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Branch - not getting it done

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by RI Patriots fan, Oct 22, 2012.

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  1. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    He's played in 5 games so far, targeted 11 times and has a total of 5 catches for 50 total yards and half of all those yards came on 1 catch. He also has zero TDs.

    So that's 10 yards a game half of which came on 1 catch. Am I missing something? Is he that great of a downfield blocker?

    Now I really like him as a person....great guy...and I understand that he has great chemistry with TB, but at some point that chemistry has to translate into results. His performance averages are worse than even Ochocinco's pathetic display last year.

    According to Sportstrack, Branch is making $1.32 million (including bonuses). Is he really worth that kind of money given his results?

    Right now, we have Salas on the practice squad. We thought enough of him to trade a late round draft pick on him and increase his salary to $465k so he wouldn't be scooped up from our practice squad. So if we think that much of him, why not give him a shot? Could he possibly do worse than 10 yards per game on 2 targets?

    Why not save Branch's salary against the cap and give this kid a chance? I can't imagine he could do any worse.
  2. Rossmci90

    Rossmci90 Rookie

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    He's the 5th receiving option, and the running game is more prominent this year.

    How are the rest of the league's 5th option doing?
  3. andrewgarrr

    andrewgarrr Banned

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    He's fine.

    Can Salas run block effectively? Do you trust Salas in the no-huddle? Does Salas have unmatchable chemistry with Brady?

    Welker, Lloyd, Hernandez, Gronkowski, Edelman, Woodhead are going to get more targets than either Salas or Branch.
  4. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    But again, why pay his salary if you have a guy on the practice squad who's making $465k a year? It's not like Branch is even playing special teams (at least not that I've seen).

    I just dont see the reason to pay him $1.35 million for 1 catch a game for 10 yards with Salas on the PS.
  5. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    Chemistry......5 catches on 11 targets....doesn't sound like unmatchable chemistry.
    Where's the results of this great chemistry....10 yards per game?
    This is wasted cap space and cap space is precious.
  6. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Go back and re-watch the Denver game, even the Seattle game and specifically watch Branch; that will answer your question about how good of a downfield blocker he is.

    Branch represents about 1% of the team's cap, so replacing him on the roster isn't going to save enough money to make that a consideration in my opinion.

    On a roster that has Gronk, Hernandez, Welker, Lloyd, and a greater commitment to running the ball than it had in the past, how many passes should be thrown to Branch, or anybody that replaces him?

    As far as comparing him to Chad Johnson the more appropriate comparison would be Lloyd to Ochocinco, and Branch to Tiquan Underwood/Matthew Slater.


    The Patriots do have areas that need to be improved upon, but replacing Branch with Salas or someone else is not the answer. I'd rather keep him around for that occasion where the team really needs a first down in a big way, but Welker is covered. Salas can take his place next year.
  7. BSR

    BSR Rookie

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    Branch is what he is, the last true WR on the depth chart. Unfortunately, Edelman has been hurt which has forced him into a more prominent role that he should have. This is why the whole Edelman hate was so dumb.
  8. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    Actually, replacing Branch with Salas would save his entire salary and a million dollars can be the difference (in a competitive bidding situation) between signing a high quality free agent and not signing him.

    Now if you're saying that he isn't getting touches because of all the talent on this team, then again, why keep him? Blocking?

    As far as I'm concerned Edelman is a far superior downfield blocker than Branch. Now that Edelman is back, why keep Branch?

    Comparing Branch to Slater???? Slater is a special teams specialist....unless I've missed it, I haven't seen Branch play special teams (or made any plays....so either way it's not impressive).

    As for making 1st downs in a big way, Branch his 3 total in 5 games. Why do you think he'll make it happen in "big way" if he can't make it happen in these past 5 games?

    I think people remember Branch of the past, not Branch of the present.
  9. patfanken

    patfanken On the Roster

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    #91 Jersey

    Why do you keep beating this senseless drum. Branch's salary isn't going to be the difference to any FA signing this year. There isn't a single FA available for the rest of this season who we can't afford with Branch still on the roster, and next year he won't be on the roster so it won't matter.

    Your continued diatribe against Branch is every bit as senseless as the Edelman hate.
  10. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady On the Roster

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    You hurt your depth by getting rid of Branch. Right now you have both Branch and Salas. If you cut Branch and promote Salas you save some money not Branch's whole salary though as you have to pay Salas to be on the 53 and you pay someone else to be on the PS. Plus you have already paid him for some of that 1.2 for games played.

    Secondly I dont think it matters what Branch's production right now is as the 5th WR but should 1 or 2 of those guys go down who do you think would then produce more given the a bigger opportunity? We saw what Branch did last year and we know he knows the system.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012
  11. Spiral

    Spiral PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The fact that we're arguing about which 5' 9" or 5' 10" slot receiver is the better downfield blocker speaks volumes about the quality of the Patriots' receivers. IMO, the Patriots are doing other teams a favor by playing Branch. He can't separate any more, but Brady ends up forcing the ball to him once or twice a game. I was really surprised to see him cut at the end of TC, but the more I've seen him play the past few weeks, the less suprising that move appears in retrospect.
  12. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    You can carry salary cap money that you don't use from this season to the next season. So for next year, whatever money we don't use to keep Branch around can be used the following year. So much for "senseless"...


    "The new CBA has, for the first time, provided teams a valuable benefit: the ability to carry over remaining cap room into the following year."



    Closing the books on 2011 | National Football Post
  13. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    They could always carry it over. There is just a new easier mechanism that eliminates the use of phony LTBE incentives in late season extensions to facilitate the carryover... And you're talking about saving roughly half of $925K which is the minimum veteran salary Branch returned on. His signing bonus was sunk cost before he was signed, cut and re-signed. Bill wasted a couple of million plus on failed signings this off season. He doesn't need $500K refunded from Deion as much as he needs his capacity to be on the field in up tempo situations, something Salas would be unable to do. There is more to contributing to an offense than being targeted and catching passes. And he has over $9M in excess cap to carry over already, as well as the ability to create more as needed via extension and restructure.
  14. Timbo717

    Timbo717 Rookie

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    Well, if one of the other receivers go down I would rather have a guy like Branch get his targets upp'ed rather than Salas because I'm just not sure Salas could come in on the no-huddle situations as easily and keep up with the tempo.

    Sure you save a million bucks (or I guess even less if Mo is right), but at the same time he is good depth to have even if he isn't the same Branch of years past.
  15. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    Yes, there is more....like blocking and special teams. Branch doesn't play special teams and (from what I've seen) his blocking although good isn't exceptional. As for the uptempo.....he has 1 catch per game. What exactly does he do that helps the uptempo? Run routes slowly and not catch passes?
    I bet Salas could do that also.
    The off season signings are an entirely different matter and have nothing to do with keeping Branch. The question is, is he worth the remaining $520k and a roster spot?
    Personally, I think any coach given the choice between receiving an extra $520k in their salary cap next year and not receiving it would gladly take it.
    Besides, is it possible that Salas would produce more than one catch per game for 10 yards? Again, it would be tough not to meet those standards.

    Hey, I hope Branch turns it around soon and starts to produce. But from what I've seen I think he creates very little if any separation. I just hope his downfield blocking is worth his salary and the lost production someone might bring in at his roster spot.
  16. borg

    borg On the Roster

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    Brady threw 58 passes vs Seattle.....Branch's line ....1 catch 5 yards. His "exceptional" run blocking skills were never unleashed in that game either. Bottom line, Branch is a JAG and least productive member of the slowest WR corp in the NFL. Branch appears to be this years recipient of the annual parting gift contract before retirement (See 2011 Kevin Faulk)
  17. stcjones

    stcjones Rookie

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    i think you make the main point here.....He is essentially a security blanket at this point IN CASE Welk or someone else goes down....and he can come in occasionally and make a play here and there. He KNOWS the system inside and out like you say...and that is his value right now....

  18. BradyBranch39

    BradyBranch39 Rookie

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    The catches he has made have been fairly important ones... he's a great blocker... he appears to be QB#2 in our hurry up offense...

    I don't want him going anywhere.
  19. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    And knowing the system in and out has gotten him what....1 catch per game?
    If the Patriots cut him tomorrow, do you think there would be teams lining up to add him to their roster? I'm going to guess he wouldn't be playing football. So, if his only value is to be a "back-up" then cut him and pick him up if there's an injury.
  20. MoneyFX

    MoneyFX Rookie

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    Branch is done. I was too shocked when he was cut but now I realize why he got cut. He was very productive from early 2010 to late 2011. Branch isnt really needed anyway when Gronk and Hernandez are great receivers as well. Lloyd was brought in to replace him and has done a decent job this year.
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