BY GEOFF HOBSON
Third-round pick Ron Dugans, the wide receiver out of Florida State, hasn't played a down in the league but he may perform an NFL first Friday night: The only man in history to hold out despite an agreement on the money in a contract. Agent Jim Steiner reiterated today his client is willing to sit out over "The Carl Pickens Clause," which transfers loyalty language in the collectve bargaining agreement and standard contract to the signing bonus.
"I'm just not going to sign anything with that rider on the signing bonus," Steiner. "The discipline is already in the CBA. It's not needed. And why should what is supposed to be guaranteed money be at risk?"
Richard Berthelsen, general counsel for the NFL Players Association, said today the clause could be one of four yearly cases that get expedited for arbitration. But there still probaby wouldn't be a decision for weeks.
Dugans, along with second-rounder Mark Roman and sixth-rounder Neil Rackers who are looking for more money, are the last unsigned draft picks. Seventh-rounder Brad St. Louis is expected to sign Thursday.