Dave Wannstedt blasts “selfish” Roquan Smith

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Former Bears head coach Dave Wannstedt showed up to the team’s training camp today and blasted rookie linebacker Roquan Smith, whom Wannstedt described as “selfish” for remaining unsigned, almost two weeks after the rest of the Bears’ rookies reported to camp.

“For a rookie to hold out because of some fine print, it’s pretty selfish from an agent standpoint to do that. This kid needs to be here,” Wannstedt said.

Of course, what’s “fine print” to Wannstedt could be millions of dollars to Smith, especially if the Bears are holding to the idea that they could wipe out Smith’s guarantees if he gets suspended for violating the NFL’s ill-defined rule against lowering the helmet to initiate contact. If that’s why Smith is holding out, then his agents are being prudent, not selfish.

Still, Wannstedt says a rookie needs to be in camp.

“Physically I’m sure he’s running and doing that stuff, but there’s no substitute for what they’re doing right now, for having the pads on, going through full speed drills with pads on,” Wannstedt said.

That may be true, but there are always two sides to every negotiation. Wannstedt may only see the management side because he was in management, but there’s validity to the player’s side as well.

73 responses to “Dave Wannstedt blasts “selfish” Roquan Smith

  1. “especially if the Bears are holding to the idea that they could wipe out Smith’s guarantees if he gets suspended for violating the NFL’s ill-defined rule against lowering the helmet to initiate contact.”

    Bad rule and bad strategy by the Bears to try and penalize a player’s contract simply for being a defender having to play under the bad rule. Can’t blame the player at all if the Bears are the only team trying to cram that clause down a defender’s throat.

  2. harrisonhits2 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:14 am

    “especially if the Bears are holding to the idea that they could wipe out Smith’s guarantees if he gets suspended for violating the NFL’s ill-defined rule against lowering the helmet to initiate contact.”

    Bad rule and bad strategy by the Bears to try and penalize a player’s contract simply for being a defender having to play under the bad rule. Can’t blame the player at all if the Bears are the only team trying to cram that clause down a defender’s throat.

    ———————————————

    And by the way…as you stated above is just conjecture by Profootballtalk. “If that’s why Smith is holding out” was the phrase quoted.

  3. I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.

  4. The way fans pile on athletes because they won’t just bend over for a billionaire when it comes to contracts is disgusting. If it was your family and your life changing opportunity, you wouldn’t be kowtowing to your rich boss.

  5. You need to diagnose the person when you’re scouting and interviewing them. For the Bears, who have been underwhelming and essentially rebuilding now for years, you need a slam dunk 1st rd pick to build around there.

    Horrible.

    Ryan Pace whiffed on the JimmyG sweepstakes and now he’s botching 1st rd picks.

    The McCaskeys need to pony up the money for a real GM there for once and a real coach, or it will never work.

    That’s been their problem. Jerry Angelo at one time was good about 15 years ago, but the next guy was horrendous and this new Pace guy isn’t off to a good start.

  6. Once Smith signs, he has no leverage for the next 5 years. Smith should be concerned about the fine print.

  7. gobears84 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:20 am
    Mark this down in history: The one time Wanny said anything I and other Bear fans agree with.
    ———
    … no one agrees with you, though.

  8. billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.
    ——–

    They’re only pro-management because they’re mostly White people (along with the owners ALL being White) controlling a mostly-Black league.

    There, someone finally said it.

  9. And now we illustrate the uniformed Bear fan:

    johnodocks says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:26 am

    Wannstedt just doesn’t have the guts to call out ownership for being cheap.

    ——————————————–

    The Bears have been anything but cheap. Poor managing and decision making? No doubt. Instead of providing facts for you, Ill let you go find it for yourself.

  10. “fine print” such as “nothing in this ‘contract’ is guaranteed, rendering it not a contract at all”

    Of course, all NFL players have the same fine print in their “contracts.”

  11. Exactly Mike. Im glad you consistently side with the worker. there was a time in this country where unions made it possible for people to have a decent living wage. seeing some of the comments on this site makes me realize alot of working folks today, for whatever reason, are more than happy to bite off their nose to spite their face. let the players get all they can when they can.

  12. Mr. Wright 212 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:32 am

    gobears84 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:20 am
    Mark this down in history: The one time Wanny said anything I and other Bear fans agree with.
    ———
    … no one agrees with you, though.

    —————————–

    Mr. Wright huh? I’ll just laugh about that while you scroll up and look for yourself champ.

  13. 100% agree with Wannstedt here although that isn’t much of a surprise, I always side with ownership over labor. Get him signed and then make him inactive, healthy scratch for the entire year. Let him sit with the practice squad guys who are barely making it in the NFL and who are bagging groceries and driving for Uber to make ends meet. Force some humility on him and then maybe let him play in 2019.

  14. Come on now, Dave. Roqueen needs big bank upfront guarantees to buy that $100k neck chain bling and the matching ear rings. He also has a payment coming up on his new Porsche and lakeside 19 bedroom home. The dude is just being real, that’s all.

  15. Darnold should be holding out for offset language because he in fact will be a bust. He’ll need all of the financial advantages possible and he knows it…or at least his CAA agent knows it.

  16. How in the world is it selfish if you are trying to maximize your services? Stay out of the man’s a bank account Wanny the Pooh. Unless you are going to loan the kid some money shut up…

  17. Rookie contracts have very little to negotiate now, rookies are largely already bent over by the CBA. It’s not as though the kid can squeeze the team for more money or greater guarantees, the onus is on the team to make it happen.

  18. Rules are rules. You either play by the rules or you don’t. If you violate the rules you can get fined or suspended. That is what life is like in the NFL. There are some players that violate rules on a regular basis, and many push the rules to the limit. When a good player gets suspended, it can hurt the entire team. I can’t blame a team for trying to make an individual player responsible for his actions.

  19. These rookies have never played a down in the NFL. They have produced nothing as yet. What teams should do is let them sit at home.

  20. Mr Wright, when all one can play is the race card that person is playing a losing hand, rightly or wrongly. So you are saying all football fans bow down to white owners. what about all the minority sports fans out there, sounds like they are getting lumped together based on your theory.
    race baiting makes one lose cred.

  21. It’s HIS contract plain and simple. I would not think to advise someone else about the conditions under which they have to work and wouldn’t appreciate somebody telling that to me.

  22. gobears84 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:36 am
    And now we illustrate the uniformed Bear fan:

    johnodocks says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:26 am

    Wannstedt just doesn’t have the guts to call out ownership for being cheap.

    ——————————————–

    The Bears have been anything but cheap. Poor managing and decision making? No doubt. Instead of providing facts for you, Ill let you go find it for yourself.

    11 0 Rate This

    —————————-

    The Bears have been notoroiously cheap. Look at the coaches and GMs they’ve settled for in recent years.

    Ray Emery was a clueless moron, Jerry Angelo got very senile towards the end, and now Ryan Pace traded up for a QB who only played 1 year in college.

    Trubsiky may work out just fine, but when you have JimmyG avaiable as the hometown boy and Ryan Pace also went to Eastern Illinois, how you didn’t sweeten the deal to trade for Garoppolo, is almost inexplicable.

    Belichick spent EVERY DAY with JimmyG to tutor him as the intended successor in case Brady listened too much to Giselle and he retired.

    That means that no other QB they’ve ever drafted was intended to be a Brady Jr. JimmyG WAS groomed to be Brady Jr just like how BB groomed Brady into what he has become today.

    Why teams throw away 1st rd picks on complete unknowns as compared to being more aggressive for what appear to be more slam dunk prospects, I have no idea.

    Arziona, Chicago, Washington and the Giants all should have been in on the sweepstakes, but only SF was.

    That right there is a good example as to why 75% of this league sucks overall and tv ratings are tumbling.

    It starts at the top. Always has and it always will.

  23. tfootball1234 says: “Exactly Mike. Im glad you consistently side with the worker. … let the players get all they can when they can.”
    ===========================

    Except that the NFL is a hard salary cap. They have to spent $178 million regardless of which players get it. Owners can’t cheap out and only spent $50 million on contracts and then pocket the other $128 million as profit. But they can be prudent and afford more better players.

  24. Guy who has been in the league making money for years is blasting a kid he’s probably never even met who just got done playing for free. Makes sense.

  25. If players didn’t cry at being oppressed, while making millions to play a game maybe people wouldn’t side with the owners.

  26. The Bears could have hired Bruce Arians, but insisted he keep some of the prior assistant coaches because they were still under contract and they didn’t want to eat the coast of buying out the contracts.

    He went to the Cardinals and had some good success. I think this is when the bears hired Marc Trestman, and then John Fox.

    An NFL team should have some business sense, but when it comes to getting the best players and coaches…well just pray their current QB works out.

    I guess they had no trouble giving Mike Glennon money though. HIM you break the bank for ?

  27. Wannstedt “blasted” Smith? How so??
    Here’s his quote, “it’s pretty selfish from an agent standpoint to do that.”

    Where did he “blast” the player?? Sensational the headline much?!

  28. Only the Bears could screw up signing their 1st-round pick in what is essentially a slotted system anymore.

  29. This is EXACTLY why the AGENTS exist. Sheesh. Shut your mouth ex-coach. As you and the owners have said umpteen times – IT’S a BUSINESS.

  30. billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.

    Take care of their families? My wife and I, as do many if not most in this country, do it on much less. If you’re looking to garner sympathy you might try a different path. When I hear a guy with a diamond stud driving a Maserati telling me he needs to feed his kids I kinda stop listening. What I understand is that a lot of people are pretty free and easy with other people’s money.

  31. daramsman says: “How in the world is it selfish if you are trying to maximize your services? Stay out of the man’s a bank account Wanny the Pooh.”
    ===============================

    It’s selfish because rookie contracts are slotted. “Stay out of the man’s bank account” is stupid because there’s no extra money to be squeezed.

    So instead of being in camp and learning the playbook, working on vital game situation communication with teammates, getting into NFL-level conditioning, etc., he’s hurting his team going into the season by not being ready.

  32. C’mon now….did Wannstedt really “blast” this kid??
    He said and I quote the article, “it’s pretty selfish from an agent standpoint to do that. This kid needs to be here,” Wannstedt said.

    I don’t think that quote rises to the level of “blasting” the kid. He said it was selfish of the “agent” and implies that it’s in the player’s best interests to be in camp. You can disagree with Wannstedt, but I don’t think he’s “blasting” the player here.

  33. Mr. Wright 212 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:33 am
    billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.
    ——–

    They’re only pro-management because they’re mostly White people (along with the owners ALL being White) controlling a mostly-Black league.

    There, someone finally said it.
    ____________________________________________________________________________

    I don’t get it either. Every ham and egger out there is wanting more pay from their bosses for the work they do. Why do they get up in arms when players want the same?

    Management can terminate contracts virtually at will. Players have very little power over their employment plus their careers are mostly short lived. Let them get what they can!

  34. waynefontesismyfather says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:44 am
    100% agree with Wannstedt here although that isn’t much of a surprise, I always side with ownership over labor. Get him signed and then make him inactive, healthy scratch for the entire year. Let him sit with the practice squad guys who are barely making it in the NFL and who are bagging groceries and driving for Uber to make ends meet. Force some humility on him and then maybe let him play in 2019.
    ___________________________________________________________________

    Who the heck are you to decide he needs to have humility forced upon him? Would it be OK for your boss to underpay you and stick you in an office by yourself and not let you work at your job to the fullest of your ability? Man, some people’s children!

  35. wiscoregon2 says: “Guy who has been in the league making money for years is blasting a kid he’s probably never even met who just got done playing for free. Makes sense.”
    ===========================

    Cost of going to Georgia is about $45,000 a year in tuition and residence. Add to that he got free, high level coaching from Kirby Smart’s staff that made him a better player than he first started out from high school. Enough to get noticed and drafted by the NFL. Also, he built him brand name recognition from hundred of thousands of Georgia Bulldog alumni.

    So yeah, “playing for free” doesn’t even come close to being accurate.

  36. Playing for free most definitely would be accurate. You take kids from situations in which they don’t have the proper resources, put them on a football field to make millions of dollars for the university and then put them in classes that won’t help them in the long run so they can be eligible. On top of that, you refuse to teach the person who’s only at your school to play a sport how to manage their money and avoid the pitfalls with agents/hanger-oners and so forth. Also, fans being pro-management is definitely about race. These guys are supporting more than just themselves with these salaries. You see people talking about spending money on bling and other material things and you can only equate that to stereotypes. People don’t do that when talking about owners or how frivously they spend their money.

  37. If he is going to lead the defense, the more training camp reps the better. It can be tough for defensive rookies to pick up the system without repetition. Then again, without knowing the basis for the contract snag, it’s premature to call him selfish.

  38. tylawspick6 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:25 am
    You need to diagnose the person when you’re scouting and interviewing them. For the Bears, who have been underwhelming and essentially rebuilding now for years, you need a slam dunk 1st rd pick to build around there.

    Horrible.

    Ryan Pace whiffed on the JimmyG sweepstakes and now he’s botching 1st rd picks.

    The McCaskeys need to pony up the money for a real GM there for once and a real coach, or it will never work.

    That’s been their problem. Jerry Angelo at one time was good about 15 years ago, but the next guy was horrendous and this new Pace guy isn’t off to a good start.

    ____________

    As a Bears fan I agree with everything you said except for the McCaskey’s need to pony up. What they need to do is just sell this team. At this point I really miss JA & Lovie.

  39. A lot of overreacting going on here. The Bears are not a playoff team. These issues will be resolved soon and his impact won’t matter until maybe 2020.

  40. If that’s reason for hold out that’s 100% on Bears and I support Smith. How ridiculous but of course that’s typical of Bears management. Idiots.

  41. jstdad says:
    July 27, 2018 at 12:22 pm
    Mr. Wright 212 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:33 am
    billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.
    ——–

    They’re only pro-management because they’re mostly White people (along with the owners ALL being White) controlling a mostly-Black league.

    There, someone finally said it.
    ____________________________________________________________________________

    I don’t get it either. Every ham and egger out there is wanting more pay from their bosses for the work they do. Why do they get up in arms when players want the same?

    Here’s why,

    If a guy’s is making 50, 60 or 100k a year he might get a 2 or 3 maybe even 5% raise which amounts to not much after taxes. When a guy is already making mid to high 6 figures or more at 22-25 years old not because he’s a contributor to society but an entertainer, and asks for more of a raise than most ham and eggers make in 10 years, well there you go. Should be pretty clear now. Most owners are in it for the long haul. A lifetime endeavor into which they stake their own resources except where they have strongarmed cities into funding stadiums. Most players don’t make 10 years so I get why they want as much as they can get. Imagine if you owned a company and your employee tells you unless he gets a 50% raise he’s going to stay home. I’m sure you’d just pay him, right?

  42. commentawaitingdeletion says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:56 am
    Rookie contracts have very little to negotiate now, rookies are largely already bent over by the CBA. It’s not as though the kid can squeeze the team for more money or greater guarantees, the onus is on the team to make it happen.

    ———————

    Agree with your 1st take, but not the 2nd. Prior to 2011, the way rookies were wildly overpaid was preposterous on many levels. So, the rookie cap is necessary for team protection reasons up against the cap, for tv ratings, etc, good cap health, etc (even though teams are still morons), but also for that veteran free agent who SHOULD have been making more pre 2011, and was not.

    Mark Sanchez made 17 million in 2009. Brady was making 7 million that year, and if with Brady taking discounts, that is still a vast, vast difference in ROI there.

    That was the entire backdrop as to how I knew the union would get demolished at the negotiating table. The pendulum swung WAY, WAY too far the other way for the union’s point of view pre 2011.

    But now, it has swung way back way too much for the owners. It’s like how unfair the Versailles Treaty was to Germany, as a comparison.

    Middle ground is always the healthiest.

  43. Mr. Wright 212 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:33 am
    billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.
    ——–

    They’re only pro-management because they’re mostly White people (along with the owners ALL being White) controlling a mostly-Black league.

    There, someone finally said it.

    You’re a bit late. There’s been plenty of folks saying that out loud or under their breath for a long time now. Somewhat prejudiced methinks. Not nice to hate or denigrate based on skin color. Guess that is a one way street.

  44. Why would it be about a clause about the new rule?
    It’s more than likely about offset language.
    Guys drafted to bad teams (Chicago, NYJ) should fight for their double dip contract because it is more likely that the team will have to reload/rebuild again in 4 years. Therefore these players are just protecting themselves from their bad franchises, imo.

  45. This is a crazy tactic the Bears r tryin here. I wonder if any other rookies have this new lowering of the helmet clause in it. No1 has even played under these new rules and as a LB who get like 100 tackles it would be plain stupid for his agent to let him sign a contract w this language in it.

    This is uncharted territory w this new helmet rule as no1 anywhere really knows exactly how it’s gonna play out. But for the Bears to be trying to get this in his contract where it nullifies his guaranteed contract is ridiculous. No1 has ever that we know of signed such a rookie contract. He was your top 10 pick why try and be weasels and be slick in this one of year w a new rule.

    Just sign him to a regular rookie deal like everyone before him and after him since this new rookie wage scale. If they had so many concerns maybe they shouldn’t have drafted a LBer. Roquan is 109% right not to sign that and his agents would look like jokes if they let the Bears get that over on him.

  46. The rookie salary slotting (per Overthecap) determines the guts of the contract: 4 yr. (GUARANTEED!!) for $18,477,16 w/ a SB of $11,517,940 with the team option of 5th yr. Haggling about the fine-print is silly from both parties ~ stop trying to deviate from “the norm” & get the guy into camp.

  47. Wannstedt is a complete and total TOOL , how much dumber can you get? That has to be the dumbest comment i’ve heard out of a coach’s mouth in atleast 4-5yrs, congratulations for being that freaking stupid Wannstedt!!!!! I’m sure Wannstedt would of showed up to coach guys without getting paid a nickle yet by the Bears!!! If the Bears want him at camp that badly THEY PAY THE FREAKING MAN & Stop try to rip the kid off giving him totally unacceptable terms in fine print!!! This is why no one wants to play for that crappy franchise, it’s a shame to that one of the leagues more historic franchise has fallen that freaking low.

  48. xargscutgrep says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:12 am
    Next year, teams should stay away from CAA clients.

    ______________________________________________________

    Or maybe next year players should stay away from the Bears until they start running a professional modern NFL organization out there in CHI.

  49. Every time there is an impasse in regards to contracts and how teeny, tiny, itty bitty the difference is between player and management, somehow the media ALWAYS sides with management. If the issue is so minor why not slam the team for getting it done?

  50. Kelly Arvin says:
    July 27, 2018 at 12:05 pm
    If players didn’t cry at being oppressed, while making millions to play a game maybe people wouldn’t side with the owners.
    ———

    More excuses for bigoted opinions. The players use their platform and voice to speak for those who ARE being oppressed, marginalized and killed when they otherwise would (continue to be) ignored.

    The fact that bringing attention to that FACT rankles certain people speaks VOLUMES.

  51. Everyone keeps speculating what the hold out is over. The fact is that we don’t know. Both sides have been professional enough to not negotiate through the media or in the court of public opinion. For all we know it could be over offsets (a reasonable concern for any organization – why pay a player you no longer employ?), or it could be over bonus money (reasonable expectation for the player to want to be paid up front. He is after all literally risking life and limb). As a Bears fan I want my team to have every opportunity to succeed on the field. So yeah, it annoys me that Smith isn’t in camp. But it’s important to remember that the NFL is a business put together to entertain us. All the inner workings aren’t my business at the end of the day, nor is it anyone’s right to speculate or pass judgment one way or the other. Just cheer for who plays and hope for favorable outcomes. The rest will work itself out.

  52. Mr. Wright 212 says:

    July 27, 2018 at 11:33 am

    billvick111 says:
    July 27, 2018 at 11:24 am
    I understand why fans are pro-management when their team is negotiating with players, but why do people pull for management in negotiations that don’t involve their team? Makes zero sense. Let these guys get paid and take care of their families.
    ——–

    They’re only pro-management because they’re mostly White people (along with the owners ALL being White) controlling a mostly-Black league.

    There, someone finally said it.
    ——————–
    Mr. Wrong chimes in again. Where’s the other guy that is always wrong YoungNoisecom?

  53. “For a rookie to hold out because of some fine print, IT’S PRETTY SELFISH FROM AN AGENT STANDPOINT TO DO THAT.”

    Wannstedt was not criticizing the player, he was criticizing the agent for not getting the deal signed and getting the rookie into camp on time.

  54. What the hell does Wannstdt even have an opinion anymore? He’s proven to not be an NFL coach. Why listen to him?

    His rookie contract is slotted. The guys at 7 and 9 have signed. Not much wiggle room. Maybe his agent is not giving him good advice. Where’s my commission? Maybe he’s already got too many baby mommas to support. Or just maybe he doesn’t want to play for the Bears.

  55. Isn’t Wannstedt the guy who put the Bears future in the hands of Eric Kramer? I’m just saying, Wannstedt might not be the expert on players he thinks he is. If Smith has natural talent, he won’t be affected by missing some of camp. If he doesn’t have talent, then the Bears should add him to their talentless offensive line. He’ll fit right in.

  56. Smith is very ill advised about this hold out. Not the way to start a NFL career by ruining your BRAND with lousy PR. The Bears should just let him sit out as long as he wants till he is ready to play some pro football. I was wrong about this kid during the Draft process they should have choose anyone of a dozen other prospects at #7 because they were all mature men enough to make their own decisions. They have all signed! Go Bears.

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