Readers who frequent this site are probably familiar with the fairly new column, On To The Next One, where I highlight when an athlete leaves his agent for new representation. I do not cover every switch; not all changes are worth reporting, and I could probably make a post per day due to the high number of athletes that decide to ditch their agents for something new. In one of my posts on the subject, made on July 2, 2010, I wrote the following:
Still want to be an NFL agent, right? Move as far away from Florida as imaginable and make sure to provide your client the least amount of publicity as possible, or else risk losing him to Drew Rosenhaus. All kidding aside, minus the costs (time and money), shady business, and sleepless nights involved, are you prepared to work day and night with the hope that you keep your clients past their first contracts? Good luck.
Rosenhaus had just picked up Quentin Groves, Anthony Davis, and Jared Odrick as clients. Odrick, a Miami Dolphin, was previously represented by Lamont Smith and Peter Schaffer of All Pro Sports & Entertainment.
Maybe I should not have been joking when I made the comment regarding moving as far away from Florida as possible before Rosenhaus comes in for the kill. In actuality, it does not matter where you as the agent live, but if your client becomes a Miami Dolphin, you might want to become seriously concerned. Some agents are even going as far as to steer their players away from Miami.
Since the start of the year, seven Dolphins players have dumped their existing agents and signed with Rosenhaus, giving him 10 clients on the team in a pursuit that could be considered relentless even by his standards. This has infuriated the spurned agents. According to multiple sources, at least two have told the team they will no longer steer their clients toward the Dolphins for fear that Rosenhaus, who is forever lurking at the perimeter of the Miami practice field, schmoozing with players, will swipe them.
Agent Albert Irby, who represented defensive tackle Tony McDaniels before he left for Rosenhaus this year, said he has a pending grievance filed with the NFL Players Association for improper contact with his former client.
When contacted by The Miami Herald, four other agents who had Dolphins clients swiped by Rosenhaus all contend the Miami-based agent also improperly and unethically recruited their players. Nobody has provided proof. None would speak on the record. One prominent agent said he has had enough.
“I don’t need the headaches or the aggravation,” said one prominent sports agent who lost a client to Rosenhaus this year. “I told the team, `I love you to death, but I can’t send players down to you.’ I’m not doing it. It’s not worth the aggravation.
“I’ve talked to at least five other agents who are going to do the same. We’re steering them away.
“It’s not worth the risk.”
That last line also reminds me of a post I wrote titled, Is The Reward Worth The Risk?, where I typed the following:
As I have mentioned many times, I find it very difficult to understand how many football agents, in particular, survive in my industry. The costs leading up to the NFL draft, per player, is exceptionally high, and agents pretty much have to assume those costs to have a reasonable shot at signing any potential draftees. In fact, many players will have their costs paid for by agents and never get a shot in the league. What then? Money out the window. But even if a player is drafted, the commission on that first contract will barely even pay for that one player’s pre-draft costs (time spent by the agent not included). And then you have to worry that if the client is drafted by Miami, Rosenhaus might get him before his 2nd contract.