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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Tuesday, August 5, 2008

    By Nick Wagoner

    Senior Writer

    MEQUON , Wis. – As the Rams prepare for their second plane ride of the preseason, they are once again doing it with a vacant seat where running back Steven Jackson was supposed to be.

    Jackson missed Tuesday’s morning practice, the 16th workout of training camp he has missed. Those 16 sessions fall within a 12-day period of missed time resulting in a fine of $15,116 per day. That brings Jackson ’s total fines to a whopping $181,392.



    “It will have to work itself out,” coach Scott Linehan said. “These things, there has never been a timetable. If you have a timetable you set yourself up for disappointment. I am going to be very pleased when it does happen. In the meantime, I will focus on the guys that are here and this Tennessee trip and it will all work out.”

    More than any monetary losses, though, Jackson could be costing himself an opportunity to cash in during free agency sooner than later.

    According to NFL rules, Jackson had to report to camp by Tuesday in order to maintain his accrued seasons. The rules states that a player must be in camp 30 days before the start of the regular season.

    In this case, the season opener is Sept. 4 when Washington and the New York Giants square off.

    Because Jackson has not reported and isn’t likely to arrive today, he could cost himself the opportunity to hit the market under the following possible but not necessarily probable scenario.

    In May of this year, the owners decided to shorten the current collective bargaining agreement in hopes of negotiating a new deal in time for the 2011 season. Should no agreement be reached, the minimum requirement for unrestricted free agency would go from four years to six.

    Jackson has been in the league four years and his contract would expire after this season were he to play it out. Assuming Jackson reports in the next few weeks, he would then need a contract extension to avoid the possibility that he could have to wait two years to become a free agent. Barring that, the Rams could simply slap the franchise tag on him for 2009 and he would be forced to accrue his fifth season then. With no agreement in place, the uncapped year of 2010 would be his sixth season and he would become a free agent after that season.

    Even if he reported on Wednesday, he would still lose that year of accrued seniority. In other words, though he could in theory play five seasons in the NFL through this year, only four of them would count.


    That would mean the 2009 season would actually count as his fifth season and he would have to complete that year and the 2010 season before he could hit the free agent market.

    By the time 2010 would roll around, Jackson would be 27, which would put him on what would normally be the down side of a career for a running back.

    Again, all of that is assuming that the owners can’t come up with an agreement for a new CBA in the next year or so and that the Rams and Jackson don’t agree on a long term contract upon his return.

    The Rams made Jackson a contract offer on the eve of training camp, an offer that Jackson and agent Eugene Parker turned down the following day.

    Soon after that, Parker informed President of Football Operations Jay Zygmunt that Jackson would not be reporting to camp. Zygmunt responded by letting it be known that the Rams would not negotiate further until Jackson arrived in camp.

    True to their word, there have been no further discussions on a contract with Jackson since that time.

    While Linehan says he remains calm about the situation, the closer the season gets to arrival, the less the possibility that Jackson could be ready to play. Jackson has copies of the team’s daily Scripts and has been able to follow along with the goings on of practice but that isn’t the same as the physical repetition required to get in football shape.

    Jackson remains in contact with players and staff but has showed no signs of budging from his current stance.

    Linehan says he will remain unruffled by the situation unless it gets to the point where the Rams are preparing for the regular season opener against Philadelphia . In the meantime, he’s pleased with what he’s seeing from backup runners Antonio Pittman and Brian Leonard.

    “If he’s not here when we have our first week of practice for the Philly game, I would be pretty concerned,” Linehan said. “I don’t foresee that. I don’t think anybody knows when it’s going to happen. I am very confident it will and in the meantime I am really happy our other backs are getting this work. I think we have answered a lot of questions we might have and we still have some. I think it really helps us in the evaluation of our roster, especially behind him.”


  2. #2
    AtlantaRamFan's Avatar
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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Would it be a bad idea to (assuming he's in shape) play him a lot during the preseason? He's missed training camp and (if he shows for the other 3 games) I would guess he'll be a bit behind everybody else. I don't think it would be overworking him since he hasn't been in camp and he needs to get up to speed quickly.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlantaRamFan View Post
    Would it be a bad idea to (assuming he's in shape) play him a lot during the preseason? He's missed training camp and (if he shows for the other 3 games) I would guess he'll be a bit behind everybody else. I don't think it would be overworking him since he hasn't been in camp and he needs to get up to speed quickly.
    I agree, last season he missed alot of preseason action and started the season out pretty bad.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    I fully agree with your preseason points. His lack of play in the preseason last year became a point of contention when he didn't start off well. Though, there was a really injuried o-line and he was injured a lot. In fact, later in the season, when he came back from injury, he looked good.

    So, I say, pay him already! This is the same team that rushed to give midseason contracts to Little and Tiniosamoa but they won't give one of the top 5 RBs in the league a contract? Really? I never liked Zygmut and his stubborn attitude here isn't endearing himself to me any more.

    While usually, I agree with the front office in these hold outs, in this case, I don't. Give S-Jax the money he deserves (and he deserves it) so he can get some pre-season reps under this new offensive system. (I'll say it again for good measure: New Offensive System). That way a 3-13 2007 team can focus completely on football with their entire team (that's not injured) in tact.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    I think if the Rams want to have any chance at competing, it's imperative that Jackson is close to mid season form by game 1. I don't think this is very one sided though. The FO offered him top 5 money and he turned it down, and IMHO if all they need to work out is a bit of guaranteed money, he should have been in camp, but the FO should have started this sooner. I have a hard time siding with Jackson since he'll be making more money than most of us could ever dream of having (deservedly so) and he won't honor a contract he signed, but that's more personal opinion..

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate




    I get a strong sense that Jackson is the 'ME' type person.

    If that is truly the case he must be loving the fact that he is the center of attention even though he is not at camp.

    I wonder if he is in contact with any of the offensive lineman?

    If so, how would it go?

    Hmmm....I wonder

    SJ to his OL:

    "Hey guys I know it is hot out there. I know you are sweating your butts off. I wish I could be there with you, but I need my money. You know I deserve my money, right guys? Keep up the good work guys because you will need to block for me after I get my money. You will block for me, right guys?"

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlantaRamFan View Post
    I think if the Rams want to have any chance at competing, it's imperative that Jackson is close to mid season form by game 1. I don't think this is very one sided though. The FO offered him top 5 money and he turned it down, and IMHO if all they need to work out is a bit of guaranteed money, he should have been in camp, but the FO should have started this sooner. I have a hard time siding with Jackson since he'll be making more money than most of us could ever dream of having (deservedly so) and he won't honor a contract he signed, but that's more personal opinion..
    This isn't one sided. Both sides can be stubborn, and this will mean nothing gets done. One of the sides need to break. I hope its Jackson though.

    There are alot of teams out there who would love to have Jackson on their team. I don't want to see him in any other uniform outside of ours.

    We do need him on our squad. I think that the money he gets, he'll play for. He has shown us that he is a work horse. The players on the team know that he is a very hard worker. I believe that the front office should also approach Jackson now. They should offer, as said, more guaranteed money.

    We need him this season more than ever. And we can't have him playing with a cloud above his head. He needs to be healthy, he needs to be happy. We need to play him more during the preseason to get him in top shape and familiar with the system.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by Ferter View Post



    I get a strong sense that Jackson is the 'ME' type person.

    If that is truly the case he must be loving the fact that he is the center of attention even though he is not at camp.

    I wonder if he is in contact with any of the offensive lineman?

    If so, how would it go?

    Hmmm....I wonder

    SJ to his OL:

    "Hey guys I know it is hot out there. I know you are sweating your butts off. I wish I could be there with you, but I need my money. You know I deserve my money, right guys? Keep up the good work guys because you will need to block for me after I get my money. You will block for me, right guys?"
    Take out the "block for me" part and it sounds like something one of those offensive lineman who plays on the left side could have very well said a few years ago.
    Last edited by r8rh8rmike; -08-06-2008 at 12:30 AM. Reason: Wrong side.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    This is not Good............

  10. #10
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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by NJRamsGuy View Post
    So, I say, pay him already! This is the same team that rushed to give midseason contracts to Little and Tiniosamoa but they won't give one of the top 5 RBs in the league a contract? Really? I never liked Zygmut and his stubborn attitude here isn't endearing himself to me any more.

    While usually, I agree with the front office in these hold outs, in this case, I don't. Give S-Jax the money he deserves (and he deserves it) so he can get some pre-season reps under this new offensive system.
    While I, as well as yourself, am not a Zygmunt fan, I must admit........Jackson is the ONLY person keeping Jackson from getting reps.

    Jay Zygmunt didn't bar the door. Scott Linehan didn't lock the gate. Steven Jackson isn't getting reps, because Steven Jackson is choosing not to get reps.

    Again, I too feel Jackson needs to get his extension. All he has to do is walk through the door, and honor the contract he signed.
    "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: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Good point, Hubison, and I don't think it's one sided at all. As I said, I was never a fan of the hold out and you're right, Jax should be in camp. But by no means is this a new invention. This is what players do to get their extrodinant amount of money. (Could you imagine calling the office and saying "Hey, listen Mr. Johnson, but I'm not gonna come in until you give me a huge raise with the gold standard benefits package?" That's the quickest way to unemployment.)

    That being said, I think someone needs to compromise. Jax should return to the field, but after the Javon Walker incident a few years back, I think players are afraid to. If the FO can give Jax and his agent some assurance about where this negotation will go, then maybe they can presuade him to get onto the field.

    But aren't we forgetting the real victims here? Us. The Fans. Who one way or another seem to be getting the shaft out of this situation.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by r8rh8rmike View Post
    Take out the "block for me" part and it sounds like something one of those offensive lineman who plays on the left side could have very well said a few years ago.
    Yeah Mike, I suppose so, but the circumstances are different.

    Pace had played out his contract and wanted a long term deal, while the Rams FO was not willing to meet the demands of the long term deal, and put the tag on him instead. Then he reported late and played for the going rate.

    Most likely Pace is understanding of what Jackson is doing. But Jackson, Bulger and the other guys at the skill positions are not doing much of anything without the execution from the guys up front.



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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    I have never liked Jackson.I think he is the epitomy of selfish.Unfortunately the Rams really need him right now.While Jackson is no Faulk or LT for that matter,the Rams need to find a way to get him on the field.I dont know, sometimes I feel that Jackson is like Ricky Williams without the water bong.
    ST.LOUIS RAMS:THE MOST FRUSTRATING TEAM IN THE NFL!!!

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by Ferter View Post
    Yeah Mike, I suppose so, but the circumstances are different.

    Pace had played out his contract and wanted a long term deal, while the Rams FO was not willing to meet the demands of the long term deal, and put the tag on him instead. Then he reported late and played for the going rate.

    Most likely Pace is understanding of what Jackson is doing. But Jackson, Bulger and the other guys at the skill positions are not doing much of anything without the execution from the guys up front.


    Hey, I couldn't resist having a little fun with my buddy Ferter.

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    Re: Rams, Jackson Still at Stalemate

    Quote Originally Posted by Aries51 View Post
    I have never liked Jackson.I think he is the epitomy of selfish.Unfortunately the Rams really need him right now.While Jackson is no Faulk or LT for that matter,the Rams need to find a way to get him on the field.I dont know, sometimes I feel that Jackson is like Ricky Williams without the water bong.

    Another post that is completely un-called for. How is Jackson the epitomy of selfish? He sacrifices his body for the good of the team doesnt he? Faulk held out but other people say Faulk was proven so that made it ok. Well if you think Jackson isnt proven you guys are crazy. I dont think you can get to holdout status unless your proven. If he wasnt proven like say Leonard or Pittman the team could care lesss about him holding out. Funny how Jackson isnt like Faulk or LT but aside from rediculous td numbers Jackson has put up pretty good numbers wouldt you say or are those just average seasons? Comparing Jackson to Williams is out of line almost as bad as saying he's T.O. Holding out doesnt make you a bad person does it??? Is holding out only a bad thing for Jackson? Ellard,Pace,Dickerson and Faulk all held out did that make them all selfish. Did my record just skip again or is there an echo on this message board???
    Just Fix It

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