Bears linebacker Lance Briggs has no leverage in trade demand and money demands

Lance Briggs

Lance Briggs have formally filed a trade demand with the Chicago Bears, his agent Drew Rosenhaus made the request with contract negotiator Cliff Stein.  The Bears won’t meet Briggs’ demand for a raise in pay so now he wants out of Chicago.

Much like the previous trade demand and contract squabble from three years ago, Briggs is acting like a child.

Beyond all this trade and contract squabble let’s look at Briggs’ value to other teams.

First in 2009 when Brian Urlacher went down with a season ending injury Briggs was asked to move to middle linebacker and be the caller of the defensive plays and signals.  Briggs refused to move.  From there Hunter Hillenmeyer went down with an injury for a period of three games and Briggs was asked again to step up and take on the leadership role on defense, AGAIN Briggs declined.

The responsibility instead fell to third year back up linebacker Nick Roach who promptly screwed up some defensive calls from the middle linebacker spot which cost the Bears a victory over the Falcons.

Briggs was asked to step out of the shadow of Brian Urlacher (which was a part of his original desire to leave Chicago) and flat out declined.  When the Bears needed Briggs to step up and be the leader of the defense, the player with the most knowledge of the defense he declined.

Now less than two years later Briggs is making a a contract raise demand to be paid more.

Pardon me while I laugh in Lance Briggs’ face.  Briggs’ contract demand is so completely off base at this point that it only makes him look stupid and selfish, two characteristics that won’t get him a lot of money elsewhere.

Briggs is a system player, a player that benefits from a system alignment that funnels all of the offensive plays to his position for him to make the play.  Briggs is great at what he does, the best in the NFL by far, as his NFL leading tackles for a loss stat show.

That is value to the Chicago Bears, but Briggs’ opportunity to prove himself at a different position he didn’t live up to the request.

So where is Briggs’ value to other teams?  Well he’s not a 3-4 OLB, nor is he a 3-4 ILB, so that leaves him as a 4-3 OLB.

Briggs tested the open market in free agency in 2008 and there wasn’t a single team that offered more money than the Bears offered.  If there was then he would have taken that money instead of coming back to the Bears.

That was three years ago when Briggs was 27-years-0ld, he’s now 30 and demanding to be paid more money.  What exactly does he think his value for a contract extension is now?

He won’t play another position, he’s three years older and has the reputation of being an unhappy camper.

Why does Briggs now think he’ll get more money from another team?  Another team can trade for him, but that team doesn’t have to extend him.

What indications does Briggs have that make him think he’ll get more money from another team now?

Given that the trade market for Briggs is small it’s only safe to assume that the same market is smaller to pay him more money.  The Bears could in fact seek to trade him to another team that is not willing to extend Briggs and then he is in the same situation now in Chicago with another team not likely to compete for a championship.

The story here is Briggs can be a distraction,  make a trade demand, make a contract extension demand, but he has absolutely no leverage.  The Bears have no reason to trade him, and a relatively small number of teams to negotiate a trade with.