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Will Matt Lepsis Be Given The Franchise Tag and Other Goodies!

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  • Will Matt Lepsis Be Given The Franchise Tag and Other Goodies!

    There were some interesting facts in the recent Post article for digestion.

    First:

    After this season, the Broncos will have eight unrestricted free agents: Gerard Warren, Keith Burns, Ron Dayne, Sam Brandon, Mike Leach, Patrick Chukwurah, Marco Coleman and Monsanto Pope.
    Notice that Matt Lepsis is NOT in that list. Was he overlooked? I thought he was unrestricted this off-season, but he might be a restricted FA, in which case he could be given the franchise tag, or the Broncos could match any offers he receives in FA. That means he'd very likely be a Bronco next season and could explain why Shanahan has done nothing to lock him up before now. Either way, it doesn't look like the Broncos crucial LT will be going anywhere next year. That would be a HUGE relief to Bronco fans. Lepsis has quietly emerged this year as a premier left tackle -- one of the most important positions in football.

    None of the eight UFAs this off-season are that important. Of course, that list doesn't include Courtney Brown who will be due an $8 million roster bonus or Trevor Pryce, whose cap # is $10.4 million. One or both could be gone. Both would have to re-negotiate to stay.

    Unlike some teams such as the Philadelphia Eagles, who recently gave a new deal to running back Brian Westbrook, the Broncos don't negotiate during the season. Come late winter, Warren, their starting defensive tackle whose salary cap value this year is $1.85 million, will become the Broncos' No. 1 priority.
    I have NO idea why the Broncos don't do that! It seems really stupid to wait until a player becomes a FA to negotiate with him. Then he costs MUCH more $! WHY can't Ted Sundquist handle player re-negotiations DURING the season? Does Shanahan have to make every decision himself and not want to be distracted? Why even have a GM at all if you can't give him some responsibility? Surely, Ted could get his marching orders from Shanahan and then carry them out independently?

    Almost all the teams in the NFL handle player contracts during the season. There's no good reason not to and a lot good reasons to do so. No wonder Shanahan has LOST such valuable players as Bert Berry and Reggie Hayward with that kind of policy!

    "My focus is on this season," Warren said. "I would love to stay here, but I'm just trying to finish up the season on a positive note. If I'm fortunate enough to stay healthy and they want me back, I'd be more than happy to oblige and stay."

    A former first-round draft choice (third overall), Warren played four seasons with the Cleveland Browns until he was traded to the Broncos in March for a fourth-round draft choice. Has Warren's first season with the Broncos been his best overall?

    "It's my funnest year, the most fun I've ever had in the NFL," Warren said. "We're playing nice, fundamentally sound football. You don't find too many guys with minuses on their grade sheets when we come in on Monday or Wednesday. So that's been very uplifting. You could say I'm having my best year technique-wise and fundamental-wise, so, yeah, I guess you could say that."
    Well, so much for those who argued that Warren would be GONE at the end of the season because he hates being forced to play in a gap control defense! Unless he's just flat lying through his teeth (and why would he say anything if that's the case?) he wants to be back.

    That's certainly good news. He and Trevor Pryce have been the best Broncos DL.
    sigpic

  • #2
    I agree 100% about Lepsis. He is priority # 1 to re sign. In my mind the O-Line are the MVP's.

    I disagree that you should try and sign FA's during the season:

    1. Contract negotiations are distracting, and if a team starts opening the doors to contract talks during the season you are inviting players to be disruptive.

    2. Late season injuries can play a major role in value.

    3. I don't think it saves money, as they agents are always testing the waters to see what they will get in the offseason, and would be foolish to sign for less than market value.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hopefully, isn't Tom Nalen retiring after this season, which means Hamilton will move over to center. We should sign Lepsis, and we're most likely going to draft an offensive linemen in the first round. So we should have depth at the OL.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Cugel
        There were some interesting facts in the recent Post article for digestion.

        First:



        Notice that Matt Lepsis is NOT in that list. Was he overlooked? I thought he was unrestricted this off-season, but he might be a restricted FA, in which case he could be given the franchise tag, or the Broncos could match any offers he receives in FA. That means he'd very likely be a Bronco next season and could explain why Shanahan has done nothing to lock him up before now. Either way, it doesn't look like the Broncos crucial LT will be going anywhere next year. That would be a HUGE relief to Bronco fans. Lepsis has quietly emerged this year as a premier left tackle -- one of the most important positions in football.

        None of the eight UFAs this off-season are that important. Of course, that list doesn't include Courtney Brown who will be due an $8 million roster bonus or Trevor Pryce, whose cap # is $10.4 million. One or both could be gone. Both would have to re-negotiate to stay.



        I have NO idea why the Broncos don't do that! It seems really stupid to wait until a player becomes a FA to negotiate with him. Then he costs MUCH more $! WHY can't Ted Sundquist handle player re-negotiations DURING the season? Does Shanahan have to make every decision himself and not want to be distracted? Why even have a GM at all if you can't give him some responsibility? Surely, Ted could get his marching orders from Shanahan and then carry them out independently?

        Almost all the teams in the NFL handle player contracts during the season. There's no good reason not to and a lot good reasons to do so. No wonder Shanahan has LOST such valuable players as Bert Berry and Reggie Hayward with that kind of policy!



        Well, so much for those who argued that Warren would be GONE at the end of the season because he hates being forced to play in a gap control defense! Unless he's just flat lying through his teeth (and why would he say anything if that's the case?) he wants to be back.

        That's certainly good news. He and Trevor Pryce have been the best Broncos DL.
        I saw an article in a Cleveland paper way back when we made the trade for Warren that he said he would like to make his stay here in Denver a longer one. So whether or not he is lying I don't know but he has been consistant in what he has said.

        Lepsis' situation tricky to say least. I would like for the Broncos to keep him but his agent said months ago that Matt was going to test the FA market.

        I'm not sure exactly why Shanahan waits until the end of the season, but my guess is that something to do with the fact he is so involved with the process as well and being the head coach.

        Cugel every once in a while I've heard about players getting new contract during a season but I don't think its as common you're thinking. Guys like Wayne, and James of the Colts are in contract years but as far as I a deal hasn't been struck yet. Jerry Porter of the Raiders was in a contract year last season, but didn't get a new deal until the end of last year.
        Last edited by TXBRONC; 11-18-2005, 08:27 PM.
        John 11: 25-27

        My Adopt-A-Bronco is D.J. Williams



        Thanks Snk16

        Comment


        • #5
          Lepsis has the right to opt out of his contract. That is why he will be a FA.
          http://216.58.161.132/forums/showthread.php?p=497087#post497087

          Above I will list all my predictions for the 2005 season.

          Comment


          • #6
            I hope we resign Warren.

            But understand, a player that already is portrayed as a malcontent is not going to say a negative word in his contract year.

            I could well be wrong, and I don't think Warren is lying one bit, but based on what he has said his entire life basically, he wants to be able to rush the passer and he feels wasted in a gap control scheme. He even said as much this season when he talked about wanting Coyer to unleash the line more often.

            In the case of Warren, he might well want to stay in Denver, but he's going to ask for a big contract to do it, while I believe he would take less money to go to an attacking D-line scheme on another winning team.

            The other thing that has become obvious from his comments over time is that he values a winning organization. So the Broncos do have a legit shot to resign him.



            As for the Lepsis contract. He took a big paycut for this season under the stipulation that his contract was rewritten allowing him to void his remaining years and test the free agent market after this season. That was the sole bargained for aspect for taking his pay cut, so its pretty safe, he's going to void his contract. He's vastly underpaid as well and will be the number 1 tackle in FA.

            While, I would make Lepsis the #1 priority, I can absolutely see the team letting him go if it believes Foster is ready to move over to LT, in which case the team can simply draft a RT in the 1st and develop him behind Cornell Green for a season or two. Obviously, if we use the money instead to sign Warren, then DT won't be as big of a need in the draft.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by suavejones
              Hopefully, isn't Tom Nalen retiring after this season, which means Hamilton will move over to center. We should sign Lepsis, and we're most likely going to draft an offensive linemen in the first round. So we should have depth at the OL.
              The talk about Nalen retiring is premature. He is playing great and will be a probowler this year. Shanny knows how valuable he and Lepsis are to the teams success. We will draft probably two olineman this upcoming draft and resign these guys.

              If Nalen and Lepsis are resigned than it will raise questions on the defensive side with Warren, Brown, Pryce, Ekuban and Champ. Champ I think is going to have a big jump in his pay, so I won't be surprised if he restructures.
              The three Keys to football
              1. Turnovers
              2. Field Position
              3. Red Zone Play

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by DURANGO BRONCO
                I agree 100% about Lepsis. He is priority # 1 to re sign. In my mind the O-Line are the MVP's.

                I disagree that you should try and sign FA's during the season:

                1. Contract negotiations are distracting, and if a team starts opening the doors to contract talks during the season you are inviting players to be disruptive.

                2. Late season injuries can play a major role in value.

                3. I don't think it saves money, as they agents are always testing the waters to see what they will get in the offseason, and would be foolish to sign for less than market value.
                If Matt Lepsis has a unilateral option out of his contract, then HE isn't a good example of my point. Unless it is a MUTUAL option, in which case the team could decline to exercise the option or Lepsis could decline to extend, then it would NOT be in the player's interest to sign an extended contract during the season.

                Either Lepsis would stay healthy and continue to play well this season, in which case his bargaining leverage would be highest, or he'd be injured, in which case he wouldn't exercise the option and would just try and stay. The Broncos would then have to cut him or keep him. If they cut him, then that would accelerate the reamaining years of his contract and cause a big cap hit.

                But, it sounds like Lepsis' contract is up at the end of this season, just like Courtney Brown's. Perhaps the Broncos could pick up an option on the remaining 4 years of his contract or perhaps not (just like Brown).

                In that case, it's in BOTH the player's and the team's interest to get a new contract done DURING the season, and it WOULD save the team some money.

                The reason is that the player is risking a LOT against the chance of injury. If he's injured his FA value would decline by $MILLIONS. This happened to John Abraham (who wasn't even that badly injured). Just a lingering Doubt about a player (Trevor Pryce) can kill interest from other teams.

                Since NO player contract is guaranteed, the player can be cut at any time. The only money he KNOWS he's going to get is the signing bonus, which he only gets when he signs a new contract. See? The team translates some of the remaining contract salary into a signing bonus which is pro-rated over the life of the contract (so it's not so big a cap hit) and the player gets a lot of cash up front which he'll never have to give back (even if he's permanently injured or cut), unless he does something totally stupid like Ricky Williams.

                Win-Win scenario. And other teams do it all the time. Not in every situation, but in many. It's NO distraction at all, since the coach and the player aren't involved in the negotiations. (The player could be distracted if the negotiations are particularly contentious -- like T.O.'s but that's rare). The Team GM and the player's agent work out the details, the coach coaches, the player concentrates on doing his job and lets his agent handle it.

                The problem for the Broncos is that Shanahan is apparently such a CONTROL FREAK that he can't let GM Ted Sundquist do his job and negotiate on his own! And he can't spare the time during the season to do it himself.


                This just further illustrates the universal belief of all the other teams in the league that Shanahan tries to do too much -- wears too many hats, and would be better served if he had a real GM with the power to handle player negotiations and manage the cap.

                I.E. if the Broncos were run just like the other 31 teams in the league.
                sigpic

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mat'hir Uth Gan
                  I hope we resign Warren.

                  But understand, a player that already is portrayed as a malcontent is not going to say a negative word in his contract year.

                  I could well be wrong, and I don't think Warren is lying one bit, but based on what he has said his entire life basically, he wants to be able to rush the passer and he feels wasted in a gap control scheme. He even said as much this season when he talked about wanting Coyer to unleash the line more often.

                  In the case of Warren, he might well want to stay in Denver, but he's going to ask for a big contract to do it, while I believe he would take less money to go to an attacking D-line scheme on another winning team.

                  The other thing that has become obvious from his comments over time is that he values a winning organization. So the Broncos do have a legit shot to resign him.



                  As for the Lepsis contract. He took a big paycut for this season under the stipulation that his contract was rewritten allowing him to void his remaining years and test the free agent market after this season. That was the sole bargained for aspect for taking his pay cut, so its pretty safe, he's going to void his contract. He's vastly underpaid as well and will be the number 1 tackle in FA.

                  While, I would make Lepsis the #1 priority, I can absolutely see the team letting him go if it believes Foster is ready to move over to LT, in which case the team can simply draft a RT in the 1st and develop him behind Cornell Green for a season or two. Obviously, if we use the money instead to sign Warren, then DT won't be as big of a need in the draft.
                  I'd be very hesitant to give Lepsis big time money to stay on at left tackle. For one, our scheme de-emphasizes the true value of a left tackle, and outside of Atlanta, we are hardly modernized at that position. For this reason, I don't believe losing Lepsis would be the death blow people consider it to be. As long as you are athletic, can crab and cut block, you can grow into left tackle in Denver. Foster may just be ready. Lepsis' sans-cartilige knee is enough reason for me to balk at throwing big money his way. He's played great, but lets not get too carried away and break the bank for him just because he has "LT" by his name...

                  I think Warren is staying and will not be so pulled by his "nature" to follow the money. He isn't the malcontent he was made out to be, and I believe he is doing more than just "playing nice" to appease suitors, he was just miscast in Cleveland after the "kill the head the body's dead" comment. Is he emotional? Yes, and outspoken as well. Is he a character concern? Not in the slightest. Besides, he is young enough to receive a long term deal spreading out big money over several dummy years. He can be quite cap friendly for a few seasons and make fair money. His numbers also won't be up to the caliber of a Simon type contract, and I doubt he can aim that high without raw figures as a bargaining chip. I'm most certain he stays at this point.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cugel

                    The problem for the Broncos is that Shanahan is apparently such a CONTROL FREAK that he can't let GM Ted Sundquist do his job and negotiate on his own! And he can't spare the time during the season to do it himself.


                    This just further illustrates the universal belief of all the other teams in the league that Shanahan tries to do too much -- wears too many hats, and would be better served if he had a real GM with the power to handle player negotiations and manage the cap.

                    I.E. if the Broncos were run just like the other 31 teams in the league.

                    I hadn't any idea that the other 31 teams considered Mike to be a control freak and that he does too much. I keep hearing them say that he does an exceptional job.

                    If the Broncos were run just like the other 31 teams does that mean that we have to take the same win/loss record as they average?? I hope not. In Mike Shanahan's time in Denver, we have been one of the best. My guess that as long as he stays we will continue to be one of the best.

                    Outsiders have all sorts of comments on his personel moves but he keeps on winning. Does he have to do both? He must be doing something right. Maybe he has a better feel for his personel than we do. Ya think?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by OhNoKoolAid
                      I'd be very hesitant to give Lepsis big time money to stay on at left tackle. For one, our scheme de-emphasizes the true value of a left tackle, and outside of Atlanta, we are hardly modernized at that position. For this reason, I don't believe losing Lepsis would be the death blow people consider it to be. As long as you are athletic, can crab and cut block, you can grow into left tackle in Denver. Foster may just be ready. Lepsis' sans-cartilige knee is enough reason for me to balk at throwing big money his way. He's played great, but lets not get too carried away and break the bank for him just because he has "LT" by his name...

                      I think Warren is staying and will not be so pulled by his "nature" to follow the money. He isn't the malcontent he was made out to be, and I believe he is doing more than just "playing nice" to appease suitors, he was just miscast in Cleveland after the "kill the head the body's dead" comment. Is he emotional? Yes, and outspoken as well. Is he a character concern? Not in the slightest. Besides, he is young enough to receive a long term deal spreading out big money over several dummy years. He can be quite cap friendly for a few seasons and make fair money. His numbers also won't be up to the caliber of a Simon type contract, and I doubt he can aim that high without raw figures as a bargaining chip. I'm most certain he stays at this point.
                      I agree completely, and, as MUG pointed out, Cornell Green may be ready to step in. When George Foster sprained his MCL a few weeks back Green stepped in admirably and has been sharing time ever since, which many have not even noticed.

                      It seems that Cornell Green from what I've read has become a favorite of Shanny's and is really earning his PT, sure to get more time and for a lot less money than Lepsis will cost, with Foster of course moving to the left. I'm sure there will be some growing pains with this, but of course, Lepsis had his growing pains at LT early on too.

                      I couldn't agree more on Warren, I am very confident he'll be re-signed. Courtney Brown and Pryce are the bigger questions to me as to whether they will be back or not. I highly doubt Pryce comes back another year, and Courtney's deal will probably just come down to money. Either way, I am very much in favor of packaging our picks to get Williams or Kiwanuka if possible. Hopefully Shanny will follow suit on his previous attempt to get Suggs and make a move for either of the two, or else, perhaps we can land Dumervil for a part time pass rushing role.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by OhNoKoolAid
                        I'd be very hesitant to give Lepsis big time money to stay on at left tackle. For one, our scheme de-emphasizes the true value of a left tackle, and outside of Atlanta, we are hardly modernized at that position. For this reason, I don't believe losing Lepsis would be the death blow people consider it to be. As long as you are athletic, can crab and cut block, you can grow into left tackle in Denver. Foster may just be ready. Lepsis' sans-cartilige knee is enough reason for me to balk at throwing big money his way. He's played great, but lets not get too carried away and break the bank for him just because he has "LT" by his name...

                        I think Warren is staying and will not be so pulled by his "nature" to follow the money. He isn't the malcontent he was made out to be, and I believe he is doing more than just "playing nice" to appease suitors, he was just miscast in Cleveland after the "kill the head the body's dead" comment. Is he emotional? Yes, and outspoken as well. Is he a character concern? Not in the slightest. Besides, he is young enough to receive a long term deal spreading out big money over several dummy years. He can be quite cap friendly for a few seasons and make fair money. His numbers also won't be up to the caliber of a Simon type contract, and I doubt he can aim that high without raw figures as a bargaining chip. I'm most certain he stays at this point.
                        AGREED...

                        Paying an LT top dollar would be wasteful, extremely wasteful, in this offense.

                        And yes, Warren is staying in my opinion as well.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Cugel

                          The problem for the Broncos is that Shanahan is apparently such a CONTROL FREAK that he can't let GM Ted Sundquist do his job and negotiate on his own! And he can't spare the time during the season to do it himself.


                          This just further illustrates the universal belief of all the other teams in the league that Shanahan tries to do too much -- wears too many hats, and would be better served if he had a real GM with the power to handle player negotiations and manage the cap.

                          I.E. if the Broncos were run just like the other 31 teams in the league.
                          Wow!
                          Do brain farts smell?

                          Since when is having an organizational operandi to NOT negotiate contracts during the year come down to having 'freakish' control?

                          And now the Broncos should run their team like the rest of the league does?

                          Since the hell when?
                          "It does not take a majority to prevail, but rather an irate,
                          tireless minority keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of
                          men."

                          -- Samuel Adams

                          sigpicJacks RULE!!!!!!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Lepsis and Warren must stay, period.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by rcsodak
                              Wow!
                              Do brain farts smell?

                              Since when is having an organizational operandi to NOT negotiate contracts during the year come down to having 'freakish' control?

                              And now the Broncos should run their team like the rest of the league does?

                              Since the hell when?

                              there was the same talk about lenny walls. how many people would be happy right now if shanny had signed walls to a long term deal before training camp?

                              a big factor will be how we finish the season. i'm sure off season decisions will be different if there is another first round blow out compared to coming down to the wire in the afc championship.
                              "Philosophers have hitherto merely interpreted the world in various ways; the point, however, is to change it."--Karl Marx


                              "And I tell you this, that you must give an account on judgement day of every idle word you speak. The words you say now reflect your fate then; either you will be justified by them or you will be condemned."--Jesus Christ




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