Cowboys’ Micah Parsons Sounds off on Coach Contract ‘Scam’

It happens quite a bit in the NFL. A player signs what is reported as a large long-term deal and, a year or later, he is waived and much of that reported money never gets paid. There’s some logic in that—big money in the NFL needs to be earned. Unless you’re an NFL coach, and for Cowboys star Micah Parsons, that’s not entirely fair.

Making note on Twitter (X) about the firing of coach Josh McDaniels in Las Vegas, Parsons labeled coaching contracts a, “scam.”

The original tweet came from sports and business podcaster Joe Pompliano, who noted that the Raiders are not only paying McDaniels but also paying former coach Jon Gruden, who parted ways with the team two years ago after an email scandal in which he was found to have used offensive and insensitive language.

Gruden received an undisclosed settlement to part with Las Vegas.

“NFL coaching contracts are fully guaranteed,” Pompliano wrote. “So with the Raiders firing Josh McDaniels last night (and Jon Gruden resigning in ’21), they are now paying somewhere between $40M & $80M for them not to coach the team, depending on Gruden’s settlement. That’s poor money management.”

And Parsons responded: “But players can’t get fully guaranteed money lol !! Sh** a scam!”

But players can’t get fully guaranteed money lol !! Shit a scam !

— Micah Parsons (@MicahhParsons11) November 1, 2023

Cowboys’ Micah Parsons Contract a Bit of a Scam

There are guaranteed contracts in other sports—most notably the NBA—but not in the NFL, where player injuries and roster churn is a lot more common. Players have made progress in how deals can be structured, though, including more guaranteed money and signing bonuses. But for young players, the current iteration of NFL pay structure can be costly, as Micah Parsons well knows because of his current Cowboys contract.

Because NFL players are subject to draft scale salaries, Parsons is one of the best-value players in the league, making a base salary of just $2.2 million this season. On the free-agent market, Parsons would certainly be made one of the top-paid edge rushers in the NFL, except that the collective-bargaining agreement won’t allow him to do so until after four years.

In fact, Bleacher Report noted in September that Parsons could warrant a contract that tops the one signed by the 49ers’ Nick Bosa.

“Dallas Cowboys star edge-rusher Micah Parsons will become eligible for a (contract) extension after the 2023 season. If he continues to produce the way he did in his first two years in the league, he could set a new mark for the highest-paid defensive player with his new,” contract, writer Doric Sam noted.

Josh McDaniels Will Get Paid not to Coach

As for Josh McDaniels, as Micah Parsons wrote, he is getting away with a bit of a scam in Las Vegas. But, fact is, the Raiders and owner Mark Davis agreed to give him an outlandish, six-year, $60 million contract after the 2021 season, despite the fact that McDaniels had no success as a head coach during his first run with Denver when he went 11-17. In his year-and-a-half with the Raiders, McDaniels went 9-16.

That’s a 20-33 career record, and it’s important to remember that the Broncos were 6-0 in McDaniels’ first six games. So, in his last 47 games, McDaniels has gone 14-33.

He did set an interesting record this week, though, as he became the only coach in NFL history to be fired by two different franchises before finishing his second season.

For that, he’ll get $10 million per year through 2027. Micah Parsons is right: Nice scam if you can get it.

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