Free Agency Thoughts

Discussion in ' - Patriots Fan Forum' started by AndyJohnson, Mar 5, 2007.

  1. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson Veteran Supporter

    Warning, this could get wordy.
    -I have an opinion on the historical FACT that FA signings rarely turn out as well as expected. There are few examples of big FA deals where the player was as good or better than the money dictated he should be, and tons of examples of guys who never lived up to the deal.
    The most obvious is that players are paid for their resume, for what they were, then deliver th ewatered-down version of what they become when passing their prime.
    A different thought that occured to me recently is that every FA on the market was not resigned by his previous team. The team that knew him the best decided NOT to pay what he wants. That may be the best perspective on FA failures I can think of. There are a couple of types of players who negate that:
    1) Previous team simply cannot afford him (Thomas seems to fit that)
    2) The player was blocked by a great player. (Jarvis Green comes to mind as a guy who may be a very good starter in the NFL, but will never get the chance here. We may choose to not pay him his value, because his role here wouldnt make it worth the cost)
    3) The team rightfully wont pay the player what he wants because he doesn't fit the system. (Vrabel is a good example)
    4) The player decides to move on for non-money issues

    When you balance it out, there are high-risk FAs--those that their own team decide to let walk, and lower risk FAs, those that may fit 1-4 above.

    As far as the Pats moves so far, my take is:

    Thomas. Great signing. Stud player. Bmore would have kept him if they could. Iam not at all concerned about his age. I thinkhe is peaking, and it will be near the end of the deal before he declines.

    Morris. I actually really like this signing. I thought we needed a guy like this who can start if he must, due to a Maroney injury. Faulk is the 'backup' but should stay the backup if Maroney is injured. Morris fits this bill, IMO, and while Faulks role would be bigger if LM was out, Morris can be reasonable effective filling the bulk of Maroney role. If its Maroney 85% of the snaps and Faulk 15%, then its Morris 70% and Faulk 30% if LM is out. However, what I like best about this signing is that Morris is a special teams stud. 2(?) years ago when we tried to sign him, it was almost exclusively for special teams ability. This gives us a special teams stud when Maroney is healthy and a capable fill in if he were not.

    Brady. When you look at the chances Graham got in the passing game, and recognize elsewhere he would get a lot more, it was obvious that we were moving on. Graham is going to be paid as a multi-dimensional TE, while in our system, he was never going to be that. No doubt it is a loss, because he was the best blocking TE in the NFL, but Brady is a very good blocker as well, and while he does not have Graham's speed and athleticism, may actually be a better fit for the routine type of receiving he will be ask (and Graham was asked) to do.

    Welker. I wasn't excited about the possiblity of Welker a few weeks ago, but its growing on me. Welker, IMO, is Troy Brown circa 1998-99. Brown then became a 100 catch guy for a few years, then age set him back to a backup role. Welker may never go beyond the Brown of 98-99, but Brown was very effective before becoming a 100 catch guy. Even more important is the similarities between the 2, short route running and run after the catch ability, and how valuable that is in our system.
    We have really not had the threat of a guy who can catch a 5 yard pass, then make 3 guys miss and end up with 35 yards in quite some time, and our offense is really helped by it.

    I thought Caldwell showed decent rac potential last year---he always looked to escape after making the catch, but never really had a lot of success. I thought Gaffney does not fit the rac mold. Jackson is the speed, and I expect we will see that coming.

    We should know by now its not about comparing to past teams, but if you look at the success we have had in the passing game, it seems Welker can bring what Brown did and Branch later replaced. Jackson adds the speed factor that Patten brought. (In 2004 Patten's speed and deep threat was a big boost to the offense, even though he only caught about 35 passes or so)
    Caldwell/Gaffney seem to be the capable David Givens-type.

    Maybe we do add Stallworth. I'm not so sure we will. If we do, my hopes are not extremely high for him, but I think he could replicate what David Patten did in 01-02 when he caught 60 passes or so. If we do, we will have more depth than playing time at a position where last year we were struggling to sign a guy and get him on the field.
    Really, if you look at the transition in the WR postion from 01-04 (valley to peak) when we started with Brown, Patten and no one, and grew to a very deep and talented unit, we may be making that jump again this time in one off-season.

    Going forward, I'd like to see:
    Maybe another WR like Stallworth.
    1 or 2 OL added in the mid rounds of the draft.
    A 3rd QB who isnt on Social Security.
    One more vet LB who could be a primary backup.
    One more vet LB who is a reliable JAG backup.
    The rest of the LB corps filled out by retianing our own young guys or getting newer versions.
    A day 1 corner who could push for the #3 corner role.
    One safety to add to the mix, ideally a draft choice.

    Of course as cap room dictates, I am all for upgrading any position further through FA in addition to the above.
  2. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member Supporter

    #75 Jersey

    Great stuff, AJ.

    I am a little concerned re: AD's age and the last two years of that contract. In those last two years he would be about the same age as Willie Mac when we let him go because we wouldn't pay him north of $2 mill. per year. (of course the cap will be higher then than last year).

    Interesting angle on Morris. What you wrote made me consider that this signing might almost as much to do with Tebuckey's release as it did with Dillon's.

    Semantic difference regarding K. Faulk. You termed him the "backup". I think of him as the "changeup".
  3. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson Veteran Supporter

    Frankly, if we get 3 years from Thomas at his peak, and he retires after that, I would love this signing.
    I don't think 33-34 is that old for a LB to be effective though.
    It almost lines up as, the guy he will most resemble (Willie) was let go when age caught up (and not before) and thomas contract will run out at about that same stage.
  4. mgteich

    mgteich Veteran Supporter

    My question is about the health of the OL. If they are healthy, I do not see us drafting even one offensive lineman. We have a fine group of 10 young linemen for the 53, plus a couple more for the Practice Squad.
  5. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    I am sure that biggest Team weakness is depth at LB. Currently we have four starters and now have to consider that we are going to lose the fifth guy in a four man crew. Behind TBC there is NOBODY. I would want a first reserve at LB before I want the fifth WR, two or three beyond the starters.

    Why aren't they interviewing Nap Harris or Edwards, or someone else?

    I considered the Welker addition, and realized that he fill two needs at once; the short quick reception role and releases others for the deep receiver role.

    Both Caldwell and Gaffney have acceptable not great speed; both demonstrated that they can catch deep when sent on those routes in 2006. Now they can be sent more often, solving the intermediate and deep roles.

    So Welker solves both the short possesion situation and frees Gaffney/Caldwelll to go deep, as well as handle the intermediate routes, making them more valuable and dangerous in both situations when the Defense doesn't know what they will do.
  6. Sean Pa Patriot

    Sean Pa Patriot Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

    #12 Jersey

    Im going to disagree with you on the Stallworth is another David Patten, but we shall see..
  7. chunkypony

    chunkypony Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

    My opinion on the free agency period is as follows:


    I am going nuts! How is this happening? Why are we having so much action? I don't get it? How much caproom do we currently have? Is Welker now signed? What are the details of this? Stallworth? MOSS??!?!?!?! I am not sure about either of them. Don't we need some JAGs as backup LBs and CBs????? Why is everyone freaking out about a 7TH ROUND PICK!?!?!? WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON ON THIS %&#^ING BOARD?!?!?!?! WHY CAN"T EVERYONE JUST RELAX FOR TWO SECONDS>??!?"!?!?!?!

    This place is nuts right now. That is all.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2007
  8. Here's some thoughts...

    You Patsy pusses are funny. So arrogant and full of ****. Let's take away your football team for one second and let's see what you've got left to be thankful for living in New England. Well, the rest of your sports teams suck, and last time I checked your towns are made of **** and bricks and full of ugly people with ugly accents. The reason y'all are so arrogant as Patriots fans is because it's all you got. Take Miami fans ... we may have a pourous football team right now, but let me tell you, life is the **** down here, so we'll be okay during the wait for a better team. We've got better weather, better girls, better environment. Even before the Pats were good you fans were annoying. Now, you are just a bunch of loud-mouthed *****es who ride Belichick's coat tails. And I'll even go on and accuse every Pats fan of wanting to suck off Tom Brady, no matter if you're straight or not. You're just living a pathetic life of being a Patriots fan first, lowly New Englander second. Enjoy living in the armpit of America, jackasses.
  9. Heck67

    Heck67 On the Roster

    click, cut ,paste lazy get to work loser
  10. kptmorgan04

    kptmorgan04 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

    I completly agree with this, and would have liked them to (I know they still can, but it doesnt look like it) bring back Tully as a reserve roll (he is most likely looking to go to a place he can start, and good for him if he can get it). I am hoping that seau comes back, I think he would have really made a difference in the postseason if he didnt get injured and that he still has some left in the tank with a rotation of him, vrable and bruschi at inside.
  11. DarrylS

    DarrylS Supporter Supporter

    Looks like he has been taking some cues from Borges, except he is too stupid to realize he is plagiarizing himself.

    A very good read by AJ, not much I disagree with, regarding AD's age, some players seem to age better than others dependent on injuries, he might be ok difficult to assess right now. Reading this AM Stallworth is heading to NE. Stay tuned folks more stuff could be happening.
  12. shirtsleeve

    shirtsleeve In the Starting Line-Up

    Dont forget about Borges!:D

    Shoulda been here last evening. 1100 viewers. 220 members. Crazy stuff. Especially due not only to FA but also due to the fact that someone here broke the whole Borges thing to CHFF. Been crazy ever since.

    To answer your questions. We will know about cap space when the contract details are released by the league. Check Miguels pages frequently. Welker is signed, at least I think its official, haven't checked the official website yet on this one. But its a done deal. Best anyone knows. 5 years 18 million. 10.5 guarranteed. Stallworth is in town trying to peddle himself off on us now. Moss trade is a big rumor and that is all it is for now. (personally dont want either of them) Yes we need help at MLB and in the secondary. More at FS than CB imo. People are freakin about the seventh (3 short of mr. irrelevent) because we coulda stuck with the poison pill and kept the pick. We gained at least a week, and can now adjust the cap due to the trade deal instead. Not as big a deal as the more retentive make it out to be. Welker will be great here.

    I do wish people would take their time to scan the threads before they start the 63rd one on the same topic. Perhaps a mod could merge these repetitive threads, making the board easier to read?

    That is all right back at ya!
  13. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks Supporter Supporter

    Let's get AJ back on the front page...bahump!
  14. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi Supporter

    #12 Jersey

    Regarding LB it depends on how much they like Pierre Woods and Corey Mays and whether Barry Gardner and Junior Seau are coming back. If the above are all longshots then we need some serious depth at LB. Quality depth. OTOH, if they like the chances of those guys to be quality depth then we're just about done at LB.
  15. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks Supporter Supporter

    In Free Agency I presume you to mean, in the draft I expect (at minimum) one or more UDFA players signed, though the ideal would be to land one of the handful of higher ranked players as the draft unfolds.
  16. jeffd

    jeffd On the Game Day Roster

    Great read. BTW, no need to post a warning about the thread being long. Most of us were prepared when we saw the author of the post.

    I have two disagreements.
    I'm not big on Sammy Morris. I hope he was brought in to compete for the #2 spot, not as the answer. If he wins the spot in camp fine but I'd like to see someone else brought in.
    Also, I don't see a need for a vet LB. We have Bruschi, Seau, Colvin, Thomas and Vrabel. That's more vet leadership than some DIVISIONS have. Bring in some kids and let them knock the old guys out of their roles.
  17. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi Supporter

    #12 Jersey

    Sure, some guys will be signed but whether they're big names or high draft choices vs. throwaway guys depends on the four players I mentioned.
  18. Bertil

    Bertil Third String But Playing on Special Teams

    Man, Florida schools really have their work cut out for them if this is the kind of "product" they're turning out.
  19. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi Supporter

    #12 Jersey

    Morris signed for solid money, if Maroney gets hurt he is the guy. Someone else might be brought in but he would be behind Morris, not ahead of him.
  20. mgteich

    mgteich Veteran Supporter

    Seau isn't signed, is he?


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