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2011 O line: Pats can afford both Mankins and Light

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by borg, Jan 3, 2011.

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  1. borg

    borg In the Starting Line-Up

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    The Patriots O line is functioning better than I can remember over the last decade, despite the absence of two higher priced assets...Neal and Kazcur, who combined, would earn in the vicinity of $6.5 mill next year.
    Neal is on his last legs with an eye on retiring no later than '11. Too often, injuries have reduced him to a part timer.
    Kazcur was IRed with a back injury, his future is uncertain, and his replacement has easily outperformed him. BB may see value in retaining Kazcur as a chip in the trading game, but he would be selling low and it may not be worth holding a roster spot.
    Replacing these two with draft picks would help pay for Light's extension and the overall salary for the starting 5 O line would be $18-20mill, just a couple more mill than the 2010 line.
    The line is the key. Eliminate the nonperforming, retain the core, and draft for depth with an eye on the future. I can easily see drafting both a guard and tackle in April.
     
  2. bucky

    bucky 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    I think it goes without saying that this team's cap is in excellent shape and they can afford pretty much any player. That said, I just don't believe they'll make Mankins the highest paid Guard in the NFL. Light, on the other hand, has been outstanding for a long time and should have 2 good years left. I hope he they can reach an agreement with him.
     
  3. robertweathers

    robertweathers Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I agree. Light will be 32 at the start of 2011 camp. He has played well this year and should have a couple of solid seasons left. He doesn't strike me as I don't think he'll be looking for a big FA pay day but who knows. .

    Mankins- Great player. It's all about the benjamins now.
     
  4. Haley

    Haley In the Starting Line-Up

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    With the draft picks we have available, I don't see BB interested in keeping a high price tag around like Mankins. That's just not his style. However, if we do well this post season Mankins might decide he wants to stick around for next year given the NEP prospects and may drop his demands.
     
  5. aluminum seats

    aluminum seats In the Starting Line-Up

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    Mankins is the kind of guy you want, obviously. Having said that, I'm very much in the "in Bill we trust" mode w/what happens with him--if they pay him, then I'll be happy. If they don't, I'll consider that the right move.

    In either event, the draft this year can and should be about the lines (and maybe an OLB in there.) But give me offensive & defensive linemen all draft long.
     
  6. mcsully

    mcsully In the Starting Line-Up

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    how can I ever doubt BB in his personal decisions.. He's been right more than he's been wrong..



    With that being said, here is my opinion:


    In the back of my mind I always hear "let them go a year early not a year late". With that being said, I think Mankins is brought back and Light is let go and Volmer is moved over to the blindside.. Kazur will be kept around but I feel we'll draft a RT with one of our 1st 4 picks. Connelly can man the RG..
     
  7. Metaphors

    Metaphors In the Starting Line-Up

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    This is the key area for the offseason. The rest of the team can just return players under contract for 2011 and (because of youth) those respective areas will be better. That is freaking amazing.

    That being said, I think Belichick is going to do what is needed to keep the OL intact for 2011. Mankins should get the same offer from this past year and given the likely new CBA situation, he is unlikely to get much better elsewhere. If he doesn't take it, he will get a franchise tag and nobody will give up a #1 pick to get him. I doubt Mankins sits again since it didn't gain him anything this year...so I expect Mankins to be at LG next year.

    As for Light, I can't imagine a situation where he plays anywhere else. I think he gets a 2-year deal with the Pats hedging their bets for the 2012 season by having a replacement OT queued up.

    So I see this team basically returning intact with 4-5 top players in the 2011 draft being added. That should give them insane depth. If they can handle the OL transition of Light, Neal and Koppen well, the Pats should be entering a 3-year window where they will be very difficult to beat.
     
  8. State

    State In the Starting Line-Up

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    #70 Jersey

    Mankins, my favorite player--I have a thing for big, nasty guards that dominate the opposition--is the best O-lineman for the Patriots since John Hannah, no?

    Why in the world would Bill get rid of him? Pay him. Even with my enthusiasm, it's still been a surprise how much better the offensive line has played with him in there.

    It helps that we have the best coach in America, except Belichick and Saban, in Dante "Scar," coaching the beefcakes.

    We have two years to find a replacement for Light, who has the heart of a warrior, if not the ideal body size for his position. But Mankins is the stud that makes it all go so much better.
     
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