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Thread: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

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    Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    BY BERNIE MIKLASZ,
    Friday, March 16, 2012

    * What the hell is Mike Holmgren talking about? The Cleveland Browns' president certainly seemed to be trying to cover his backside Wednesday during a conference call with team season-ticket holders. Holmgren implied that the Rams gave preferential treatment to the Washington Redskins in the deal that sent the rights to the No. 2 overall draft pick to D.C. The Redskins will use the pick on Baylor QB Robert Griffin III. The Browns apparently wanted Griffin, too, despite all of the pre-draft posturing coming out of Cleveland about the Browns being ambivalent about RG3.

    "Honestly, when it didn’t happen I think there are reasons that I can’t go into right now, but there is a very close relationship between the people getting the deal done and the people who offered," Holmgren was quoted as saying by multiple Cleveland-area media outlets. "And I’m not sure anything we offered would have been good enough. We were very, very aggressive and it didn’t work."

    Holmgren added that the Browns made "every bit the offer" that Washington made.

    This is some weak stuff being served by Holmgren:

    • First of all, multiple Rams sources are adamant about this: Washington "clearly" made the best offer.

    • If Cleveland made a superior offer, then why wouldn't the Rams take it? If all else was equal, the Rams would have benefited from moving down only two spots to Cleveland's slot, No. 4 overall, instead of moving down four spots for Washington's No. 6 overall. Rams GM Les Snead, coach Jeff Fisher and chief operating officer Kevin Demoff have made it clear that they want to build this team through the draft, and would love to accumulate as many picks as possible. No way the Rams would have hurt themselves by declining a better offer from Cleveland. Absolutely no way. They would gain nothing from that.

    • The Rams would have had every motivation to take a superior offer from Cleveland. By moving down two spots instead of four, the Rams would have been in position to take WR Justin Blackmon (or another highly coveted rookie) with the 4th overall pick. As it stands now, Blackmon may be gone when the Rams choose at No. 6 overall. And by making a deal with Cleveland instead of Washington, the Rams would get Griffin3 out of the NFC and into the AFC. That would be a bonus.

    • Demoff is friends with Washington GM Bruce Allen; they worked together at Tampa Bay. And Fisher has a good relationship with Redskins coach Mike Shanahan. Does Holmgren have buddies in the league? Don't all NFL coaches and execs have buddies with other teams? What does this have to do with anything? So, the Rams are going to weaken their rebuilding efforts by doing a favor for the Redskins? Again: this goes against everything we know about Fisher. His desire to win is unquestioned, and he is just beginning a major reconstruction in St. Louis. The last thing in the world Fisher would do is intentionally undermine his own goal.

    • If the Browns made "every bit the offer" as the Redskins, then why didn't Holmgren divulge the specifics of his exact offer and give the Rams a chance to respond? Did the Browns really match the Redskins' offer of two future No. 1 draft picks and a second-rounder this year? And when, exactly, did Holmgren make this incredible offer? Did he come in after the Rams had already agreed on the deal with the Redskins?

    • If Holmgren made an "offer" after the Rams had already executed a trade with Washington, a cynic would suggest that Holmgren did so knowing that (A) it was too late; but (B) he could still use the story of his generous offer to the Rams to provide cover should Browns fans react negatively to Team Holmgren being a couple of steps slow in pursuit of the RG3 draft slot.

    • If Holmgren really wanted Griffin3 and was aware of the STL-DC friendships that Rams' people have with Redskins' people, then common sense tells us that he would have been even more aggressive in his efforts to land that No. 2 overall pick.

    By whining to his team's fans, all Holmgren did was raise more questions over the Browns' failure to obtain the rights to Griffin. And by now proclaiming that the Browns wanted RG3, Holmgren also made it clear that they don't believe Colt McCoy is their long-term quarterback. Which is a rotten thing to do to McCoy, considering that the Browns may have no choice but to make him the starter again in 2012.


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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Koo Koo Ka Choo Walrus. You lost the bidding, take it like a man. It's absolutely moronic to suggest that the Rams would have taken an inferior offer from anyone based on a "relationship." If you want to criticize, criticize snead for not conducting a pure auction and going back and forth between the two parties until someone stopped bidding.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Sounds like Holmgren is trying to save face for the franchise's complete lack of action at the quarterback position by trying to shift the blame to St. Louis.
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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    This reflects well on Les Snead. He said to the two teams, "give me your best offer, and we'll make a deal with the one who makes the best proposal." The Redskins made the better offer and, instead of going back on his word and continuing to solicit bids, Snead followed through on his promise.

    I think having a reputation as a straight shooter is a good thing for a GM.

    Holmgren, on the other hand, sounds like a whiner.
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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Hey Mike what part of make your best offer did you not understand...

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Quote Originally Posted by general counsel View Post
    If you want to criticize, criticize snead for not conducting a pure auction and going back and forth between the two parties until someone stopped bidding.

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    And I do. IMO Snead should have conducted an open auction with open bidding, not a closed auction with what is tantamount to sealed, closed bids.

    While I agree that the Walrus is whining he may have a point that if Snead had allowed for a "bid/counter-bid" process he may very well have increased his offer and procured the pick.

    Granted, we may never really know but I believe that nobody, including Washington, could outbid the Browns and Snead and company may have inadvertently cut them off at the knees.

    Besides there is still a part of me that is not all that enamored with a 2014 pick. While I'm glad it is a first rounder I believe we need the assets to build the Rams sooner rather than later. Heh...after going 15 - 65 over the past 5 years time is definitely of the essence!!

    The Browns could easily have ( and should have) beaten the 'Skins offer. Maybe they should have been given every opportunity to do so.


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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    I agree with Ramarkable. A reputation as a straight shooter is a good thing, and in any auction there is a time and place for soliciting "best and final" bids. However, you can still be a straight shooter and conduct an auction of more than one round of bidding. I think that Snead's most important obligation is to maximize value for the Rams, nothing more and nothing less. It is the nature of any auction that it turns into a bidding war playing one party off against the other. The more bidders, the higher the price goes. Once he told people to submit one round of best and final, i dont think he should change his mind and go back on his word. However, i would not have solicited best and final on the first round of bidding in this situation.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable View Post
    And I do. IMO Snead should have conducted an open auction with open bidding, not a closed auction with what is tantamount to sealed, closed bids.

    While I agree that the Walrus is whining he may have a point that if Snead had allowed for a "bid/counter-bid" process he may very well have increased his offer and procured the pick.

    Granted, we may never really know but I believe that nobody, including Washington, could outbid the Browns and Snead and company may have inadvertently cut them off at the knees.

    Besides there is still a part of me that is not all that enamored with a 2014 pick. While I'm glad it is a first rounder I believe we need the assets to build the Rams sooner rather than later. Heh...after going 15 - 65 over the past 5 years time is definitely of the essence!!

    The Browns could easily have ( and should have) beaten the 'Skins offer. Maybe they should have been given every opportunity to do so.


    WHAT SAY YE?
    They had the opportunity, and low-balled - knowing full well the parameters set by Snead. They lost - tough titties. They should have made a better offer within the established time frame. They knew they had the ammo, but cheaped out. Boo hoo ...

    I believe Snead handled the whole trade scenario very well. If the Browns really wanted to close the deal they should have made their best offer prior to the deadline. Snead specifically said he did not want to play the teams off against one another. He kept his word, and the Rams got a great deal. Cleveland's offer came to late - that's on Cleveland and Mike ("once a whiner - always a whiner") Holmgren.

    This post from another forum is spot on:

    By Elmgrovenome

    Post subject: Peter King on Holmgren and Rams trade

    Posted: 16 Mar 2012 08:33 am
    King was on Mike and Mike and said that Holmgrens talk is just sour Grapes.

    He said the deal went down just as Snead said it did. Snead said give me your best offer and he will accept the best one and honor the agreement. He took the Skins offer because it was better.

    It was not until after the Browns found out that they lost out, that they upped the ante and threw in the second first and their second rounder.

    Snead said it was too late.

    apparently Holmgren didn't understand the rules, or thought he was smarter than everyone else.

    Av's comment about Snead being a man of his word is on the money - Snead's honesty/trustworthiness will not be lost on the rest of the leagues owners, general managers, and coaches ..

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Snead called this perfectly in my opinion. Holmgren tried to screw us and got caught with his pants down. Happy with the deal and to continue loling at the Browns.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Remember this is/was Snead's first move as a GM. And i like what he did. He put out a notice around the league basically saying that the Rams aren't going to be pushovers. He basically said that you will play by our rules if you want the pick. Browns didn't, and they are the ones left trying to save face after not managing to get a QB once again
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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    EXACTLY, AV!

    We were clear and said give us your best offer. Browns though it meant they will get back to the them saying, well skins offered this can you top it? Well we didn't. We wanted to know what the best offer is and its not our fault you didn't match what Skins offered when were trying to get it done.

    Maybe if you didn't bull**** around and made a true top offer, you would have had it. We all know Browns were trying to hide that 1.22 as much as possible, if they didn't and put their top offer when asked they would have RGIII now. Sorry Holmgreen, seems Les Snead doesn't play games. When he says give us your BEST offer, give it to him then, don't bank on him to comeback to you again to ask for more!


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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    I don't think anyone can be sure a multi-round auction would have achieved a better result. If it was multi-round bidding, the Redskins may not have made an offer nearly as high at any time in the bidding process and it may have allowed them time to negotiate directly with the Browns. Bids like a normal auction work when the time constraints are in place (like at a physical auction place) but it's not as smooth when the people can go see if other alternatives are available while bidding. The NFL itself does a 1-bid auction for the supplemental draft.

    We also can't be sure the Browns even made the offer Holmgren is hinting they made. Saving face is pretty routine in any corporate culture. I don't think the Browns low balled either. It sounds like the Browns initial offer may have been along the lines the Rams were hoping to receive. Just because the Skins came in high (like they did in free agency) doesn't mean anything else is low.

    edit: note when agents are negotiating, they routinely say another team is bidding but they refuse to disclose who it is. It's not always a lie. One reason is that they don't want 1-GM negotiating with the other GMs and bi-passing the agent. Manning is negotiating with Denver and the Titans. I guarantee you he has others that we don't know about. He doesn't want the Broncos and Titans to negotiate between themselves.
    Last edited by RebelYell; -03-16-2012 at 02:05 PM.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    As someone that participates in auctions for a living, it is a very rare event where one round of bidding results in the best result for a seller. It happens, but its rare.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Quote Originally Posted by general counsel View Post
    As someone that participates in auctions for a living, it is a very rare event where one round of bidding results in the best result for a seller. It happens, but its rare.

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    You're not considering all the pertinent factors.

    First, it may very well be that the Rams viewed this as a time-is-of-the-essence scenario. They did not wish for a multi-round negotiation to continue into the Free Agency period, when other options would present themselves to the bidders.

    Second, Snead likely wished to send a message: this is how we do things, so don't think there is a bluff here to call.

    In the end, the Rams got a great deal, and I have serious doubts as to whether the Browns truly would have topped it had the Rams gone back to them.

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    Re: Bernie Bytes: Holmgren whines about Rams ..

    Quote Originally Posted by general counsel View Post
    As someone that participates in auctions for a living, it is a very rare event where one round of bidding results in the best result for a seller. It happens, but its rare.

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    I would say it depends on the structure of the auction. If it's a house on the court house steps, no. Open bidding is best. Game Theory has shown, closed bids work best in certain situations. Just like in an auction where they disclose a minimum bid has been set in secret, people will start bidding against themselves (essentially what a closed bidding process is trying to achieve)

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