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David Patten a Saint

Due to a slow news cycle I'm forced to write on ex-Redskins. With that in mind Hogs Haven wishes David Patten all the best with his new team:

The New Orleans Saints signed wide receiver David Patten to a one-year contract yesterday, hoping the 10-year veteran can rebound from two disappointing seasons with the Washington Redskins...

Patten was cut last month, two seasons into a five-year, $13 million free agent deal he signed with the Redskins after helping the New England Patriots win three Super Bowls earlier in the decade. . . .

Let's quantify "disappointing seasons". In 2005 and 2006 Patten managed to get on the field 14  times with just 7 starts. 2005 was the best of two horrid years, where he racked up a totally forgettable 22 receptions and 217 yards. 9.9 yards per catch just won't do the trick. But at least he was on the field; in 2006 he started in zero games, played in five and caught just one pass.

With a 3.5M signing bonus already paid out (although the dead cap hit will come back to haunt us, more on that in a moment), without factoring in base salary David Patten made, at a an absolute minimum, over 150 thousand dollars per catch. And these weren't particularly outstanding catches, either, as none resulted in touchdowns and less than half led to first downs.

One interesting and in my opinion underreported fact I just caught thanks to PC, was that the Redskins burned one of two Early-Cut exemptions. Meaning David Patten, though released at the end of March, will count as a June 2nd cut. PC lists the 2007 dead cap hit at 0.0 dollars, though we'll be dishing out 1.5M in 2008 for his (non) services.

I'm viciously against Dead Cap hits as they serve no on-field purpose and are really little more than necessary contractual evils. In this case there isn't any question that David Patten played well below his contract and was a disappointing signing. And now the absolute soonest that we're cap free of David Patten is 2009 (huzzah!). The good news is, all things equal, if you're going to pay 1.5M in dead cap space, 'tis better to pay it later than sooner. As the Salary Cap will almost certainly be higher in 2008 than it is this year (it cannot, by rule, be lower), the 1.5M will be worth less relative to the total cap.

So we've got that going for us, I guess. Hard to remain positive about what unquestionably turned out to be a mistake, through and through. We move on and best wishes to David Patten in New Orleans (who probably signed him for close to vet minimum).