9, 2015, 12:24 PM EDT
    What did they think would be discussed during the 3 day window? Under these guidelines, anything more than small talk about the weather or what the player had for lunch today would be a violation.
    _____________________

    To be honest, it seems like those are the only things teams can do..

  21. “hypothetically what would a player like you think of an offer like this?”
    “hypothetically a franchise like yours and a player like me might find that number acceptable.”

  22. Philly could def. use a “do over’

    NFL blew it with this.d lousy coverage on the NFL network over the weekend while guys were “signing” like crazy.

  23. I’m sure the Redskins are extra careful after getting spanked a few years ago. The Miami team and Philadelphia team would be the most likely to be investigated now at this point.

  24. Yeah you’re right it’s “about the most ridiculous thin EVER”. I seriously wonder where you come up with this stuff.

  25. The words “negotiating period” was used in that email, yet negotiating isn’t allowed?

    “You can’t negotiate during a negotiation period!”

    Makes sense…or not. I’m confused.

  26. It’s like going to your toilet and negotiating with the bowl that you’re gonna take a poop. Once that horse has left the barn, there’s no waiting til Tuesday.

  27. They haven’t entered into an official agreement, they have just closed their individual window for offers, if the team didn’t want to lose the player they should have offered a contract they would sign instead of having them test free agency and have them “set their market”. The home teams are expecting the players to be required to allow the teams the right of first refusal. Moral is, come correct the first time and you won’t lose your free agents that you supposedly want but don’t want to pay.

  28. This is what the NFL is envisioning:

    Agent: Hey “GM”, my client is interested in knowing if you like him, or if you like him like him?

    GM: Hey “Agent”, we definitely like him like him.

    Agent: Cool, he likes you likes you too. Where do you stand on funding?

    GM: This is certainly not an offer, but if, and that is a big if, we were inclined to offer him a deal when legal to do so, we would offer ______.

    Agent: My client says that is like super eeewwww. We already have a better offer, if other teams could make offers, from another club.

    GM: Oh, well, if, and this is a big if, we were legally able to negotiate, we would increase the years by 1, the guarenteed money by $4 mil, and the overall value by $9 mil.

    Agent: My client would soooo sign a deal like that, if it were actually available legal…

  29. If you can’t negotiate contracts, then what’s the point of the 3-day legal tampering period? Just to call agents and say they like a player?

  30. Maybe the NFL needs to introduce a leage-approved Tinder-like app. Teams swipe right if they like the free agent, swipe left if they don’t. At the end of the 3-day window, the teams that liked players are revealed to the player and then they may discuss the player’s status/occupation/salary in greater detail.

  31. Maybe the NFL needs to introduce a leauge-approved Tinder-like app. Teams swipe right if they like the free agent, swipe left if they don’t. At the end of the 3-day window, the teams that liked players are revealed to the player and then they may discuss the player’s status/occupation/salary in greater detail.

  32. What or who the hell is “Marmalard?”

    If this is another tedious and obscure pop-culture reference, how about letting the rest of us in on the secret? If it’s not, how about telling us anyway?

    For future reference: Clarity is much more important than a writer’s personal need to feel ‘hip’ or ‘in’ or relevant. Never assume that readers will know what you’re talking about just because you know.

    Thanks.

  33. In my opinion, the new year should start the day after the super bowl. That would solve the problem big time.

  34. Hmm… And the teams have sent the league an email scolding them for their punishment policy of making it up as they go along and overreacting to the public outcry (after first having announced a way too lenient punishment and then defending it staunchly).

    Hey league… the thing is that us fans WANT to hear about these things, trades, deals, signings etc…

    We do NOT want to deal with the missteps and back and forth of the investigations and such that YOU made much worse than they needed to be.

  35. tootitan says: Mar 9, 2015 2:13 PM

    What or who the hell is “Marmalard?”

    If this is another tedious and obscure pop-culture reference, how about letting the rest of us in on the secret? If it’s not, how about telling us anyway?

    For future reference: Clarity is much more important than a writer’s personal need to feel ‘hip’ or ‘in’ or relevant. Never assume that readers will know what you’re talking about just because you know.

    Thanks.
    ****************************************
    reference to Greg Marmalard who was the main snob Greek character in Animal House and was working with Dean Wormer to get rid of the Deltas.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.