Wednesday is the deadline for players who have been given the franchise tag by their respective teams to sign long-term deals. If that does not happen by 4 p.m. ET, players can only sign the franchise tag or negotiate one-year deals with their previous employers. In the case of New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, we know a long-term is absolutely not going to happen.
So, the question is what is going to happen now? Let's see if we can shed some light on the situation as it stands between Pierre-Paul and the Giants.
We also know, or think we know since there is a veritable information blackout when it comes to what is going on between JPP and the Giants, that both sides appear to be at a stalemate over Pierre-Paul's contract.
The Giants, per the reports that have filtered out, seem to have no intention of rescinding the franchise tag. Pierre-Paul would be a free agent if the Giants did rescind the tag. If they don't, that means that if JPP intends to play football in 2015 it will have to with the Giants. The Giants hold that leverage. So, he has to deal with them eventually.
Pierre-Paul's leverage is when, or if, he signs the franchise tag. We have been through this, but let's review.
If Pierre-Paul signs the franchise tag the Giants can place him on the Non-Football Injury list and, conceivably, keep him there without pay for the first six weeks of the season.
If Pierre-Paul chooses not to sign the tag until he believes he can pass an NFL physical, be that before the start of the regular season or after, he would have control. He would still not be paid, but the Giants would not be pre-determining the number of games, and paychecks, Pierre-Paul would miss.
The best thing, of course, is for the two sides to work together to come to some type of incentive-laden one-year deal that protects the Giants if Pierre-Paul isn't able to be the player he was a year ago, and gives JPP the ability to earn a good portion of his money if he is capable of playing at a high level.
That, of course, requires Pierre-Paul to share medical information with the Giants and allow them to examine him to see for themselves what his condition is. Truthfully, Pierre-Paul can't expect the Giants to pay him when they haven't seen him or his medical records.
The passing of the long-term deal deadline today is, in the case of JPP, just a footnote. For the time being, the waiting game is still being played.