Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Why Albert Breer respects Nick Bosa for holding firm in contract negotiations with 49ers

Jun 20, 2019 at 8:41 AM--

Defensive end Nick Bosa remains as one of just two unsigned San Francisco 49ers draft picks and one of the six remaining unsigned first-round draft picks. While fans would prefer to see everyone signed well before training camp, the rookie does not seem concerned about the negotiations and is leaving it in the hands of his agent.

"I don't really deal with that," Bosa told reporters earlier this month. "I let my agent do that. I probably asked him about it once throughout this process, but I know it takes a little bit for that to happen for a lot of guys. I'm just patient, and I'll see what happens."

Thanks to the CBA, there is nothing to negotiate as far as salary is concerned. How much a rookie deal is worth depends on where he was selected in the draft order. All rookie contracts are for a length of four years, and Bosa's deal is believed to be worth $33,551,874, according to Over the Cap. NFL teams have an option for a fifth year for first-round picks, like Bosa.

With the salary terms set, that leaves other miscellaneous structural items left to negotiate. Typically, that is what holds up rookie contracts under the current CBA.

The 49ers' top pick last year, tackle Mike McGlinchey, signed his rookie deal just days before the team's first training camp practice. In 2017, then-rookie defensive lineman Solomon Thomas signed his rookie deal as his new teammates were going through their first training camp practice.

At least one member of the national media, senior reporter of The MMQB for Sports Illustrated, Albert Breer, commends Bosa — or his agent — for standing firm on their demands.

Buried within his Thursday-morning feature for The MMQB, Breer responded to a fan who was concerned that Bosa has not yet signed and questioned why rookie contracts don't already contain set language surrounding the miscellaneous structural items.

Here is how Breer responded:

"Because the slotting system is based entirely on math, so there are certain things regarding the language of the contract—like cash flow and offsets—that are negotiable. And that's precisely why these things become a big deal. Give teams and agents something to fight over, and they'll fight.

"The team will claim it has to hold to all of its precedents in these contracts, hence pushing hard against offsets. Agents need to win in these situations because if they don't it's used against them in recruiting. And in the great majority of cases, they don't really wind up affecting the player much—he has to be a massive bust (cut in his first three years) for those offsets to come into play.

"That said, I do respect Bosa, one of two unsigned 49ers draft picks, for holding the line as a rookie. (Bosa's brother, Joey, also had extended negotiations with the Chargers as a rookie in 2016; he ended up signing in late August.) Not enough players do in contract negotiations in general."

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