greg-jennings-ball2

Maybe it’s something in their diet, like an abundance of passion fruit. Yeah, I dunno, or maybe they’re all going on too many late night/early morning Jonathan Baldwin style runs. But it seems this year’s crop of free agent wide receivers has contracted some kind of viral disease that leads to both inflated self esteem, and also an inflated perception of financial value.

In short, they’re acting like wide receivers. Odd, yes.

First, earlier this week there were reports that Mike Wallace will likely seek a contract worth $60 million. You know, the same Mike Wallace who had 548 fewer receiving yards than Vincent Jackson in 2012 after the Bucs wide receiver signed a contract worth $55 million last spring. Nothing about that makes sense.

So what say you, Greg Jennings? How unrealistic are your expectations?

Earlier this morning Tom Pelissero from ESPN 1500 reported that Jennings will seek $14 million annually. That’s absurd, which means it will absolutely happen.

As Rotoworld notes, a contract of that girth would make Jennings the third highest paid receiver in the league behind only Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald. Age is a mild factor here with Jennings, as he’ll turn 30 next September, which isn’t exactly young by wide receiver standards. But what’s much, much more concerning is his inability to not break himself. Jennings missed nine games this past season, and over his seven-year career he’s sat out 18 times.

Yeah, I know. I’ve gone on the anti-injury rant so very many times, and although that’s often been addressed towards fantasy concerns, the same logic applies to reality too. In short, it goes something like this: injuries are violent, random events, and one broken bone or ripped muscle doesn’t necessarily mean more damage is forthcoming.

And most often that’s true. But what’s troubling with Jennings is that his most recent injury was a soft tissue injury, and therefore one that was of the nagging, tugging variety. He injured his groin early in the season, and then after missing one game he was highly limited in a two-game comeback attempt before needing surgery and missing seven more weeks. Then when he returned in Week 13 he averaged only 39.6 receiving yards per game.

Yet even with those recent worries and his increasing age, he’s still deeming himself worthy of a greater financial commitment than not only Jackson, but also, say, Brandon Marshall, Andre Johnson, and Demaryius Thomas, all of whom also had more than 1,400 receiving yards, while Jennings finished with just 246 and he’s been below 1,000 yards for two straight years now.

Someone will bite on this, because the NFL is a passing league, and desperation among the teams most desperate for a wide receiver (hi, Miami) runs just that deep. And then we’ll all have a good, hearty laugh before Jennings posts 1,500 yards next year, and feeds everyone his delectable crow pie.

You’re still awesome, free agency.

And now the links part of the links post…

  • Nnamdi Asomugha will be asked to take a pay cut. And if he refuses, the Eagles will release him. [Schefter]
  • Jay Cutler celebrated Valentine’s Day with a pack of smokes. [Busted Coverage]
  • So you’re saying that Ryan Fitzpatrick is average? Huh. [Buffalo News]
  • Elsewhere in average quarterback play, Rob Chudzinski is really amped for Brandon Weeden, but not amped enough to name him Cleveland’s starter. [ESPN Cleveland]
  • Nobody develops quarterbacks like Andy Reid. Nobodddyyyyy. [Arrowhead Addict]