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Add Dan Koppen to the FA Equation

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by rhubma, Jun 9, 2006.

  1. rhubma

    rhubma Rookie

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    I previously posted this late in another thread, so it may have been missed... I moved it to its own thread as I'm curious to see your thoughts:

    'If it comes down to only keeping 2 out of 3 of the "D"s [Dan (age: 28), Daniel Graham(currently 27, 28 in season) or Deion Branch(27)] for cap reasons, personally I would rather hold together (and complete) the O line with the 2 Dans and lose Deion. IMO, blocking for Brady is THE crucial component of the team through, at least, 2009-10 when many contracts conclude.

    Even though Branch is one of my favorite all-time players and I would like him to stay for his entire career, WR and RBs usually peak in their mid 20s when they are their fastest & quickest. OL and TE often can perform well into their early 30s, even if they lose a step. Given that thinking, Dan and Dan may be better values, especially if you get them for the same total cost as Deion.

    Ultimately, I believe that the Pats WILL resign all 3 (with Graham being the least likely to resign and Koppen the most likely).'
  2. stinkypete

    stinkypete Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    I agree that Dan Koppen should be one of 2 guys kept, if it comes to that, but there's no way you let Deion walk in favor of Graham.
  3. arrellbee

    arrellbee Rookie

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    Just out of curiosity, what do you think the Pats are going to use their carefully crafted cap space for ? Might it be to sign all of their proven free agent players ?? With the amount of cap space they have, why do they need to let any of these guys go, providing the players will accept a reasonable deal - and only time will tell that.
  4. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    They have the money, it's just whether they'll sign for what the Patriots consider to be decent value. Picking one over the other is pointless, they're individual cases and I'm sure we'd like to re-sign them all for the appropriate price. Samuel also.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 20, 2005
  5. Miguel

    Miguel Patriots Salary Cap Guru PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey

    What he said.
  6. bucky

    bucky Rookie

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    In my opinion, the most important positions on a football team are as follows:

    1) QB - obviously the most important position in any pro sport.
    2) Outside pass rusher - a Freeney type is the best way to slow down the best QBs in the game.
    3) LT - for the obvious reason of slowing down the pass rusher.
    4) #1 WR - A true goto guy who can always get open.
    5) #1 corner - I don't want to it a "cover" corner, but somebody who can cover, tackle, has good ball skills, etc.

    Of those 5 positions, Branch is pretty close to being a true #1 WR. I iconically, he's the 1 guy you'd let walk. If I had a choice between keeping just Branch or Graham AND Koppen, I would keep Branch. Though I would certainly like to keep all out 2006 free agents, if I had to rank them, it would be as follows:

    1) Branch - Brady's main man.
    2) Samuel - hopefully, we will never again see the Samuel of the first half of 2005.
    3) Graham - a very good all-around TE, but his main job here is blocking. That can be replaced.
    4) Koppen - a slightly above average C. Can be replaced.
  7. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Rookie

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    Has Koppen been declared 100% healthy and I missed it?

    I might want to wait to re-sign him until I was sure about that.

    That's why Hochstein was a priority signing... you don't want to wait until a guy knows he's your only option at C before starting and finishing negotiations.

    Koppen, I would expect, won't be considered for an extension until its well established that he's healed from his injury. As of right now there's a lot of doubt as to whether he'll be able to start the season.
  8. primetime

    primetime Rookie

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    #18 Jersey

    I do not resign Koppen today. If he is able to re-establish himself, excellent, hit the negotiation tables. If not, Hochstein is more than capable of centering this offense and took less money than he would've got on the open market (see: Tom Ashworth) to stay here.

    I'd rather have Graham and Branch.
  9. rhubma

    rhubma Rookie

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    If you say that there would be enough for all to be resigned I take that as gospel. Would you include Wilson in with the other 4 (including Samuel), so that all 5 would fit into next year's cap if BB & Sp want to?
  10. Dartanyan

    Dartanyan Rookie

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    It would seem to me that if some of these guys are locked up with the extra cap space we have this year, we can do the same with a few of the others next year. I hate to see young talent leave the team routinely after their rookie contracts expire.
  11. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    That makes sense on the surface....half this year half next EXCEPT..one has to add in the 07 FAs as well.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2006
  12. rookBoston

    rookBoston Rookie

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    To me Branch is the most important target. Basically, whatever it takes.

    The only situation that would give me pause is if I had to choose between Deon, or both Graham and Koppen. That, to me, is a close call.
  13. PatsFan37

    PatsFan37 Rookie

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    #37 Jersey

    Interesting to me that they structured Seymour's contract so they had the flexibility to use up more of this year's cap if they couldn't negotiate what they believe are value contracts with the starters whose contracts expire in '06. In other words, the money won't burn a hole in their pocket.

    But if they bring in Law, would that change the equation?
  14. PatsSox363804

    PatsSox363804 Rookie

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    Branch should be the priority right now. If Koppen were healthy and we knew what we would be getting from him I would put him #1 on the list but until then you have to consider Branch above him. As much as I don't want to lose his blocking if it comes down to one that doesn't get re-signed it's going to be Graham.
  15. rhubma

    rhubma Rookie

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    This is exactly the point of this thread. If it was an either or situation (Branch v Graham/Koppen) what would you do? It may be a mute point if they are all resigned, but it is interesting. Signing Koppen keeps the top 8-9 OL together through 09. Graham adds a lot to the blocking too. Signing those 2 keeps TB and Maroney very happy. And it is probably real smart for a cold-wx team with late year aspirations.

    See Miguel's (very, VERY good) recent thread "ranking Branch" (http://www.patsfans.com/new-england-patriots/messageboard/showthread.php?t=36783) as well - gives opinion where Deion fits with other number 1 WRs and their value over the next five years.

    Interesting and thought provoking stuff. Also this whole issue may, in the long run, reveal a good deal about how BB and SP rate the position's as well as the person's value.
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2006
  16. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree. It is not one or the other or the other or the other.

    I believe than Koppen is overrated. He was a great pick and a great value, but he isn't one of the best centers in the league, and Hoch did fine in replacing hiim. BTW, I also think Samuel is overrated on this board.

    Branch is who he is: a frail receiver, probably about #15 in the league. I do beleive that many teams will approach him. Will the market pay less than for Givens? Not likely! Wasn't Branch kept out of the whole pre-season last year, to avoid injury?

    I cannot see offering Branch a $12M bonus plus salary when he has a year left on his contract unless the deal is discounted for injury risk. Branch is ours for the next two years for $3.5M - $4M a year ($1M this year, transition/franchise next). Why should we take risks and offer an enormous deal now?

    In any case, Branch seems likely to follow Givens. Surely Branch think he's worth lots more. IMHO, only Brady could convince him to sign before this season.





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