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  1. #1
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    No need to RSVP: Holt, Pace don't get conditioning letter from Rams

    March 10, 2009

    By Howard Balzer
    The Sports Xchange/CBSSports.com


    ST. LOUIS -- Further evidence that wide receiver Torry Holt and left tackle Orlando Pace are not considered part of the St. Louis Rams' present or future is the existence of a simple letter that neither player received.

    The Rams will begin their offseason conditioning program next Monday, and players expected to participate were sent letters by the team detailing the program and expectations. Holt and Pace, both under contract for 2009, did not receive the letter.

    In addition, Holt has had no contact from anyone in the organization since Steve Spagnuolo was hired as head coach.

    It has been widely reported that the Rams have been trying to trade both players. Holt is due a $1.25 million roster bonus next Tuesday, which means he would have to be released or traded before that date for the Rams to avoid paying the bonus and keep that money off the salary cap.

    Holt currently counts more than $10.2 million against the cap, a figure that includes the roster bonus, $6.65 million salary, a $100,000 workout bonus and slightly more than $2.2 million in prorated signing bonus. This is the final year of his contract. A trade or release would save the Rams around $8 million of cap space.

    Pace counts $8.975 million against the cap: $5.975 million in base salary and $3 million in prorated signing bonus. He has two years remaining on his deal with salaries of $7.175 million in 2010 and $8.375 million in 2011. However, because of the way the vontract was structured, this is the final year of prorated bonus due so there would be no additional acceleration if he is traded or released. His departure would save the Rams $5.975 million in cap space.

    The issue is whether the Rams want the status of both players settled before the beginning of the offseason program. Each player could report to the program anyway, and the Rams couldn't stop them. An injury, no matter how unlikely, could result in the Rams being on the hook for the player's salary.
    Several years ago, then-Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair was not allowed in the team facility during the offseason while the team decided what to do with him. Eventually, he was traded to Baltimore. However, McNair filed a grievance and it was ruled the team could not bar him from the facility.
    Last edited by AvengerRam; -03-10-2009 at 02:12 PM.


  2. #2
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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    In addition, Holt has had no contact from anyone in the organization since Steve Spagnuolo was hired as head coach.
    That's harsh. He deserves better than that.

  3. #3
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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    He may deserve better but bottom line....it's a business.

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    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Maybe, but I'd say that Spagnuolo deserves better than the current version of Torry - the one who goes to the press and talks about how he wants to leave and play for other teams when he's still under contract.

    Spagnuolo doesn't owe Torry anything.

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    I'm not saying he deserves to be in the teams future, but the man deserves a phone call at least. How can anyone be mad at Jackson or whoever and call them selfish when they try to get the best deal for themselves, but when a team discards veteran future hall of famer like yesterdays trash, that's somehow ok? I think Holt's 10 years with the team deserves a little better ending than this.

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Bruce saw he was let go on tv.....and he's not the only pro that has happened to. Morality and sports go about as well as peanut butter and dijon mustard.

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    txramsfan's Avatar
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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    The Rams aren't doing anything wrong here. The guaranteed money would be paid by any team whether they are released or not. It's guaranteed. However, if that money transfers to say the Giants for Holt, then the Giants pay it. Bonus money is guaranteed, salaries aren't. That's part of the CBA.

    So no, there would be no grievance against the Rams.

  8. #8
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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Quote Originally Posted by RamFan_Til_I_Die View Post
    I'm not saying he deserves to be in the teams future, but the man deserves a phone call at least. How can anyone be mad at Jackson or whoever and call them selfish when they try to get the best deal for themselves, but when a team discards veteran future hall of famer like yesterdays trash, that's somehow ok? I think Holt's 10 years with the team deserves a little better ending than this.
    But who is going to recognize Holt's 10 years? The owner that's been here 1 year? The GM that's been here 1 year? The Head Coach that's been here for 2 months?

    On the flip side, I think Holt would owe it to the team to not go around yelling from the media mountain tops that he wants out. But like tx said.......peanut butter and dijon mustard.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    If I was making millions and knew I was going to be making millions more playing some where else you could bar me for any facility you want. Not going to hurt my feelings!

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    I think the owner owed Holt a personal phone call and i would say the same thing about pace. I dont buy the owner has only been here one year argument. The owner is the son of the prior owner and effectively a continuation of that ownership regime. Spagnuolo owes holt and pace nothing. The organization owes them some commone courtesy. I agree its a two way street so i feel differently about holt and his big mouth than pace, who hasnt said a thing.

    ramming speed to all

    general counsel


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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    It seems like a tough situation for both sides. What are the Rams suppose to say to Holt? He's asked for his release, meaning he doesn't want to be a Ram any longer and the team may still be waiting to see what happens with other clubs before they decide what to do with the roster bonus. Additionally, if Holt wants his outright release and the Rams are hoping for a trade, there's a chance any communication could become heated with both parties looking for different outcomes. It may appear harsh, but I'd do the same thing the Rams are doing right now, keep quiet.

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    peanut butter and dijon mustard with the addition of soy sauce and brown sugar make a great thai dipping sauce. Just a useless tip of the day.

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    I guess it will be a final day announcement on the cuts just wondering what are we waiting on.
    :ramlogo:

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Trading Holt and Pace is understandable. We need the money and to get younger.

    Cutting Holt and Pace is understandable. We need the money and to get younger.

    Barring them from the programs is understandable. No sense if giving them any inside info on the new system to take with them to the new teams.

    But letting them find out about the barring by not receiving a letter is just a little rude. It wouldn't have cost us anything to show them a little respect in return for the years they served. I know it's business but I don't see what the Rams gain by acting this way. I know players that are thinking of signing with us in the future will care first about the money and second about playing time but some where in the back of their minds "how we treat are stars" has to have some impact.

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    Re: Balzer - Holt, Pace not invited to Rams offseason program

    Quote Originally Posted by RamFan_Til_I_Die View Post
    I'm not saying he deserves to be in the teams future, but the man deserves a phone call at least. How can anyone be mad at Jackson or whoever and call them selfish when they try to get the best deal for themselves, but when a team discards veteran future hall of famer like yesterdays trash, that's somehow ok? I think Holt's 10 years with the team deserves a little better ending than this.
    the legacy may deserve better.... but what's there to say? You say he deserves a phone call at least, but what would be its purpose? Holt said he won't re-structure... and if the facts of this article is correct; that means Holt said no to a restructure without even giving the organization a chance to talk about it. Saying "no" to a question before it is asked speaks volumes. Spags wants youth and character, and Torry is displaying neither. Holt and friends were burned by the old FO long ago, and it seems he's done everything he can to avoid communicating with them, even with the regime change. Read the Bartell story... Bartell went in and the coach immediately made time to speak to him. Who here thinks that if Torry went to Rams park, Spags wouldn't agree to talk with him? c'mon, we all know he would. But instead, all Spags (& Linehan & Haslett) have gotten from Torry is a cold shoulder.

    my guess is Torry has been upset for a long time now and doesn't want to even try to deal with the new regime. he just wants out.

    So again, what would the phone call accomplish? Sometimes there's just nothing more to say, i gues.

    it sure is a darn shame tho. personally, i blame this one on ziggy and shaw.

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