It’s really too bad that humans are hard-wired to be self-serving, and at times even maniacal and egotistical when money is introduced into any disagreement.
This process usually happens at a very young age. The child wants a toy truck, and his mother denies him said truck. The child cries, and he gets a fire engine instead, earning an even greater prize because of his pouting.
The fire truck is the most ferocious beast in the animal kingdom, and it seems we’ll need several emergency vehicles to extinguish the fire ignited by Logan Mankins’ reported and disputed settlement requests. The Patriots offensive lineman is one of the 10 plaintiffs in Brady v. NFL. Earlier this week with the new CBA steaming towards its conclusion he allegedly made settlement demands along with Vincent Jackson, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees. Mankins and Jackson were said to be seeking either $10 million, or immediate unrestricted free agency.
Well-respected NFL sources like Greg Bedard of the Boston Globe, Mike Freeman of CBS Sports, and Albert Breer of the NFL Network relayed the demands made by the four plaintiffs. After an intense public backlash, Manning, Jackson, and Brees either backed off or publicly denied the reports.
Now that denial is continuing, and the source is Frank Bauer.
Bauer is Mankins’ agent, and he harshly denied the reports of his client’s settlement requests Thursday afternoon, telling ESPN Boston that the media characterizations of Mankins have been unfair.
“Logan Mankins is a young man who was encouraged and solicited into a lawsuit to help the union spearhead a new agreement. Logan’s main concern for entering into as a plaintiff was to see if he can become free and help other players have less restrictions. For people to say he has made monetary demands, he hasn’t made any such demand. We don’t know terms. We haven’t talked to (NFLPA attorney) Jeff Kessler. There has been no communication, but it’s irresponsible to report Logan has made monetary demands.
“Are we disappointed there has been no communication? Hugely. He trusted the union and Kessler to fight for Logan Mankins and the other players.”
Breer then followed up Bauer’s comments by clarifying on-air that he didn’t say Mankins personally made a request. Instead he reported that a request was made on Mankins’ behalf during the antitrust settlement negotiations, most likely by Kessler.
So it may not have been greed and selfishness directly from Mankins that could have held up the settlement. But the greed was there nonetheless from the rich men in suits representing the rich men in pads.
If Bauer is speaking truthfully, it’s discouraging and disappointing that Kessler didn’t have any contact with Mankins or his representatives before going rogue and making these demands. But with the two sides on the brink of voting to settle the antitrust case and by extension move closer to ending the lockout, the two-way street of communication should have been open.
Maybe that street was bustling with activity, and it’s far more likely that Mankins and his agent encouraged Kessler to pursue that cool $10 million for his already deep pockets. During four months of smokescreens and public relations ploys, this statement from Bauer was probably yet another bland PR statement aimed at deflecting all responsibility and blame towards Kessler.
He’s ready to accept it with open arms. He’s a lawyer after all, and that’s how this game works.