Cornerback Eric Wright is going to be released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before any kind of offseason workouts begin. That’s what we’ve reported previously, and that’s what makes the most sense. Wright was a severe disappointment, and was proof that money does not solve every problem in the NFL. The loophole by which the Buccaneers are able to release Wright without penalty was language in his contract that stipulated that guaranteed monies would not be paid under certain situations, including suspensions and arrests. Everyone in the Buccaneers’ fanbase, and everyone in the media, considers this to be true.
Eric Wright isn’t convinced that’s all true. And he’s going to do something about it.
It was reported today that the Buccaneers’ corner is fighting voiding of his guaranteed money, and will seek to have his guarantee secure for 2013, making it absolutely foolish for the Buccaneers to release him. The nearly 8 million dollars Wright is due in 2013 would be completely guaranteed if he is able to win his case against the Buccaneers, and would leave him in limbo as a player on a team that doesn’t want him.
Wright has filed a grievance that will be heard by a neutral party, and 620 WDAE reported that the case would be decided upon tomorrow. The Buccaneers are very confident, as they believe the contract is very well written and supports their act of voiding the guaranteed money. As Stephen Holder of the Tampa Bay Times wrote in his article about the situation, Wright would be unwise to not try and recoup some or all of this money, because if he’s released, he doesn’t see a dime of his big money deal with the Buccaneers.
We will keep you updated as more information is available about this situation. If Wright were to win this case, it would really put a wrench in the offseason plan for Mark Dominik and his team. The money due to Wright would be better spent on continuing to rebuild the defense, and having a disgruntled Eric Wright in 2013 would be a lose-lose situation. Hopefully the Buccaneers confidence in the legal jargon in the contract is justified, otherwise this could turn out to be a catastrophic mistake from the Bucs’ front office.