Reggie Bush has announced that, despite earlier declarations that he intends to be in camp once it starts, that is contingent on getting “a fair offer, one that meets our expectations.”
Although he reiterated his intention to be in his first NFL training camp on time, New Orleans Saints first-round draft choice and reigning Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush delivered a not-so-subtle message to Saints officials over the weekend: Negotiations are a two-way street, and it’s time for everyone to take the on-ramp to the bargaining table. “I’m a competitor and a football player, and so, yeah, naturally, I want to be in camp on time,” Bush told ESPN.com. “My goal is to be in there and to start doing my part to bring a Super Bowl championship to New Orleans. That’s what I want. But I have an agent and I have faith in Joel [Segal] to handle that end of things for me. â€¦ [And] he knows we have to have a fair offer, one that meets our expectations.”
Other than allowing that he wants a contract which is “fair for everyone involved,” Bush did not address in detail his financial expectations. But it is fair to assume that, as the second overall choice in the draft, Bush will seek a deal that approximates, and perhaps in some ways surpasses, the six-year, $54 million contract that the Houston Texans awarded defensive end Mario Williams, the draft’s top pick.
I’m beginning to see why the Texans passed on this guy. The second pick gets less money than the first pick; that’s the deal. And he could have been the first pick had he been reasonable in his pre-draft contract negotiations.
Still, he’s clearly not a bad guy:
Bush called his reception in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans, where he has been embraced by fans as the savior of the Saints franchise, “overwhelming,” and Bush said he intends to expand upon the charitable endeavors he has already begun in the city. Of his ongoing battle to wear his familiar uniform No. 5 in the NFL, he noted that the decision is out of his hands and that there is nothing new to report. There could be a resolution of the uniform matter this week, with owners scheduled to meet in Denver on Tuesday.
He deserves a big-time contract, given what he accomplished in college. But the NFL has a “slotted” system and a rookie cap that each team has allocated. He’s got to work within those parameters.
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