Dalvin Cook arrived for work on Tuesday, the day reports were scheduled for the Vikings training camp in Minnesota. No, the return does not yet have the new contract extension it wants. And no, despite the threat he allegedly made in June, there was never a chance that he would survive the camp one way or another.
The traditional training of a player entering the last year of his contract is not something you can expect this year, and it has nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic. The reason for the delayed camps is mostly in the past. They are mentioned in the new agreement on collective bargaining of the league, which was approved by the owners and players in March. The exact text in Article 8 (1) 1 letter B):
A player will not receive the accumulated season for any league year in which the player has a contract with the club and in which i) the club’s mandatory training camp has not been reported on the day of the player’s mandatory registration; or (ii) the player has not subsequently performed his contractual services for the club for a significant period of time, unless he demonstrates to an impartial referee extreme personal difficulties which cause such failure to report or perform, such as serious illness or death in the family. .
In the last round of CBA talks, this was a priority for owners. They wanted to tighten fines for delaying training camps, and they did. The previous CBA stipulated that players can lose an accumulated season only if they did not register for the camp within 30 days before the team’s first regular season. So in Cook’s case, that would be August 14. According to the new CBA, it was Tuesday.
Why does it matter? The loss of the accumulated season affects the state of the player’s free agency. As a pre-selection in 2017, Cook has won three seasons so far and needs four to be eligible for an unlimited free agency. If he did not win the accumulated season by 2020, then he should be a limited free agent in March next year, which means that the Vikings would have the right to compare any offer he received from another team.
Now, even though the report date was mandatory later under the old rules, that didn’t stop everyone. For example, last year’s Cowboys returning, Ezekiel Elliott, did well behind the brand 30 days before the season, when he headed for his fourth year, which means that if he hits a leisure agency last March, he should have been a limited free agent. instead of an unrestricted agent. Elliott didn’t care when he found out what successes he had made during the first three seasons – that is, leading the league in a hurry in a hurry twice and in a hurry in a game of the second year – would prevent a free agency from being curtailed by market restrictions. In the end, it didn’t matter, because just before the season, he signed an extension with Cowboys.
But a player like Cook, even if he’s so big, can’t assume what Elliott could have done. Cook missed 19 games due to injury during his three-year NFL career, and even if he had to put together an excellent and healthy season, there was no way to make sure the team was willing to offer him Vikings. and the part with the selection of the second round of thrust.
So there’s Cook, because Joe Mixon will almost certainly be in Cincinnati and Alvin Kamara in New Orleans and George Kittle in San Francisco, and everyone else who goes into the last years of their contracts and wants new ones will be in the cities where their teams play. Staying a few days in camp brings a harsher punishment than you have ever been used to, and it doesn’t make sense unless you’re a stellar quarterback or someone who may feel convinced that a limited service agency won’t, well, limit you.
Three more information about this new CBA feature:
Do not expect any “suspensions”. Some are in the league who believe that a player in Cook’s situation would show up for the camp and just refuse to train until a new deal is struck. It is possible, but go back and read Article 8 (2) again. 1 letter B) and note where it says: “the player subsequently did not perform his contractual services for the club for a significant period of time. ‘ ” This is the part that would allow a team to anchor a player in an accumulated season if he showed up and refused to train or participate in mandatory team activities. Can a player claim an injury in Cook’s situation? Of course. However, if the team did not trust him or diagnose him as injured, the case could end up in front of an referee, who could rule in favor of the team and deny the player the accumulated season.
The fines are tougher, but not for Cook, Mixon, Kamara or Kittle. The new CBA has increased the maximum fine for skipping training camp from $ 40,000 to $ 50,000 per day, but fines for players who are still in contract with newcomers are limited to $ 40,000 per day unless they are in the fifth year. season. Each player who was nominated in 2017 enters the fourth year of their rookie agreement, so their fines will remain at $ 40,000 per day if they skip days. Not that it’s very important, because the threat of losing the accumulated season is likely to act as a more significant deterrent.
Fines cannot be waived. It used to be that if a player fired and finally agreed to a new deal with the team, he used to order the team to waive the fines. But due to the owners’ desire to discourage detention in the camps, there is a provision in the new CBA that forbids it. Article 42, section 1, deals with fines for camps, “For the avoidance of any doubt, any such penalties shall be mandatory and shall not be reduced or waived by the clubs, in whole or in part, but shall be paid by the player or deducted by the club as set out in section 5. (b) of this Article. . ‘ “ [Časť 5 písm. B) určuje spôsob, akým sa vyberajú pokuty.]