John Spanos unloads on Joey Bosa’s bargaining position

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After the Chargers issued a blistering statement regarding the Joey Bosa negotiations, I contacted the team to offer someone/anyone a chance to join PFT Live on NBC Sports Radio and NBCSN to discuss the situation. The Chargers said, as of 2:48 p.m. ET, “right now we’re going to let the statement stand on its own.”

“Right now” didn’t last very long.

In an item published at 5:23 p.m. ET by the San Diego Union-Tribune, Chargers president of football operations John Spanos unloaded on Bosa in a team-friendly forum.

“I’m highly, highly disappointed in the path we’ve had to take,” Spanos told Kevin Acee of the Union-Tribune regarding the team’s decision to reduce its total financial offer. “It’s so overly clear we had no choice. It would have been more difficult if I felt they were being reasonable. But when you’re dealing with someone who isn’t reasonable, it makes it easy.”

Acee characterized the (in his assessment) usually even-keeled Spanos as speaking in a voice that (in Acee’s assessment) “could have shattered glass.”

“I’m blown away,” Spanos said. “At all costs I wanted to avoid going down this road. They made it overly clear we had no other option. . . . It’s absolutely asinine. He would have gotten more cash in this calendar year than anyone except Carson Wentz.”

Spanos contends that, over the next four months, Bosa would have received $14.5 million under the team’s latest offer.

Regardless of who’s right and who’s wrong, the implosion of the talks will spark a P.R. battle. For the Chargers, the primary battleground is San Diego, where voters eventually will be determining whether to harvest other people’s money for a stadium for a team that currently isn’t using any of its money to pay Bosa. For Bosa, the audience resides beyond San Diego, where folks may be inclined to look at all of the various holdouts the Chargers have endured over the years and wonder whether the problem is more about the team than the players they want to sign by using glass-shattering rhetoric that accuses people of being “asinine.”

For the most part (with the exception of Bosa’s mother saying she regrets not “pulling an Eli Manning”), Bosa’s camp has avoided inflammatory statements that could be hard to get past if/when the time comes to do a deal. If that approach changes, Bosa may indeed miss the season and re-enter the draft.

It would be stunning if it happens. Based on today’s events, however, “stunning” already has happened.

54 responses to “John Spanos unloads on Joey Bosa’s bargaining position

  1. The Chargers couldn’t be handling this any worse. This has nothing to do with Bosa, and everything to do with Spanos being cheap.

  2. It is such perfect irony thay he has the same name as the fraudster that managed to buy the Islanders and couldn’t even come close to affording it. Are we sure the NFL vetted the Spanos family and they didn’t just change their first names?

  3. Any truth to the contention that SD is trying to stick Bosa with a set of contractual terms no top 5 pick has agreed to, post-CBA? Namely, that they’re trying to spread his guaranteed money over 4 years, which is unprecedented for a top 5 pick?

    If so, it confirms that the Chargers organization is a clown college.

  4. Bosa apparently looks in the mirror and sees JJ Watt, while everyone else sees James Laurinaitis.

  5. Every football contact is team friendly.

    Every football team has screwed over a player in the past by making them take less or be fired even though their contract says otherwise.

    The ownership reworked every rookie”s earning potential.

    The chargers should suck it up.

  6. As a Packers fan with no vested interest in this…the Chargers organization is embarrassing itself.

  7. LOL. I hope Bosa does reenter the draft. What would even be funnier is if this ego-maniac didn’t get drafted until the 3rd round.

  8. It would be funny if Bosa got on a team with a new stadium next year and the Chargers are still in the craptastic Qualcomm.

  9. Chargers are going to squander a top three pick. Priceless. In a game of chicken, the Chargers need to concede for the benefit of the fans and players. Bosa is only hurting himself…the Chargers are hurting everyone else. Stupid.

  10. Bosa knows if he goes back to the draft – he’s not top 5 but it really seems to be about principle with him.


  11. You can leave out the ‘in his assessment’ biased bs rubbish.

    Acee and Spanos have known each other for decades. John Spanos has not had a problem w a rookie signing since he was Director of College Scouting over 10 yrs and he sits on the NFL’s Board of College scouting. He is not a disagreeable person

  12. SD is a laughing stock. It sucks for this kid that they got to select him.

    He absolutely should pull an ELI. Else he’ll face the frustration of losing and being underpaid.

  13. The only thing that’s asinine other than calling someone’s position asinine publicly is the fact that somehow in post 2011 NFL this deal isn’t long done.

  14. It’s an insult to the intelligence of Chargers fans everywhere that Spanos’ would issue such a statement in what he clearly believes is a vacuum. The track record of San Diego’s front office is quite the indictment against this tool-bag’s assumed credibility.

  15. Players change, coaches change, the incompetence of the Spanos family is a constant. Hopefully it remains a constant in some other city that doesn’t deserve such a slum lord family.

  16. Chargers fan here. John Spanos may have some legit experience working in the club’s front office and such, but blowing-up in public like that is wrong, just wrong. He projects an image of being out of control and feeling entitled, which is exactly how the Spanos family has appeared to be during their long tenure owning the club. What’s more, it comes at a terrible time as this franchise is essentially a vagabond one and can only hope & pray that SD voters will approve stadium financing for them. Meanwhile Bosa and his family are taking the high road….

  17. No way out on this one. Both sides have dug themselves into a 50 feet grave. The only glimmer of light for either side is if SD can find a sign & trade partner, who will give Bosa exactly what he wants and the Chargers their 1st round pick in the 2017 draft. The chance of that happening is pretty much zero. Oops! Wait a minute; Jerry Jones is on Spanos’ other line.

  18. Actually a big part of the problem is Bosa’s agent Tom Condon.

    Chargers have generally had good relations w most agents but they have a long history w Condon.

    No wonder Bosa’s mum was griping about Eli Manning. Condon was his agent. Also the agent for Shawn Merriman and LT who both had notorious and acrimonious hold outs.

    Guy is bad news regardless of who he deals w.

  19. If this guys mother wasnt in the mix i would side with bosa but sounds like they are puting a gun to san diegos head. If not maybe bosa just doesnt want san diego.

  20. This is what happens when unprofessional people let their emotions take control and dictate their lives. USUALLY they don’t get as far as GM of an NFL team.

    If this guy was good and had some integrity, we would know NOTHING about what they are doing. Now he just sounds like a big baby trying to cover his butt in the media. Bosa sends something out, immediately the managment lowers themselves to that level.

    What’s more, he says “I’m so disappointed we are going down this path”….well that’s the same thought that a guy has when he’s in the back of the police car on the way to jail. You CHOSE this path and now either you were too incompetent to see this coming or you are so cheap that you didn’t care and knew this was a possibility but went for it anyway.

    Most GM’s don’t do deals that even have the possibility of this happening, let alone being probable.

    I don’t feel sorry for niners fans, they are the worst and only now getting smacked down hard enough to keep quiet. But I do feel sorry for Chargers fans. Seems like San Diego would be the perfect place to have an NFL team. Ownership is ruining that running this thing like a pawnshop.

  21. If he doesn’t sign soon both sides lose. Don’t kid yourself that there is a winning strategy for Bosa that involves going back into the draft next year.

    He will lose 1 prime earning year that he will never get back and there’s no way he get’s drafted as high after a year out of football.

  22. afourthlombardiforthehaters says:
    Aug 24, 2016 8:48 PM

    14.5 million the first year.

    What a moron that’s more money than half of us on this sitemail will see in a life time….


    He won’t be sitting on his fat arse, banging away on a keyboard and you won’t be dodging 320 pound linemen, trying to tackle 230 pound running backs either.

    This debacle is all Charger management/owner fueled.

  23. Since the rookie wage scale was adopted, everyone signs early for a reason.All the salaries are slotted and pre-determined so all the rookies have been signed early for years. The Chargers are trying to set a new precedent with the slotted salary system, and whatever ground Bosa gives up will affect other draftees for years to come. Every team will expect the same terms going forward, and play hardball. The union should be picketing the Chargers by now. Where the hell is De Smith?

  24. It’s hard to imagine a front office handling this any worse. This just looks like an owner worth about a billion dollars being extremely cheap. And if they were doing all that they could to “avoid going down this road,” they would have done what other teams did and paid the guy how he is asking to be paid. This isn’t that complicated.

  25. Move on nothing to see here.

    It’s not a right to work in the NFL. Walk away if the terms in your contract are not favorable to you. Anyone else here should do the same when discussing their own pay.

  26. Bosa would do himself a favor by firing his agent and stop letting his father and uncle influence his financial decisions. He surely is getting advice along the lines of “Get as much money as soon as you can” as if he’s going to get injured and cut within the first year of his contract.

  27. Spanos is 100% in the right on this. Where fans just want the player to play, the Chargers have been forced away from the negotiating table by the obstinance of Bosa and his people.
    Every NFL owner and GM must think how lucky they are that their team didn’t draft Joey Bosa. The player should take some responsibility in all of this.

  28. “Stupid Joey Bosa should take what he’s being offered because I’m reading about this at my crappy job!” – translation of 90% of the comments on this story

  29. Why don’t you just pay the man you drafted and wanted so bad, did you just up and realize you took him 2 rounds too soon?

    He doesn’t have to accept offset language, it’s actually insulting for a first rounder. He should get nearly as much as Wentz because that’s where he was drafted.

    Spanos is too big for his britches and could use a nice scaffadone.

  30. It’s not his fault, he was bitten to a man who owned strip bars and a mom who worked in them.
    He’s a self entitled punk who will be a BUST in the NFL.

  31. filmex2000 says:
    Aug 24, 2016 7:57 PM
    Bosa apparently looks in the mirror and sees JJ Watt, while everyone else sees James Laurinaitis.


    The same JJ Watt that Eric Fisher owned and beat up in the playoffs last year?

  32. More proof Chargers are a cheap ass joke of an organization: The cost of the entire salary cap, all players salaries, is more than covered by TV revenues each team gets from the NFL. Every team gets about 90M MORE than the total amount it costs them to pay the players on their roster. So it’s not remotely a matter of them being able to afford the contracts for Bosa or any other player. They just don’t want to do it.

  33. “At all costs I wanted to avoid going down this road.”

    Well, pretty obviously NOT at all costs, Spanos…

    One may or may not agree with Bosa’s stance, but he’s certainly helped shine a light on at least one team’s terrible leadership and management style.

  34. Same thing I tell my employees.. Show me you’re worth what you want and I’ll pay you. But don’t tell me you want the money before you’ve shown me you’re worth it.

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