Melvin Gordon tells Chargers he’s not showing up without a new deal

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Melvin Gordon is taking a stand.

The Chargers running back, entering the fifth year of his first-round rookie deal, has informed the Chargers that he won’t report for training camp without a new contract, and that he’ll demand a trade. Gordon’s agent, Fletcher Smith, informed ESPN of the situation.

Gordon is due to make $5.605 million this year. He has been eligible for a second contract since the completion of the 2017 season.

It’s wise for Gordon to force the issue; injury and age can quickly diminish a running back’s value. The problem becomes even more pronounced for running backs taken in round one, since the fifth-year option is available to be used against them.

In contrast, former Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell earned $12.1 million under the franchise tag in his fifth NFL season, because he wasn’t a first-round pick. Which highlights the value of not being a first-round pick — especially if the player isn’t taken in the top 10, which triggers a considerably higher fifth-year option salary.

Gordon has made $10.669 million during his first four NFL seasons. He has rushed for 3,628 yards in 51 career regular-season games. He has one 1,000-yard rushing season and 38 total touchdowns, rushing and receiving.

83 responses to “Melvin Gordon tells Chargers he’s not showing up without a new deal

  1. As short as NFL careers are, especially for RB’s who are the target of hits on every play, I cant criticize them for trying to get every buck they can, while they can.

  2. I really hope the player’s union negotiates some more freedom of movement in the next CBA. In particular they need to get rid of the franchise tag, which is what this is really about. If I am the Chargers, I would make Gordon play out this year of his contract, and then just keep franchising him until you can replace him. Why commit long-term to him at this point.

    But this really stems from the ability that teams have to restrict player movement.

  3. RogerThat! says:
    July 11, 2019 at 10:19 am
    Chargers are notoriously cheap. No way they cave. Be prepared for a season without Melvin and missing the playoffs.

    —————

    no dog in the fight but still a solid team, elite qb, tough d. and the rbbc approach seems to work well for most. bye melvin.

  4. And here comes cap hell…Their best move, and it SHOULD HAVE ALREADY BEEN THE MOVE, was to deal him quietly this past offseason and gone RB in the draft.

    Do you see the Pats catering to over-priced RBs?

    My goodness, why are teams so dumb?

  5. Then dont sign the conifer you arent going to honor it. The 5th year option is an option approved by the union, they shouldnt have approved it but they did so suck it up and earn your measly 5 mil plus. Poor guy, what a hardship

  6. At least the Chargers already have their excuse for not living up to their annual preseason hype.

  7. “Which highlights the value of not being a first-round pick — especially if the player isn’t taken in the top 10, which triggers a considerably higher fifth-year option salary.”
    ———————-

    Le’Veon Bell made only $3.9m in his first 4 years as a second-round draft pick. Gordon has already made $10.67m in four years and possibly another $5.6m in his fifth. Looking at the TOTAL five year span, Gordon will still make more than Bell as a first-round pick.

    Plus more of that was guaranteed with bigger signing bonus. It’s nonsense to suggest it’s better off to NOT be selected in the first round.

  8. How many times do we have to see this happen before the NFLPA realizes that a standard 4-year rookie deal is obscenely unfair to rookies? The largest discrepancy between value and pay in the NFL is the tail end of the rookie deals. Players are worth much, much more than what they are earning by their final year. It’s time to fix this problem with the next CBA.

  9. friends, as much as we are all lunatic fans, in moments of sanity we have to recognize that any star running back nearing end of his first deal who DOESN’T hold out is out of his @%$#% mind. They are all gonna get DEmarco Murray’d by their teams (run into ground, then let go). How that numbskull in Dallas is showing up to camp without a contract is insane.

  10. packers291 says: “How many times do we have to see this happen before the NFLPA realizes that a standard 4-year rookie deal is obscenely unfair to rookies?”
    ———————-

    Veteran players knows exactly the issue and DON’T CARE. Less money to incoming rookies (ie no vote in union or CBA yet) means bigger contracts to vets.

    Management/owners don’t really care because a hard salary cap means they’re spending money anyways.

  11. So far, it looks like Le’Veon Bell “won” and others are feeling empowered. If Bell’s situation in NY works out over the course of the next 3 or 4 years, we’ll see more of it. If Bell gets hurt and never earns back the money he lost sitting out, players will think twice. If he does nothing (or even little) for the Jets, teams will think twice.

  12. The only reason it got to this is because the Chargers are being cheap, just like they’ve always been.

  13. Gordon is a “good” back but not elite. He won’t get a lot more from some other team. Spanos is cheap particularly now that the LA Chargers revenues are way down. He’s promised Rivers a new contract, but it hasn’t been done. Since the disastrous “re-location” to LA, other than the Chargers share of TV revenues, they have almost no fan base. Spanos is literally renting everything in Costa Mesa and LA. He’ll be renting playing time in Kronke’s stadium and Spanos has already crashed ticket prices in hopes of building some kind of fan base. Won’t happen.LA has too many pro sports teams already.

  14. Aside from the weather, zero idea why anyone would want to play for the Chargers. They beat you up with hard-line offset language on your rookie deal. They are notoriously hard to work with trying to get a 2nd contract out of them. I know that’s how business gets done, but given the small window RB’s have to maximize earnings before they are discarded, I find myself understanding his point of view.

  15. Put him on the inactive list and start preparing for life without him. RBs are a dime a dozen.

  16. akira1971 says:
    July 11, 2019 at 10:44 am

    Plus more of that was guaranteed with bigger signing bonus. It’s nonsense to suggest it’s better off to NOT be selected in the first round.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    It’s better off in the sense you get your 2nd contract or hit free agency quicker…preserving your age/prime earning years…

  17. Did someone tell Gordon he’s a running back and that the Jets already gave an obscene amount of money to a running back so there’s no other teams out there willing to pay him like that?

  18. It’s a rough situation. The Chargers don’t want to pay him if he’s just going to remain injury-prone, and Melvin doesn’t want to play again without a deal in case he gets injured again. Ultimately it’s the Chargers that will be more compelled to fold, they want to make a playoff run, so I imagine a deal gets done mid -to-late training camp.

  19. tinye67 says:
    July 11, 2019 at 10:51 am
    I usually despise hold outs…..but hard to blame a RB.
    They rarely get that one big contract like their counterparts.

    6 5 Rate This

    ——————————-

    That’s just the way it is. More reason for them to deal him quietly to a dumb willing to overpay like the Jets just did with LeVeon Bell.

    It’s not any one team’s fault that the league is known more as a passing league now and that a guy like Gordon, who ran behind a behemoth O Line at Wisconsin was a reach in the draft to begin with, and his own teammate, James White, has more impact in a specialty role and is worth MORE in the league than a Melvin Gordon.

    But, it IS SDs fault for being dumb. You should be constantly looking to draft RBs and find them as UDFAs, due to demand and need, but also signing mid tier veteran ones to short term deals (no more than 2 years).

    It’s not that complicated and SD had to have known what his number was going into last season, and if they didn’t, they’re even more moronic than I thought.

    What a joke it is seeing the media rant and rave about all of these supposed superior GMs over Belichick, while forgetting to talk about contracts and salary allocation, or the trades teams DIDN’T make due to inconsistent drafting.

    Keep hyping other AFC teams not named NE, drooling over players they draft, when NE is running circles around these kinds of teams.

  20. He’s already torn his ACL before, right? Can’t blame him for doing this but also can’t blame the chargers for not wanting to do a big deal. Be interesting to see how this goes down

  21. These players are crazy.. average 900 yards a season and they cant accept 5 mill a season. What a joke

  22. Most overrated RB in the League. Other then getting spoonfed inside the 10 yard line, what has this guy done?

  23. Im not sure what he is asking for, but i think he is worth more than he is getting paid now. But good luck getting the chargers to pay you, they are known for being cheap. and coming out demanding pay or trade, just made your trade value go down.

  24. J K says:
    July 11, 2019 at 11:43 am
    Most overrated RB in the League. Other then getting spoonfed inside the 10 yard line, what has this guy done?

    1 0 Rate This

    ————————-

    I have wondered the same thing. The Pats have dismantled this guy every time they’ve played him.

    He had 1 TD run against them in October of 2017 because Cassius Marsh refused to set the edge like an arrogant, dumb moron as a player. He was dealt that week to dumb SF.

    Other than that, he’s an above average RB who would be a fine complimentary back for a team, but he is in no way, shape or form a dynamo lead back.

    Even still, you’re a fool as a team to have a dynamo lead back and then max out their money for their prime years contract like the Jets just did with Bell.

    Again, not difficult.

  25. The NFL isnt the NBA. Nor do we want it to become like the NBA. If he wants a new deal and not play under his current SIGNED CONTRACT, then let him not play. His numbers alone do not justify any pay raise, so I’m not understanding his issue.

  26. As a Chief fan, I honestly see no reason for the Chargers to pay him. Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson won’t miss a beat with that offense. I would argue Ekeler actually looked better than him from what I saw last year. I honestly don’t see how the guy is even in position to make demands. He can’t stay healthy and doesn’t even average 4 yards per carry, and that’s with Rivers keeping defenses more than honest. Unless his contract demands are very team friendly, they have no reason to give in. I get that he’s a fantasy football hero because he scores a lot of TDs, but any RB is going to put up similar numbers there with Rivers at QB.

    I understand it from his end as well, though. He knows he probably only has a few good years left. Trade him somewhere that will give him a decent contract, collect a draft pick and move on. Avoid any ugliness that seems to be on the brink of occurring.

  27. “It’s wise for Gordon to force the issue; injury and age can quickly diminish a running back’s value.”…. And it’s also wise for the Chargers NOT to pay him for the same reasons. Besides, he’s good, but nothing special

  28. You know who is also taking a stand? The Chargers. Because Gordon, a talented RB but still one who has missed multiple games over 3 of his 4 seasons and averaged less than 3.9 yards a carry each season before this past one, likely wants to get paid big money, and the Chargers know he is more of a “boost” player than a core/elite one. Am I surprised that PFT is seemingly taking the pro-player position here? No, I am not.

  29. Most people don’t make that in a life time but I hear you Gordo 5. whatever million a year has got to be hard on you.

  30. Looking at his #’s Gordon catches the ball better than I would have guessed. He also seems to have cured his fumbling issues from his rookie season.

  31. 1 1,000 yard season. 1 season played 16 games. How much do you think that RB is worth? I honestly think $5 mill this season is appropriate. Hes not a star. Is it that he wants $20-25 mill guaranteed, and a guaranteed future salary? If that’s what he wants, he chose the wrong position to play in this day and age, sadly.

  32. RogerThat! says: “Chargers are notoriously cheap. No way they cave.”

    ==============

    You know there’s a salary cap AND a salary floor for every NFL team, right? This notion of a team being cheap is nonsense. If a team refuses to sign a star player, it is because they view the signing is not worth the money and they would have to place that money somewhere else. This is not the ’80s. It has nothing to do with cheapness. It’s all about money and value management, every team has to go through that.

  33. One 1,000-yard season, and it was barely over 1K, and three other very average years for a backup filling in as a starter gives you zero leverage. Hope the Chargers tell him to just enjoy his vacation.

  34. The 5th year option is a sham for the teams. So a player is selected with the last pick in the first round 32 and another is picked 1st in the 2nd round 33 at the same position. If both are good players after 4 years the guy that was picked in the first round got a little more money but after 5 years the guy picked in round 2 got his new deal after year four and has made more money than the 1st round guy because he is stuck in his 5th year option.

  35. edon8334 says:

    all you people crying about him wanting more money when it’s actually about job security!

    —-

    So, he was offended that the Chargers offered him and extension and more job security. That makes sense.

  36. Tough situation all the way around. Gordon knows at any moment a major injury could squash his high end future earning potential, while the Chargers must question his durability and the cost effectiveness of actually paying him anywhere near what he wants right now. If Gurley hadn’t fell off the cliff end of last season, Melvin might have been able to get something done. Now it’s going to be play it out, and if he actually stay healthy, the franchise tag.

  37. The Gurley deal should scare teams from paying top dollar for running backs. Even LeVeon lost money sitting out a year then signing with the Jets for less money than the Steelers offer, not to mention cost of living and tax differences in NY compared to PA.

  38. Amazing how the white players get paid right away while African-American players have to beg for scraps. Dak Prescott knows what I mean better than anyone.

  39. Wow “Ten Million” already spent on a running back who proved he cannot stay healthy… But he feels he is worthy of a new contract,, I believe you should receive it after you prove you have a 1000 yard season which in the past 4 years you have fallen short of due to injury keep in mind NFL stands for “Not For Long”. Clock is ticking make the 1000 and they will pay you the money the game of football is that a game and the sport will take care of you only as long as you contribute to the team for which you play. Chances are the Chargers look to other backfield members and to the 2nd or 3rd round in the 2020 draft for a replacement. Take control of what you can control do the 1000 yards and you will be paid.

  40. He deserves a little bit more, but I’m definitely not breaking the bank for him! If Melvin thinks he deserves to be the highest paid running back, he could go kick rocks!

  41. homerdawg says:
    July 11, 2019 at 2:39 pm
    Wow “Ten Million” already spent on a running back who proved he cannot stay healthy… But he feels he is worthy of a new contract,, I believe you should receive it after you prove you have a 1000 yard season which in the past 4 years you have fallen short of due to injury keep in mind NFL stands for “Not For Long”. Clock is ticking make the 1000 and they will pay you the money the game of football is that a game and the sport will take care of you only as long as you contribute to the team for which you play. Chances are the Chargers look to other backfield members and to the 2nd or 3rd round in the 2020 draft for a replacement. Take control of what you can control do the 1000 yards and you will be paid.

    —————–

    No… he won’t! He has to demand money now while he has leverage. I doubt he is looking to break the bank, but a one year deal is useless to him.

  42. fifth year of his first-round rookie deal, WTF? RB have a very limited shelf life, who can blame him for wanting to know what is up? While he is making good money its time to decide if he should stay or go.

  43. arealisticpackerfan says: “So, he was offended that the Chargers offered him and extension and more job security. That makes sense.”
    ———————-

    What nonsense are you talking about?!? The Chargers HAVE NOT offered any extension yet. THAT’S THE POINT.

  44. Not to say that they would not miss him but there is no way I would give him a dime this close to training camp. They will be fine without him.

  45. akira1971 says:
    What nonsense are you talking about?!? The Chargers HAVE NOT offered any extension yet. THAT’S THE POINT.
    ==

    And their point is, why should they offer an expensive, multi-year extension to a guy that has done very little and hasn’t always been available? It’s much smarter to see how this year pans out, and whether or not he can finally deliver for a full 16 games.
    If not, the Chargers did the smart thing, which they’re allowed to do under the terms of the CBA as agreed to by the NFLPA. If he does, then he’ll get paid a lot of money next year, by the Chargers or someone else.

  46. Wrong again.

    “The Chargers offered an extension that Gordon that his representatives feel is “disrespectful” because of his production.”

    Meaning, it’s about money… not security.

  47. MG is a VERY good RB! Easily top 10, problem here is he will be looking for top 3 money. The other chargers RB’s (Eckler, Jackson and Newsome) are all about a million per season or less, each. From the Chargers standpoint, is MG worth 10 times more than any of them, given the same opportunities? Probably not. However, MG loves LA, his teammates, and is a fan favorite. I love watching him run. Hope they work something out, but keep in mind they have A LOT of money to deal out next year. Extensions for rivers, Bosa, Henry, Hayward, Ingram, etc. That’s all a lot to consider

  48. He’s not that good. Can’t move a pile and has too many negative plays. He breaks a long one occasionally but I’ve been saying ever since he was drafted the Chargers offense would be better off with a consistent 3 yds & cloud of dust type pile moving between the tackles player.

  49. What would he make on the open market given his production and injury history? Doubt teams would be lining up to throw 10 million a year at him.

  50. J K says:
    July 11, 2019 at 11:43 am
    Most overrated RB in the League. Other then getting spoonfed inside the 10 yard line, what has this guy done?
    ——————————————
    No. The most overrated RB in the league plays for the other team in LA

  51. I agree with the610limited…Gordon signed the contract with the 5th year option, that’s on him and his agent. Also Melvin, your hurt just about every year…You missed 4 games last year…You don’t think that the Chargers won’t take that into account?

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