Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Playing Chicken with Richard

Richard Seymour is a Raider…or he could be soon…or he might not be. Depending on which side of the debate of the merits of this trade you stand on, you are either elated, or disappointed at this point, and your feelings have most likely changed 10 times in the last three days.

IMO, if the Raiders can sign Seymour to a long-term deal, it is a fair trade for both sides. And most would agree, if they can get by the intellectual dishonesty being spewed by the Boys at Bristol, more on that another time, if the trade goes through.

The thing is, I no longer believe that this is a high stakes game of chicken between Seymour and the Raiders. I think this is a game between the Patriots and Seymour, with the Raiders just willingly going along with the charade, with the hopes that they can reap the rewards should the trains collide.

The leaks of strange information the past few days are what have lead me to this conclusion. Cable’s slip that there are financial issues to deal with in New England, the reports today that Seymour though he was close to signing an extension to stay in New England. Then you take into account that Seymour is the one player who, along with his agent, Eugene Parker, has actually won a stare down with Belichick in the past, and you have the ingredients for something different.

My theory is that Seymour and the Patriots were in discussions on an extension, and things were not going as well as Seymour thought. The Pats, tired of dealing with the unreasonable demands of Parker issued a take it or leave it deal, and Parker thought they were bluffing.

The Patriots then put together a deal with Oakland to send Seymour there for the 1st round pick in 2011, they also gave the Raiders the parameters of the deal that Parker and Seymour were looking for, and the Raiders found it acceptable.

The Patriots have flipped the table and called Parker and Seymour’s bluff.

“You say if you can’t get this deal here, you’ll take it somewhere else, well take it in Oakland”.

Now it is a full-fledged game of chicken between the Patriots and Seymour. Will Seymour blink 1st and accept the deal the Pats have on the table? Will Seymour take the offer in Oakland and report?

One of these sides is going to lose; if Seymour goes to Oakland the Patriots loose a key clog in their attempt to get another ring, a 2011 pick is no help to the team this year, and the window of opportunity in the NFL is too short to count on anything that far down the line.

If Seymour returns to New England at the reduced rate, yet another player will have lost the stare down with Belichick. His last chance at a big payday will be gone, sure he will be well paid, but he could have had more.

And where does this leave Oakland, if Seymour doesn’t come, well the fans will be let down, but the team will be about where it was before, a 6 to 8 win team needing line help. If he does come, the Raiders will be a 7 to 9 win team, needing a little less line help, but with less amo down the line

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