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mjt328

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  1. Both are terrible fits for the New England offense. Cam Newton has always been most effective as a dual-threat, thanks to his running ability and big arm. His strength has never been accuracy, patience or dissecting defensive schemes. Pretty much the complete opposite of Tom Brady. This is without starting to consider the way injuries have taken a toll. There is a reason that most people believe Cam is done as a starting/franchise QB in this league. Jameis Winston is purely a pocket-passer, but he is totally reckless with turnovers. If Belichick is counting on the defense to carry the Patriots this year, the absolute last thing he needs is a guy who throws 3-4 interceptions a game. After 5 years in the league, I doubt this is something coaches can still fix. And with the current WR weapons the Patriots have, I doubt Winston will be able to duplicate the touchdowns he threw with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. As mentioned, the other problem is cap space. The Patriots are currently at about $1.1 million, which isn't even enough to sign their draft picks. I can't see either Newton or Winston agreeing to play for less than $15 million per year, which would put them at the bottom of the NFL in starting QBs - not counting the guys still on rookie deals.
  2. I would agree with this. Doug Whaley generally had a good eye for talent. He very rarely bombed his top picks, and actually put together a decent collection of talent during his time here. But in this league, being a good scout is not enough to be a good General Manager. GMs need to be responsible for constructing a UNIFIED team, where the scouts, coaches, coordinators and players work as a single unit. It's not just about collecting talent. Whaley often talked about "just getting good players" and then letting the coaches figure out how to use them. This is exactly why he failed. He was never of the same mind as Doug Marrone or Rex Ryan, and the pieces never fit together. GMs also need to have an understanding for how to structure contracts and how the salary cap works. He needs to plan how the financial puzzle will work 2, 3, 4, 5 years down the road. Whaley handed these duties over to Jim Overdorf, and it showed. Even without a franchise QB, the Bills drifted closer and closer to cap hell every season. Look at a team like Cleveland, and you see a similar dynamic playing out. The team has been drafting fairly well, and now has a strong collection of talent. But the pieces don't fit, the GM/Coach don't seem on the same page, and they are clearly underachieving in the victory column.
  3. CJ Spiller had a Pro Bowl season where he rushed over 1200 yards. The next season, he had over 900 yards. He was a decent NFL player, who should have been viewed as a change-of-pace RB instead of a 3-down workhorse. The problem with Spiller was expectations, since he was a Top-10 pick. If he was taken in the 3rd Round, people would have been fine with his career production. Guys like Aaron Maybin and Torrell Troup were worthless, and had no business even being on NFL rosters.
  4. 1) We would probably need to give up our 2021 and 2022 first rounders (at the very least) to move up that high. 2) While this would certainly make our WRs very difficult for defenses to cover, it would not make our offense unstoppable. We still need to get good blocking from the O-Line (especially if we are going 4-wide all the time) and we need Josh Allen to make the right decision on where to go with his throws. 3) No prospect is bust-proof. As much as I like Lamb, he still has a chance to under-perform to expectations once he gets to the big leagues. Sammy Watkins is a great example.
  5. It's interesting to see the responses, and what qualifies in people's minds as a "bad" selection. There are several players I've seen mentioned who were actually very productive NFL players. CJ Spiller, Donte Whitner, Willis McGahee, Sammy Watkins, etc. But Bills fans still consider them terrible picks because they were selected too early OR because we passed on someone really good to take them. Personally, I would go with player(s) who were ALL of the above.... drafted way too early, with much better players sitting on the board, and who ended up having terrible NFL careers. With all of that in consideration, it's really hard not to go with someone like Aaron Maybin, Erik Flowers or Torrell Troup.
  6. I'll concede that it's possible a rookie RB eventually displaces Devin Singletary as the technical "starter" at some point down the line. Although I would say the situation is more likely to be a 1A vs. 1B situation, where the heavier workload depends on situation. My curiosity is where this Top 20 in rushing and Top 45 in receiving number comes from. Is this based just purely on Singletary's 2019 stats? Because if so, you should really be reminded that Singletary was barely given any carries in the first quarter of the season, and then spent four games injured. He really didn't get rolling for us until mid-season. If you take his average over the last 8 active games (he was inactive Week 17) and spread them over a full season, he would have over 1200 yards rushing (which is tied for #6 in the NFL).
  7. At this point, drafting a WR isn't about need. It's about value. Nobody we draft this year is going to start, barring injury or absolutely exceptional play in training camp/preseason. Our biggest "needs" are considered by many to be Running Back (rookie would split carries with Devin Singletary), Edge Rusher (rookie would be in a rotation behind Jerry Hughes and Mario Addison - and possibly Trent Murphy and Darryl Johnson), Defensive Back (rookie would be the nickel DB behind Siran Neal and Taron Johnson) or maybe Linebacker (rookie would fight for reps behind AJ Klein). Mock Drafts keep having us draft WR, because of the crazy depth of this class. We could probably wait until the 3rd Round and get someone who would be a back-end 1st Rounder in most drafts.
  8. I'm a big believer that GMs shouldn't throw out 1st Round draft picks or big contacts at the Running Back position. Totally agree there. But let's not go to the extreme the opposite direction. The sweet spot for drafting a Running Back is the 2nd-3rd Round. After that, the probability of success drops pretty quickly. Just like every other position. Most Day 3/UDFA picks aren't going to make it. Even playing RB. People consider RB a need, because you technically need two backs in today's NFL. Devin Singletary was very good as a rookie, but the drop-off was huge when Frank Gore or TJ Yeldon entered the game.
  9. Being "tuned-in" with OBD may give you an idea what players/positions they are interested in. It does not forecast who the pick is actually going to be. Not even Brandon Beane knows who they are going to pick. There are 53 players who will be taken before our first selection (barring a trade). For all anyone knows, Dugger could be gone in the 1st Round. The only thing clear about Beane's strategy, is that he's leaving himself open to go "almost" anywhere with his picks. At this point, we have zero needs in the starting lineup. Regardless of who we draft, that player is probably going to spend most of 2020 watching from the sidelines. We go with a RB, he will be in a timeshare with Devin Singletary. We go edge rusher, he will be 4th (at best) in the rotation. Dugger wouldn't start over Micah Hyde or Jordan Poyer, and it may take some time before he could even displace Siran Neal.
  10. Quarterbacks always have the biggest bust potential. Nobody comes from college to the NFL completely ready to play the position (although this can sometimes be hidden by athletic talent and/or simplistic offensive scheme).
  11. Depends on your definition of tanking. I don't believe that players lose on purpose, for any reason. Especially so they can be replaced by a younger player/draft pick. Even if a player isn't motivated by personal integrity (and some definitely are), they are most certainly motivated by things like money, stats and pride. All of those are affected when you purposely tank on the field. For coaches, it probably depends on the situation and how much job security they feel. Again, I don't think many coaches are willing to lose on purpose. But they may replace a veteran and play someone younger and inexperienced... realizing future seasons are more important than winning that week's game. If you really think about it, it's no different than benching starters in Week 17 to have a better chance in the playoffs. General Managers on the other hand, are always making moves with the future in mind. They may trade valuable/star players for future picks, or purge the roster of bloated contracts (exactly what Buffalo did when Brandon Beane came on board). But the GM cannot control what actually happens on the field. Which is why we ultimately went 9-7 in our "tank" season, made the playoffs, and required two additional trade-ups to get into the Top 10 and land Josh Allen. With all that said, the signs DO point that New England's front office is NOT trying to field the most competitive team in 2020 (and Bill Belichick is both coach and GM). They have made virtually no moves in free agency, lost several key pieces, and most importantly have not replaced Tom Brady at QB (at least not yet). Things could change and they could sign Cam Newton, Andy Dalton or Jameis Winston. But if they go into the season with Jarrett Stidham, it's clear they are definitely counting 2020 as a lost season. If they are targeting Trevor Lawrence, they will probably need to start trading players away though. I think the defense is too good for them to reach the #1 pick.
  12. Just looked up the article on ESPN. Starting this season, the new CBA expands the practice squad from 10 to 12, and the game-day active roster from 46 to 48. It then allows teams to elevate 2 players from the practice squad to the active roster per week. So technically - yes, the roster will now carry 55 players instead of 53 players. But those last two guys are still eligible to get poached from other teams. This is good for stashing some extra late-round picks and undrafted free agents, but doesn't really help those back-end veterans who are looking to stick. Either way, the Bills don't have very many spots available. I have a tough time believing we keep all 7 picks. My guess is that Beane trades up once or twice. And even those guys we pick in the 2nd and 3rd will be playing backup for quite a while. Just noticed that I left off Tight End, but I think this position is likely pretty much set. Not much room for another body. The Bills generally carry 4 guys, and I see both Knox/Kroft as roster locks. They seem to like keeping one blocking specialist, which for the time-being is Lee Smith. They also seem to like Tommy Sweeney's potential. So right now, Jason Croom and Nate Becker on are on the outside looking in.
  13. With the draft flying around the corner, most of us are looking at the team's biggest needs. But I thought it would be interesting to see how many roster spots we can legitimately fill with rookies. I was surprised how tough it will be to cut-down to 53 spots this year. Barring trade/injury, I consider the following starting players to be roster locks: Josh Allen, Devin Singletary, Patrick DiMarco, Stefon Diggs, John Brown, Cole Beasley, Dawson Knox, Mitch Morse, Quinton Spain, Jon Feliciano, Dion Dawkins, Cody Ford, Mario Addison, Jerry Hughes, Star Lotulelei, Ed Oliver, AJ Klein, Tremaine Edmunds, Matt Milano, Tre White, Levi Wallace, Taron Johnson, Micah Hyde, Jordan Poyer, Steven Hauschka and Reid Ferguson. That comes to 26 players. There are also several backups that I expect to be guarantees, either because of their value to the team or because their contract makes it extremely tough to cut them: Spencer Long, Ryan Bates, Daryl Williams, Quinton Jefferson, Harrison Phillips, Vernon Butler, Tyler Matakevich and Siran Neal. The Bills must carry a punter, whether that is Corey Bojorquez or someone else. Since they haven't added a veteran QB, I expect Matt Barkley to stick. Tyler Kroft's restructured contract pretty much guarantees he will stick. That is 11 additional depth guys, bringing the total to 37 players. If I am correct, this would leave only 16 roster spots technically up-for-grabs. Let's take a look at these positions, and who would be forced out if we draft someone: Quarterback Highly unlikely we keep more than 2 on the active roster. Not sure if Davis Webb has practice squad eligibility, but that probably determines whether he sticks as the #3 guy or if we replace him with a Day 3 draft pick. Running Back Currently, TJ Yeldon is the only "veteran" RB in the locker room. Which is something this particular coaching staff seems to want. Taiwan Jones is probably safe because of his role as a special teams gunner. If we carry 4 backs and draft someone, that probably pushes Christian Wade back to the practice squad. Wide Receiver Andre Roberts is our only return specialist. Duke Williams is our only WR with good size. Isaiah McKenzie is our gadget player. If we carry 6 WRs and draft someone, that pushes one of these guys off the roster - and that's without even considering Robert Foster, Nick Easley and Ray-Ray McCloud. Offensive Line I consider 8 O-Linemen above to be roster locks. And that is without counting Ty Nsekhe, who technically could get released without much dead cap. If we draft anyone, we can probably say goodbye to Ike Boettger and Victor Salako. Defensive Line We are completely set at tackle, so say goodbye to Vincent Taylor. If we draft an edge rusher, that would likely cause us to cut Trent Murphy and push Darryl Johnson back to the practice squad. Just can't see us carrying more than 8 on the active roster. It's unlikely Jonathan Woodard and Mike Love make it. Linebacker Vosean Joseph was showing promise during training camp before getting hurt. If we add someone, then likely Corey Thompson, Tyrel Dodson and Del'Shawn Phillips get cut. Defensive Backs I considered 4 CBs to be locks, without even counting Josh Norman or EJ Gaines. It's unlikely we carry more than 6 guys here. So wave goodbye to Cam Lewis. At backup safety, they seem to like Jaquan Johnson and brought back Dean Marlowe. Both are expendable if we draft someone.
  14. Trading up is almost definitely going to happen. Almost all of the roster spots are already filled with good players. Even without the draft, we are going to be pressed to put together 53 guys without being forced to release valuable veterans or promising prospects. We simply don't have enough room for all of these picks on the active roster. And you really don't want your 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th Round guys being pushed to the practice squad, because they will almost certainly get snatched up by other teams.
  15. If Reid is correct (and the contract language was changed after the vote), that is a ridiculously shady move by the NFL owners and should absolutely invalidate the CBA. However, you shouldn't use something like this to make blanket statements about anyone. Being rich and successful does not make someone evil, greedy or untrustworthy. Many billionaires are extremely generous and giving.
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