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Better off getting a Safety in the draft or in FA??

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Joey007, Jan 30, 2013.

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  1. Joey007

    Joey007 Rookie

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    #91 Jersey

    One of our pressing needs this offseason is safety. Fortunately for us, the FA class and draft class are both strong this year. Do we go after a young, big name like Byrd, or draft a safety, like Vaccaro or Matt Elam in the 1st round?? My problem is if we do one of these is, we're basically giving up on Tavon Wilson as a big part of the future. Sure, he could still be a role player, but with McCourty at one spot, and a guy like Byrd or Elam at the other safety spot, it wouldn't seem like we'd have any big time plans for Wilson, right??

    That's why for me, Ed Reed would be a good way to go. What better way for Wilson to develop then let him watch for a year or two behind one of the greatest to ever play the game?? He might have a bit of a price tag compared to some others, but to me he'd be worth it.

    So as I asked in the thread title, what should we do??
  2. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    What's the argument against doing both? Service the now and develop for tomorrow.
  3. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    That's an expensive option, in a couple of respects:

    1. Outlay. It would require spending a non-trivial amount to sign a FA like Ed Reed and also using a non-trivial amount of limited draft capital to draft a high safety like Elam or Reid (Vaccaro seems projected to be gone well before we pick, at least right now).

    2. Roster crunch. We already have 4 safeties on the roster, including Ebner as a STer, but he got some playing time and the team seems to like his upside. How many can we carry? 5? 6?

    My personal take would be you try to solve both the short and long term problem by signing a relatively young safety rather than someone like Ed Reed. Kenny Phillips is my preference, as he's only 26, and injuries should keep his cost down. He worked very well with Antrel Rolle, who played a somewhat similar role to what Devin McCourty is playing for as at FS. He can lay the lumber but still has good range.

    If we can't land someone like Phillips in FA, then I'd look at the draft, but it would be my second choice, because I think our secondary has suffered from too much inexperience. I'd rather not add more rookies in key positions right now. A solid experienced S such as Phillips would add more, IMHO, than someone like Elam or Reid.
  4. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I'm not disagreeing with you mayo. I don't understand why the Pats can't bring in a vet and draft a safety.
  5. EwanSellars

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    #15 Jersey

    i want Elam really bad in the draft and i think ed reed would be perfect to help out everyone all of our safeties are young and learning the position so need help with their development and ed reed would help the team with his play and in the future by teaching the young safeties. What better way to learn from one of if not the best safety of all time
  6. Avenger

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    #11 Jersey

    same as every other position, build through the draft. but f we can get Reed at a reasonable price we should sign him
  7. supafly

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    #24 Jersey

    I'm not really seeing it this way to be honest with you.

    I think that if Belichick has the ability to realistically improve any position, he will always do it depsite looking back at who he picked last year, especially if we're not talking about a first rounder.

    Wilson saw a decent amount of reps for a rookie, and can still be a dime back or rotational player with the ability to start in a pinch if needed. If they brought in a bigger name FA signing then Wilson would still be in the battle for the #3 spot in his second year, which is nothing to be ashamed about.

    He's under rookie contract so he's cheap, and he isn't going anywhere. My guess is that Belichick would be perfectly happy with his 2nd round selection if it meant the position of safety would be improved upon, no matter what the route was of getting there.
  8. FredFromDartmouth

    FredFromDartmouth Rookie

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    No need to decide now...just try to get the best FA for the money and then if that fails go to the draft for one.
  9. supafly

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    #24 Jersey

    I'm guessing that the development of Wilson and the prospect of Gregory playing as a backup/rotational guy would be the two main variables aside from whether or not Belichick reels in a bigger name FA signing at the position.

    If he's good with Wilson and Gregory as backups/rotation guys then he may feel that there are better areas to address. If he's not comfortable with those two then we may end up seeing a draft pick AND a free agent signing.

    I suppose the CB situation would definitely come into play too, as that may be more of a focus for the draft depending upon whether or not Talib or Arrington stays etc. Lots of variables in the secondary this year.
  10. Joey007

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    #91 Jersey

    Well by drafting a safety do you mean drafting one in round one or waiting until the 3rd round?? I think mayo made a good point, we already have an inexperienced secondary, and that we could use some vets in the secondary.

    It all would depend on who we brought in. We could bring in a big name safety and draft a safety in the 3rd or with one of our late rounders. Or we could draft a lower market, yet starting caliber safety, and draft a Vaccaro, Elam in the 1st round?? I would be okay with either of these scenarios. But if you're saying, draft Matt Elam round one, and also go after Ed Reed, or even Jarius Byrd for that matter, I'd think that'd going a little overboard there, especially price wise.


    I remain firm on my opinion, the safeties in this draft look nice, but I think we've done enough drafting in the secondary, and it's time to get some experience.

    I also agree with Mayo on Phillips, he would be my second choice. We could probably get him much cheaper than Ed due to his injury history.
  11. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Indeed there is supa. Whilst Gregory has proven to be a reasonable role player, I don't see him as a starter. There's a definite need to upgrade Safety. You're quite right when you bring up Tavon Wilson. It's difficult to know what his sophomore improvement is going to be when his rookie season just finished. That said, his coverage on Tight Ends looked reasonable during the playoffs.

    Losing those middle rung picks may come back to haunt the Patriots this offseason, if even it was just for wriggle room.
  12. Deus Irae

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    They've got a veteran safety, in Gregory. They've got a starting safety in McCourty. What they need is a big talent leader in the secondary, and they need that player around for a while. Use the first round pick and draft one of the best safeties in a great safety draft
  13. Joey007

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    You make a good point on how finding ways to improve at a certain position is what's most important, and it's not like we'd be losing much on him cap-wise. But I still think if Bill saw enough talent in him to select him in the 2nd round, he had to really see something more than simply a rotation role player.
  14. Deus Irae

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    Patrick Chung was a high second round pick. When it comes to the draft, what the drafting teams think is there is a mirage more often than not.
  15. Joey007

    Joey007 Rookie

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    Here's another thing- we need a true leader. Not just a really good player. A guy the secondary can rally around. I feel Ed Reed's that kind of guy. And if we do draft safety early in the draft, do any of these safeties show qualities of a true leader?? Like a Rodney Harrison type, who can set the tone at any time leader??
  16. BradyFTW!

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    To the quoted poster's point, I'm willing to bet that Belichick saw a lot more in Chung than what he ended up becoming. He was wrong, just like he may be wrong on Wilson, but it's not unfair to point out that a second rounder is expected to be better than Chung ended up being.

    Personally, I'm a bit more optimistic about Wilson than I ever was about Chung (and I was always down on Chung, even when it was not a popular opinion), simply because Wilson can cover. Mentally, he obviously still has a ways to go, but at least the raw talent is there, which was never true for Chung. And TBH, I didn't get the sense, watching Wilson, that he was too far away. The problem was that when he made mistakes, he made really big ones. On the bright side, though, in theory that's much more coachable than someone like Chung, who was simply caught out of position and/or taking terrible angles on pretty much every play.
  17. Joey007

    Joey007 Rookie

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    I was very optimistic on Chung, especially during 2010. But as his injuries continued to mount up was when my confidence was lost.

    But yeah, I think Wilson's shown more in his rookie year than Chung had over his 4 years here.
  18. BradyFTW!

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    At Texas, Vaccaro was pretty much the leader of the defense. He'll probably go before the Pats come up, though, so if they're planning on drafting a safety early it will probably be Reid or Elam.

    Personally, the scouting reports on Elam remind me a little too much of Chung: a bruising safety who plays bigger than his size (ie: will get hurt a lot) and needs significant work on his coverage skills. Needless to say, I'll be absolutely terrified if the Pats draft him. Doesn't help matters that Elam is smaller than Chung was when he came out, with almost identical speed.
  19. Joey007

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    BB has recently been one to trade up. Any chance that if Vaccaro's available around the 20-ish selection range, we ship a couple picks off to get this guy??
  20. TriplecHamp

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    exactly my problems with Elam. He's fun to watch play but he WILL NOT hold up with his playing style, in the box at the next level. Would much rather a bigger physical presence who can match up with tight ends. Vaccaro is much better suited to do so.
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