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saintz08 04-22-2004 12:57 AM

McKenzie trade bait ?????
 
By Rob Demovsky
PackersNews.com

Though no final decision has been made on what to do with disgruntled cornerback Mike McKenzie, the Green Bay Packers are willing to consider trading him.

NFL sources said Tuesday the Packers are listening to offers from teams who might be interested in acquiring McKenzie.

It has been 11 days since McKenzie’s agent, Brian Parker, confirmed he asked the Packers to trade his client. The Packers initially denied the request, but since then little has been done to repair the relationship. So, according to sources, the Packers have been putting out feelers to see what interest there is in McKenzie.

That suggests the Packers believe there is a chance that the relationship is beyond repair. A source close to the situation believes the main issue is McKenzie’s contract, a five-year, $17.1 million extension that included a $3.5 million signing bonus that was signed in January of 2002. That contract was negotiated by one of McKenzie’s former agents. Parker is McKenzie’s fourth agent the last five years.

Parker did not return phone messages left at his Memphis office Tuesday. The Packers’ coaches and personnel staff were in draft meetings Tuesday and could not be reached. Coach Mike Sherman is scheduled to hold his annual pre-draft news conference today at team headquarters.

McKenzie has already given up a $200,000 workout bonus he would have received for participating in an offseason program, and the Packers don’t expect McKenzie to show up at their minicamp next week. McKenzie has not spoken publicly since Parker confirmed on April 10 that he asked the Packers to trade McKenzie.

If the Packers do trade McKenzie, the rest of his pro-rated signing bonus — $2.1 million — would accelerate to this year’s salary cap. However, his base salary of $2.75 million would be wiped off the books, giving the Packers a net gain of $650,000 in cap room.

It’s unknown what the Packers would want in return for McKenzie, who is their top cornerback and arguably one of the top corners in the league. McKenzie was originally a third-round draft pick. Teams could try to low-ball the Packers if they know they are desperate to get rid of him.

The Packers could simply give into McKenzie’s demands for a new contract, but teams never want to appear to be held hostage by a player.

Another option for the Packers would be to call McKenzie’s bluff and do nothing and see if he eventually returns to the team, but indications are McKenzie would be willing to sit out before returning to Green Bay.


no_cloning 04-22-2004 07:18 AM

McKenzie trade bait ?????
 
I assume a player who sits out a season simply doesn\'t get paid (that\'s logical, isn\'t it?).
Technical question: Does he count against the salary cap? The situation is somewhat similar to an injured player - he doesn\'t contribute but his rights remain with the team - but also somewhat similar to a player who is released as he receives no payments from his club.

chRxis 04-22-2004 10:34 AM

McKenzie trade bait ?????
 
i like mckenzie... we would lucky to get and we should really try to... we would need to pick up a corner in the draft if we do and it would probably only take a 2nd rd pick anyway

turbo_dog 04-22-2004 11:01 AM

McKenzie trade bait ?????
 
Fourth agent in five years? You have to wonder what that is all about. They couldn\'t have all been incompetent. Sounds like he might be acting like a spoiled brat. That\'s not to say he isn\'t a good player.


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