Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

09 Feb 2010

Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!

Our J.I. Halsell suggested in January that the vaunted "poison pill" used by the Vikings and Seahawks in the Steve Hutchinson and Bernard Berrian deals a couple of years ago could return this offseason.

Any ideas? Player need not actually be a RFA, although there are enough actual RFAs out there that you really need not cheat.

Posted by: Bill Barnwell on 09 Feb 2010

71 replies , Last at 16 Feb 2010, 12:23pm by The Human Spider

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by RMH (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 1:53pm

Any team not interested in the Wildcat, or any bastardized version of it, should sign an offer sheet to Ronnie Brown stipulating that he earns a $5M bonus (or more?) for taking more than 20 direct snaps in a season.

2
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Tim Wilson :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:06pm

Jets should make an offer to any #1 WR in the league (Austin and Marshall are available) offering a $10MM bonus if that player leads the team in drops the following season. Most #1 WRs will lead their team in that category, but no one is ever going to top Braylon.

3
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by big_jgke :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:07pm

wow thats good. +1 (drops)

9
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Independent George :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:25pm

Shouldn't that be -1?

21
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Noah of Arkadia :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:43pm

nah you dropped the ball

22
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Dan :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:57pm

Better be careful. Based on his reputation, Marshall might go for it.

40
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Brendan Scolari :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 8:48pm

Sounds like a pretty horrible idea, you'd be encouraging your own player to drop passes (with a reward likely higher than his yearly salary no less).

56
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Tim Wilson :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 12:28pm

I think these are meant to be light-hearted, Brendan...

60
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Brendan Scolari :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 3:11pm

Sorry, that was a bit rude.

57
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Tim Wilson :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 12:31pm

If you want to fix it, though, have the $10MM be awarded to a local charity (or to be burned at the 50 yard line, if you so desire), so the player is not directly incentivized to drop passes and performance will proceed roughly as usual.

The necessary point is that the team has to spend $10MM, not that the player actually receives the money.

4
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Dan V (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:10pm

Imagine if Braylon missed several games -- the Jets would have to throw to him 20 times a game in the last weeks of the season to escape that bonus. Excitement!

5
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by ugarte (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:12pm

Sign Joshua Cribbs to a deal that balloons if he has the highest passer rating on the team.

8
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Phil Osopher :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:18pm

0-1 for no yards. 36.4 passer rating. Bonus earned.

ROFL

6
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by dhaverkamp (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:12pm

Pierre Thomas gets a $10 million bonus if he plays on anothe team with a Pierre (to prevent signing with Colts).

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Marko :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 5:04pm

How about Pierre Thomas gets a $20 million bonus if the offensive coordinator in 2009 for the team he signs with was never Thomas' head coach in college?

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Eddo :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 5:26pm

Aren't poison pills designed so that a player's current team can't match the offer?

Any pill directed at Pierre Thomas would have to prevent him signing with the Saints. Ron Turner is not the offensive coordinator of the Saints, to my knowledge.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Marko :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 7:15pm

Exactly. I'm hoping the Bears sign him. (Note that I referred to the offensive coordinator in 2009.) And the Saints couldn't match the offer.

You may have seen the story a few days ago that Ron Turner wanted the Bears to draft Thomas or sign him as an UDFA in 2007. Jerry Angelo obviously knew better, as evidenced by the following picks he made in the second and third rounds of that draft: Dan Bazuin, Michael Okwo and Garrett Wolfe.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Eddo :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 8:49pm

Ah, gotcha. I didn't pick up on the 2009 part.

And yes, I would love for Pierre Thomas to play for the Bears.

7
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by canada (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:16pm

I would give Vincent Jackson a huge bonus for having the 2nd most receptions on the team. Gates usually hauls in more catches in SD, but on a team like Baltimore of NYJ, Jackson would likely lead the team.

11
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Rickter (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:34pm

Wouldn't that give him a disincentive to get open or make caches, to ensure earning the bonus, when he's on your team?

42
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Brendan Scolari :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 8:49pm

Yes, this kind of idea will never happen.

10
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by RMH (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:29pm

Offer Miles Austin a salary escalator if his home stadium hosts a Super Bowl during the length of the contract; also good for Jammal Brown on a 3-year deal.

12
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by geekosphere101 (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:35pm

An interesting pill for either Dumervil or Marshall would be an extensive bonus for playing x amount of games (let's say 6) at an elevation above 5,000 feet.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by njjetfan12 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 9:33pm

just saw this, but my idea was similar.

13
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by billsfan :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:36pm

Here's the complete list:

http://www.nfl.com/news/story?id=09000d5d81561ba1

(I also like the Eagles)

14
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by geekosphere101 (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:42pm

Another neat pill would be giving Campbell a huge incentive if the team drafts a QB in rounds 1 or 2 of the 2010 NFL Draft. Everybody knows Snyder likes the big names, and at #4, one of either Bradford or Clausen will be there. Who knows, maybe the skins are eager to ditch Campbell, but it would prevent them from trying to hold him and draft a QB, or force them into keeping Campbell, in which I should get bonus points because this would fit in line with the FO writer's pact to defend Campbell at all costs.

captcha: mannerly low-income

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by billsfan :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:50pm

Vincent Jackson: Full contract is guaranteed if he isn't the tallest WR on the team. (Floyd is also 6'5")

Edit: Or guaranteed if he's the same height as his QB!

(I also like the Eagles)

15
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by billsfan :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:49pm

Samkon Gado or Victor Adeyanju: Full contract guaranteed if there's another player on the roster who was born in Nigeria.

(I also like the Eagles)

17
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Splattered :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 2:57pm

Tank Johnson, Larry Johnson, Brandon Johnson: offer a deal that escalates $2M/year for each additional player who was born with a surname of Johnson that's on the team's roster.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by RMH (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:12pm

Best used by a team, such as the Bears, with currently no Johnsons on the roster.

*ahem*

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Amp (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:07pm

Introducing your 2010 Bengals - Tank Nueveneuve, Brandon Cinconeuve, Larry Dossiete, Jeremi Dostres, Michael Neuvetres, ...

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by deep64blue :: Thu, 02/11/2010 - 3:14pm

You missed the "born with" part of the qualification.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by billsfan :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:17pm

Any Bills RFA's get offered escalators if they play more than two games outside of the United States.

(I also like the Eagles)

20
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Noah of Arkadia :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:41pm

Raiders, Browns, Lions and Chiefs can snatch any RFA from the Colts, Saints and a few others by guaranteeing the entirety of the contract if the team has a winning record.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by KJT :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:18pm

except usually when bad teams add players they're hoping they can help turn the franchise into one with a winning record

that poison pill basically says "we plan on being mediocre this year, but come play for us anyways"

looking back at that statement though, that's pretty much how the raiders operate so they, at least, could take advantage of that

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by MurphyZero :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 9:03pm

For some of those teams, the cost of a guaranteed contract would probably be worth it to get the winning record. And you know the player will give his all to get them there.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Key19 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 3:59pm

Uh... it was Nate Burleson, not Bernard Berrian.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Bronco Nut (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 4:01pm

If I were any team other than New Orleans or Indy, I would offer Antoine Bethea a contract including a $2 Million instant bonus for every time Archie Manning is shown on tv in Bethea's home stadium.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Kevin from Philly :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 10:38am

You don't think he'd throw a few grand at old Archie to fly up for each game?

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by dk240t :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 4:02pm

"Contract becomes fully guaranteed if a player plays more than 3 games in any season on a field with a dirt baseball diamond on it." Used against Oakland free agents...is there another team that has a baseball diamond on the field for half the season?

"Contract becomes fully guaranteed if a player plays 2 or more regular season games against xxx team (a division rival of the player's original team) in any single season." That could be a good one, if the team wanted him bad enough to let him skip one game a year (but couldn't pay him the crazy contract).

26
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Pete (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 4:19pm

Sign Miles Austin for a penny under $54m over 6 years. With a huge bonus if that makes him the second highest paid wide receiver on the team. Actually, never mind, that might make Jerry Jones cut Roy Williams.

Or one with a provision that gives him a bonus if his team's state capital is the same as his last name.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by moses74 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 4:41pm

A contract for a wide receiver which guarantees the value if he catches a pass form a QB whose first name rhymes with the county seat of Montgomery County, Ohio?

To be fair, you can have Hank Baskett.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by dryheat :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 1:07pm

We've descended into the absurd. Offer Vincent Jackson a 10 year 1 gazillion dollar contract that becomes guaranteed if he catches a pass from a quarterback whose name rhymes with Schmillup Shivers.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Theo :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 5:01pm

Contract becomes fully guaranteed if the team's quarterback retires, not un-retires and/or unretires from football.

Contract is fully paid by the original team if the next team is in pro football that is not the NFL. Good luck in the CFL, UFL or Arena League. Convict.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Kibbles :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 5:35pm

Offer Miles Austin a $10 million bonus for every time the local paper publishes a picture of his QB out with a blond with at least one million record sales. This move is best performed by a team with a homely QB, just in case. Yeah, Denver, I'm talking about you.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:06pm

$5,000,000 bonus for each mention of "genius", "amazing", or "ultimate leader" in the team's media guide.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by KJT :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:21pm

$5,000,000 bonus for the player for each missing sleeve on the head coach's NFL equipment hoodie.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by The Powers That Be :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:29pm

Not sure what centers are available, but this should work for most (except where QB uncertainty exists):

$1 million bonus every time [current team's QB] touches his butt.

37
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Terrell Owens (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:42pm

Is Jeff Garcia still in the league?

38
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Stephen (not verified) :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 6:52pm

Give Tavaris (or any Viking) a big bump for playing with anyone over 40. Make the Vikings pay big to bring Favre back, or leave him without a backup/key teammates.

44
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by njjetfan12 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 9:32pm

Give Brandon Marshall a fairly big contract and guarantee all of it if he plays more than 2 games a season at an altitude above 5,000 feet above sea level

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by njjetfan12 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 9:34pm

Same principle with Miles Austin if he plays more than 2 games with an attendance above 90,000

47
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by njjetfan12 :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 9:35pm

nvm

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Thok :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 11:04pm

A poison pill for having total team travel distance under 26000 miles would prevent a player from signing with all non West Coast teams, and I think Seattle/SF could probably do a poison pill that affected everybody but themselves. Similarly, Cleveland can probably put a poison pill for traveling over 15000 miles (although that would be less effective then the other way.)

49
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by DavidL :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 11:08pm

Maurice Jones-Drew: $15 million guaranteed if he plays fewer than three home sellouts.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by SackSEER :: Tue, 02/09/2010 - 11:50pm

All of these involve penalties in the form of cash bonuses and guarantees. Let's take advantage of the freedom to contract to make the poison pill truly bizarre!

If Team, at the time of the execution of the Agreement, has a quarterback on its roster who has the same first name as the person who hosted Music Television's "Total Request Live" program from 1998-2002, then the following provisions apply. The Team shall appoint the team's leading receiver (hereinafter, "Receiver") from the previous year to the following positions within the organization: General Manager, Head of Pro Personnel, Head Coach, Chief Financial Officer, and Director of Sales and Public Affairs. Any persons then employed in any of the capacities identified in the previous sentence shall be immediately terminated and paid the balance of any contract with Team.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Amp (not verified) :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 12:10am

Nice idea, but why not go the whole hog and state that the GM must be named starting quarterback for the next season.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Noah of Arkadia :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 1:42pm

Nice one! Very nice. I had a similar idea:

To snatch a RFA from the Jets, include in the contract the provision that the HC must spend a day in a room with Channing Crowder in a remote place.

To snatch a RFA from the Vikings: if any of your QBs are royalty, your HC must put his face up said QBs ass. Ooops... that might not work. Already happened once, it could happen again.

To snatch a RFA from the 49ers: if the player's brain has been imprinted with an image of his team's HC's penis, said coach must put on a dress and dance the waltz in a press conference.

To snatch a RFA from the Bengals: if a WR on the team has worn a charro hat during a game in the past 5 years, said WR must be traded to the 1st team that offers 2 tickets to their first preseason game and a beer.

To snatch a RFA from the Giants: the contract becomes guaranteed if the HC is or has ever been, or been represented to be, a Nazi.

To snatch a RFA from the Raiders: if there's an eyepatch on the team's helmet, or a guy with a broken pair of sunglasses, the owner of said team must present himself before Roger Goodell, drop to his knees and sing the Chinese national anthem.

To snatch a RFA from Atlanta: if any starting QB in the last 5 years has also spent time in jail, you must offer Bobby Petrino 20m a year to be your HC.

To snatch a RFA from Cleveland: if your GM resembles a walrus, your HC must issue a public statement declaring Bill Bellichick to be the nicest, most wonderful person to ever grace his life with his presence, and ask his hand in marriage.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by The First Nathan (not verified) :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 12:39am

Poison pill against the Cardinals.

1 billion dollar bonus if home team's temperature reaches over 115 in the year.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by wr (not verified) :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 11:54am

As stated, that would just make the Cards keep the roof closed on
the stadium. Now if you phrase that "The official temperature as reported
by the National Weather Service for the city in which the team plays"...

And to use it against Green Bay : A $10 000 000 bonus if the kickoff temperature
is ever less than 0 Celcius.

53
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by tornadot :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 1:23am

10 million bonus to Vince Wilfork if coach wears hoodie with cutoff sleeves for at least 6 games.

15 million bonus to Vince Wilfork if coach wears cap with poofy little ball on top for at least 3 cold weather games.

I'd obviously be ticked if McDaniels started to wear a hoodie with the sleeves cut off.

64
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Kibbles :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 10:05pm

And you don't think that Belichick would just match that and, you know, not wear a hoodie anymore?

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by MilkmanDanimal :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 5:49pm

Tampa--$10,000,000 bonus for every English Premier Soccer League your owner attends.

Carolina--$10,000,000 bonus for every five-interception game your QB throws. Oh, wait, Delhomme's probably gone, never mind.

New Orleans--$1,000,000 for every inspirational pregame story that invokes the name "Katrina" within the next year.

Oakland--$10,000 bonus for every slot higher the team drafts a player than their projected mock draft position.

67
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Chris UK :: Thu, 02/11/2010 - 2:47pm

Malcolm glazer hardly ever (if ever) attends Manchester united games, especially given the fans there are calling for him to sell the club citing financial mis-management and £40m a year interest payments due on the loans taken out to finance the purchase. More likely to work on randy Lerner.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by IlluminatusUIUC (not verified) :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 7:23pm

Brandon Marshall: $25,000 for every pass he catches from anyone other than Jay Cutler. Even if Cutler goes down for a few games in Chicago, they could still stomach the financial hit, but Denver couldn't.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Aerogopher (not verified) :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 9:52pm

Bernard Berrian wasn't obtained with a poison pill. Sorry if that was already picked up on.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by MilkmanDanimal :: Wed, 02/10/2010 - 11:01pm

Yeah, it was Nate Burleson. Minnesota and Seattle effectively traded Steve Hutchinson for Nate Burleson. Um . . . yeah . . .

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by bowman :: Thu, 02/11/2010 - 12:03pm

Employing team must pay an additional amount of salary/bonus to cover the income tax applicable in the state of employment.

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Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by Jeff M. (not verified) :: Thu, 02/11/2010 - 4:51pm

(For Pierre Thomas)

Extra $1M of contract becomes guaranteed for each teammate with a Super Bowl ring.

70
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by IlluminatusUIUC (not verified) :: Fri, 02/12/2010 - 9:30pm

What if your team actually wins the Super Bowl with him on the roster? That's almost as poisonous to your team as the Saints.

71
Re: Invent Your Favorite Poison Pill!
by The Human Spider :: Tue, 02/16/2010 - 12:23pm

LaDanian Tomlinson: $250 thousand guaranteed for each handoff he recieves from quarterbacks NOT coached by Marty Schottenheimer or Norv Turner.

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