Tag Archives: TARP

Federal Bailout of the NFL

Over the last few months, as our country navigates through turbulent waters of this Recession, the Federal Government has conducted some unprecedented moves – increased deficits spending, bailouts, and increased unconstitutional powers to the Department of Treasury.

On the heels of the forced retirement of CEO Rick Wagoner of GM, Secretary Timothy Geithner has acknowledged recently on “Face the Nation” on CBS that the Federal Government should have the option to purge any directors or senior management of financial institutions that received aid from the Federal Government – “Where that requires a change in management and the board, then we will do that” states Geithner.NFL

Wow!  Now that is power.  Maybe Geitner and the Federal Government need to take this power to the next step by beyond struggling financial firms and auto companies, but to all areas of the economy.  My first suggestion would be for them to start with the National Football League.

You heard me correctly…the multi-billion dollar a year industry that is call the NFL which is sorely in need of Federal help.  If anywhere there was an example of poor leadership and grossly abuse of bonus money, the NFL is defiantly the poster boy in these areas. 

Where else can besides Fannie Mac and Fannie Mae can an individual receive millions of dollars of bonus money for failure and performing below expectations.  Take for example DeAngelo Hall of the Washington Redskins.  He received a six-year deal worth $55 million, $23 million of which is guaranteed this year.   To give you an idea of the season that Hall had in 2008 here are his stats:

  • 73 Tackles, 63 Solo Tackles, .5 Sacks, 4 Interceptions, and 21 Pass Deflections in 15 games

Not too bad, I guess…However, this is the same guy who got beat out of starting position in Oakland and dumped mid way through 2008{is this the right year} by Al Davis due to poor performance.  Oh yeah, he just signed a $70 million free agent contract months beforehand with the Raiders.  To break it down, he was paid $8 million for eight games, while receiving a $7 million signing bonus for that bit of work.  To make matters worse, he struggled in the man-to-man defense scheme that Oakland runs and was rottenly beaten for big plays which lead to numerous Raider losses. 

Where is the outcry about Hall’s over bloated salary and bonus that were paid out for his poor play and performance?  I don’t see Congress freezing his pay or the pay of his ex-teammate Javon Walker who received an $11 million signing bonus for the 15 catches in 10 games he played in.  $733,333.333 per catch!!!  OMG!  Hall and Walker are just a few examples of bonuses being paid for underperforming employees without any Congressional outcry…where are you Nancy Pelosi??!!

Now let’s talk about management.  No one can argue that Geitner needs to fire everyone involved from the owner down to the towel boy in the Detroit Lions organization after their historical 0-16 season.  Mr. Obama himself could run a better organization that the Fords can.

You shouldn’t discount doing the same type of dismal strategy to the organization that seems to draft more felons than the Dallas Cowboys and that would be the Cincinnati Bengals (4-12 in 2009 and 110-193 since 1990).  Tell me one reason why Mike Brown and William Clay Ford should still be in position to run these teams in communities that deserve better?  Mr. Geitner, time to make your move and hand out some pink slips, the fans are waiting!

If you are not convinced yet that NFL needs government oversight and help, then I offer one last example.  The bloated rookie signing bonus that draftees receive year in and year out for services yet performed on the expectation that they will “rock stars” and be worth every penny they were given.  However that seems not to be the case for most first round draft picks. 

Take for example Jake Long on the Miami Dolphins.  He signed last year for a $57.5 million contract which included a guaranteed the $30 million signing bonus he received in 2008 as the #1 draft pick.  The $30 million guarantee bonus was given out for services that yet to rendered and Congress is ruffled by the AIG bonuses.  What a hypocritical world we live in!!!  I guess the severance package that Wagoner received for 30 years of service at GM of $20 million is not looking too bad after all.

Hopefully I have created a good case for Federal intervention into the NFL so our national pastime can be saved.  So, I deeply implore everyone to write and call their Congressional representative requesting Government assistance before it becomes too late… Do for the children!