First, I apologize for it taking some time for me to get some of the comments from the initial piece about the Redskins ticket issues posted. I'm on the road and I just can't get to them as fast as I'd like. The need for me to approve comments pertains to just the initial comment that each poster makes and, after that, they go up on the site immediately.
For the same reason, I haven't been able to respond to comments as quickly as I like to so I'm going to address some issues here in a separate post.
Was it wrong for the Redskins to sell tickets that should have gone to waiting list fans to brokers? Absolutely. Was Dan Snyder aware that it was going on? I doubt it. Is Snyder responsible for the high-pressure atmosphere that led to some salesmen breaking the rules to meet quotas? Absolutely.
And, on to the second article in the series, did the Redskins both create a major PR blunder and come down with too heavy a hand in some of their cases involving individuals holding premium seat contracts? Absolutely. Does that mean that they should let people out of signed contracts because they ask to be? Absolutely not. What's the purpose of a contract if it can unilaterally be cancelled? Should the Redskins offer tickets to those who have paid their judgments in full? Absolutely.
I posted a question to reporter James V. Grimaldi's chat yesterday and it didn't get answered. These two bits of information are crucial in judging the Redskins' actions. I asked them in my original post and one was partially answered, the other not addressed at all:
- What do other NFL teams do in such situations? We did find out that nine said that they take no legal action when people default on premium ticket contracts and two said that they do. The other 18 either had no comment or did not respond. For such a well-researched piece, this was some pretty shoddy reporting. It would be simple enough, for example, to jump on line or get on the phone and see if any cases are pending or settled in Kansas City or in the city of Philadelphia. These cases are on the public record. The Post's failure to do this fuels my suspicion that they did not want to find anything that did not fit their agenda, a practice that I though was limited to just their political coverage.
- Nobody interviewed a neutral lawyer to find out whether or not giving a pass to people who signed contracts would hinder the team's ability to go after corporations who default on million-dollar contracts? I don't know one way or the other. The failure of the Post to try to obtain some pretty basic information is fishy.
Again, the Redskins don't come out of this smelling like a rose. And while the Redskins did uncover the ticket bundling scheme on their own it's good that the Post got it out to the public as that will help ensure that something like that is unlikely to happen again.
But the Post clearly wanted a sensational story here. In the eyes of some, they got it. I certainly hope that it makes people think twice, maybe three times, before committing thousands of dollars per year to club seats many years into the future. I do have to say that hhe front-page picture of the weeping fan on the Redskins-decorated couch was a bit over the top.
In the end, people who foam at the mouth at the mention of Dan Snyder's name have one more reason to do so. And the Post may have temporarily boosted its sagging subscription numbers. The Redskins will review their practices and maybe make some changes for the better.
Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 24, 33 days before the NFL draft.
The Redskins week that was
A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington.
Free agency update: What's next for the Redskins on the D-line? The Redskins have been casting out lines for defensive linemen since before free agency officially started but they haven’t been able to reel one in. Part of the issue might be that they know that Vita Vea and Da’Ron Payne are likely to be available in the draft. They have to balance spending big on a lineman vs. being able to get one pretty cheap for the next five years.
Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility—Speaking of the D-line, the team negotiated the removal of a salary guarantee for one player to give themselves more flexibility when it comes time to cut the roster down to 53 in September. See the post for details.
Redskins guarantee Alex Smith a whopping $71 million in new contract—In the words of Joe Biden, this is a big f-----g deal. It showed that the Redskins aren’t afraid to pay a quarterback big money if they think it’s the right guy. It should be noted that whether or not they chose the right guy is something that remains to be seen. Although the post shows that it’s plausible for the Redskins to terminate the deal after three years, I anticipate Smith playing out at least four if not all five years of the contract.
Redskins add another ex-Cowboy as they sign Scandrick—Orlando Scandrick has struggled with injuries the past few years and Redskins fans did not greet the news of his signing with great enthusiasm, to say the least. To point out the bright side, his contract is not pricey by NFL terms ($2.6 million cap hit this year, no guaranteed money beyond a $1 million signing bonus) and from what I have been able to gather it’s possible that change of scenery might give him a boost for a year or two.
Tweet of the week
Well before free agency started, I wrote that the Redskins’ top priorities in free agency should be to get extensions done for Smith, Brandon Scherff, and Jamison Crowder. They should have about $15 million to work with after a few more free agent signings and that would be plenty to get all of those extensions done. And if they do score a big free agent signing, it would be worth it to restructure the contract of someone like Ryan Kerrigan to get them done.
Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.
—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 23
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 124
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 169
In case you missed it
Philadelphia Eagles lineman Michael Bennett has been indicted on felony abuse for allegedly pushing an elderly NRG Stadium worker during Super Bowl LI.
Bennett was indicted by the Harris County, Texas district attorney's office for injury to the elderly — which is intentionally and knowingly causing injury to a person 65 years or older, according to a press release from the Harris County Sheriffs' Office.
A warrant has been issued for Bennett's arrest.
The 66-year-old paraplegic stadium worker was attempting to control field access when Bennett allegedly pushed her.
The maximum penalty Bennett faces is ten years in prison in addition to a $10,000 fine.
2018 NFL DRAFT: MOCK DRAFT 6.0
Bennett — whose brother Martellus played in that Super Bowl for New England — was a member of the Seattle Seahawks during the incident and was in attendance as a noncompetitive player.
The NFL has been made aware of the situation and is looking into the matter, according to Pro Football Talk.
The 32-year-old 10-year NFL veteran could potentially face NFL discipline under the league's personal conduct policy.
RELATED: NO DEAL WITH GALETTE