NFC West: tampering
Kansas City Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel caught my attention at the NFL scouting combine Saturday when he expressed interest in Manning despite alluding to the tampering policy's prohibition of such comments.
"I’m not supposed to talk about anybody else’s players, and he’s still a player with Indianapolis," Crennel said, "but with a talent like that, I would be crazy not to consider it, if he were available. So I'll leave it at that."
Was that tampering? Read this passage from the NFL anti-tampering policy and decide for yourself:
Any public or private statement of interest, qualified or unqualified, in another club’s player to that player’s agent or representative, or to a member of the news media, is a violation of this Anti-Tampering Policy. (Example of a prohibited comment: "He’s an excellent player, and we’d very much like to have him if he were available, but another club holds his rights.")
The Chiefs accused the Detroit Lions of tampering. Tis best for teams to err on the side of safety.
"We really can't talk about it," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Friday when asked about Manning. "He's on somebody else's team. So we're not part of that discussion right now."
Those have been dropped.
Why? The charges served their purpose, which was to remove the Jets as a possible destination for Crabtree back when the 49ers and Crabtree's agent could not agree on a deal.
Crabtree signed with the 49ers after the tampering charges made it clear San Francisco wasn't interested in eventually trading him or relinquishing rights to him.
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
The 49ers have not said much regarding the tampering charges they filed against the Jets regarding first-round draft choice Michael Crabtree. They've generally fallen back on the familiar "it's a league matter" line.
Team president Jed York would not go into details during his recent interview with KNBR radio in San Francisco, but he did say more than I had heard the 49ers say previously:
I think it was clear there was some evidence that the Jets talked to him and as a group we decided this is something that is very serious and we wanted to make sure it was brought to the league's attention. Scot, Paraag and I discussed it and we moved forward from there.
'Scot' is general manager Scot McCloughan. 'Paraag' is salary vice president of football operations Paraag Marathe.
This is the strongest and most specific statement I have seen from the 49ers regarding this ongoing case. York did not mention anything about Deion Sanders' potential role, which could also be of interest.
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
Mike Moses asks via Facebook whether the Jets' acquisition of receiver Braylon Edwards might be linked from a timing standpoint to Michael Crabtree's new deal with the 49ers.
Mike Sando: The 49ers did accuse the Jets of tampering with Crabtree during the negotiations, but the timing of these transactions is probably a coincidence. NFL rules would prohibit the 49ers from trading Crabtree's rights before March. The Jets acquired Edwards with the 2009 season in mind.
Also, it's pretty clear those tampering charges would have made it impossible for the Jets to show any sort of interest in Crabtree now or in the future. For that reason, the Jets would not have been waiting to see what happened with Crabtree before deciding to pursue a deal with Edwards.