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Do We Need More Than 11 OL's?

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  1. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Could we go with 8 OL's on the 53 and 3-4 on the Practice Squad? Ghiaciuc (or a free agent)would be our #9, but do we need a #9? None of the 8 are developmental players. All are ready start if need be.

    Starters: Light, Connolly, Koppen, Neal, Vollmer
    Game Day Backups: LeVoir, Wendell
    Inactive Backup Ojinnaka (he can backup at both OT and OG)
    Practice Squad Larsen, Bussey, Ohrnberger, Welch (one might not make it through)
  2. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    There are only eight spots on the Practice Squad. It serves no purpose to have half of those slots go to one unit (the offensive line.)

    I would guess the Pats break it up as one QB (only two on the roster), two OL, two DL, a LB, a DB, and a WR or TE.
  3. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I would keep 3 OL's on the Practice Squad, especially if carrying 3 on the Practice Squad would allow me to keep only 8 on the total roster. As Belichick says, we have a 61 man roster.

    QB - saves a roster spot, although it is an inactive roster spot
    OL - the single best use of the PS for development of players 3 players are my choice
    DL -We usually keep a couple in the hope of development: Deaderick is clear
    LB Fletcher
    TE Myers
    WR/DB I don't see anyone I'd keep


  4. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    NE needs 5 starters: Light, Connolly, Koppen, Neal, Vollmer

    Dante/BB usually keep...
    - 2 reserve OT: LeVoir, Ojinnaka/Bussey;
    - & 2 reserve interior OL: Wendell, Orhnberger/Ojinnaka/Bussey.

    Kaczur was kept on the active roster during the early part of 2006: Game Log 2006. It seems likely NE gives him some time this season to recover.

    Ojinnaka is suspended for Game One, this allows NE to keep another player in his place for that one game. They don't have to keep an OL, since the second reserve OT is usually inactive on game day.

    Larsen, Welch, and Simmons are battling for PSquad slots. Bussey and Orhnberger both have PSquad eligibility and could be released with the hope of making through waivers.

    Ghiaciuc is a solid veteran, I just have Wendell ahead of him for all three positions, and I think Orhnberger is a mauler being groomed to be Neal's eventual replacement.

    NE will most likely keep 9 OL (including Kaczur) + Ojinnaka (suspended) for the opening day roster. Starters plus Levoir, Kaczur, Wendell, Orhnberger.

    If they keep 10 + Ojinnaka, I'd expect it to be Bussey.

    Ghiuciuc and Simmons are likely pointed at the shadow roster. If I was Dante I'd try to slide Larsen to the PSquad. I think Welch will be better at OT after a year of Woicik & Nash, if Dante wants to take the time to develop him; otherwise, I see Bussey getting the PSquad OT slot.
  5. PATSYLICIOUS

    PATSYLICIOUS Rookie

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    10 usually gets the job done on my Madden franchise
  6. lillestroom

    lillestroom Rookie

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    No. We need 10. We need three QBs. I'm sorry but we've gotten by thru the skin of our teeth in the past and it could bite us in the ass.

    We TT went down and Cassel went in, the playbook was significantly simplified. Result: We became way too easy to predict Games that went our way were due to individual talents and average opposition.
  7. DocE

    DocE Rookie

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    Right now, I'd only keep 8 on the 53. I don't think guys like Welch, Larsen, and Bussey have shown enough to be on the roster. Ideally, I'd bring those 3 to the practice squad for a total of 11 OL with the team (8 on the 3, 3 on the PS). Of course, they could keep 9 on the 53, but they likely will only dress 7 on the active 45. I just don't think any of the later round OL have shown enough potential to stash them on the 53 and make them inactive every week.
  8. patriotscpfc

    patriotscpfc Rookie

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    Miami and Jets @ Gillette and San Diego on the West Coast had absolutely nothing to do with Cassel having a simplified playbook. The Colts loss may have done, but a David Thomas penalty and a Gaffney drop lost that game. Steelers game we lost because of Welker being murdered across the middle and a Special Teams mistake.

    Who do you suggest should be our 3rd QB?

    Robinson? Don't make me laugh, he might just about get on the Practice Squad.

    Brady and Hoyer is fine.

    9 OL is fine with 2 on the Practice Squad and Ojinnaka inactive for the first week with another possibly sliding to the Practice Squad or IR in Week 1.
  9. convertedpatsfan

    convertedpatsfan PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    My guess would be 9 on opening day (including Kaczur), with Ojinnaka added after week 1. That'd give us 10 roster spots, but really only 9 linemen until Kaczur comes back.

    Big assumption on Kaczur though, but he hasn't been IR'd so hoping he makes it back at some point. I'd think Ojinnaka's versatility at guard and tackle would mean he's active all the time.

    And I don't expect Mankins to join this group at any point...
  10. stinkypete

    stinkypete Rookie

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    3 QB on the roster? Who's going to be #3, Zack Robinson? Waste of roster space.

    10-11 OL's, only 7 are going to see the field in a game. We're going to keep 3-4 inactive players at a single position? Waste of roster space.

    Why do I think it is a waste of space? Well, if we have to play Robinson at QB at any time this season, we're screwed. Simple as that. If Brady and Hoyer both went down, we'd be just as well bringing in a JAG off the street. That's my take anyway.

    As for OL, if we sustain so many injuries to the OL that we have to exhaust options 10 or 11, again, we're screwed. Besides, options 10 and 11 will both be on the practice squad, eligible for call up if needed.
  11. patriotscpfc

    patriotscpfc Rookie

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    If Brady went down for 2 weeks and Hoyer got hurt, i'd rather run the wildcat with Edelman and Faulk with Tate and Wes on the field for the entire game.

    There'd be no need to use Moss for that game.
  12. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    What quarterback that was available at any point of this past off-season should the Pats have acquired, that would give the team a better chance of succeeding than Hoyer would?

    Now if you're talking about a third QB on the practice squad for developmental purposes, that's fine. But if you are advocating one less lineman so the Pats can carry a third QB on the 53-man roster, I'm going to respectfully disagree; to me that's a wasted roster spot.

    As far as simplifying the playbook goes, I'd say there's probably more likelihood of that happening for a veteran that is brought in this late than there is for Hoyer, who has had seventeen months in the system at this point.
  13. Ron Sellers

    Ron Sellers Rookie

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    A couple of things to consider:

    There are a lot of injuries to offensive linemen over the course of the season. Not just season-ending IR injuries, but things like sprained ankles and twisted knees. These are really big guys putting a lot of stress on their lower body, getting constantly hit by even bigger guys on the other side of the ball. Do we really expect Stephen Neal to be available for every game? It's not as simple as saying here are my five starters and a couple of backups.

    Football is not like baseball where you send a developing player to the minor leagues. While the practice squad is available, there is zero guarantee that a player will make it there. Another team may sign him either after he is cut, or after he lands on the practice squad. In addition the player may decide his chances of making it to an NFL roster are better with another team, like Buffalo or Tampa Bay, for example. While the Pats would add someone else to the PS, the chances of him contributing this year would be much less; he would be four months behind other players in learning the system.

    Bottom line is that I would prefer keeping one more offensive lineman on the 53-man roster, even if he is most likely going to be a game day inactive. You can't really count on designating a player for the practice squad and him being available later if you need him.
  14. RayClay

    RayClay Rookie

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    We need 9 or 10 linemen. Without Mankins we'll go back to rotating linemen so we have consistency through injuries. Rest Neal occasionally too.Anyone that can't play or isn't eligible for the squad, cut them.

    I have no problem with loading the squad at a certain position, since we actually have used it for OL and other positions have never contributed to the team, so what's the point.

    what I'm saying is, if you're going to hit the waiver wire for a need at a certain position, who cares if there's someone at that position on the PS?
  15. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    THE 53 MAN ROSTER
    Having SEVEN offensive linemen provides for two on the field injuries. Consider having Wendell, LeVoir and Ojinnaka as our three backups, giving us EIGHT, seven active plus an inactive player. Because Ojinnaka can play both tackle and guard, we would be prepared for two injuries. We can't prepare for more. I think that we would be prepared for injuries with the players listed.

    THE PRACTICE SQUAD
    We can indeed count on the Practice Squad. In the past, we have have often had a lineman there who we have brought up during the season. One strategy Belichick has used is to pay a lineman full roster pay while on the Practice Squad. He did that for Yates and Wendell. For the offensive line, the Practice Squad can be the place for backups.

    I think that we need a TOTAL of 11 offensive linemen. As has been posted, the norm is 9 on the active roster and 2 on the Practice Squad (one interior and one tackle). My suggestion is to switch the allocation of the 11 to 8 on the 53 man roster and 3 on the Practice Squad. I suggest this because of the mix of vets and youth. It seems that we would be fine with three of Welch, Bussey, Ohrnberger and Larsen being on the Practice Squad.

    Yes, THREE offensive linemen is one too many on the Practice Squad, UNLESS we can save a needed roster spot on the 53, perhaps for Green-Ellis, perhaps for a special teamer, perhaps for Wheatley.

    KACZUR and GHIACIUC

    For me, the real roster question is whether to include an additional veteran, who cannot be on the Practice Squad. If Kaczur is expected to be healthy by mid-season, I think it likely that he will get a roster spot. If not, then for me the question is whether Ghiaciuc is worth a roster spot. I can certainly understand keeping him as our #9 offensive lineman.

    BOTTOM LINE - THE KIDS ARE ALL COMPETING FOR PRACTICE SQUAD POSITIONS
    Do you agree? Do any deserve a roster spot?
    Welch?
    Larsen?
    Bussey?
    Ohrnberger?

    Ojinnaka and Ghiaciuc are probably better players and likely better prospects.



















  16. BPF

    BPF Rookie

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    Great thread, I've been thinking along the same lines. I just don't think that some of these back ups have earned the right to be on the 53 and they need some development.

    At this point I would go with, 9 for opening day roster simply because you'll leave yourself too light inside if you go with 8 -- unless of course Kaczur is IR'd then that is a possibility. When Ojinnaka is back from suspension after game 1 Wendell will be waived. If the Pats can't pick up a C/G type via trade or waiver claim then Ghiaciuc will be back for game 2 roster:

    OT’s: Light, Volmer, LeVoir (3)

    C/OG’s: Koppen, Neal, Connolly, Wendell, Kaczur, Trade/Waiver claim, Ojinnaka* (6)

    PS: Simmons or Welch, Larsen
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  17. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    1) I am fine with 9 OL's if one is Kaczur.

    2) I am fine with only 3 OT's since Ojinnaka is a RT.

    3) I am fine with a free agent replacing Wendell at G/C. I am not sure if the choice of Ghiaciuc is better than Wendell as our backup center. But, we agree. Belichick will be looking for a G/C on the waiver wire before and after Game 1.

    4) I have one nitpick with your plan. Why isn't Ghiaciuc on your 53 instead of Wendell? After all, you believe that ir Ghiaciuc that would make the 53 if we can't find a free agent. Does he enough service to guarantee his salary if he plays one game?

  18. BradyFTW!

    BradyFTW! PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I wouldn't be at all surprised if Deaderick doesn't make it to the PS. He has enough positional experience, and has shown enough so far, that there are a couple teams that would probably grab him if they got the chance.
  19. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    'trained pigs' will be just fine
    People here and elsewhere seem quick to dismiss Wendell, but in addition what Light and Chris Price have to say I recall reading that in practice Wendell comes in at LG when Connolly takes his FB reps, Wendell has also been taking FB reps in practice, and in the games Wendell has been part of the Wedge on KR, and perhaps even more importantly, when Ojinnaka took his first game reps as a Pat at RT - Wendell was his RG. I call on you long time observers to note how Wendell, like Hochstien and Connolly before him, is following the classic Scarnecchia utility infielder playbook from PSquad to preseason (which is why I think he's next up in the batting order).
  20. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree. LeVoir and Wendell are the current Game Day backups. Wendell was on the 53 for some of last year, and was paid full roster pay when on the Practice Squad. Dante and Belichick think of him as part of the roster. With Mankins gone, and Connolly moved up, it seems that it is time for Wendell to be on the 53 on a full time basis.

    With Connolly starting at LG, Wendell is our backup center. Wendell is also the first off the bench at both guard positions.

    The open question is who will be chosen as the inactive OL backup or backups. Kaczur and Ojinnaka seem to be the be best choices at the moment, with Ghiaciuc or a TBD free agent as other options.

    It is a disappointment for many that only one of the five offensive linemen drafted in 2009 and 2010 are likely to make the 53 man roster, even if we don't have Mankins and Kaczur.

  21. AzPatsFan

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    I beleive there is an unusual set of circumstances occuring right now on the Offensive line.

    It is no secret that Belichick has devoted most of the past few drafts re-building both the starters and reserves on Defense. It is astounding that there is only 1 starter, Wilfork, left from the 2007 undefeated team on Defense.

    At the same time Belichick has taken only a few steps to rebuilding the Offense. I assume more will come. But look what he has done. He drafted mid-range WRs and a TE, found a couple, and end of Draft, Offensive linemen. The only premium picks he used on Offense were Gronkowki at TE and Volmer at Tackle,who both look like future stars. He also drafted a mid-range draft QB who failed, and discovered another "find" at the tail end of the draft in UDFA Brian Hoyer. He needs a next generation premium RB or two.

    I think Belichick has been drafting his next generation Offensive line RESERVES, not his next generation expected starters, except for Volmer(!), as yet. I could see plans to use a pair of premium picks and invest in the Offensive line next draft.

    If this is so, Belichick might well allocate additional positions to offensive linemen, to allow the future reserve candidates to stick around and grow.

    Right now I think Ohrnberger, Larsen and Wendell are all vying for the next generation starting C job, and for reserve G. None are big enough for a full time starting G position. I speculate that the future RT and starting G candidates are future premium draft picks.
  22. patriotscpfc

    patriotscpfc Rookie

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    I'd argue against this line of thinking.

    You have to have at least 3 of the spots on the Practice Squad as athletes. Be it TE, WR, CB or S.

    They have roles to play on the Scout Team during practice.

    2 OL on Practice Squad at most.

    QB, OL, OL/DL/Athlete, DL, LB, Athlete, Athlete, Athlete.

    Myers, Brown and Jenkins would be my 3 athletes right now.

    In fact, I don't see Ohrnberger and maybe Welch/Larsen clearing waivers with their being more of Bill's coaching offspring around the league.

    Robinson, Larsen, Myers, Love, Brown, Fletcher, Jenkins. There's 7 guys. Darryl Richard would be favourite for the final spot for me.

    I see Deaderick getting Foxboro Flu in the near future and hitting IR.

    Plus, Love seems to be getting a lot of reps. Maybe he'll be the UDFA on the Roster this year.
  23. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I was probably just about the only one that thought the Pats might use one of their picks in the first few rounds of this year's draft on an offensive lineman. Almost all the pre-draft discussion focused on OLB, DE, TE and RB - and rightfully so - I still thought even before Mankins' holdout and Kaczur's injury that the OL deserved consideration because of Neal's age and injuries, and Koppen occasionally being overwhelmed.

    When Larsen was drafted I thought he could end up replacing Koppen somewhere down the line. I still think that could happen even though some are ready to write him off. Remember Larsen has just two years of experience on offense; Neal didn't show much in his first training camp either and he turned out to be okay.

    My guess is that among those four early draft picks next year, one each will be used on a RB, DE, and OL; the other choice will be something that drives Pats fans crazy.
  24. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I have suggested the choice of
    8 OL's on the 53 man squad plus 3 on the Practice Squad or
    9 OL's on the 53 man squad plus 2 on the Practice Squad

    Which are you arguing against?
    How many OL's would you want on the 53 and on the Practice Squad?

  25. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson Rookie

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    Really? Nice. I have not heard anyone speak so positively about Orhnbeger.
  26. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    For me, the ROSTER is not the place for developing future reserves. It is the place for developing future starters. The ROSTER is the place for players who are currently reserves and could start if needed, given an injury or two. Wendell and LeVoir are current resxerves that are ready to step and start and who can give starters a rest, as needed, on Game Day.

    The open question is how to use any additional roster spots, understanding that these players would usually be inactive. One option is veterans like Ojinnaki and Ghiaruic, or for injured veterans like Kaczur. Another is to portect a draft choice who needs development
    and who might be picked up by another team, and he is soooo valuable that we do not want to lose him.

    My choice is to use the 8th and POSSIBLY 9th spot for veterans. For now, the right choice seems to be Ojinnaka and Kaczur.

    The PRACTICE SQUAD can be used for youngsters who might contribute in the future or not, who might be a future starter or not. We have lots of those: Larsen, Ohrnberger, Bussey and Welch.

    I agree that while Larsen could be a future starter, future starters will likely come from future drafts. The reality is that the four youngsters may or may not contribute in the future.

    The overlooked player is WENDELL, as another poster noted. WENDELL is ready to backup Koppen now, and could start if necessary. He's the equivalent of Connolly, only at center.
    That being said, the future answer is still likely to be the draft.

  27. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson Rookie

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    I would agree with the caveat that with the exception of a few potential franchise Left Tackles or Mauler C/OGs, unlike other positions where talent level can drop off precipitously, offensive linemen are generally are a dime a dozen in the mid rounds of the draft with little separating them in terms of talent. I wouldn't necessarily say that BB is intentionally drafting back up players, after all Koppen was a 5th round pick, Kaczur was a 4th rounder and Neal was an UDFA (IIRC), but given the continuity of our starting OL (prior to the Mankins holdout) it is a smart drafting strategy IMO to wait till the mid-rounds to draft OL when there are no immediate needs to fill the position.
  28. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I don't see the urgency to draft an OL high in 2011.

    Connolly or Kaczur are reasonable LG options for the next two–three seasons.

    Vollmer starts at one tackle, Light should have another couple seasons at LT remaining to keep Vollmer on the right side (assuming he is extended or re-signed). If Bussey can remain healthy and improve on his angles, technique, and conditioning, he should be competitive for the left side, and maybe the right. LeVoir is a solid reserve swing-Tackle for the next couple seasons. I think Welch could be if he makes the PSquad and takes his conditioning and drill work to heart.

    I know you consider Ohrnberger too small, but his height is adequate and he's much burlier this season than last, so I'd take his reported roster weight with a grain of salt. I think he was drafted with the goal of developing him as Neal's replacement. Wendell is also much thicker than he appeared his rookie season, if he has to step in at either of the three interior positions this season I'd expect things to go reasonably smoothly (04 Hochstein smooth as opposed to 08 Yates). Larsen is already at weight for a NE OL, and he runs like a deer, I hope he does get a shot at the PSquad to develop, I think he's your Center of the future considering how often NE likes to send the Center to the next level and I think he could be a dandy LG if needed.

    Regardless of what occurs with Mankins, I think NE's O-line is going to be okay. Which leaves Vollmer-like targets of opportunity.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2010
  29. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I was day dreaming about NE getting a shot at Roger Saffold, but I'll settle for Gronkowski and wish St. Louis happy with their new LT.
  30. Joker

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    Getting back to the 11 OL'man question, I don't see how this is possible if the Pats are going to keep three TE's on the roster.
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