What Can the Patriots Realistically Expect From Demaryius Thomas?

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LJRomanoff

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
Also, with all the time he and Culpo spent together in the NE-area (and them now being separated), he may be seeking a change of scenery.

This sounds like a fine argument until you realize the scenery he chose is Detroit.
 

supafly

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What can we reasonably expect? It seems fairly obvious—A guy who tries to recover from serious injury and competes for a spot in training camp.
 

captain insano

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yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa cmonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn/ lolol this was a post that i made after the bruins scored lmao. opps wrong thread lol.
 
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DarrylS

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If healthy, I view him as a guy who will be a "bridge player" who will help the WR's we draft acclimate to the NFL and show them how to play football on that level..

The health issue concerns me.. low risk, possible reward..
 

luuked

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I once had someone tell be we haven’t had issues drafting receivers in the BB era.

Unless you want to be dense and reductive instead of looking at the context then I would not claim that we are inherently bad at drafting WR. But instead BB doesn't put any real resources into drafting them because you can get cheap but effective production out of veterans at that position.

We have only drafted a single WR on day 1 or 2 for almost a decade. Throw the amount of resources at the position like the Steelers and the narrative changes quickly. As would most probably the number of Lombardis we have because of other holes this would create.

Now is there an added complexity based on our offense ? Yeah. Which is yet another reason not to throw high value picks at college players who for the most part only know the spread by now but look for veterans that have NFL level game tape which makes it easier to project them.
 

203Pat

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Unless you want to be dense and reductive instead of looking at the context then I would not claim that we are inherently bad at drafting WR. But instead BB doesn't put any real resources into drafting them because you can get cheap but effective production out of veterans at that position.

We have only drafted a single WR on day 1 or 2 for almost a decade. Throw the amount of resources at the position like the Steelers and the narrative changes quickly. As would most probably the number of Lombardis we have because of other holes this would create.

Now is there an added complexity based on our offense ? Yeah. Which is yet another reason not to throw high value picks at college players who for the most part only know the spread by now but look for veterans that have NFL level game tape which makes it easier to project them.
If we aren’t “inherently bad” at drafting receivers how do you explain Chad Jackson, Taylor Price, Bethel Johnson (as a WR not kick returner), Brandon Tate, Josh Boyce, and Aaron Dobson. The last actual receiver prospect they evaluated and drafted that had a good career was Deion Branch. Edelman was a full time college QB and David Givens was a RB for most of college.
The problem with getting free agents is you have to pay them more than you would a rookie. They take up more cap space and you also miss out on a few years of their prime. Also we aren’t hitting it out of the park on every FA WR we bring in. For every Brandon Lafell, Randy Moss, or Wes Welker you have a Chad Johnson, Joey Galloway, Tory Holt, Reggie Wayne, or Donald Hayes.
 

luuked

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If we aren’t “inherently bad” at drafting receivers how do you explain Chad Jackson, Taylor Price, Bethel Johnson (as a WR not kick returner), Brandon Tate, Josh Boyce, and Aaron Dobson.

The only players of this list that are relevant to my point are Dobson and Boyce as I have been looking at the drafts since 2010. Boyce was a fourth round pick which doesnt even fit my criteria (day 1, day 2) when it comes to "big investment of resources".

So this leaves us with Dobson who looked fine and was coming on well (i.e. Pittsburgh game in 2013) until he broke his foot, rebroke it and then was never the same again. Medical busts suck but there is literally nothing you can do about that.

The last actual receiver prospect they evaluated and drafted that had a good career was Deion Branch. Edelman was a full time college QB and David Givens was a RB for most of college.

And none of this matters to my point. If you go bargain shopping on day 3 this is the result you will most probably get unless you luck out on the likes of Edelman or Antonio Brown.

The problem with getting free agents is you have to pay them more than you would a rookie. They take up more cap space and you also miss out on a few years of their prime.

Except that this is not a problem at all. Because whatever marginal amount they cost more you dont need to waste 1-2 seasons on developing them and can project players with NFL level tape a lot better as they have been playing against pro level defenses using pro level routes.

The prime argument is also kinda pointless to me. Nobody cares if a player is in their prime or not as long as they are used in the right role. Hell, used on one year contracts veterans on cheaper deals are right now the best way to fill out your roster when it comes to overall economics. Also who is to say that you will wont miss out prime years of drafted players ? If anything it is more likely that successful WR in their prime might leave for a bigger paycheck.

Also we aren’t hitting it out of the park on every FA WR we bring in. For every Brandon Lafell, Randy Moss, or Wes Welker you have a Chad Johnson, Joey Galloway, Tory Holt, Reggie Wayne, or Donald Hayes.

And yet the offense has been consistently a top 5 unit for the entire timeframe I have been looking at and -- apart from the Hernandez debacle -- we never ended up with cap issues. So whats your point again ?

The bottomline is that saying we have been bad at drafting WR when we barely use any resources in the first 3 rounds of the draft for it is similar to saying you are bad at guessing a number between 1-10 if you only take one guess compared to others that have five guesses.
 
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203Pat

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The only players of this list that are relevant to my point are Dobson and Boyce as I have been looking at the drafts since 2010. Boyce was a fourth round pick which doesnt even fit my criteria (day 1, day 2) when it comes to "big investment of resources".

So this leaves us with Dobson who looked fine and was coming on well (i.e. Pittsburgh game in 2013) until he broke his foot, rebroke it and then was never the same again. Medical busts suck but there is literally nothing you can do about that.



And none of this matters to my point. If you go bargain shopping on day 3 this is the result you will most probably get unless you luck out on the likes of Edelman or Antonio Brown.



Except that this is not a problem at all. Because whatever marginal amount they cost more you dont need to waste 1-2 seasons on developing them and can project players with NFL level tape a lot better as they have been playing against pro level defenses using pro level routes.

The prime argument is also kinda pointless. Nobody cares if a player is in their prime or not as long as they are used in the right role. Hell, used on one year contracts veterans on cheaper deals are right now the best way to fill out your roster when it comes to overall economics.



And yet the offense has been consistently a top 5 unit for the entire timeframe I have been looking at and -- apart from the Hernandez debacle -- we never ended up with cap issues. So whats your point again ?
So basically you’re going to cherrypick to make your argument that a team that has drafted 1 good receiver in almost 2 decades isn’t bad at drafting receivers. I also like how you dismiss the money and losing years of a drafted players prime just because you don’t think it’s important.
 

Tony2046

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So basically you’re going to cherrypick to make your argument that a team that has drafted 1 good receiver in almost 2 decades isn’t bad at drafting receivers. I also like how you dismiss the money and losing years of a drafted players prime just because you don’t think it’s important.

They're going to end up paying someone. Why does it matter if it's a veteran WR or not?

Isn't it possible the Pats feel that the hit rate for certain positions at the bottom of each round of the draft are higher than WRs?
 

203Pat

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They're going to end up paying someone. Why does it matter if it's a veteran WR or not?

Isn't it possible the Pats feel that the hit rate for certain positions at the bottom of each round of the draft are higher than WRs?
I said we haven’t been good at drafting receivers. He said it’s fine because we sign veterans. If we are drafting a receiver late in round 1 that we think will be a starter we are most likely paying him less than a receiver who is in his 4-5th year in the league that we are expecting to be a starter.

As far as the Pats thinking that they are more likely to hit on another position late in the first that may very well be the case but if we aren’t hitting on receivers in the other rounds we still aren’t getting cheap contributors at the receiver position.
 

luuked

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So basically you’re going to cherrypick to make your argument that a team that has drafted 1 good receiver in almost 2 decades isn’t bad at drafting receivers. I also like how you dismiss the money and losing years of a drafted players prime just because you don’t think it’s important.

I am not cherry picking anything. I just went back to the season where we drafted Gronk and slowly made him the focal point of the offense. A sample size of 2010-2018 is not cherry picking at all. In fact it is the complete opposite showing that WR became an afterthought for BB & co when it came to investing draft resources.

The narrative that they cant draft WR is just silly because the people who believe in it refuse to account for the lack of draft resources used.

If we would limit the use of high picks for other positions you would be able to build the same flawed narrative:


Now if he had thrown as many high picks as other teams at WR and had the same lack of success then it would be a different story. Is this too nuanced for you?

Yeah those prime years of Chandler Jones or Trey Flowers really came in handy for us. That is if you are living in an alternate universe where we tend to extend our successful draft picks consistently.
 

203Pat

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I am not cherry picking anything. I just went back to the season where we drafted Gronk and slowly made him the focal point of the offense. A sample size of 2010-2018 is not cherry picking at all. In fact it is the complete opposite showing that WR became an afterthought for BB & co when it came to investing draft resources.

The narrative that they cant draft WR is just silly because the people who believe in it refuse to account for the lack of draft resources used.

If we would limit the use of high picks for other positions you would be able to build the same flawed narrative:


Now if he had thrown as many high picks as other teams at WR and had the same lack of success then it would be a different story. Is this too nuanced for you?

Yeah those prime years of Chandler Jones or Trey Flowers really came in handy for us. That is if you are living in an alternate universe where we tend to extend our successful draft picks consistently.
We have the same GM we have had since 2000 so it would make sense to look at the entire body of work.

As far as Chandler Jones and Trey Flowers each of them was instrumental on defensive championship teams on rookie deals. Both were getting paid less than similarly productive defensive linemen on their second contracts. See how that works? They were drafted. Paid based on the rookie wage scale. Had very good production. Helped win a super bowl. So one could say that yes, they came in very handy. Even more so because they weren’t taking up much cap space as they were in their early prime on rookie deals.
 

luuked

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I said we haven’t been good at drafting receivers. He said it’s fine because we sign veterans. If we are drafting a receiver late in round 1 that we think will be a starter we are most likely paying him less than a receiver who is in his 4-5th year in the league that we are expecting to be a starter.

I never said it is fine because we sign veterans. Maybe you should try reading things twice if once doesnt get it done.

I said you can't say that the team can't draft receivers because they have been throwing late picks at the position. And this is -- like @Tony2046 correctly said -- most probably because so far they have rarely felt like there is any value in taking a WR early relative to other positions that are easier to project and hence involve less risk.

And this is also where the veterans angle comes in. With those you have a better idea of how they will do in the NFL on an overall level because there is tape/history showing how they do against pro level teams running pro concepts.

Finally your entire argument about veterans being more expensive is kinda pointless because if you run the team like BB and stay mostly away from big FA signings it is a zero sum game. For every player veteran WR we sign because we didnt draft any early enough to increase the chance of them succeeding there is a rookie playing another position that doesnt need FA attention.
 

203Pat

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Anyways here’s a couple quotes from the last time we argued about this a few months ago. I guess in order to have a better showing in this go-around you decided to move the goalposts to the arbitrary 10 year mark.


I would assume anyone with half a brain. You’re fine wasting draft capital because you can just go out and pay a free agent more? It’s amazing how much of a homer you have to be to think that the Patriots have done a poor job of drafting receivers.
Bill has taken 6 receivers in the first 3 rounds with the Patriots. All but Deion Branch were busts.

In 2016 we signed Hogan to a 3 yr/12 mill. Michael Thomas went in the second round in the ballpark of where we normally pick and he signed for 4 yr/5.1 mill.
Hypothetically if Bill decided he wanted to invest in a first round WR Josh Doctson was drafted a few spots higher than we normally pick and he signed for 4 yrs/10 million.

In 2014 Brandon Lafell signed for 3 yr/9 mill. That same draft Davante Adams went in the second round and signed a 4 yr/3.9 mill deal.

In 2013 Danny Amendola signed for 5 yrs/28.5 mill. He could’ve drafted a receiver with every pick in the draft and not spent that much.
When you decide to fill your receiver core with free agents you usually spend more and get shorter contracts. I didn’t think that needed to be spelled out but here we are.

They’re writing us off again.
 

luuked

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We have the same GM we have had since 2000 so it would make sense to look at the entire body of work.

Not really. The offense morphed into more spread concepts in 2007. Then there was a new CBA that changed the rookie payscale profoundly. Add in rule changes that made it easier than ever to play WR in the NFL.

As far as Chandler Jones and Trey Flowers each of them was instrumental on defensive championship teams on rookie deals. Both were getting paid less than similarly productive defensive linemen on their second contracts. See how that works? They were drafted. Paid based on the rookie wage scale. Had very good production. Helped win a super bowl. So one could say that yes, they came in very handy. Even more so because they weren’t taking up much cap space as they were in their early prime on rookie deals

And if we had signed a WR instead of Jones we would have needed a veteran to fill that hole. Now what is more abundant and likely to be cheaper at an acceptable level ? A WR or a DE ?
 

luuked

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Anyways here’s a couple quotes from the last time we argued about this a few months ago. I guess in order to have a better showing in this go-around you decided to move the goalposts to the arbitrary 10 year mark.

Just shows that you are apparently too dense to understand easy concepts like draft value. Even after six months. Amazing how some people dont grasp some things despite watching BB do it for almost 20 years from the front row.

Also it seems like the difference between saying "they cant draft WR" and "the drafted players were bad" is too nuanced for you. Because one is true the other is not.
 

A Defiant Goose

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We suck at drafting WRs. There's nothing beyond that obvious point to discuss. I'll take "we suck at drafting WRs" for all we've been given since 2001 though
 

203Pat

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Not really. The offense morphed into more spread concepts in 2007. Then there was a new CBA that changed the rookie payscale profoundly. Add in rule changes that made it easier than ever to play WR in the NFL.



And if we had signed a WR instead of Jones we would have needed a veteran to fill that hole. Now what is more abundant and likely to be cheaper at an acceptable level ? A WR or a DE ?
So the offense morphed into more of a passing attack so that makes receivers less important? Interesting concept. The rookie wage scale means we shouldn’t attempt to draft receivers either because they’re even cheaper now (dollar to dollar) than 20 years ago? Another brilliant insight. Also according to you the rule changes make it even easier to play receiver so we shouldn’t bother drafting someone cheap to do the easy job? Another swing and miss.

So in the same post you just said rule changes make it easier than ever to play receiver but you think it is easier to find a defensive lineman to play at a cheaper price at an “acceptable level”. If it’s so easy to play receiver now then why would it be harder to find one to play at an “acceptable level” over a defensive lineman.
 
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