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Saturday, July 16, 2011

72 Hours

It looks like a new CBA is finally at hand soon, after three years of worry over it. Along with that comes free agency - there will be no right of first refusal, and teams will only have 72 hours of pre-negotiation with their own players before they're free agents.

For Carolina and its 26 free agents, you can see how that will be difficult. If you were to not sleep (and under the idea that you were pushing it all for that 72 hours, not the open of FA, which I find unlikely), that's still under 3 hours time per free agent.

If you remove Kalil (franchised), Richard Marshall (not likely to return), and Craig Null (not at all interesting), you get 3.1 hours per free agent.

If they're smart, they have realistic offers for minor free agents - they have bigger contracts for starting level players. They have Marty Hurney and Ron Rivera make calls and the followup is with lower level guys (Mark Koncz, pro personnel; Rob Rodgers, cap; assistant coaches), and leave the bigger FAs face to face with president Danny Morrison and owner Jerry Richardson while using a centralized Hurney to negotiate.

Those pre-made contracts as offers create a starting point, and you can go from there. But it would allow the team maximum contact with those players in the 3 day window, and allow a team rep to followup with 2-3 players per rep to make sure there's personal contact.

The Panthers must lock down Charles Johnson, and if reasonable Deangelo Williams and James Anderson would be great, too. But losing out on other players - Thomas Davis, for instance - is not something that needs to happen either.

With a 72 hour window, I have a hard time seeing Steve Smith involved in trades right now.
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