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BB Drafting and the Salary Cap

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by kurtinelson, Nov 4, 2010.

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  1. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson In the Starting Line-Up

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    #37 Jersey

    I absolutely love BB's approach to the draft. Trading down, trading aging players and by taking the route of delayed gratification by trading lower round picks for higher round picks in subsequent years, has given BB multiple high round draft picks use in the last several drafts. By continuing to trade picks into the following years draft, there is no reason to think that this won't be the norm for rest of BB's tenure.

    As a result we have a team full of young studs.

    One thing I am curious about, however, is how BB will manage this drafting strategy under the salary cap. If we project forward a few years it seems likely that there will be some very tough decisions to be made due to salary cap restrictions.

    For example the following players will or may command a significant salary when there rookie contract is up:

    Mayo
    Merriweather
    Vollmer
    Chung
    McCourty
    Spikes
    Hernandez
    Gronkowski

    Not having done the math, I think it is likely that BB will have to let some good players go and restock the shelf through the draft.

    In other words having a team with multiple high round draft picks is great, but it is not likely possible to keep all of these players beyond their rookie contract.
     
  2. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey


    Good post. I don't think, however, this is any different from what has been going on since BB has been here. When a very good, but not elite, player is off his rookie deal (or any contract, really), he'll be allowed to move to greener pastures and replaced by a younger player or bargain free agent for less money. Graham and Samuel were made FA offers that were much lower than other teams were making. Maroney, Hobbs, Seymour, and Vrabel were traded for an asset higher than a comp pick before they reached FA status. Remeber, being a high draft pick doesn't entitle you to a big second contract, being a very good player does, so it's largely irrelevent that we might have some extra high draft picks coming in to Foxboro in the near future.

    As for your list, I'm of the opinion that safety is probably the easiest position to fill through the draft and free agency. I would expect Meriweather to be allowed to move along. Chung has a better chance of sticking, but chances are he'll get his second contract elsewhere too if he wants big money.

    Mayo and McCourty seem to be players that BB would want to keep around and build the defense around for many years, from a mental make-up as well as physical skills. What McCourty is doing as a rookie is nothing short of amazing. He's also the best tackling cornerback on this team that I can remember.

    Given the loyalty Belichick has shown Light and Kaczur, I would expect Vollmer to re-up with the team. BB seems to place a high value on offensive line continuity.

    I think it's too early to say on Hernandez, Gronkowski, and Spikes. Spikes has some of the best ILB instincts I've seen since Bruschi, and it took Bruschi a lot longer to get to this level. If he continues to improve, and if Hernandez actually does become Dallas Clark, and Gronkowski continues to develop into an all-around tight end, it will probably come down to contract demands. As a fourth rounder, Hernandez might want a little more money next time around, but he's a New England kid, so he might be willing to forego big free agency dollars. Gronkowski's versatility could make him a Belichick favorite, but if he wants Graham money, he'll have to find it elsewhere. Plus he needs a good run of health. Belichick would probably like to sign Spikes long term at a friendly discount, but if he gets to FA, he's likely gone.
     
  3. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree with dryheat44 in regards to the offensive line. That is one area that the Pats seem to try to keep together more than other units or positions. Compare who is still on the 2010 with who was on the 2007 or 2004 roster, and you'll find more OL than other positions.

    It seems to me that for a long time now the best offensive lines in the NFL are not so much ones filled with high draft picks, but units that have played together for a long time. That continuity results in better overall performance - more than with other units on the field.

    That's not to say that I'm not looking for and expecting upgrades to the OL next spring. The biggest decision on the OL will be with Light, who is a free agent next year.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2010
  4. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I agree, it seems that our talent bank had run low due to a few failed drafts for a few years and he has done a nice job of replenishing it.

    However if we make it back to elite status again, I think he needs to change his philosophy a bit. Instead of having multiple picks and drafting a bunch of "hope they can provide depth" guys, he instead trades multiple picks to move up and target a stud.
     
  5. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey

    If the rookie salary scale becomes a reality, I'd expect him to do just that.
     
  6. jsull87

    jsull87 In the Starting Line-Up

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    So he replenishes our talent by doing what he's doing... and when it works you want him to change the strategy that got us there?

    ...Smart thinking
     
  7. jsull87

    jsull87 In the Starting Line-Up

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    This i do believe would change his strategy alot. The rookie salary scale would A.) make higher picks more valuable (for trade downs) but B.) also mean someone who likes value out of his picks would be a bit more hesitant to trade down because of the lesser cost of missing on a pick/their salary
     
  8. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson In the Starting Line-Up

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    #37 Jersey

    Have you heard any projections on what the rookie scale will look like?

    Part 2 of the question is can we afford to sign Logan Mankins for 7$ million? a year?
     
  9. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson In the Starting Line-Up

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    #37 Jersey

    I agree. I'd love to keep him around for his physical play but I have a hard time seeing BB break the bank for him.
     
  10. zimmy

    zimmy On the Game Day Roster

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    I think its all swings and roundabouts. A lot of these rookies will not be getting their 2nd contracts for 3-4 years. By that time some of the high earners on this team will have moved on - Matt Light, Ty Warren, Bodden, Tully, possibly Mankins, obviously we are down Moss's contract and eventually Brady. It's a cyclical process. We will have to pay McCourty, Mayo, the Tight Ends etc. but by this point we may have a new left tackle, QB, Defensive Tackle on their first contract to off set the money.

    As with everything, Bill will decide whether the player is worth the contract he is demanding and if he is not then he will move him on.

    I tend to think Meriweather is a guy who could earn more on the open market than we would offer him so he's probably gone.
     
  11. SirApropos

    SirApropos On the Game Day Roster

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    #75 Jersey

    Hernandez deal was actually quite good for a 4th rounder. It had a lower than normal signing bonus but makes it up with huge roster bonuses/workout bonuses for every year he makes the 53 man roster. If he plays out his deal he will actually make more than Taylor Price this years 3rd rounder. So basically if he keeps his nose clean he can keep the cash.
     
  12. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #12 Jersey

    Yes, when your roster is depleted you look for quantity over quality. When your roster is stocked, you go for quality over quantity.
     
  13. Off The Grid

    Off The Grid Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #3 Jersey

    This is my personal favorite post on an exceptionally original and important Thread.

    Possibly the most powerfull effect of Coach Bill's absolute ravaging of the Draft, since Counselor Pioli left ~ and one I have NEVER seen written about ~ is the dramatic import of developing a ridiculously deep Roster of 2nd, 3rd, 4th Rounders, and beyond: Their 1st contracts are so disproportionately smaller than the Top 10 in a given year, that our Return on Investment SKYROCKETS, allowing us to forge a DRAMATIC advantage in Depth of Talent.

    And as the Rookie Contracts of 2009 + 2010 approach Maturity, a few years hence ~ and, perhaps: a few Championships, hence!! :D ~ we can all be sure that Coach Bill will, as always, race 3 steps ahead of the competition, by whatever means best avails itself to him. :cool:
     
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