The Truth about Free Agency

NFL fans can’t help but feel gyped when their team doesn’t sign a big-time free agent in the first three days. After the Redskins signed Albert Haynesworth to a contract that was later confirmed as four years, $48 million with funny money thrown in there to dupe sportswriters, every Titan fan wanted a backfill signing. Chris Canty, formerly of the Cowboys, seemed like that guy. Thanks to some solid reporting by Peter King, we found out that Canty was the first guy on Redskins’ GM Vinny Cerrato’s speed dial at midnight on Saturday. After the ‘Skins got their Haynesworth, Canty’s agent thought the Titans would be interested. They were not.

Canty signed with the Giants, who now have two teams’ worth of defensive linemen. The Titans got nothing. I expect that they’ll find a relatively cheap free agent or two and it will get almost no media coverage.

What’s up with the funny money love in these contracts? The 49ers signed Brandon Jones to a deal that was reported as five years, $16 million. More accurately, it looks like a three-year, $5.4 million deal, which is a lot better for a slot receiver. Hey NFL beat writers, contracts aren’t guaranteed. They never have been. Stop publishing funny money deals like they are legit. Every dime of a baseball contract is guaranteed. No one cares about baseball.

I’m glad that in the midst of a rare Atlanta snowstorm, the local CBS affiliate decided to show Tennessee/Florida instead of Missouri/Kansas. Kansas is one of those basketball programs that reloads instead of rebuilds. How you get really good basketball players to come to Lawrenceville, Kansas and stay without restraints is beyond me.

The Matt Cassel to KC trade is intriguing, in that reports stated the Pats would need multiple high draft picks to let him go. Then he goes to KC, where the former player guru Scott Pioli resides, with another player, for a second-round pick. Now, it is a high second round pick, and in terms of bang for your buck, a second-round NFL rookie is hard to beat. Still, it looks a little like a salary dump for the Pats. Newly hitched Tom Brady better be 100%.

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