As the World of Sidney Rice Turns... Now he wants to test Free Agency

Remember when Sidney Rice was hurt last November and refused to speak with local media on if his hip would allow him to play versus the Green Bay Packers… And then within the same hour he told ESPN’s Ed Werder that he would indeed suit up? It was diva-esque and left us confused. And what’s ironic is the first three years of having Sidney in purple he wasn’t seen as a “me first” type of wide receiver that the position so tends to be associated with.

Well here we are all over again. The world of Sidney Rice has been a global drama and I don’t just say that because he recently visited China.

First we speculated that Sidney would be retained with the franchise tag. Then that tag understandably went to Chad Greenway instead. Then VP of Player Personnel Rick Spielman publicly says that Sidney was a player that we wanted on our roster for 2011 and Head Coach Leslie Frazier said Sidney wants to be a Viking. Then Sidney gets offered a long term contact offer from the Vikings. And now comes a tweet from ESPN’s Adam Schefter that per Sidney’s agent Drew Rosenhaus that his client will not re-sign with the Vikings without testing free agency first.

Sidney, what is going on? You wrote on your blog only 11 days ago “I have no contract right now but I’m still a Viking. I hope to remain a Viking.” What exactly changed in those 11 days? Are you aware Sidney that next to no players are even being offered a long-term contract with all of the uncertainty surrounding the CBA? In fact, only 12 teams even used the franchise tag and we’re one of them. Also do you know that the Vikings may have your rights for this offseason if you come back a “restricted” free agent having only 4 years of NFL service? Or is this simply a one night scare tactic that your agent is pulling to get us to up the ante of guaranteed money before the NFL officially locks out? Now we obviously haven’t found a QB yet, but that remains a top priority for the offseason. And you know what would make it easier on whoever the next QB is? Staying on the same team as your best friends Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin and Visanthe Shiancoe. How many QBs changing teams next year wouldn’t want to play on that offense?

At any rate Sidney, we deserve better that this. We waited patiently for two years while you underachieved, cheered like crazy when you exploded onto the scene in ’09 with Brett Favre and gave you the benefit of the doubt while you waited until training camp to have hip surgery while rumors circulated you were unhappy with your contract. We’re not asking you to sign on the dotted line now, but it would be nice if you’d speak for yourself and quit it with the nonsense.

Jon Merckle may be followed on Twitter @thevikingpig

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