Following the 2013 NFL Draft, Geno Smith fired his agents and decided to join Roc Nation, the sports representation agency headed up by Jay-Z. Many were left scratching their heads at the decision, with the New York Jets rookie quarterback opting to be represented by inexperienced agent Kim Miale. When a photo of Jay-Z and Geno Smith meeting appeared on social media, questions were brought up about whether Jay-Z violated the "runner rule" implemented by the NFLPA. Roc Nation has been cleared by the NFLPA after their investigation.
It's understandable that there were a few eyebrows raised when New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith chose to be represented by Kim Miale instead of many more experienced agents interested in having him as a client. When the photo of Geno Smith and Jay-Z surfaced, it made sense that Smith could have been influenced by Jay-Z in joining Roc Nation. As part of the "runner rule" implemented by the NFLPA, only licensed sports agents can meet with potential NFL Draft prospects.
The rule is to prevent undue influence on prospects by big-name celebrities. The NFLPA wants to make sure prospects decide on their representation based on the merit of the agent/agency, not any other factors. It's easy to see how a player fresh out of college could be influenced by a major personality, such as Jay-Z, into signing with an agency.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the NFLPA has cleared Jay-Z and Roc Nation of any improper contact with Geno Smith. Along with clearing Roc Nation of any wrongdoing, the NFLPA contacted all agents to clarify the runner rule.
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