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Thread: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

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    Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    There has been a lot of talk on the web in the last 24 hours about Sam Bradford. This stemmed from an erroneous "report" claiming that the Rams do not intend to extend Sam's contract. The report was later retracted.

    Here are the facts, and my personal projections regarding Sam and the Rams.

    2014 Season
    Sam's salary, including pro-rated signing bonus, is $17,610,000. If the Rams were to release him, they would save $10,420,000 off the cap, with $7,190,000 in dead money. Playing out that hypothetical, if the Rams then used the No. 2 pick to replace Sam, it would (based upon what Luke Joekel received last year as the No. 2 pick under the new rookie scale) cost the Rams about $3.8M against the cap.

    So, the Rams choices, from a financial standpoint (and barring the option of signing a veteran QB to replace Sam), are either Sam at $17,610,000 or a rookie at (combining salary and dead money) approximately $11,000,000.

    Certainly, that extra $6.6M could be used on a FA, though its not enough for the top guys on the market.

    Given these options, the big question for the Rams is "are there any QBs in the draft who are so highly regarded that it would make sense to roll the dice and release Sam?" I believe that the answer is "no." There certainly are no QBs in this draft with the type of "grade" received by guys like Andrew Luck.

    Given this, it should come as little surprise that the Rams are unlikely to release Sam at this time. It also should come as no surprise that it does not appear that Sam will simply take a pay cut. The Rams don't have the leverage to impose that on Sam, unless they are willing to threaten releasing him, which it appears they are not willing to do.

    The tougher question is whether it makes sense to try to extend Sam's contract to lower the 2014 cap hit in exchange for more years (Sam's contract currently ends after the 2015 season). Les Snead has stated that the Rams are open to the concept. Sam might also be, if it meant more guaranteed money in the long run. I believe that the sticking point is that the short-term bargain that the Rams would desire is incompatable with the long-term benefit that Sam would require. As a result, I doubt we'll see an extension.

    2015 Season
    Assuming that Sam's contract stays as-is, then Sam's salary (including pro-rated signing bonus) will be $16,580,000, with $3,595,000 in dead money if the Rams were to release Sam. That means that the potential cap savings is $12,985,000.

    Given that potential savings, its pretty obvious that the Rams' decision will be based upon how Sam performs in 2014. If he stays healthy, puts up "career numbers," and leads the Rams to a winning record, I would expect that the Rams would likely try to extend Sam's contract during the 2015 offseason and make a long term commitment at that time.

    If, on the other hand, Sam is unable to stay healthy, or fails to progress on the field, then the Rams could decide that that time to move on and use the extra cap money or draft capital to obtain a new QB. If the draft is the route the Rams decide to travel, many think that the potential 2015 QB class (Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariotta, Brett Hundley, Bryce Petty, etc.) will be superior to the 2014 class.

    Conclusion
    Many commentators who are not supporters of Sam Bradford like to make statements like "Sam has to prove himself" or "this is a make or break season" or "its time to put up or shut up" when describing the 2014 season. While the tone of these remarks - which seem almost punitive - is misleading, the basic premise is correct. From a business standpoint, it makes little sense for the Rams to move on from Sam now, but it could make sense to do so a year from now. As a result, Sam's performance in 2014 will determine whether we'll be wearing our Sam Bradford jerseys in 2015, or tucking them away in the backs of our closets.
    Last edited by AvengerRam; -02-18-2014 at 01:06 PM.


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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Thanks for the financial breakdown and the insights AvR, your expertise is appreciated! Seems Sammy has this season to cement his spot or see it go to one of the Rookies of next years Draft. Easy to see and understand why the Rams are standing by him to this point... All that being said I know we still would like to draft a QB to groom this season as well. Taking shots at the minimum a viable back up is a sound plan so most of us view it and agree on.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Quote Originally Posted by Randart View Post
    Thanks for the financial breakdown and the insights AvR, your expertise is appreciated! Seems Sammy has this season to cement his spot or see it go to one of the Rookies of next years Draft. Easy to see and understand why the Rams are standing by him to this point... All that being said I know we still would like to draft a QB to groom this season as well. Taking shots at the minimum a viable back up is a sound plan so most of us view it and agree on.
    Taking a QB this year in Rounds 2-5 could definitely be part of the plan, as it would require little financial commitment this year, while opening up a potential long-term option.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    Taking a QB this year in Rounds 2-5 could definitely be part of the plan, as it would require little financial commitment this year, while opening up a potential long-term option.
    Right.

    I believe it was Fisher who said they didn't even look at qb's in the lead up to the draft last year... had the scout dept spending their time on the other positions.

    I think that's what changes this year. Austin Davis regressed in his sophomore year with the Rams, and got cut, so they no longer have a young signal caller to groom with the playbook. I believe they'll want one, and so the Rams will look at qb's this time around and if a highly graded qb drops far enough (imo: rds 4-7), may grab one.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Fisher: Bradford is our quarterback
    Updated: February 18, 2014, 1:27 PM ET
    ESPN.com news services

    Fisher: Bradford Is Our Quarterback
    Jeff Fisher says St. Louis is committed to Sam Bradford as the Rams' starting quarterback.

    Jeff Fisher remains committed to Sam Bradford as the St. Louis Rams' starting quarterback.

    In an interview Tuesday with ESPN's "Mike and Mike," Fisher said Bradford is making good progress in his rehab from a torn ACL and left little doubt who will be under center as the starter when the 2014 season begins.

    "Sam's doing great with the rehab," Fisher said. "He's really excited. He took on a leadership role last year and he's maintained that and he's our quarterback, and we've said that."

    Fisher also touched on Bradford's contract, which has become a topic of discussion. Bradford, heading into the fifth year of a six-year deal, is set to count $17.6 million against the salary cap. There has been speculation that the Rams, who hold two first-round picks in May's draft, could cut Bradford or redo his contract.

    "We talk about extensions with all our players under contract," Fisher said. "Whether or not we do so with him, I don't know where all this came from, but Sam's our quarterback. He's going to be under center."

    General manager Les Snead said the Rams remain open to a new deal with Bradford.

    "We have been and still are open to extending Sam," he said.


    Bradford was off to the best start of his career last season before suffering a torn ACL against the Carolina Panthers on Oct. 20. He completed more than 60 percent of his passes with 14 touchdowns and four interceptions in seven games.

    Seems so many outsiders want the Rams to move on from Sam. No matter how many times the Rams say Sam is our QB some idiots are going to question it.
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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    I heard an interview with Torry Holt today, on NFL Radio (Sirius). He was very luke warm about Sam. He'd like to see the Rams draft a QB in the 2nd or 3rd round to challenge Sam. Torry was VERY high on Jimmy Garoppolo, from Eastern Illinois. It would be interesting to see how Sam would react to some actual competition.

    As for extending or not extending Sam's contract at this point, I see definite advantages for the Rams in not doing anything until after the draft. If someone feels the Rams might pull the trigger on a QB they want, we might be able to squeeze out a few more picks in a trade.
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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Two years after passing up the opportunity to draft Robert Griffin III, the St. Louis Rams are doubling down on their Sam Bradford bet.

    Amid conflicting reports on the organization's willingness to extend Bradford's contract, coach Jeff Fisher made it clear on Tuesday's edition of ESPN Radio's "Mike and Mike in the Morning" that Bradford's job is safe even with a scheduled $17.6 million salary cap figure in 2014.

    "We talk about extensions with all our players under contract," Fisher said. "Whether or not we do so with him, I don't know where all this came from, but Sam's our quarterback. He's going to be under center."

    Fisher added that Bradford took on a leadership role last year and is "doing great" in his rehab from ACL surgery.

    The head coach's support echoes that of general manager Les Snead, who said last month that he would not entertain the idea of drafting a quarterback at No. 2 overall.

    We addressed that very subject on Monday's edition of the "Around The League Podcast."

    Given the choice of Johnny Manziel and $7 million in salary cap space versus Bradford and the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the ATL crew voted unanimously to open Door #1.

    Bradford entered the 2013 season as perhaps the NFL's most enigmatic quarterback. Although he padded his numbers in a pair of blowouts, it's not a stretch to posit that he's now a known mediocrity after four seasons in the league.

    With an 18-30-1 record, a 58.6 completion percentage, 6.3 yards per attempt, a 79.3 pass rating and shaky pocket presence, Bradford has been more of a problem than a solution.

    Considering the struggles of Tom Brady and Robert Griffin III early in their returns from knee reconstruction, Bradford can't be expected to suddenly start playing like a top-15 NFL quarterback in 2014.

    Regardless of Bradford's pedestrian results to date, this team's brass is determined to sink or swim with their $78 million investment. We will soon find out how long they can they keep treading water.

    Even after Fisher comes out and squashes rumors idiots like this are spinning the facts.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    So, Sam padded his numbers in blowouts, but Russell Wilson gets full credit for "winning a Super Bowl" (he had fewer than 100 yards when Seattle was up 29-0).

    Moronic.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    So, Sam is our QB. He needs to play well in coming year and the pundits think we should release him. Sounds like last off season.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    As better player and business analyses unfold, the Rams make more and more Sam sense. Great to see the offense will continue to evolve and revolve around SB.

    BTW, once again this points at how misleading and/or confusing certain 'insiders reports' can be.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Here's also a good read about Sam Bradford's production and really gives a lot of positive insight about him. Best of all, the writer isn't a Rams fan.

    The Eye in the Sky: The St. Louis Rams Should Commit to Sam Bradford for 2014 - Backyard Banter
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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    Two years after passing up the opportunity to draft Robert Griffin III, the St. Louis Rams are doubling down on their Sam Bradford bet.

    Amid conflicting reports on the organization's willingness to extend Bradford's contract, coach Jeff Fisher made it clear on Tuesday's edition of ESPN Radio's "Mike and Mike in the Morning" that Bradford's job is safe even with a scheduled $17.6 million salary cap figure in 2014.

    "We talk about extensions with all our players under contract," Fisher said. "Whether or not we do so with him, I don't know where all this came from, but Sam's our quarterback. He's going to be under center."

    Fisher added that Bradford took on a leadership role last year and is "doing great" in his rehab from ACL surgery.

    The head coach's support echoes that of general manager Les Snead, who said last month that he would not entertain the idea of drafting a quarterback at No. 2 overall.

    We addressed that very subject on Monday's edition of the "Around The League Podcast."

    Given the choice of Johnny Manziel and $7 million in salary cap space versus Bradford and the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the ATL crew voted unanimously to open Door #1.

    Bradford entered the 2013 season as perhaps the NFL's most enigmatic quarterback. Although he padded his numbers in a pair of blowouts, it's not a stretch to posit that he's now a known mediocrity after four seasons in the league.

    With an 18-30-1 record, a 58.6 completion percentage, 6.3 yards per attempt, a 79.3 pass rating and shaky pocket presence, Bradford has been more of a problem than a solution.

    Considering the struggles of Tom Brady and Robert Griffin III early in their returns from knee reconstruction, Bradford can't be expected to suddenly start playing like a top-15 NFL quarterback in 2014.

    Regardless of Bradford's pedestrian results to date, this team's brass is determined to sink or swim with their $78 million investment. We will soon find out how long they can they keep treading water.

    Even after Fisher comes out and squashes rumors idiots like this are spinning the facts.
    NFL Network reported Fisher wouldn't commit on the record that the Rams intend to extend Bradford's contract. Bet we can all guess as to why. But I wonder unlike previous years' speculation that its Bradford's make it or Break it year, I wonder if this coming season is...or the previous season was. My gut says more the later then the former. Or it could be simple, I am not tipping my had as to what I am going to do coming from the Ram's FO

    Still I wonder if using the Ram's number 2 spot to pick a QB isn't a bad idea at all. I see one downside only and a lot of upsides. Downside, Bradford gets upset. Upside, it puts pressure on Bradford to have a stellar year to better position himself for contract talks; upside, Bradford crashes and burns and the Rams have someone other then Clemens; upside Bradford proves he was worthy of being the number one pick and worthy belonging on the Rams squad, while the new QB can be groomed over a couple seasons and become trade bait for a QB desperate team

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Dragoon View Post
    NFL Network reported Fisher wouldn't commit on the record that the Rams intend to extend Bradford's contract. Bet we can all guess as to why. But I wonder unlike previous years' speculation that its Bradford's make it or Break it year, I wonder if this coming season is...or the previous season was. My gut says more the later then the former. Or it could be simple, I am not tipping my had as to what I am going to do coming from the Ram's FO

    Still I wonder if using the Ram's number 2 spot to pick a QB isn't a bad idea at all. I see one downside only and a lot of upsides. Downside, Bradford gets upset. Upside, it puts pressure on Bradford to have a stellar year to better position himself for contract talks; upside, Bradford crashes and burns and the Rams have someone other then Clemens; upside Bradford proves he was worthy of being the number one pick and worthy belonging on the Rams squad, while the new QB can be groomed over a couple seasons and become trade bait for a QB desperate team
    I see a pretty big downside to the Sam playing well and we groom the #2 pick for a trade in 3 years.
    #2 QB sits on the bench while Clowney, Matthews, Watkins etc fly around making plays in cities that aren't Stl. To me, that's a much bigger downside than, Bradford gets upset.

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    Re: Sam Bradford's Future: Facts and Projections

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    So, Sam padded his numbers in blowouts, but Russell Wilson gets full credit for "winning a Super Bowl" (he had fewer than 100 yards when Seattle was up 29-0).

    Moronic.
    Buttt.... he won a SUPERBOWL and Sam didn't even come close... So yeah it's a fair statement to make.

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    Quote Originally Posted by itsguud View Post

    Buttt.... he won a SUPERBOWL and Sam didn't even come close... So yeah it's a fair statement to make.
    No, its not. Either they both get credit for all of their successes, or neither does. You can't take away Sam's good games because some if them were blowouts, while giving Wilson credit for every Seahawk win regardless of his role.

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