The 2008 Patriots...

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AzPatsFan

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
I want to pose a question. Could the 2008 edition of the Patriots be even stronger than the 2007 edition? What would it take to do so?

On examination it does NOT require an impossible off season or heavily mortgaging the future to have that happen.

The Pats will enter the Off season with about $12 million in CAP room, per Miguel. They have four picks in the draft in rounds one through three. They might suffer the retirement of either Tedy or Junior, but not both if BB desires. They have three players with very high CAP contracts who may need to renegotiate, as well as a couple of very important Free Agents to sign.

They would need to find about $5-6 million dollars to resign Moss and Asante over what they spent in 2007. Doable certainly. ($ 1.5 more for Asante and $4 more for Moss.) Could they rengotiate the three high Cap hits for Donte, Rosey and Kelly? Kelley and Rosey would seem to be easy renegotiations.

Colvin's contract is up after 2008, and could be extended. Kelley's renegotiated to reflect reality as the sixth WR on a six man rotation. Only Donte contract seems to be a stumbling block but money is there, if reason prevails. Or maybe it time to promote CJ and let Donte go.

What could the Patriots add in the Draft? Laurinaitis/Ghoulson and a second round CB and a RB and a OT as four prime picks. What might the pickups be in Free Agency?

How about a Karlos Dansby for $5 million and and for chuckles, Jason Taylor at a ring-seeking induced $2.5 million in new money? That would give a ILB crew of say Tedy, AD, Karlos, and Lauranitis inside; and a Vrabel, Colvin, Taylor and Woods outside, with flexibilty to swing players as well. The CBs would be same but four deep, and the Safeties the same five deep playable participants.

The oldsters could be platooned to allow them to rest, pace and tutor. (Tedy and Rodney and Jason) The DL remains the same as this year but with a healthy Seymour all year and Mike Wright back.

The Offense would be the same with another RB taking Eckle's job, Dave Thomas back at third TE, and maybe Donte gone, but not necessarily. Add a veteran backup QB, if you want, and the job is done.

All can be done for about $20 million or so, and NO MORTGAGE for the Future and that is what the Pats will likely have after the renegotiations.

Woud you be satisfied that such a Club might be even stronger than the 2007 edition?:eek: :eek:
 

Ice_Ice_Brady

PatsFans.com Supporter
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If this team goes 19-0, I don't know how they could be STRONGER. After all, teams are measured on W/L record.

Before we start thinking about how to get better, we need to hope that we can retain most of the talent we have right now. Despite Belioli's desire to improve the team every year, sometimes we regress.

The key to next year, and the next several years, begins with signing Moss to a longer deal. If we do that, we have a chance to improve. If Moss is not resigned, no matter what we do this offseason, we won't be as strong as this year's team.
 

shmessy

Northern VA/Retired
PatsFans.com Supporter
Excellent post.

Can you imagine a healthy Sammy Morris next year???? Wow!!!!!

The big need is at LB (particularly ILB). I want AD on the outside rotating with Vrabes and Rosey. I want Laurinaitis inside learning from Tedy, Junior or a good vet FA.

I'm still not sold on Asante at $8 million per year. Shutdown corners should be able to go to the opposite side of the field to take on the other teams' top WR. Couldn't we get two extremely good CB's for $4 million each (assuming incentives)?
 

patsfaninpa

Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract
I want to pose a question. Could the 2008 edition of the Patriots be even stronger than the 2007 edition? What would it take to do so?

On examination it does NOT require an impossible off season or heavily mortgaging the future to have that happen.

The Pats will enter the Off season with about $12 million in CAP room, per Miguel. They have four picks in the draft in rounds one through three. They might suffer the retirement of either Tedy or Junior, but not both if BB desires. They have three players with very high CAP contracts who may need to renegotiate, as well as a couple of very important Free Agents to sign.

They would need to find about $5-6 million dollars to resign Moss and Asante over what they spent in 2007. Doable certainly. ($ 1.5 more for Asante and $4 more for Moss.) Could they rengotiate the three high Cap hits for Donte, Rosey and Kelly? Kelley and Rosey would seem to be easy renegotiations.

Colvin's contract is up after 2008, and could be extended. Kelley's renegotiated to reflect reality as the sixth WR on a six man rotation. Only Donte contract seems to be a stumbling block but money is there, if reason prevails. Or maybe it time to promote CJ and let Donte go.

What could the Patriots add in the Draft? Laurinaitis/Ghoulson and a second round CB and a RB and a OT as four prime picks. What might the pickups be in Free Agency?

How about a Karlos Dansby for $5 million and and for chuckles, Jason Taylor at a ring-seeking induced $2.5 million in new money? That would give a ILB crew of say Tedy, AD, Karlos, and Lauranitis inside; and a Vrabel, Colvin, Taylor and Woods outside, with flexibilty to swing players as well. The CBs would be same but four deep, and the Safeties the same five deep playable participants.

The oldsters could be platooned to allow them to rest, pace and tutor. (Tedy and Rodney and Jason) The DL remains the same as this year but with a healthy Seymour all year and Mike Wright back.

The Offense would be the same with another RB taking Eckle's job, Dave Thomas back at third TE, and maybe Donte gone, but not necessarily. Add a veteran backup QB, if you want, and the job is done.

All can be done for about $20 million or so, and NO MORTGAGE for the Future and that is what the Pats will likely have after the renegotiations.

Woud you be satisfied that such a Club might be even stronger than the 2007 edition?:eek: :eek:


Your math is a little fuzzy. That's 12m in cap room with zero money counting towards Samuel and Moss. Neither is signed. So, their 08 salaries aren't factored into the 12m figure. We will need 7-8each for Moss and Samuel. IMO the only way we keep Asante would be to drop Colvin. I think it's a given we will keep Moss. The following players not counted either; Caldwell,Gay,Bruschi and Seau. I think our offense is pretty set. Not so sure about the defense.
 

Amnorix

On the Game Day Roster
Your math is a little fuzzy. That's 12m in cap room with zero money counting towards Samuel and Moss. Neither is signed. So, their 08 salaries aren't factored into the 12m figure. We will need 7-8each for Moss and Samuel. IMO the only way we keep Asante would be to drop Colvin. I think it's a given we will keep Moss. The following players not counted either; Caldwell,Gay,Bruschi and Seau. I think our offense is pretty set. Not so sure about the defense.


Does the $12M number include the STallworth figure which isn't going to happen? While Colvin's number is also sizeable, the Stallworth figure, if you include the roster bonus, is definitely the one that is going to go down first.
 

SoCal Bong

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
A healthy Sammy Morris and Dave Thomas will make this offense even better even if we lose a Stallworth or Chad Jackson.
 

satz

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
alot of assumptions.
you assume kelly and colvin will redo their contract. look at takeo spikes contract if colvin is cut at 30 he is going to be a big check coming his way in FA.So now unless he wants to stay their is no way we can easily tell him what to do.

asante is gone for good .also gay and wilson are fa . i am more worried about gay as he has been good in nickel performace.2nd and 3rd year CB`s play well in our system so i see merriweather ,harrison and sanders will be playing alot of 3 safety formation to counter the TE threats. we will need 1 more cb to play against hobbs.or maybe gay can play their leaving one safety in nickel pakcage.we do have andrews.

our slow poke lb who are fine covering westbroke and jacobs coming from the back field will be back doing what a LB does for 1 more season.i do not see alot of "young lb" covering RB effectively as our guys in the league now.

AD was brought here and paid to play the QB of the front seven.He is smart and has to know every player responsiblities and calls .I think him playing every spot in baltimore and 1 yr in the system will be critical to step up.He is the big strong MLB we can send on gaurds for success.He is the key who is going to fill bru`s shoes in play calling. I do not see a rookie taking over playcalling for the front seven. now seau or bru do it and tell the DL what to do i will be worried to hand this to a rookie .

kyle eckel is a ST stand out and plays a decent FB - replace him a rookie who might do what develop into eckel in 2 yrs ?
 
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AzPatsFan

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
Looking at Miguel's figures he has I thinik he has Stallworth Colvin and Washington's contracts included but not Moss' or Asante's or any other FAs non existent contracts.

Any Long term contract for AS or RM would cost 8-9 million but the CAP in year one would be a lot less. So they could sign all their other FA and pick up a one or two FAs too.
 
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PatsFanInVa

PatsFans.com Supporter
PatsFans.com Supporter
2020 Weekly NFL Picks Winner
If this team goes 19-0, I don't know how they could be STRONGER. After all, teams are measured on W/L record.

Yah. They could go on TV talking about themselves from this year and say "Hey, Tommy - These guys are pursuing perfection, while we live in a state of perfection. Yeah Randy, don't call me when you're in my town, call me when you're in my driveway. Yeah Tommy, you got an asterisk too. No you do Randy...."
 

Miguel

Patriots Salary Cap Guru
PatsFans.com Supporter
2020 Weekly NFL Picks Winner
The Pats will enter the Off season with about $12 million in CAP room, per Miguel.

I need to do a better job of explaining that my future numbers are of today. If nothing changes between now and the start of free agency, the Patriots will indeed up around $12 million under the announced cap of $116,134,000. But things will change between now and the advent of free agency.

1.) The Patriots will sign their PS players to 2008 contracts.
2.) The Patriots will tender their ERFAs and RFAs offers.
3.) Players will have reached escalators.
4.) The LTBE/NTLBE incentive calculation will take place determining the Patriots' 2008 adjusted cap number.
5.) Option Bonuses will either be picked or not.
6.) A player may get tagged (transition or Franchise)
7.) Players may retire
 

Ring 6

PatsFans.com Wall of Fame Member
This is a great topic that should dominated our mid-late February discussions.
I'm not going to get into the cap parts of it right now, because I think we will make the cap work. (By the way, Asante would cost only the first year cap hit on a new contract, which would be siginificantly lower than this year).
I want to focus on positions and units to see improvement, decline or staying the same.

QB- Cant be better. Brady won't digress, although the numbers could just because they were so awesome. We are the best in the NFL here. It could make sense to look at a QB in the draft. We may well be able to afford a 3rd or 4th rounder on a QB.
RB- Will only get better. Maroney is good, and is improving. Morris staying healthy would help the backup situation. Faulk doesnt seem ready to decline in his role just yet.
WR- I'd like to see Stallworth back. He was productive, I dont think 46 catches is unprodctive when you have 2 other WRs catching 210 between them. IMO, Stallworth helps create some of Welkers opportunities. Gaffney can be replaced by Jackson, IMO, but I'd rather he replace Gaffney than Stallworth. Even though Gaffs production has resembled Stallworths there is no doubt Stallworth creates more issues for defenses.
TE- Should improve. I think Watson has settled in at a good level, and will produce as much as opportunites permit. Thomas looks like a contributor to me if he is healthy. Brady missed an awful lot of time. I think whether or not he returns, we will have someone in his role, and better health improves the position, even if its from someone who is a cut beliow Brady as a blocker.
OL- Should continue to improve. Light, Koppen and Neal are what they are. They are veterans who should play equally next year to what they did this year. Mankins seems to continue to improve. Kazcur has room to improve and has not played enough to think he has peaked, plus OCallaghan has a decent chance to overtake him. Playing together as a unit helps an OL. Depth seems solid. We seem to have set up a dynamic on our OL where essentially anyone good enough to be on the roster, can step in for a game or 2 and noone really notices. Here, the success we have had with mid to late round picks (Koppen, Kaczur, O'C) and undrafted pickups being developed it seems reasonable that we will look at OL prospect on day 2.

DL- We are stocked, young and should be the best DL in the NFL for the forseeable future. I'm not thrilled with the depth, as Wright seems to have trouble staying healthy, and Smith is still unknown. But we don't go more than 4 deep very often. A vet as insurance vs injury could make sense. This is also a spot where day 2 draftees have a chance to make the team as end of the bench guys.
LB- Potential transition here. I think Colvin (depending on the real severity of his injury) gets extended to save a bunch of cap room. Colvin, Vrabel, Thomas are 3/4s of a tremendous LB corps. Bruschi played better this year than last, and seems to be going nowhere. I think Seau will retire. Depth is again a concern. What we do not know is how Alexander, Woods, and even Lua fit into the plans. This would seem to be an ideal time to draft a LB in round 1. (I like Lauranitis a lot if he declares) With the 4 back (assuming Seau retires and Colvin is healthy) and the versatility they have, a top pick LB can get as much playing time as he earns and not be needed to. I would see Lauranitis as the 5th LB, and with AD able to play inside or out, Lauranitis would allow the other 4 to rotate equally. i.e. he could play half of the 'regulaar D' snaps, with the other 4 splitting up the rest. Because nickel/dime Ds are used so much in the NFL today, we really use 3 1/2 LBs, (4 in the base, which is about half the plays, are 3 in nickel/dime) We have basically played the entire season never going deeper than the 5th LB. I think the 6th-whatever spots will be a combination of vet insurance, developmental guys and special teamers. We won't be going 6 or more deep in starter-caliber guys, although this board will clamor for it.
CB- Another potential transition. Does Asante stay or go? Does Chad Scott come back for depth? For the first time in ages, we have stayed healthy at corner and rarely gone deeper than the top 3. I think we need to add a pick (day 1) or FA to that mix, and 2 if Asante goes. Being stronger in 2008 hinges a lot on the cb position, imo.
S- For the first time in a long time, this position has potential for improvement from within. Sanders has been very good. Meriwhether should contribute a lot more next year (I see him in a Sanders of 2006 role) then take over as a starter in 2009. I'd like ot see Wilson back, and I think it should be a cap friendly move. I see no reason for Wilson to want to leave, he should sign a 1-2 year deal, stay healthy and improve his market value. Rodney should be back in 2008, which makes us 4 deep with quality safeties. Cant ask for more than that. I'd like to see us find a day 2 safety that can be a special teams demon, and be developed into a backup safety by 2009, and potnetial starter within 3-4 years.

I see no reason the Pats won't be back equally as strong in 2008. The majority of the contributors will be back, and we will have 4 picks (until we trade) in the first 3 rounds which should improve the area of the roster that is guys who play sometimes but not much, such as LB, DL, CB, TE, OL.

My gut instinct is that BB has not yet gotten his roster to his ideal of what he is building. I think he has almost all of the pieces in place to fit his blueprint of the best roster he could put together in a capped league, but still sees some ways to squeeze more out of the cap and improve some slots within the 53. I have not analyzed the cap situation in great detail, but it appears to me that we can do what we want and need to do and don't have to make exteme sacrifices to future caps to do so.
 

Ring 6

PatsFans.com Wall of Fame Member
I need to do a better job of explaining that my future numbers are of today. If nothing changes between now and the start of free agency, the Patriots will indeed up around $12 million under the announced cap of $116,134,000. But things will change between now and the advent of free agency.

1.) The Patriots will sign their PS players to 2008 contracts.
2.) The Patriots will tender their ERFAs and RFAs offers.
3.) Players will have reached escalators.
4.) The LTBE/NTLBE incentive calculation will take place determining the Patriots' 2008 adjusted cap number.
5.) Option Bonuses will either be picked or not.
6.) A player may get tagged (transition or Franchise)
7.) Players may retire

I know that it is impossible to know the impact of all of these, but, based on your general knowledge and past examples, where would you estimate those items would leave the cap, after they all play out?
I'm guessing half of that 12mill gets absorbed in those moves, and the best guess of where we are when FA starts is 6mill of cap room, NOT COUNTING any extensions, or reworks of contracts.
 

mgteich

PatsFans.com Veteran
PatsFans.com Supporter
What portion of the $6M you show in 2007 will be rolled over into 2008? We there any transactions to use it up?

I need to do a better job of explaining that my future numbers are of today. If nothing changes between now and the start of free agency, the Patriots will indeed up around $12 million under the announced cap of $116,134,000. But things will change between now and the advent of free agency.

1.) The Patriots will sign their PS players to 2008 contracts.
2.) The Patriots will tender their ERFAs and RFAs offers.
3.) Players will have reached escalators.
4.) The LTBE/NTLBE incentive calculation will take place determining the Patriots' 2008 adjusted cap number.
5.) Option Bonuses will either be picked or not.
6.) A player may get tagged (transition or Franchise)
7.) Players may retire
 

mgteich

PatsFans.com Veteran
PatsFans.com Supporter
Re: The 2008 Patriots... - OFFENSE

I agree with almost all of what you say. It seems that there are several challenges in being stronger in 2008. Of course, health is always the #1 factor to consider, so depth is critical.
===============
OFFENSE - at least as good!!!!
The only issue is re-signing Moss

QB even
We should add a #3 or, even better, a #2

RB improved
Maroney should continue to improve
Morris should contribute more
We should bring in someone as an upgrade to Eckel, even a jag

WR down a little
We need to re-sign Moss
Stallworth should be more involved
Welker is Welker
Jackson should be more involved (or Gaffney could be re-signed)
Washington or a ST/WR replacment could be more involved
it seems best to keep six and re-sign Gaffney

TE improved
we have to have better health at TE

OL a bit improved
We have a great OL that gets better each year, with more experience
===================================================
This is a great topic that should dominated our mid-late February discussions.
I'm not going to get into the cap parts of it right now, because I think we will make the cap work. (By the way, Asante would cost only the first year cap hit on a new contract, which would be siginificantly lower than this year).
I want to focus on positions and units to see improvement, decline or staying the same.

QB- Cant be better. Brady won't digress, although the numbers could just because they were so awesome. We are the best in the NFL here. It could make sense to look at a QB in the draft. We may well be able to afford a 3rd or 4th rounder on a QB.
RB- Will only get better. Maroney is good, and is improving. Morris staying healthy would help the backup situation. Faulk doesnt seem ready to decline in his role just yet.
WR- I'd like to see Stallworth back. He was productive, I dont think 46 catches is unprodctive when you have 2 other WRs catching 210 between them. IMO, Stallworth helps create some of Welkers opportunities. Gaffney can be replaced by Jackson, IMO, but I'd rather he replace Gaffney than Stallworth. Even though Gaffs production has resembled Stallworths there is no doubt Stallworth creates more issues for defenses.
TE- Should improve. I think Watson has settled in at a good level, and will produce as much as opportunites permit. Thomas looks like a contributor to me if he is healthy. Brady missed an awful lot of time. I think whether or not he returns, we will have someone in his role, and better health improves the position, even if its from someone who is a cut beliow Brady as a blocker.
OL- Should continue to improve. Light, Koppen and Neal are what they are. They are veterans who should play equally next year to what they did this year. Mankins seems to continue to improve. Kazcur has room to improve and has not played enough to think he has peaked, plus OCallaghan has a decent chance to overtake him. Playing together as a unit helps an OL. Depth seems solid. We seem to have set up a dynamic on our OL where essentially anyone good enough to be on the roster, can step in for a game or 2 and noone really notices. Here, the success we have had with mid to late round picks (Koppen, Kaczur, O'C) and undrafted pickups being developed it seems reasonable that we will look at OL prospect on day 2.

DL- We are stocked, young and should be the best DL in the NFL for the forseeable future. I'm not thrilled with the depth, as Wright seems to have trouble staying healthy, and Smith is still unknown. But we don't go more than 4 deep very often. A vet as insurance vs injury could make sense. This is also a spot where day 2 draftees have a chance to make the team as end of the bench guys.
LB- Potential transition here. I think Colvin (depending on the real severity of his injury) gets extended to save a bunch of cap room. Colvin, Vrabel, Thomas are 3/4s of a tremendous LB corps. Bruschi played better this year than last, and seems to be going nowhere. I think Seau will retire. Depth is again a concern. What we do not know is how Alexander, Woods, and even Lua fit into the plans. This would seem to be an ideal time to draft a LB in round 1. (I like Lauranitis a lot if he declares) With the 4 back (assuming Seau retires and Colvin is healthy) and the versatility they have, a top pick LB can get as much playing time as he earns and not be needed to. I would see Lauranitis as the 5th LB, and with AD able to play inside or out, Lauranitis would allow the other 4 to rotate equally. i.e. he could play half of the 'regulaar D' snaps, with the other 4 splitting up the rest. Because nickel/dime Ds are used so much in the NFL today, we really use 3 1/2 LBs, (4 in the base, which is about half the plays, are 3 in nickel/dime) We have basically played the entire season never going deeper than the 5th LB. I think the 6th-whatever spots will be a combination of vet insurance, developmental guys and special teamers. We won't be going 6 or more deep in starter-caliber guys, although this board will clamor for it.
CB- Another potential transition. Does Asante stay or go? Does Chad Scott come back for depth? For the first time in ages, we have stayed healthy at corner and rarely gone deeper than the top 3. I think we need to add a pick (day 1) or FA to that mix, and 2 if Asante goes. Being stronger in 2008 hinges a lot on the cb position, imo.
S- For the first time in a long time, this position has potential for improvement from within. Sanders has been very good. Meriwhether should contribute a lot more next year (I see him in a Sanders of 2006 role) then take over as a starter in 2009. I'd like ot see Wilson back, and I think it should be a cap friendly move. I see no reason for Wilson to want to leave, he should sign a 1-2 year deal, stay healthy and improve his market value. Rodney should be back in 2008, which makes us 4 deep with quality safeties. Cant ask for more than that. I'd like to see us find a day 2 safety that can be a special teams demon, and be developed into a backup safety by 2009, and potnetial starter within 3-4 years.

I see no reason the Pats won't be back equally as strong in 2008. The majority of the contributors will be back, and we will have 4 picks (until we trade) in the first 3 rounds which should improve the area of the roster that is guys who play sometimes but not much, such as LB, DL, CB, TE, OL.

My gut instinct is that BB has not yet gotten his roster to his ideal of what he is building. I think he has almost all of the pieces in place to fit his blueprint of the best roster he could put together in a capped league, but still sees some ways to squeeze more out of the cap and improve some slots within the 53. I have not analyzed the cap situation in great detail, but it appears to me that we can do what we want and need to do and don't have to make exteme sacrifices to future caps to do so.
 

mgteich

PatsFans.com Veteran
PatsFans.com Supporter
Re: The 2008 Patriots... - DEFENSE

DEFENSE - down
We need one top linebacker addition PLUS at least two TOP corners
We need Bruschi or Seau to stay another year
Can this be done? Will it be?

DEFENSIVE LINE - even
We can always use someone to develop at the end of the bench, yet again. It is great that the top four are signed through 2009. Wright, Smith and Moore seem OK. We have been trying to improve the backups for years. We've tried UDFA's, the 6th round, and most recently the 4th. I wouldn't be surprised to see an even earlier round used on the DL.

LINEBACKERS - down
Our #5 linebacker at #7 would be great, but will he contribute more than Seau
It would be great to get some production from the backups, other than ST's
Even with the #7 to replace Seau, we still don't have enough quality depth

CORNERS - down
Unless we re-sign Asante and Gay, I can see anything but a decline.
Hobbs will continue to improve. And that's all we have. I would expect to add two draftees in the first three rounds, plus a free agent like Chad Scott, but this is unlikely to be enough. Yes, Richardson could make the squad.

SAFETIES - even
Harrison and Sanders were lights out this year.
I do expect Sanders and Meriweather to improve.
Harrison should lose a step, but still be a fine starter.
I would like to re-sign Wilson. Call it Meriweather insurance, or depth.





This is a great topic that should dominated our mid-late February discussions.
I'm not going to get into the cap parts of it right now, because I think we will make the cap work. (By the way, Asante would cost only the first year cap hit on a new contract, which would be siginificantly lower than this year).
I want to focus on positions and units to see improvement, decline or staying the same.

QB- Cant be better. Brady won't digress, although the numbers could just because they were so awesome. We are the best in the NFL here. It could make sense to look at a QB in the draft. We may well be able to afford a 3rd or 4th rounder on a QB.
RB- Will only get better. Maroney is good, and is improving. Morris staying healthy would help the backup situation. Faulk doesnt seem ready to decline in his role just yet.
WR- I'd like to see Stallworth back. He was productive, I dont think 46 catches is unprodctive when you have 2 other WRs catching 210 between them. IMO, Stallworth helps create some of Welkers opportunities. Gaffney can be replaced by Jackson, IMO, but I'd rather he replace Gaffney than Stallworth. Even though Gaffs production has resembled Stallworths there is no doubt Stallworth creates more issues for defenses.
TE- Should improve. I think Watson has settled in at a good level, and will produce as much as opportunites permit. Thomas looks like a contributor to me if he is healthy. Brady missed an awful lot of time. I think whether or not he returns, we will have someone in his role, and better health improves the position, even if its from someone who is a cut beliow Brady as a blocker.
OL- Should continue to improve. Light, Koppen and Neal are what they are. They are veterans who should play equally next year to what they did this year. Mankins seems to continue to improve. Kazcur has room to improve and has not played enough to think he has peaked, plus OCallaghan has a decent chance to overtake him. Playing together as a unit helps an OL. Depth seems solid. We seem to have set up a dynamic on our OL where essentially anyone good enough to be on the roster, can step in for a game or 2 and noone really notices. Here, the success we have had with mid to late round picks (Koppen, Kaczur, O'C) and undrafted pickups being developed it seems reasonable that we will look at OL prospect on day 2.

DL- We are stocked, young and should be the best DL in the NFL for the forseeable future. I'm not thrilled with the depth, as Wright seems to have trouble staying healthy, and Smith is still unknown. But we don't go more than 4 deep very often. A vet as insurance vs injury could make sense. This is also a spot where day 2 draftees have a chance to make the team as end of the bench guys.
LB- Potential transition here. I think Colvin (depending on the real severity of his injury) gets extended to save a bunch of cap room. Colvin, Vrabel, Thomas are 3/4s of a tremendous LB corps. Bruschi played better this year than last, and seems to be going nowhere. I think Seau will retire. Depth is again a concern. What we do not know is how Alexander, Woods, and even Lua fit into the plans. This would seem to be an ideal time to draft a LB in round 1. (I like Lauranitis a lot if he declares) With the 4 back (assuming Seau retires and Colvin is healthy) and the versatility they have, a top pick LB can get as much playing time as he earns and not be needed to. I would see Lauranitis as the 5th LB, and with AD able to play inside or out, Lauranitis would allow the other 4 to rotate equally. i.e. he could play half of the 'regulaar D' snaps, with the other 4 splitting up the rest. Because nickel/dime Ds are used so much in the NFL today, we really use 3 1/2 LBs, (4 in the base, which is about half the plays, are 3 in nickel/dime) We have basically played the entire season never going deeper than the 5th LB. I think the 6th-whatever spots will be a combination of vet insurance, developmental guys and special teamers. We won't be going 6 or more deep in starter-caliber guys, although this board will clamor for it.
CB- Another potential transition. Does Asante stay or go? Does Chad Scott come back for depth? For the first time in ages, we have stayed healthy at corner and rarely gone deeper than the top 3. I think we need to add a pick (day 1) or FA to that mix, and 2 if Asante goes. Being stronger in 2008 hinges a lot on the cb position, imo.
S- For the first time in a long time, this position has potential for improvement from within. Sanders has been very good. Meriwhether should contribute a lot more next year (I see him in a Sanders of 2006 role) then take over as a starter in 2009. I'd like ot see Wilson back, and I think it should be a cap friendly move. I see no reason for Wilson to want to leave, he should sign a 1-2 year deal, stay healthy and improve his market value. Rodney should be back in 2008, which makes us 4 deep with quality safeties. Cant ask for more than that. I'd like to see us find a day 2 safety that can be a special teams demon, and be developed into a backup safety by 2009, and potnetial starter within 3-4 years.

I see no reason the Pats won't be back equally as strong in 2008. The majority of the contributors will be back, and we will have 4 picks (until we trade) in the first 3 rounds which should improve the area of the roster that is guys who play sometimes but not much, such as LB, DL, CB, TE, OL.

My gut instinct is that BB has not yet gotten his roster to his ideal of what he is building. I think he has almost all of the pieces in place to fit his blueprint of the best roster he could put together in a capped league, but still sees some ways to squeeze more out of the cap and improve some slots within the 53. I have not analyzed the cap situation in great detail, but it appears to me that we can do what we want and need to do and don't have to make exteme sacrifices to future caps to do so.
 

NEPatriot

Banned
2008 patriots can be stronger and better than 07 patriots

our offensive line will be unstoppable if we have second Randy Moss. Just imaging 2 Randy Moss and Welker running down the field. Brady will not have to throw the ball to 1 Moss all the time.

hopefully, we will do something about our D line because we need to gradually replace our aging D line and improve our D ranking in the league.
 

satz

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
donte istn coming back...which wont hurt our O all that much

so untrue this guy dictates the deep cover 2 being played putting jabar and wes on single coverage by LB or the 3rd corner.

how removing him and say replacing someone not hurt the O they can now slide the safety from his side to the center on wes or jabbar.....duh.
 
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