Saturday, September 7, 2013

How is today's guaranteed contract deadline at 4 pm ET significant with respect to Termination Pay?

If veterans with 4 or more accrued years credited towards free agency are on teams today after 4pm ET, their contracts become guaranteed for the year. The Jets and Patriots did it today:

This is significant for players who are Termination pay eligible. Here's an article from on Termination pay. Check it out below:

There are 26 players on the Giants' 53-man roster now who have 4 or more accrued season whose contracts (specifically meaning the paragraph 5 base salary portions of their deals) are guaranteed for the 2013 season. They are as follows:

Out of these 26 players, the only ones who have any kind of chance at being released during the season are these 4 (particularly the last two):

1. DT, Shaun Rogers
2. DT, Mike Patterson
3. OT/OG, David Diehl
4. CB, Terrell Thomas

Before I talk about these 4 players, let me first discuss what Termination Pay is very briefly. In short, there are two kinds of Termination Pay. Please read the article on Termination Pay linked near the top of the article to read more about the details. There's a quick synopsis of the two below:

Termination pay can be claimed by veteran players with 4 or more accrued years if they are cut during the season. It can only be claimed once in a player's career. As a result of this, players are more likely to put in a claim for it if they are on a team's opening day 53-man roster. Here's why:

I. First kind of Termination Pay:
If a veteran player with 4 or more accrued years credited towards free agency is a on a team's 53-man roster on opening day, and is then cut at any point in the season, he is eligible to put in a claim for termination pay (if he hasn't already) that would be for 100% of his paragraph 5 base salary.

II. Second kind of Termination Pay:
If a veteran player with 4 or more accrued years credited towards free agency is a on a team's 53-man roster at any point AFTER opening day his claim for termination pay (assuming he hasn't claimed it before) if he is cut from the team thereafter can only be for 25% of his paragraph 5 base salary.

Getting back to Rogers, and Patterson, Diehl, & Thomas now...

  • These potential cap impact of these 4 players getting cut have ranging potential impacts that could be described as slight to less than slight.
  • Rogers and Patterson seem fall into the category of less than slight potential cap impact, which wouldn't hurt the Giants cap-wise if they are cut because their potential replacement is waiting in the wings if he is needed in Markus Kuhn.
  • Rogers and Patterson are in the same situation, with respect to possibly getting axed if two things happen:
    • They underperform
    • not many injuries occur, particularly at DT.
  • If these two things happen, then DT Markus Kuhn will be waiting in the wings.
  • The Giants can place Kuhn on the active 53-man roster from the PUP list between weeks 7 and 13.
  • If they don't, then they'll place him on IR for the year since they'll need young DTs for next season on the roster from a numbers standpoint a that position.
  • If Kuhn gets placed back on the roster, it'll likely be because of injuries at DT.
  • A slight possibility also exists that Rogers or Patterson underperfom; while this may be unlikely, it is not impossible to fathom (again this is leaving injuries for these two players completely out of the equation).
  • Keep your eyes on this dynamic as the year goes by.
  • Whether he gets added on to the roster again might impact termination pay for the salaries of Rogers and/or Patterson; if they are cut to make room for Kuhn, then it won't have any cap impact since all three of these players (Rogers, Patterson, & Kuhn) are already fully accounted for on the regular season salary cap.
  • Chris Snee and Terrell Thomas aren't necessarily in the same boat though as Rogers and Patterson are though.

  • Diehl and Thomas would fall into the category of a slight cap impact.
  • They could impact the Giants more cap-wise then Rogers and/or Patterson could because their potential replacement is not on the roster now, and would then cost the Giants added cap room that they are VERY thin on at the moment. 
  • The reason I mention Diehl, who is a free agent after the year, is because he could be supplanted by Pugh by the time he comes back in about a month or so.
  • By then, the Giants could conceivably look around for help from the outside for an OT that would take his place as a swing tackle if they see that he can't hack it (possibly FA Sean Locklear if he is healthy).
  • Now I seriously doubt that this could happen; I'd say the chances are less than 1% actually, but the reason I bring him up is because stranger things have happened in the NFL.
  • I probably am off for putting him on this list of possibilities to be cut in-season, but I'd like people to be aware of his roster vulnerability, regardless of how minuscule it may be.

  • Thomas, like Diehl, is on a one-year deal.
  • If he doesn't play up to par, he could be vulnerable, but like Diehl, I think his chances of getting cut are slim (close to none); I'd say 1%.
  • Leaving injuries out of the equation, Trumaine McBride and maybe even Charles James from the Practice Squad could take his spot as the 5th CB if he doesn't play or practice well, and another CB could be signed from the outside to fill the roster vacancy that is created as a result. I doubt this happens though.
  • He and Diehl are likely to not be candidates to get axed for their performance or due to a numbers game.
  • A replacement for a roster vacancy that could be created from Diehl and Thomas possibly being cut in-season could create more cap problems for the Giants; however, while this is possible (albeit barely), it VERY unlikely to happen.

  • Odds are though that these 4 will be fine.
  • If I had to give the Giants a grade in their management of Termination Pay eligible players who are on the roster on opening day with respect to the possibility of their possibly getting released, I'd give them an "A".
  • Who they sign in-season (which I think could happen sometime between the conclusion of week 1 and the conclusion of week 3) though is yet to be determined.
  • As long as that player--most likely a RB--has less than 4 accrued years, or is a vet with 4 or more years who has already collected Termination Pay, then they'll be good to go.
  • As the season goes on though, the impact of in-season termination pay lessens significantly, particularly after mid-season, after week 8 or 9.