James Harden is playing well so far Philadelphia 76ers at their training camp in Fort Collins, Colorado. Tim Bontempts of ESPN reported that he arrived and was there on Wednesday, the second day of camp “Participate in practice.” The 76ers even posted photos of Harden on social media High-five to a 76ers employee. Another star professional athlete who showed up to practice on Wednesday after previously requesting a trade was Jonathan Taylor Indianapolis Colts.
Taylor was on the PUP list for the first four weeks of the regular season. However, he was also not satisfied with his contract situation and asked the Colts for a trade during training camp. They gave Taylor Permission to seek a trade after leaving camp twice. Nothing came of that and, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Taylor was healthy enough to play by Week 2.
While Harden may be in his “eye of the storm” phase, Hurricane Taylor appears to have left Indianapolis. Taylor, a first-team All-Pro player in 2021, was unhappy with the Colts not renewing his contract and also being given the option to sign him as a franchise player for two more years after this season ends .
As a second-round draft pick, he received a 4-year contract worth almost $8 million. If he plays under that name in 2024, he would likely be guaranteed around $11 million for a single season. He saw this happen Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs this summer and tried to stay one step ahead of this reality.
The problem for Taylor is that he’s a running back who entered the NFL with nearly 1,000 touches from his college career at Wisconsin. In his third NFL season, after 372 touchdowns in 2021, he was good but not great in 2022. Additionally, that season ended early due to an ankle injury. Taylor failed his original Colts physical exam this summer because his ankle wasn’t fully healed, and that was the case for him too He reportedly suffered from back pain – which he denied.
His return will definitely give the team a boost. They started the season 2-2 and are hosts Tennessee Titans in a big early interdivision matchup on Sunday. Even with raw rookie Anthony Richardson at quarterback, an AFC South title isn’t out of the question for the Colts. Unfortunately for Taylor, no matter how good he is and the Colts play, he won’t get anywhere near what he wants contractually.
Harden can throw a 2009 Brandon Marshall type If he chooses, he will be fit in training and his value as a player will remain the same. The tantrum would be chaos for the 76ers and comic relief for the rest of us that wouldn’t do any real damage to his career. Harden has already done it called 76ers general manager Daryl Morey verbally a liar, and it was written on a nightclub sign.
If Taylor were sent home for refusing to catch passes at practice, he would be fined, which would negatively impact his future career earnings. He may be recognizable without a helmet, but he doesn’t have even 50 percent of Harden’s fame and value to a franchise. Their bodies likely show the same wear and tear, even though Harden is 10 years older than Taylor. What team would want a running back who has had more than 1,800 touches since his freshman year and is capable of a breakout?
Taylor is being pushed into a corner that his performance can’t get him out of, while Harden is probably rubbing his beard and contemplating his next move to expedite his exit from the 76ers and receive another multi-year contract. This is the reality, even though Taylor can contribute far more to winning this season than Harden. However, in three years this is not a certainty.
Two players whose bodies have taken a beating, except for one player, it started while playing for free. Harden has the remainder of the 76ers’ 2023-24 season in his hands following the 76ers’ recent trades Milwaukee Bucks And Boston Celticswhile the rebuilding Colts are exceeding expectations without Taylor on the field.
Harden’s situation is a circuswhile Taylor is a case study in the availability of a football player who touches the ball more often than anyone on the team other than the starting quarterback.
https://deadspin.com/james-harden-76ers-jonathan-taylor-colts-1850900713 Dissatisfied players in very different situations