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Andrew Brandt Talks about the Business Side of Football

ESPN and Sports Illustrated MMQB contributor Andrew Brandt joined Jeff Thurn on Friday’s edition of Overtime on ESPN 99.1.

Brandt (@adbrant) also served as the Green Bay Packers vice president from 1999 to 2008, and former agent for Matt Hasselbeck, Ricky Williams, and Adam Vinatieri.

Brandt discusses how the Philadelphia Eagles handled the release of DeSean Jackson:

“Well, I’ve been talking about DeSean and Chris Johnson the past couple of weeks, and I really think too much is being made of work ethic, gang ties, selfishness, missed meetings, or interviews. I think so much of this is contract related, and two years ago when Johnson and the Texans did a big deal, when the Eagles and Jackson did a big deal, I don’t think they were different people. You know I don’t think DeSean Jackson was a totally different person than he is now, or Chris Johnson. What happened was leverage on the contract changed where the two guaranteed years have now ended. Now you have a 10 million dollar number for a guy with no guarantee. You could just say goodbye, and the 10 million would blow away in the wind. I think that’s the reason, if Jackson’s 10 million was guaranteed, he’d be an Eagle. I just think when we start thinking about innuendo about these players, you have to look at wow, what’s the motivation for that coming out now? Maybe it comes from the Eagles or teams that didn’t chase DeSean when he was a free agent and trying to make the Redskins look bad doing so. I don’t know, but there’s all sort of jealousness and envy around the league. I don’t how this happened, but I think the point is its all contract based. It’s the business of football, which I talk about.”

Brandt, as a former vice president of the Packers, talks about the business side of football: 

“I think that’s the best question, and the question on every player. There’s a talent/character equation on every player in the league. It’s not a democracy. If you have a lot of talent, you are going to get away with a little less character. If you don’t have a lot talent, you better be high character. It is just kind of a pendulum, and it also depends on where you are at in your contract. Like I said, DeSean’s character has not changed from 2011 when they rewarded him to 2013 when they released him. It is a change in need and a change in the locker room and things around him. Teams will allow for more when the talent base is very high. We know that. I will say this, I am a big believer in character counts, and I’ve learned that in my ten years with the Packers. We would bring in bad character guys, and they would infect if you would the rest of their position group. We would bring in high character guys, and they would infect in a good way the rest of their position group. So, I am a big believer in that and I will tell you this, I factored that into contract negotiations. When I saw a guy that raised the level of work ethic with the people around him, definitely, that would factor in how much we paid him.”

To hear more of Brandt’s interview with Thurn, listen below:

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Catch Thurn weekday’s on ESPN 99.1 in Sioux Falls from 3 to 6 p.m.

**For story ideas, or comments, email Sam at and follow him on Twitter @samtastad.**

(Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

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