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Brown's contract laughable

  • buck
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 11,475
Originally posted by 12thfan:
Good question about the union stepping in. Seemd like taking pay away for not attending a voluntary workout kind of makes it not very voluntary.

Why hasn't the union been brought in I wonder.

Why would any reasonable person make the assumption that the union was not brought in or involved in helping Brown?

The union has a legal responsibility to represent Brown and if the union did not do so, the union could be sued for a failure to represent.

The wording of the contract and established past practices define the parameters within which they union operates.

These voluntary off season work out clauses are common and legitimate in the wording of contracts and are established past practices.

As far as I can tell the 49ers did not violate the contract or cause any harm to Brown. In fact, they gave him a 300,000 dollar bonus after the season ended. The team voluntarily contributed money to a free agent without knowing if he would return to the team.

It seems reasonably clear that his agent did violate established, perhaps legally defined, professional standards and has a contractual and legal responsibility to ensure that Brown is made whole.
Originally posted by buck:
Originally posted by 12thfan:
Good question about the union stepping in. Seemd like taking pay away for not attending a voluntary workout kind of makes it not very voluntary.

Why hasn't the union been brought in I wonder.

Why would any reasonable person make the assumption that the union was not brought in or involved in helping Brown?

The union has a legal responsibility to represent Brown and if the union did not do so, the union could be sued for a failure to represent.

The wording of the contract and established past practices define the parameters within which they union operates.

These voluntary off season work out clauses are common and legitimate in the wording of contracts and are established past practices.

As far as I can tell the 49ers did not violate the contract or cause any harm to Brown. In fact, they gave him a 300,000 dollar bonus after the season ended. The team voluntarily contributed money to a free agent without knowing if he would return to the team.

It seems reasonably clear that his agent did violate established, perhaps legally defined, professional standards and has a contractual and legal responsibility to ensure that Brown is made whole.

There is always conflict between a union doing what is best for an individual and what is in the best interest of the whole. It could be the union turning a blind eye to the intent of the contract (union contract) to allow players more bargaining power to gain income in individual contracts. Wouldn't be the first time. The intent of the voluntary versus involuntary was to allow players off time as they saw fit, while still having the option of working out at the team's facility if desired.

There is no research that I've read saying players who work out at team's facilities produce better results...as a matter of fact guys like Drew Brees and others have gained a lot by working out with other specialists, who introduce varied work out methods...seems like a win win as they can take them back to the team for review.

If it becomes a wink and a nod kind of deal within individual contracts that's OK by me, but I still wonder if it is circumventing the notion of down time, individual choices, etc. But I don't know if this is a common item that's put into contracts or whether it's only in situations where the player has demonatrated neglect during the off season. The SF Giants should definately have this in Panda's contract! Bubba Paris could have used more supervision...just don't know in this case.
  • buck
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 11,475
Originally posted by dtg_9er:
There is always conflict between a union doing what is best for an individual and what is in the best interest of the whole.

Always???

I am sure that these conflicts have and do occur, but be real, but this always exists in a world of conjecture, and that is not the world in which we live.

I spent most of my working life in union shops. I was a shop steward for close to five years.

Based upon my experience as a union member and my experience as an elected union official, you are at best overstating your case.
Originally posted by English:
Originally posted by theduke85:
I have a question. I'm sure this has been brought up and answered many times, but maybe I'm glazing over it.

Could the 49ers legally (i.e. within the confines of NFL rules) have given Brown the $2M he missed out on? I assume they couldn't, because allowing teams to do things like that would probably open up a lot of loopholes and under-the-table payments and things like that. But it seems like the whole thing was an honest mistake; it's not like Brown is some lazy slob that just skipped workouts completely. Just a miscommunication or ignorance.

Throughout the process, it seemed like the 49ers were helpful -- like they were trying to get the issue resolved (iirc, they even gave him a nice bonus at the end of the year). But why would they not just give him the $2M? Was something preventing them from doing so?

You give him the $2 million
What's the point of a response like this when I'm asking a legitimate question?
Originally posted by Pillbusta:
Originally posted by theduke85:
I have a question. I'm sure this has been brought up and answered many times, but maybe I'm glazing over it.

Could the 49ers legally (i.e. within the confines of NFL rules) have given Brown the $2M he missed out on? I assume they couldn't, because allowing teams to do things like that would probably open up a lot of loopholes and under-the-table payments and things like that. But it seems like the whole thing was an honest mistake; it's not like Brown is some lazy slob that just skipped workouts completely. Just a miscommunication or ignorance.

Throughout the process, it seemed like the 49ers were helpful -- like they were trying to get the issue resolved (iirc, they even gave him a nice bonus at the end of the year). But why would they not just give him the $2M? Was something preventing them from doing so?

Because the 49ers are pinching pennies to pay for the extensions for Kap Aldon and maybe Crab and Iupati. Every penny not spent last year rolls over to this year. The same reason the team just won't give him the full $2 million is the same reason Brown stayed out of our workout program to enroll in his own. The reason is both we and he have to look after our own best interests!
But this doesn't make sense to me. You're saying they're just going to "give" him the money, but in reality they were planning on paying him it all along. Coming into 2013, when Paraag and Trent were budgeting things out, they had $2M set aside for Brown and this bonus. When he missed his workout, this was essentially unexpected cap room that fell into their lap.

I know what the contract says, and I know what the bonus was contingent upon. But by all accounts, it sounds like this was an honest mistake on Brown's part. It's not like he is a fat slob that just decided not to show up and is now trying to repent because of a mistake he made... sounds like he was just legitimately misinformed / uninformed from his agent. I mean, yeah, Brown should know better. He shouldn't be completely in the dark on his contract and his obligations. But then again, his agent must be a complete hack to let something like this slip through the cracks. It's just a monumental oversight on his part.

All I'm saying is I sympathize with the guy. I don't think he deliberately did anything malicious or devious, so I'm just a little bit surprised that the 49ers didn't demonstrate a little more willingness to bend the rules (especially considering he was a free agent). The $300K was a nice gesture, but a far fry from $2M. I feel we as an organization came off as a little bit unsympathetic, which is why I asked if something was legally preventing us from doing it.

Again, I sympathize because of two main points:
1. Brown missed the workouts because of ignorance, not because of laziness, and,
2. The 49ers were planning on paying him this money anyway.
[ Edited by theduke85 on Mar 22, 2014 at 2:31 PM ]
I'm Sorry but I don't feel bad for him. He should know his deal, and not need to be reminded of it. Workouts are technically voluntary, but in reality they are mandatory. Show up and get paid. Don't show up and guess what, you dont get paid. Can't show up either for 50% and expect the money, need at least 90% of participation to get the full amount due. It's his fault IMO. Don't blame the agent, or the team, READ YOUR DAMN CONTRACT, you're not a teenager or rookie, you're nearly 30, I am nearly 30 and know to read and re-read documents to be 100% correct. I hate people feeling sorry for him.

He messed up, and he paid the price.
  • buck
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 11,475
Originally posted by theduke85:


Again, I sympathize because of two main points:
1. Brown missed the workouts because of ignorance, not because of laziness, and,
2. The 49ers were planning on paying him this money anyway.

I also sympathize with Brown.

I do not think that anyone has stated that Brown was lazy or that laziness was the reason he did not participate in the required off season work outs (required by the language of the contract).

The 49ers were willing to pay him for something done--in this case participating in those particular workouts.
He did not participate in those work outs.

The team includes incentives in the contract. I do not think it would be a good practice to pay incentives if the player does not complete the requirements accompanying those incentives.

Originally posted by AB81Rules:
I'm Sorry but I don't feel bad for him. He should know his deal, and not need to be reminded of it. Workouts are technically voluntary, but in reality they are mandatory. Show up and get paid. Don't show up and guess what, you dont get paid. Can't show up either for 50% and expect the money, need at least 90% of participation to get the full amount due. It's his fault IMO. Don't blame the agent, or the team, READ YOUR DAMN CONTRACT, you're not a teenager or rookie, you're nearly 30, I am nearly 30 and know to read and re-read documents to be 100% correct. I hate people feeling sorry for him.

He messed up, and he paid the price.
No matter what way you spin it, if it reflects poorly on Brown, it reflects poorly on his agent tenfold. Sports agents are paid hundreds of thousands (if not millions) to handle contract negotiations and articulate back to their client what they mean. Brown was paid to do things: play football and to train. He made an honest effort to do both of those things. I cannot imagine how betrayed Brown felt by both the team and his agent. He lost 1.7 MILLION DOLLARS out of this. I know he's a millionaire and is set for life even without that workout bonus so I don't feel "sorry" for him, but on a relative scale I do sympathize with him.

Maybe the 49ers thought it would set a bad precedent. Even if they truly believed Brown skipped the workout in error, they didn't want to set a precedent of giving him a pity bonus because they thought it might start a trend of players knowingly skipping and then feigning ignorance after the fact and trying to recoup.
Originally posted by AB81Rules:
I'm Sorry but I don't feel bad for him. He should know his deal, and not need to be reminded of it. Workouts are technically voluntary, but in reality they are mandatory. Show up and get paid. Don't show up and guess what, you dont get paid. Can't show up either for 50% and expect the money, need at least 90% of participation to get the full amount due. It's his fault IMO. Don't blame the agent, or the team, READ YOUR DAMN CONTRACT, you're not a teenager or rookie, you're nearly 30, I am nearly 30 and know to read and re-read documents to be 100% correct. I hate people feeling sorry for him.

He messed up, and he paid the price.


This
Bottom line T. Brown is not as good of a corner as he presumes.

I commend the Raiders front office for not overpaying for him even though they have the leagues most cap room.
Originally posted by buck:
Always???

I am sure that these conflicts have and do occur, but be real, but this always exists in a world of conjecture, and that is not the world in which we live.

I spent most of my working life in union shops. I was a shop steward for close to five years.

Based upon my experience as a union member and my experience as an elected union official, you are at best overstating your case.

In my experience...yes! Of course...you've caught me in one of my absolute beliefs in never using absolutes!

I've been on both sides of union issues most of my life and for the past twenty years as a negotiator for and officer of a union. I have had to battle the parent union many times in order to help a member in just this type of situation--a disagreement between federal and/or state labor laws, state and local policies, and past practice. A great deal comes down to interpretation and who in the room knows more and is a better advocate.

My greatest anger has come when my "union expert" from the state level comes in and openly takes an opposing view to the local without knowing the facts of the case. In some cases there have been conflicts of interest such as one member benefiting from an interpretation that hurts other members...which may be similar to the Brown case. In the most recent case the "state expert" has apologized for interfering and may be replaced due to negligence...but I digress.

If you work in a union shop where everyone is in agreement all the time you have my sincere envy!
Originally posted by fanmusclecars:
Bottom line T. Brown is not as good of a corner as he presumes.

I commend the Raiders front office for not overpaying for him even though they have the leagues most cap room.

For a team who had so much cap space, they are being cautious. Signing good vets to 1-2 yr deals. Woodley, Tuck, McFadden, Brown(He is a good player, not elite CB tho), adding Schaub is a bold move, thankfully for them they didn't dish out a 1st and 2nd, like with Palmer deal. They added a young, but not really veteran Austin Howard on a 5yr $30M deal, he has a $8M cap figure in 2014, which was the highest until Schaub's. They screwed up IMO by letting Veldheer go. Donald Penn is a nice signing though.
Originally posted by AB81Rules:
I'm Sorry but I don't feel bad for him. He should know his deal, and not need to be reminded of it. Workouts are technically voluntary, but in reality they are mandatory. Show up and get paid. Don't show up and guess what, you dont get paid. Can't show up either for 50% and expect the money, need at least 90% of participation to get the full amount due. It's his fault IMO. Don't blame the agent, or the team, READ YOUR DAMN CONTRACT, you're not a teenager or rookie, you're nearly 30, I am nearly 30 and know to read and re-read documents to be 100% correct. I hate people feeling sorry for him.

He messed up, and he paid the price.

He's making more in a year than I will make in twenty, so no...I don't feel sorry for him. He is obviously not able or willing to understand the nuances of his contract and that is just a part of life. Kareem Abdul Jabbar was ripped off by his expert advisor(s) and lost most of his life savings. It happens and demonstrates that life is not always fair...however fair is defined. But does he have a remedy in the law? That is my question, not whether we should feel sorry for him. I enjoy these types of questions because they seem rather straight forward but in our legal system nothing is simple!
I would be curious to know how much of his salary from the Raiders is tied up in workout bonuses.
Originally posted by theduke85:
Originally posted by English:
Originally posted by theduke85:
I have a question. I'm sure this has been brought up and answered many times, but maybe I'm glazing over it.

Could the 49ers legally (i.e. within the confines of NFL rules) have given Brown the $2M he missed out on? I assume they couldn't, because allowing teams to do things like that would probably open up a lot of loopholes and under-the-table payments and things like that. But it seems like the whole thing was an honest mistake; it's not like Brown is some lazy slob that just skipped workouts completely. Just a miscommunication or ignorance.

Throughout the process, it seemed like the 49ers were helpful -- like they were trying to get the issue resolved (iirc, they even gave him a nice bonus at the end of the year). But why would they not just give him the $2M? Was something preventing them from doing so?

You give him the $2 million
What's the point of a response like this when I'm asking a legitimate question?

You got a legitimate answer. You just had to think about it.

Why should the team or it's owners throw away $2 million? No reason. Neither people nor companies act that way.