If there's anything to be learned from the past 4 months regarding the soap opera starring the San Diego Chargers and their 3rd-overall 2016 draft pick in Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa, it's that, based on the evidence presented in front of us, Bosa is being unreasonable and doesn't deserve a roster spot at this point.
"Our contract discussions and offers to the representatives of Joey Bosa have been both fair and structurally consistent with the contracts of every other Chargers player," the team said in a statement.
Per the Chargers' release, the offer included:
» "An initial signing bonus payment that is larger than any player in the League has received in the last two drafts."
» "More money in this calendar year than every player in this year's draft except one (Eagles QB Carson Wentz)."
» "The largest payment and the highest percentage of signing bonus received in the first calendar year of any Chargers' first-round selection since the inception of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (2011)."
Bosa's representatives rejected the contract. (NFL.com)
Let's look at this from an objective standpoint. Thursday, April 28, 2016, marked the day that Joey Bosa "graduated" from The Ohio State University and into the pros by having his draft rights acquired by the Chargers. This is the same team dealing with an outstanding and certainly formidable task of getting approval for a new stadium downtown next to Petco Park and the San Diego Convention Center.
However, the multiple offers the Chargers have put forth put them in an awkward position since Bosa and his agent have declined any and every offer from the team to secure a roster spot (for the time being).
I get why a guy like Bosa wants to hold true to what he wants. John Bosa - a former defensive end with the Miami Dolphins in the late 1980s - had a short career and perhaps Joey doesn't want to have a short career like his old man. Maybe he wants to be financially stable should his career get knocked short for some unbeknownst reason.
In talking to a good sports radio friend of mine, we went back and forth on the drama coming out of Chargers camp. For one thing, coaches, players, and anyone who is not in the front office directly working with the team and Bosa's representatives should have ZERO comment on how much money a man deserve before stepping foot out onto a pro football field. That doesn't concern them one iota. You should be sticking to the notion of "we'd like him here" and just leave it at that.
Joey Bosa has quite the task ahead of him and it seems like a double-edged sword. Either he "sells out" and commits to a slightly-less lucrative deal than he originally planning on wanting. Either that, or he continues to sit on the bench and not play one single down and prove his point. According to many sources, this is not some kid who thinks he's entitled to whatever he wants, but it is interesting that he has the potential of being the first draft pick, since the most recent collective bargaining agreement in 2011, to say "Screw the CBA!"
Admit it, as a football fan, you probably would expect a quarterback to make that first move, but none have had the gall to do so just yet. Bosa seems to be riding his own ship and demanding his own terms. Nobody can really blame him especially based on the history of top draft picks in the National Football League. He's probably looking to continue riding his own ship rather than jumping on some sort of bandwagon like every other pawn in the league's chess match. I'm not saying the league has any power over this, but perhaps the Chargers want to avoid repeating history.
You may or may not remember during quarterback Philip Rivers's rookie season that he didn't sign a deal with the team until late in the preseason. Was his mentality just holding out for more money? Perhaps, but you can't deny the elite signal-caller that he's become today. Is he Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or Peyton Manning? No, but he certainly holds his own. I'm not one necessarily to believe in superstition, but maybe this is a sign of what's to come from Bosa. That is if he signs sooner than later.
One other footnote that boggles my mind and I certainly can speak from experience. Those of us who are sports fans, we have our allegiances and know where they lie. We sometimes change our minds. That is life in a nutshell. I feel really bad for those fans who spent loads of hard-earned money on jerseys and other paraphernalia that had Joey Bosa's name on it from either the Chargers team store, NFL.com, or some other official entity, and now they have to sit and watch this soap opera develop into the cheesy midday drama with every single day that passes.
In the end, I think both parties have a right to continue with their status quo. The Chargers should continue trying to negotiate with Bosa and his representatives, but if they decide to do so, they should end talks altogether and sit Bosa all year long until he decides to man up. It's not as if Bosa is an unrestricted free agent and can sign with anyone he wants. The Chargers would have to trade him. The team is in a bit of a pickle because the value of Bosa, if they DID want to trade him and move on, his trade value has diminished tremendously over the past 4 months due to lack of a contract signing.
Bosa will likely win in the end, but I'm siding with the Chargers and thinking they should search for hungry free agents who are looking for a shot at the big leagues and making a name for themselves, rather than trying to appease the money-grabbing representatives and agents of the third-overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.