Sunday, May 26, 2013

NFLPA to investigate Roc Nation's recruitment of Geno Smith

The NFL Players Association is taking a look into Jay-Z’s role in Geno Smith’s decision to choose Kim Miale and the rap star's ever expanding Roc Nation as his agency, according to

Jay-Z's possible involvement in Smith’s decision could be a violation of the “runner rule” that doesn’t allow non-agents to help recruit athletes for agencies. Smith spent time with Jay-Z, as evidenced at least by an Instagram picture the Jets quarterback posted of him with the musician.

It sounds like 99 Problems should be the rookie quarterback's theme song.  Nothing Smith has said or done, since being the Jets' second-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, hasn't seemed like anything but trouble for the 22-year-old.

The NFLPA plans to send a letter of inquiry to Miale to determine Jay-Z’s role during the process, according to the report. Smith fired his former agents after he dropped to the 39th overall pick in the draft.

Phone records, emails, and other documents could be sought to confirm the things that potential witnesses may say, given the strong incentive to conceal any evidence of recruiting by Jay-Z. Interviews could be conducted of Smith, Miale, Thornton, Jay-Z, and others with knowledge of the situation.

The biggest problem for the NFLPA could come from its lack of jurisdiction over Jay-Z.  While the union can take action against Miale, the NFLPA can do nothing to Jay-Z or anyone else who doesn’t fall under the union’s regulatory umbrella.  Indeed, the NFLPA lacks the power to compel Jay-Z or anyone else not certified by the NFLPA to cooperate.

Smith’s former adviser, John Thornton, was quoted by CBS recently saying, "I was in those meetings, and Jay-Z connected with him on many levels." Thornton later said he was misquoted.

Smith announced on Wednesday that he decided to choose Roc Nation. 

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