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The Tennessee Titans' $4.5 Million Question: Is Jared Cook a TE or WR?

And he'll probably win it if he does...

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Jim Wyatt has an update on the Jared Cook situation, and it's not very pretty: not only is there no movement towards a long-term deal, now even the franchise tag contingent could get messy. Wyatt is hearing from knowledgeable sources that Cook's representatives could follow Jermichael Finley's strategy from last year and argue that he's a wide receiver, not a true tight end.

That's a difference that could cost the Titans $4.5 million if the CBA's prescribed arbitrator agrees. If PFF's snap count totals are close to what the team recorded, Cook lined up as a slot wide receiver roughly 56% of the time last year, and that's not counting the times he lined up out wide.

Finley's gambit ended with a two-year deal that split the difference between the two tag numbers before the holdout got ugly. You'd have to count that as a win for Finley and Cook. That would mean Cook would get around $8 million if the Titans try the same move. However, given that Cook's reps requested a trade after talks brokedown last year, they might not be in the mood to compromise should the arbitrator side in their favor.

I really hope the Titans can avoid an ugly arbitration session, because it's never a good situation when your GM has to argue to an independent party that one of his players doesn't deserve money over semantics. If MLB arbitration is any indication, feelings usually get hurt and a long-term deal become harder to reach.