Analysis of Chris Baker contract mess

Jets coach Eric Mangini intends on giving dismayed tight end Chris Baker a call very soon.

But not to offer Baker the raise he is looking for, but more playbook information.

"I will give him a call here shortly and see where he is with the information and see what he needs and try to catch-up," said Mangini.

You have to wonder how receptive Baker is going to be to this phone call. While he is a diligent player, he's also a player who is disgusted with his current contract. Does Mangini really think that Chris wants to go over the playbook with him during a nasty contract dispute?

"Chris is a part of this team and Chris is a conscientious guy, he wants to know what's going on and what we are doing," said Mangini.

Mangini is correct. Baker is conscientious. But he wants to be traded. He told Sirius Radio that if the Jets don't re-work his contract, he wants to play somewhere else next year.

And right now it doesn't look like the Jets are willing to give him any new money. But Mangini is under the impression Baker will be with the team this year. So he will continue to send him play sheets. Why?

"So when he does come back in he has the best chance to be successful, not just personally, but we will have the best chance to be successful as a team," said Mangini.

But Eric, Chris doesn't want playsheets, he wants a raise.

"Right now, it is books and playsheets and that's something that both he and I can work on together," said Mangini.

Wow Mangini is insistent about sending Baker the plays. You have to wonder if Chris will stamp the packages - "Return to Sender."

Mangini has no intention of stopping.

"That's what we are going to keep doing," said Mangini.

You have to give Mangini credit for his focus. When asked if he is concerned about the Baker situation turning into another Pete Kendall mess, guess what he said?

"The important thing for me is to keep Chris up-to-date with what is going on and I know that is important to him as well and that's what I'll keep doing," said Mangini.

Okay, we get the point.

So where do things stand with the Baker contract dispute?

There is nothing new, according an NFL source close to the situation.

Baker isn't participating in the team's off-season workout program, but is expected at the team's veteran mini-camp which will be June 5-7. The only reason he will be there is so he doesn't get fined. He can't be fined for missing voluntary workouts or OTA's, but can be docked pay for missing the mandatory mini-camp.

Baker can also be fined for holding out of training camp. It will be interesting to see what approach the Baker Camp will take at training camp.

Will he report and attempt to shoot his way off team like Kendall did successfully last summer, by blasting the team in the media and suffering mysterious injuries?

It would hard to see the good-natured Baker doing this, but he might have no choice if he wants a trade. The formula worked for Kendall, and Baker now is represented by Kendall's agency.

Or will he boycott a practice like guard Brandon Moore did last summer. Moore ended up getting a new deal after this brief holdout.

Stay tuned.

Baker claims that the Jets said they would give him a new deal if he played well last year, which he did. The Jets claim no such promise was made. Mangini respects Baker's claim.

"Everyone has a difference of opinions and I respect the difference of opinions," said Mangini. That is a very spiritual approach - was that Mangini or the Dalai Lama?

The Dalai Lama is all about teaching people how to be happy.

And right now Baker could use his help.

He is livid at the Jets.

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