Lost in all of the hubbub regarding Josh Cribbs and a handful of rookies that were forced to endure a 10-hour bus trip is the fact that team captain and effectively clutch kicker Phil Dawson has yet to report to voluntary workouts.
Dawson is in the middle of a five-year, $7 million deal that he signed in 2005. Being fairly front-loaded, he has roughly $1 million left for this year and next. And given the team’s inability to put the ball in the end zone, frequently resulting in a field goal opportunity, Dawson apparently feels that he should receive a bit of a bump in pay.
Terry Pluto recently called Dawson a guy who is only truly appreciated once he is gone. Meanwhile, coach Eric Mangini has wasted no time in discussing the successes of the recently-added place kicker Parker Douglass. In one of last week’s press conferences, Mangini had the following to say:
“I think that Parker Douglass did a nice job taking advantage of the opportunities; he hit a 52-yarder the other day. He hit the game-winner in the two minute drill yesterday. It’s a nice chance for him to show the ability tha t he has. He has done well with the chances that he has been given.”
Sure, but can he hit the stanchion?
Judging by the lack of response to Dawson being MIA, I assume that fans feel that Josh Cribbs means a lot more to this team. But does he? Dawson converted 30 of his 36 attempts last season; he was 5-for-6 between the 40-49-yard range.
But is his stance on his contract one that will play into training camp? This remains to be seen. But I do find it coincidental that many of the fan favorites (Winslow, Cribbs and now Dawson) are the ones that had (or are currently having) disputes regarding their compensation. As of now, the only one that received an increase did so with another team.