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mesaSteeler
03-10-2011, 07:51 AM
NFL from the sidelines
http://nflfromthesidelines.blogspot.com/
After hobnobbing around the NFL in the press boxes and sidelines, sports reporter Dale Lolley will let you know the insider scoop. Dale can also be heard on Tuesday nights throughout the season from 7 to 9 p.m. on WBGG 970-AM.
Wednesday, March 09, 2011
One hurdle cleared

According to some reports, NFL owners and the NFLPA have agreed that a rookie salary cap will be a part of any future CBA.

Under the agreement, first-round picks will be given four-year deals, while all other rounds will get three-year contracts.

This is the first step albeit a small one in getting a new CBA completed.

As we've seen with the escalating rookie salaries handed out over the past decade or so, the owners have been unable to help themselves in giving ou the big deals.

Every year, the pick in a particular first-round slot wants more money than the guy taken with that selection in the previous year.

And the owners have paid it.

Though there were some players who did not want a rookie cap in place, most veterans saw the need for it. They saw players getting more money some of it guaranteed than established players and saw how backward such a situation was.

In fact, the only people who don't like a rookie cap are likely the agents.

But even they'll make out. Once a player establishes himself, he'll get that big second contract after three or four years. And that's when everyone cashes in.

In his latest mock draft, Mel Kiper has the Steelers taking Danny Watkins, the overage guard from Baylor.

I don't see that being the pick, unless a lot of crazy stuff happens ahead of them.

A pick of Watkins, who will turn 27 during the 2011 season, would fly in the face of everything the Steelers have done in the first round of their drafts under Kevin Colbert.

Colbert has expressed a desire in the past to pick players who are not only good, but good and young. Not only are they still getting better, but you also max out on the years they can play for you.

That's why the Steelers love to take underclassmen.

Watkins doesn't qualify.

Good player, but too damn old. By the time his first contract is complete, he's already in his 30s. And then what? If he doesn't start his first season - or even his second - you've wasted a good sum of money on a guy who's already almost over the hill.

And don't give me this "football age" stuff. As we've seen with James Harrison this offseason with his two back surgeries, old age is old age.

Quite frankly, you just don't heal as quickly from injuries the older you get.