The NBA knows this all too well. Superstar players’ future homes are discussed two years before free agency. Nobody in the NBA is ever happy as they further look to maximize their brand, location, marketplace, earnings, and ability to win. There’s free agency, and preagency, when they start looking for future teammates and configurations while employed by their current teams. This leads to eyeball emojis, social media sleuthing, and teams sneaking around to create cap space for X amount of max contracts. The game itself takes the backseat to the player movement snow globe and videogame trades.
Football doesn’t deal with these problems. Players have short careers. Teams control player movement by extending them early on into their rookie contracts, and the franchise tag, which should be abolished, limits player movement. Preagency isn’t a thing because free agency barely is.
After NFL players watching how the NBA does things that could change. During the next CBA negotiations the players will try and increase the salary cap, and increase the guaranteed value of their contracts. And now, they may even be looking to future places to play while they are at their current teams.
Jalen Ramsey is in the fourth year of his rookie contract, and will absolutely have his fifth year option picked up. He’s stated before he only wants to play in Jacksonville, but at other times he’s stated dissatisfaction with the team, and wanted a contract extension already this summer, and will probably sour on playing under the fifth year instead of getting his big deal a year early. He’s also made it known how much he respects DeAndre Hopkins and loves his game.
After Russell Westbrook was traded to the Houston Rockets he made the following post on Instagram.
This is all a fun and cute thing. A way to have fun online. Could the Texans, full of cap space without a top cornerback make a run at Ramsey if he requests a trade, and would Ramsey want to come to Houston to escape having to cover Hopkins twice a year? But could there be something actual to this? Could this be the start of the NFL pre-agency. Stay tuned over the next two years to find out.