I've seen a lot of reports on the Suh contract and all of them have been refuted. I've seen or heard about some pretty nasty displays of anger as well. I've even seen some funny new nicknames (NdramaKong Suh being my favorite). What I don't know if I've seen is any truth... so let's try deduction.
The max contract is limited by the rookie pool and the 30% rule. Can't exceed those hard numbers.
The guaranteed money while important, isn't important if you think the player will hit all his incentives anyway... I think the Lions and Suh know he will make more then the guaranteed (barring permanent injury) so it doesn't matter what the guaranteed is, not really.
The Lions have great experience at top contracts... they aren't stingy and they aren't apt to pull stuff.
Suh's agents are the opposite but even that doesn't account for the delay in getting a deal done exactly (see above).
So what's different this year? The potential for a lockout next year. That's what's different. The majority of the top picks get their guaranteed money in the 2nd year (with some in year 1 and most of the rest in year 3). A lockout year in the 2nd year of the contract needs to be thoroughly covered in the contract.
I could easily be wrong here... but it seems to me if all other things are known, and no side is being utterly unrealistic about the numbers... then the new wrinkle might just be the culprit.
That said, there is still some things that just don't add up. One being that ALL the other already signed draft picks have the same new wrinkle to deal with. Two being that the 3 remaining first round picks consist of two players who think they were the best Tackle or the best Running Back in the draft and just because they didn't get picked higher then someone else they should be paid like they were (ala Crabtree last year). Three being that Crabtree's agent is Suh's agent. Four being that Suh has said that he believes HE is the best player in the draft (period) and that makes me think his agent is trying for more then Bradford despite the fact he refuted that claim. So, do I believe the agent here when he refutes the claim or was the question not phrased correctly and a lawyer responded?
Nah... I shall remain gullible and believe it's merely the small stuff that has the talks stalled, since demands of being paid more then your slotted draft spot is always going to drag out negotiations for a very long long long time.
NdramaKong Suh... lol, still funny! (Thank you darkosstache of Mlive Lions Forum for the laugh).