Rams making a final attempt to sign a jilted Atogwe?

The interwebs is a wonderful place, despite the best efforts of companies to make order out of the chaos, the chaos still slips through from time to time...and gives us the occasional sports rumor. Today, comes an "update" of sortsabout St. Louis Rams RFA safety Oshiomogho Atogwe. The info is passed along via one of those broadly labeled "sources" reported in those slums of information and discussion, the Post-Dispatch's online forums. 

Anyway, the poster details, or claims to, the Rams contract talks with Atogwe. 

The actual post is below, but let me sum it up for you:

 

  1. The Rams made Atogwe a contract offer prior to free agency that would have paid him less than SS James Butler. The former Giants S imported as a free agent last year had a 4 year, $14 million deal that paid him $1.95 million last year, $2.5 million this year and $3 and $3.5 million in the last two years, with another $3 million possible through incentives. 
  2. Said contract offer infuriated Atogwe, sending him to CA and shutting down talks with the Rams. 
  3. Atogwe's injured shoulder is fine, according to the post, having been worked on by unofficial team doctor James Andrews, and Togs would pass any physical. 
  4. The Rams have told Atogwe that they will not sign him to the one-year, $6.9 million offer he's entitled to as a RFA, but they would like the chance to match any offer he receives as a free agent.
Believe or not? I don't know what to think. Nothing in that report stands out as ridiculous. It's not a leap to think the Rams don't want to pay Atogwe $7 million...and not many other teams do either given the lack of offers he's had. 

Incentives have been a feature of several contracts given out by the Rams this offseason, e.g. Daniel Fells. So you wonder if that wasn't a feature of anything the Rams offered him. 

If Atogwe is pissed off at the Rams, would he even bother listening to a matching offer? That seems unlikely, especially since a contending team could be the one making the first offer. 

And about Atogwe being pissed off...in way, he has a right to be. The Rams thought enough of him to use the franchise tag to keep him for 2009, which made him one of the five highest paid players at his position. But that also fueled unrealistic expectations as Atogwe is a playmaker but is he really one of the five best safeties in the NFL?

The worst part about this is that the Rams secondary could be much improved this year, which would allow Atogwe to utilize his ball-hawking skills a little more.

True or false, we'll see soon enough. June 1 is a about a week and a half away.

The original post is copied in full below.

From ontarioramfan: 

 

So my sources ( no I cant say who)have told me that last week Kevin Demoff flew out to Cali to meet with Atogwe face to face to make one last ditch effort to sign him...my sources also said that the Rams only made one contract offer to atogwe right before FA began the offer would have made atogwe the second highest paid safety on the Rams behind Butler...Atogwe was so insulted by the offer he cut off all talks with the Rams...about his injuried shoulder he had a slight tear in his labrum which Dr. James Andrews successfully repaired there was no reconstructive surgery to his shoulder it was scoped and at the time of the face to face with Demoff Atogwe was very close to 100% and would be able to pass any physical...I asked my source about the apparrent sports hernia surgery Atogwe had and he confirmed that Atogwe had this done back in Dec and is full recovered. Lastly my source said that Demoff has told Atogwe that the Rams will not sign him to the 1 year 6.9 million contract but would like the opportunity to match any offer Atogwe might get June 1....Thats all for now

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