Extra Points: Fifth-Year Options, Kerley

Clubs currently hold quite a bit of leverage over recent first-round picks — 2011 first-rounders were eligible to be kept around via fifth-year options, meaning teams can wait on extension talks. However, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk writes, players affected by this stipulation have one mechanism by which to regain the upper hand: holding out. While some teams believe that a player who fails to show up for Week 1 will have his contract tolled for another season, Florio points to a 2000 case regarding Joey Galloway, who argued that his contract should not toll despite his missing eight games. An arbitrator ruled in Galloway’s favor, leading Florio to believes that 2011 first-rounders could do the same thing — miss up to half of a season — in the hopes of exerting enough leverage to jumpstart extension negotiations.

Here are some other contract notes from around the NFL:

  • Former agent Joel Corry points out (via Twitter) one flaw in Florio’s argument, noting that first-round picks that holdout during the option year are subject to a fine of one week’s salary for each missed preseason game. This wouldn’t necessarily stop players from holding out, but the potential loss of nearly 25% of one’s salary could dissuade the practice.
  • In the final chapter of a three-part series, Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap examines how closely current teams match the spending patterns of past Super Bowl champions. The Cardinals and Vikings have cap structures that most closely resemble former title-winning teams.
  • Fitzgerald also offers his thoughts on Jets receiver Jeremy Kerley (Twitter link), noting that if he can stay healthy for the entire season, Kerley could be in line for a contract extension. The 25-year-old is set to earn $1.431MM in 2014, the final year of his deal.
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