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Has Brady Quinn Dug His Own Grave?

Poor Quinny QuinnRomeo Crennel has already acquired the pot of gold that awaited him after turning around a disgusting looking Cleveland Browns team in 2006 to a 10-6 playoff contender in 2007. Next in line looking to reap their rewards are RB Jamal Lewis and QB Derek Anderson. In the beginning of this season, how many people even envisioned Anderson finishing 2007 as the Browns starting quarterback? How many thought he would either be on another team or forced out of football in a few years?

Instead, the Browns are in active negotiations with Anderson, hoping to lock him up under a new deal as soon as possible. Anderson probably will not get the 6-year deal that he is seeking and may actually get the franchise tag thrown on him. No matter what kind of deal that Derek signs, you have to think that Brady Quinn and Tom Condon have their heads tucked right into their hands thinking, “Where did this whole thing go wrong?”

This from sports blog, Rumors and Rants:

Had Brady Quinn not held out and, instead, shown up at training camp on time, he (by all accounts) would have at least secured the backup role behind incumbent starter Charlie Frye. Because of the money owed to Quinn, the Browns surely would have let Anderson go and put their new golden boy in the backup role. Then, when they traded Frye after week one, Quinn would have been ideally placed to take over as the starter. Instead, he held out and while his agent haggled over escalator clauses and what amounted to about a $500,000 difference, Brady sat in Arizona and missed valuable time in which he could have been learning the offense.

But more importantly, think about what contributor/fortune teller, Paul Schackman, said on June 29, 2007:

I understand that as an agent your job is to get your client the most money possible, but it should also be your goal to get them in training camp on time. Nothing good comes from missing training camp; it puts the rookie behind schedule in terms of progress, could lead to losing out on a starting position.

It is almost a guarantee that Jamarcus Russell will start this season, whether it is week 1 or three weeks in. The same can not be said for Brady Quinn. He is coming into the season as a backup behind Charlie Frye, but is in a position that can change hands in training camp or early in the regular season. With new developments in the contract talks between Browns brass and Tom Condon, it can end up costing Quinn even more of millions of dollars. While Quinn holds out, it locks up the starting position for Frye and makes it even harder for Quinn to learn the offense and make a contribution in year one. Worst case scenario, what if Frye has an unbelievable season and the Browns make the playoffs or close to the playoffs and Romeo Crennel’s job is saved? This can further complicate matters for Quinn.

Okay, so Schackman said Frye instead of Anderson…I guess he is not Nostradamus. The Browns traded Quinn, locking up the starting spot for Anderson and instead of Frye having the unbelievable season and coming close to the playoffs (while saving and extending Crennel’s job), it was Anderson who now further complicated matters for Quinn.

Lesson: Think longterm consequences before holding your clients out of camp/preseason games/regular season games. Was the extra $500,000 in Quinn’s first contract worth sitting out of training camp?

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.

2 replies on “Has Brady Quinn Dug His Own Grave?”

Great post! I think this is a philosophical issue many agents face. As someone who is looking to break in to the field I often play out different scenarios as I develop my representation philosophy. As the agent should always work to get as much money for his client as possible, he must keep an open mind and avoid tunnel vision. Its not just about the first contract, so there often can be a trade off that needs to occur to ensure the player,s career earning potential is maximized.

I think a big problem with the system is that the agents want to maximize their clients money to fill their own pockets. The more the client signs for, the higher the commission. Now Quinn is stuck on the bench, unable to play, unable to earn the bonuses in his contract, when he could have had a shot a the big time this year.

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