Salk Out. Revis In.

Quite the turnaround, eh?

We’ll get to Revis in a sec, but yesterday afternoon, Mike Salk announced what many had believed for some time was a fait accompli – he was leaving WEEI.

Thus ended a year at the station, where he had replaced legendary afternoon host Glenn Ordway (who begins his new radio/internet venture Big Show Unfiltered next week) and never quite fit in or got a hold of his role with the station.

Salk had been hired by the wildly unpopular (internally) Jeff Brown, and given free reign on the show. Brown however, left in September and Salk  likely saw the writing on the wall.

Chad Finn says it seems likely Salk returns to Seattle. I’ve also heard Charlotte as a possibility. Salk says he’ll announce today where he is going.

Update:

It will be interesting to see where WEEI goes from here. They’ve got a long way to go to challenge Felger and Massarotti, and although Ordway’s new show likely isn’t going to take large numbers, it’s going to take some.

********

I’m not sure we’ve seen a bigger turnaround in tone on sports radio than what we’ve seen this week. Yesterday, the Patriots were dead and buried, Belichick was a washed-up clown who should have the GM responsibilities taken from him, and today, after reaching a deal with Darrelle Revis it’s back to “in Bill we Trust.”

Speaking of that. Shaughnessy has his Latin mixed up, apparently. In his dreadful column today (oxymoron, I know.) he inserts E Pluribus Bill.

He apparently thinks E pluribus unum means “In God We Trust.”

No so. It actually means “Out of many, one.” So he’s saying Out of many, Bill?”

Way to go, Shaughnessy.

Reaction has been overwhelmingly positive, though some like Lou Merloni wondered why it was only a damn one-year deal – though it has since been reported that the team holds a $20 million option for 2015 it is a two-year deal.  A few callers wonder if the team has blown all its cap space and now will not be able to fill the other glaring holes on the roster.

One thing at a time, people.

  • Chris Boudreau

    WEEI needs a big move, but the options seem quite limited. They want to bring in someone that can entertainingly lead a program, but co-headline with Holley. One name that comes to my mind is Damon Amendolara. Not sure he would return locally, but with a little money, you can sway peoples minds.

  • OpinionNotFact

    I’m not sure there’s anyone either station could get that would make me tune into their afternoon shows anymore.

  • Leo

    Are you Fred Perillo?

  • APNDaveR

    A correction: it’s not a team option; it’s a second year. That lets them pro-rate the guaranteed money for salary cap purposes. As the linked article notes, it gives the Pats about $5m more cap room this year. Also, there’s no way that second year is going to be picked up as is. If, as is suspected, the Pats want to sign Revis to a longer term contract after next season, they’d likely guarantee most of that money in exchange for less guaranteed money in the future seasons, and spread that cap hit out over the term. Alternately, they’ll release him after this season and attempt to resign him or move on, with the only cost being a $5m cap hit in 2015.

    What it definitely means, though, is that the Patriots won’t have the ability to franchise tag him in 2015, which is an important wrinkle.

  • APNDaveR

    Ian Rap saying Wilfork has asked to be released…

    https://twitter.com/RapSheet/status/444176971191169024

    • latetodinner

      Interesting…he would rather be released than restructure. Seems to me if Kelly is healthy, they have Jones and Vellano and they could spend some draft capital on the spot…they are better off with the $11 mill than a malcontent Vince/Bianca. I am surprised they could not work out an extension that brought Vince some extra dollars this year, extended him 2 more years and brought his cap number down to a manageable $5 mill or so.

      • APNDaveR

        Maybe he was a bigger Mike Salk fan than we suspected…

  • Andy Dursin

    I don’t have much sympathy for Wilfork. He’s already been the highest paid nose tackle in NFL history. He’s coming off an injury and seemed like he lost a step before he was hurt. He’s already been paid $32 million I believe…and yet the team made the AFC title game without him. He’s not Revis, he doesn’t hold the same value to the team…the emotional element is the only thing that will irk some fans.

    • bsmfan

      I think most fans understand it with Wilfork, but many get the business end of the NFL. He’s not the first, nor will be the last. But, it begins:

      @RonBorges So Pats under pay Wilfork for 6
      yrs. then want him take a cut now. Give me a break..And he owes Pats “loyalty” discount? Spare me

      Best response:

      @NEPD_Loyko LOL at people (Borges) taking shots at the Patriots for asking Wilfork to take a pay cut like they are the only team that would have done it

      @NEPD_Loyko Put Wilfork on any 32 teams under the same circumstances and 95% of them ask him to restructure.. but BB is cutthroat because he did it.

      • Homer Greenz

        Borges from Fall River is the King Troll in this town.

    • latetodinner

      I have been thinking about the Wilfork thing all day. I think he is making a huge mistake out of emotion short term that will effect him long term. Vince has a cool gig/rep with NE. He is beloved and almost deified here. He was asked to restructure to give the team cap space. He got upset because I am sure the team asked him to take a pay cut and he saw them give Revis $12 mill and he had to hold out to get his…blah blah blah. What Wilfork is missing is that he could have stayed in Boston and made millions endorsing things after his playing days were over. He could have had a cushy media job here. A chain of restaurants. Whatever he wanted. Instead he throws all that good will away over a few million dollars. I think he succumbed to the same thing that idiocy that gets a lot of professional players…they measure respect by the pay check the team gives them and they do not look at the big picture.

      I wish Vince well. I enjoyed his time here in NE. Unfortunately for Vince…next year if he is gone someone else will line up on the nose and NE will try and win football games. Its about the laundry not the player. I hope he is happy in Cleveland or Jacksonville or with the Jets or with whoever else pays him, irrespective of fit, scheme or chance to win. He needs to rush out and grab all he can now because once he retires he has no chance to make any more money…unless he is beloved, has a strong brand and some smart people working with him…then the sky is the limit. Too bad Vince and his advisers did not think this through.

      • Brian Shea

        Does him playing his last year or two somewhere else ruin his legacy concerning such things though? I would hope not. Vince had a terrific career here. Even if he leaves and plays somewhere else, I don’t think that should spoil his post playing career if he wanted to do something around here. I think the fandom would be treating him too harshly if he was refused any welcome back.

        I think he is making a mistake too, but I think its because he’s completely overestimating his value. He’s coming off a major injury to a part of the body that is a big blow for a player of his position. He plays a position, that while he is extremely good at, is a position that simply is not as important these days with the passing game being such a big part of the game. And he’s a 30+ year old player who is at least 350 pounds, but could be 400+ easy if he hasn’t been taking care of himself since the injury. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit if all he can get out there is 1 or 2 million dollars. So he might find himself out there making potentially even less than he would have had if he stayed here and restructured (because if he does restructure he might get an extension with some guaranteed money, even if its only a few million), and probably for a team with a lower chance to win.

        • latetodinner

          I think it does. Depending on where he ends up, how acrimonious things get, and how much longer he plays in the league his value in the NE endorsement market goes away. Look at Richard Seymour and Ty Law. They both had it made here. Now Law, even with his rebirth on local TV is still considered a mercenary rather than a Patriot. Compare that to Troy Brown who still gets endorsement work in town and is beloved. Vince would have eclipsed Brown. Now he will be picked apart, warts exposed and become another mercenary…all because he and his people do not understand the economics of the modern NFL.

          I like Vince. My youngest daughter proudly wears his Jersey every Sunday (in and out of season if we let her). Still I think this is a poor negotiation tactic on his part. he is allowing his ego and emotions to interfere with doing the right thing for him and his family. If you notice I did not say for the team. Staying and renegotiating happens to be the right thing. He can take a pay cut and have the money earn able by bonus. He can extend, get his $7 mill in a signing bonus, reduce his cap hit and take $3 mill over the next 3 years as is befitting a 32 year old Nose tackle coming off a major injury.

          At times like these I am reminded of marginal players who play the game for 15 years at or just above league minimum…happy to make $500,000 a year because they know it is far more than they would ever make in a regular job. I think Vince could have set up a little mini empire here in NE and now he will be the next Richard Seymour.

  • Cory M

    Wiggins is dreadful. That would be the quickest path to putting the final nails in EEI’s coffin

  • bsmfan

    Next up, Tommy Kelly:

    Patriots DT Tommy Kelly restructures his contract, creates about $800k in cap space for Patriots. http://es.pn/1knyd69 (by @FieldYates).

  • Homer Greenz

    I assume “Answer the Question” was Salk’s idea. And this is the guy you want programming your station?

    • JonB

      Now that Salk is gone, I hope WEEI cuts back on the number of stale ESPN personalities they seem to have as guests every day (i.e. Mark Schlereth, Ron Jaworski, Mike Ditka, Mike Tirico, et al.). Do nothing but regurgitate takes from that morning’s Sportscenter and offer nothing of value to the local Boston audience.

      By the way, anybody notice that WEEI is now carrying NBC Sports radio on overnights? What’s the deal with that? Thought they were still semi-affiliated with ESPN via 850 AM.

      • bsmfan

        Wondered the same exact thing. If you’re an affil, why pay for NBCSports overnight (didn’t even know they did an overnight)?

        • JonB

          They had JT the Brick/Fox Sports in that slot previously. JT had what I guess you could call a bit of a following around here when WEEI was still a Fox affiliate 4 or 5 years ago. WEEI put his simulcast on in place of the Sportscenter overnights a year or so ago when they were in the depths of their ratings slump.

          Think JT switched time slots a few months back, so guess now they’re carrying the NBC Sports feed instead. Don’t really understand it (the NBC overnight guy is awful), thought they would have just put the ESPN overnight feed back on the air. Maybe they gotta pay extra to put the simulcast on FM and NBC is that much cheaper? Maybe a change in affiliation from ESPN to NBC is in the works?

        • bsmfan

          I’m not a JT fan but when I was up then, he was the only viable radio on. ESPN was your typical ESPN show, just without personality, and would do nothing but play ESPN.com clips and the segments from sportscenter, so I can see how they lost with many here. JT, to me, is similar to Jim Rome, where you either love him or hate his style.

          Any idea how he’s done since moving to the 6-10 or wherever FSR put him on? I remember the news about the switch and the presser made it sound like JT told them that he was going to leave if he was not able to switch.

          NBCSR overnight: I tuned in once when I was going skiing and in the car by 4am. Same thoughts. I can’t imagine they care that much because of the slot. But, I think you’re right if they were to syndicate on FM vs AM in terms of cost.

          Boy, what a downgrade that is. WEEI has to know that trying to be an “ESPNBoston” has failure written all over it but you have to think that the price is much less. Has anyone ever tried a local overnight here? WFAN (CBS/NY) and their 680SCORE (CBS/Chicago) have local overnight guys. Has to be quite low paying but you at least keep people on at that hour.

      • tiki

        I think that most people are not as avid a consumer and the ESPN hits on EEI are not re-runs the way they are for Type As that gather here. To the masses – hearing Jaws on their hometown channel is a bigger deal than 4 us who heard him give she same take to M/M 6 hours earlier.

  • JonB

    Out of those suggestions, think Picard and Bertrand are only realistic options that might work.

    They’d love to have Michael Smith but no way Entercom has the money to pay his asking price and why would he want to go slumming at WEEI when he has a high profile gig at the world leader where they provide him with a national platform in terms of his own show and podcast?
    Jen Royle has burned just about every other bridge she’s crossed in the media business, so hard to fathom she’s on the wish list. I find her takes to be vapid and annoying – tries way too hard to act like some “tough sports broad”. No way she could handle the daily badgering and criticism that would come with being a female sports talk host in Boston.

    Wiggins can be entertaining in small doses, but his act gets real old real fast. Brings nothing of substance to the table besides being an ex-Pats player.

  • smack_libs_around

    I think the WEEI ‘brand’ and ‘nameplate’ have been destroyed, no matter the people behind the microphone. There apparently is no way to right a ship once it has listed too far to starboard.

    • HighWireNickEsasky

      “There apparently is no way to right a ship once it has listed too far to starboard.”
      Kinda like the modern Republican party? (sorry for violating the no politics rule but that was a softball).

  • bsmfan

    Amazing how NFLFA can take over any town, really the country. I barely heard any talk about the B’s dominating performance north of the border. It was all Revis->Wilfork. Yesterday, Holley had Curran+Andy Hart+Field Yates, and it was great to listen to some serious talk. They had enough chatter as to where calls were minimal (good).

  • bsmfan

    Want some laughs? Jay Mariotti defends Rick Reilly:

    http://www.sportstalkflorida.com/rick-reilly-way-too-good-for-a-bad-business/

    Finn’s column today also touches on the 2-6 opening:

    http://b.globe.com/1fw8288

    • GStill45

      I think Thornton is going to find a radio job sooner rather than later. He’s getting a little old and dated for the Barstool scene. His columns are really long, on a 4 hour show you can get away with that. He’s also a special kind of Patriots honk that you don’t get a lot of these days. He makes Bruce Allen sound like the illegitimate son of Borges and Shaughnessy.

    • jwol16

      Thorton was on D+C this morning? Wonder if he’ll still do his regular F+M spot this afternoon.

      • bsmfan

        They were apparently not too pleased? I read that somewhere.

        • jwol16

          Based on his tweets, it seems that Jerry got the message that he can’t have it both ways. Also interesting from F+M on Friday was Gasper saying he was available for the Saturday morning Bertrand + Gasper show but was not asked to join Bertrand this week.

  • Homer Greenz

    Borges’ from Fall River column today is simply priceless. He rips the desperate Pats for destroying the franchise in order to sign Revis.

    • bsmfan

      but I thought it was Borges from Quincy?

      Or is that spot taken by someone else?

  • the_other_side

    Heard D&C basically say the same thing as Karen G on Thursday morning. I almost spit out my drink.