|Taylor-made for Patriots?||03.05.09 at 12:04 pm ET|
Would Jason Taylor be a good fit in Foxborough?
The question has been asked several times since Taylor was cut loose by Washington on Monday after the two sides failed to reach an agreement over his involvement in the Redskins offseason program. (In addition to an $8 million salary, he was due a $500,000 workout bonus. Taylor wanted to spend more time with his family in South Florida, while Washington wanted him to be working out at its facility. So the two sides bid farewell to each other.)
Taylor certainly has a good rep with the Patriots. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick have fairly gushed over the years about Taylor and the brand of havoc he can bring to a football field. With the trade of Mike Vrabel to Kansas City, New England has a need on the outside. And after dealing Vrabel and Matt Cassel away, the Patriots have the cash necessary to make a move.
But critics have plenty of ammo: Taylor will be 35 at the start of the 2009 season, and for a defense looking to get younger, he wouldn’t be a good fit. He wants a sizable chunk of dough. And then there’s the idea that Taylor left the Redskins on bad terms — he was certainly a poor teammate with Washington, going so far as to draw the ire of the coaching staff after not following the game plan.
And finally, there’s the question about his decision to spend more time with his family in South Florida than at the Redskins training facility. The latter drew the attention of Redskins tight end — and part-time blogger Chris Cooley — this week, who said the following on his blog:
“You would really have to hate to be somewhere to turn down ten million dollars for the next ten months of work. I mean, I know Miami is pretty nice, but just go ahead and make that much money while you still can and then retire anywhere you want. Hell, I would go play in Russia for 10,000,000. I would pack my bags and fly out tomorrow, ‘I’ll see ya in February.’
“Had he arrived and worked for the 39 days he would have been compensated $12,820 per day. That is unreal to me! Most people pay their own money to go to the gym, but almost 13 thousand dollars a day is a pretty good membership in the other direction. … I will be required to make 42 days to reach my bonus. I again would receive a check grossing $100,000. This would pay me $2,300 per workout. Still pretty awesome and enough to get me into the gym.”
One thing it’s important to remember is that Taylor has always expressed a healthy amount of respect for the Patriots’ coaching staff and Belichick in particular, so you figure listening to the coaching staff and sticking with the game plan wouldn’t be a problem if he signed with New England. Second, Belichick has made exceptions in the past for veteran players who have family members in other areas of the country — when he was with the Patriots, linebacker Roman Phifer had a deal in place where he was granted permission to fly back to Southern California on Sunday’s after a game to see his family, and was allowed to return on Wednesday for meetings. And Taylor certainly sounds like a guy making a PR press to join the Patriots.
What do you think New England should do?
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