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jsthomp2007

Let the Offseason Begin

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Just now, BaldyBronco said:

http://walterfootball.com/freeagentspreview2019.php

I think the key is keeping the core of the Defense together.  Especially the DB's and Edge Rushers is really important.  I am super disappointed in the Su'a Cravens signing, but am hopeful that he can get on the field next year.  But signing a S like Earl Thomas/Ha-Ha Clinton Dix/Landon Collins would be an upgrade at that position.   If C Harris gets back and we re-sign Roby, I think we are better off at CB than we were to start the year.  Most every guy at CB can play.  Looking at an ILB is probably smart, but our guys are serviceable at that position.  If we were to go after a C.J. Mosley, I would not be mad.  I think re-signing Shaq Barrett is a smart move too, he is a CSU Ram; nuf said.  Keeping Peko is important as well.  There are two or 3 DTs that are interesting too. Sheldon Richardson and Grady Jackson are guys I really like.  But given the depth at DT in the draft, this this may not be a position to spend the money on.

While I agree that we should not break the bank, we need to make a splash at key positions on the offensive side of the ball.  ER, OL and QB.  Keenum is NOT the answer.  He can't play.  Trading for a Flacco?  Signing Teddy Bridgewater? Tyrod Taylor is a FA?  Trading with PHI for one of their guys?  Cutting Keenum and replacing with one of these guys would be a big upgrade and bridge us to win soon and draft the QBOF this year or next. 

I would also really like to see us look at a Golden Tate/Donte Mocreief/Tavon Austin at WR.

We need help at TE in a big way given that Heuerman is a UFA and we are a mess here with injuries.  Tyler Eifert and Jared Cook are UFA.  Man I would love to see us with one of them.  It would put us in a great position to see if Jake can once again come back from injury and resign the young kids in Matt Lacrosse and Brian Parker.  Both of whom showed they can play. 

I really think the OL boils down to resigning Veldheer and Paradis, Max Garcia and Billy Turner.  Outside of QB, I think keeping the OL together and looking to draft OLOF is our most important priority.

My Early take is:

Hire:

A Harbaugh

Resign:

Roby,  Paradis, Barrett, Garcia, Veldheer, Peko, Turner, Shelby Harris, Jordan Taylor.

FA Signing:

Tyrod Taylor (assuming we don't trade), Jared Cook, Ha-Ha Clinton Dix, Donte Moncreif.

Draft:

QB, WR, DT, CB, ILB, OG, OT, TE, QB, QB, QB

 

 

This is a better FA tracker:

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/free-agents/all/

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On 12/17/2018 at 6:42 AM, Broncofan said:

Re: offseason, we should take the approach other teams do - go high and low for QB, albeit cheaply this year.   We brought in the CFL's best QB, Bo Levi Mitchell.  He'd be min. wage, and controllable for 4 years....why not.   Worst case, min-wage contract gamble spent.    One of the backup QB's probably will come cheaply - no problem there.

Ultimately, though, our solution that's long-term is the draft.  It's just that there's no good Rd1 candidates likely where we will pick.   I'm not even that high on the top guys that are there this year, as their levels of success and QB skills don't match up nearly as long or as well as last year's top class.  But even the top 2-3 guys are likely gone when we pick (none of whom I'd have put ahead of anyone in Rd1 last year).    But I recognize Elway's going to have a really hard sell without having someone else other than Keenum to challenge him. 

The issue is at 10M guaranteed, it's just enough to make a cut painful (11M more to keep Keenum), and the overall commitment makes paying significant $ for a Bridgewater type guy very unappealing to Elway.   In a perfect world, Keenum was supposed to be a 2-year bridge which allowed us to attack the 2020 draft if our other lottery tickets didn't work out.   The problem is 2-fold - Keenum's not even a bridge QB...and our lottery tickets have all gone poof.     It's just a matter of how much we pay for the next batch of lottery tickets, and when we dive in hard to a future guy we're willing to commit to for 2-3 years (Rd1-2 picks).

 

Now, while QB is one issue - we have other issues to address.    We really do need a bunch of other fixes, namely:
 

-Cover CB to help CHJ (and to replace Roby)

-More OL help, preferably T, but honestly, more trench help is never a bad thing (Turner's a backup, and Veldheer is done.  Wilkinson is probably a swing guy at best).

-A top 3 WR who can play outside - DeSean Hamilton is best suited for slot.  Sadly, these are really hard to find in FA, at least not without paying a fair amount of cash.   While Elway struck gold with Sanders so many years ago, the track record with spending big $ in FA is really sobering.   Guys are usually in decline, and they're often not true top 2 WR's anymore, but knew their old team's system and fit so well...and often underperform badly when making the move (Sanders was the perfect combo of a guy stuck behind an established star receiver in AB and their decision to go cheap and young with WR2 in Martavyius Bryant, but you seldom see young guys with emerging talent let go nowadays).

Cover CB, OL's and WR1's cost a mint in FA - so I'd imagine we go 2 of our first 3 picks to address 2 of those areas - the nice part is that BPA philosophy matches well, as WR/OL help are particularly strong and Rd1 CB would likely represent overall BPA where we pick too.


Internally - I imagine that there are 2 contracts where Elway is going to likely walk away from - Leary & Sanders, given their injuries and likelihood of decline and saved $.   Sanders really crushes me, but that's an injury where explosion rarely returns.  Leary is an easy call, decline phase is already here with him.    If Elway is comfortable with Jewell's development, then another easy cut is Brandon Marshall.     A more interesting call will be Wolfe and his near-11M salary, of which less than 2M is dead money.    He's not elite, but cutting him would also likely mean we'd be going Day 1-2 in the draft (it is a draft incredibly strong in the trenches, but we only have so many picks).  The thing is, March is when some of his extra $ becomes guaranteed, so if there's a decision, it's coming well before the draft.   

Extension-wise, Shelby Harris will get a RFA tender likely at the 2nd round, and then Elway should work on an extension.  Dude is our inside glue now in both run and pass rush interior pressure.   A more interesting case will be Paradis - he'll command top 5 C money, so it's just a Q of how much Elway's willing to spend.   The injury offers a chance for a discount, but it's not going to be a major savings.   

2 guys who could definitely get discounts that are worth retaining are Jeff Heuermann and Shaq Barrett.  It's bad practice to pay market rates for a 2nd contract, we've seen that with our aging vets.   But TE's are a notable exception given how long it takes for them to develop, they don't usually cost that much.   Hopefully that's the case with Heuermann, who really only started coming on the last year or so.    Barrett's another case where we could get a market-friendly deal, but unlike Heuermann,  a really smart competitor could offer the moon $$ wise (and the chance to start regularly, and get paid again later down the road), and he'd be silly not to get paid, if someone shows him the $.   Given how teams are always looking for EDGE help, he's certainly at greater risk to find a team willing to show him the $$ and walking.

Why do you think Veldheer is done?

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14 hours ago, AnAngryAmerican said:

This is going to be a hot topic of discussion over the next few months. HERE is a good place to find cap information, it's very detailed and updated very quickly when news breaks. I would suggest bookmarking it for everyone here who hasn't. 

To answer the question, here is what we are looking at. 

Right now, the projected league-wide cap is being pegged somewhere between $187m and $191m. We have $6.4m worth of rollover so, with a cap of $189m, we would have about $44.6m in cap space before we make any moves. 

Cutting the following players would save us the following amounts: 

  • Case Keenum - $21m cap hit, $10m dead: Savings = $11m.
  • Emmanuel Sanders - $12.9375m cap hit, $2.6875m dead: Savings = $10.25m
  • Derek Wolfe - $10.925m cap hit, $2.375m dead: Savings = $8.55m
  • Ron Leary - $9.375 cap hit, $1.75m dead: Savings = $7.625m
  • Brandon Marshall: $9.0m cap hit, $4.0m dead: Savings = $5.0m
  • Darian Stewart: $6.4m cap hit, $2.8m deal: Savings = $3.6m

If we cut all of these players, we would save $46.025m, bringing our cap space to $90.625m. That sounds like a lot but bear in mind that before they make any moves, the Jets have over $100m in cap space. Of those six listed above, I would be surprised to see Sanders, Leary, Marshall and Stewart come back, at least at those prices. I think Wolfe is kept but perhaps he is restructured to save money. I don't think, unless we trade or somehow otherwise acquire a bonafide staring QB, Case goes anywhere.

That being said, the following contributors from this year will be free agents when the new league year starts in March: Matt Paradis, Shaq Barrett, Domata Peko, Billy Turner, Zack Kerr, Tramaine Brock, Bradley Roby, Shane Ray, Shelby Harris, Jeff Heuerman and Max Garcia. All are unrestricted free agents meaning we will have to compete with other teams for their services. 

Hope this helps.

Cut Keenum and Restructure Leary/Sanders/Wolfe.  Cut Stewart and Marshall as well.  Assuming a more cap friendly number on the Restructuring, I estimate the number to be about $28 to $30MM in savings.  See my other post for potential strategy.  Thanks for this AAA.  Good SH#$

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5 hours ago, BaldyBronco said:

Why do you think Veldheer is done?

Injuries have robbed his bend and lateral mobility.  He's basically a statue in pass pro, and can't get any push in the run game.  In his prime, a good to very good T, but he's a shell of his former self.  Father Time remains undefeated.  Honestly, that's also why the only player I'd consider bringing back from the vet list of underperformers relative to salary (Marshall, Leary, Wolfe, Stewart) is Wolfe - but only if there's a huge team-friendly restructure.   Frankly, given the discount Wolfe gave us when he was in his prime, though, I doubt that happens, and I wouldn't blame Wolfe one bit for his position.     Just that hanging 1 year too long is almost always more painful than cutting ties 1 year too soon.   Sanders is in the same boat given the nature of his injury and stage in his career with the Achilles (not his prior performance).

Edited by Broncofan

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I'm curious why so many want to re-sign Garcia. He's really slow and barely NFL backup level. I'll be shocked if we keep him

It's a bit more than coincidence I think that Bolles performance has really improved since Max went down. 

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6 hours ago, AKRNA said:

I'm curious why so many want to re-sign Garcia. He's really slow and barely NFL backup level. I'll be shocked if we keep him

It's a bit more than coincidence I think that Bolles performance has really improved since Max went down. 

I don't want Garcia at all I think many thought he had a solid  year before he got injured but he sucks imo. Think we can replace him anyway. 

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Would it be the worst thing if we considered maybe resetting a bit. Not at the level the Raiders are doing but maybe look to build for the future and plan rather than try to win now?

I know that's not in Elway's mind set but he needs to realize where we're at now. We need to look long term.

And Keenum isn't the man. I gave him a chance this season. Sorry, not for me. 

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42 minutes ago, PFM18 said:

Would it be the worst thing if we considered maybe resetting a bit. Not at the level the Raiders are doing but maybe look to build for the future and plan rather than try to win now?

I know that's not in Elway's mind set but he needs to realize where we're at now. We need to look long term.

And Keenum isn't the man. I gave him a chance this season. Sorry, not for me. 

I'd be all for cutting Keenum and going with a young guy. Dead money is dead money.  I'd rather not keep Keenum 

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11 hours ago, AKRNA said:

I'm curious why so many want to re-sign Garcia. He's really slow and barely NFL backup level. I'll be shocked if we keep him

It's a bit more than coincidence I think that Bolles performance has really improved since Max went down. 

The only reason is at this point he is depth on the cheap.  My initial list has him because I can’t find an option. It would be great to sign a more athletic OG and move on. Just hard to see at this point

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9 minutes ago, BaldyBronco said:

The only reason is at this point he is depth on the cheap.  My initial list has him because I can’t find an option. It would be great to sign a more athletic OG and move on. Just hard to see at this point

Accept for the backups that are in there now who are not great, but serviceable. 

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58 minutes ago, thebestever6 said:

I'd be all for cutting Keenum and going with a young guy. Dead money is dead money.  I'd rather not keep Keenum 

There is no 'young guy' available (either draft or FA) that would be capable of winning a game next season.

Unless some miracle happens Keenum will be QB next year - and I think the best person to call plays for him would be Kubiak.

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30 minutes ago, jolly red giant said:

There is no 'young guy' available (either draft or FA) that would be capable of winning a game next season.

Unless some miracle happens Keenum will be QB next year - and I think the best person to call plays for him would be Kubiak.

I think Daniel Jones is a plug and play better than Keenum day one starter.

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4 hours ago, PFM18 said:

Would it be the worst thing if we considered maybe resetting a bit. Not at the level the Raiders are doing but maybe look to build for the future and plan rather than try to win now?

I know that's not in Elway's mind set but he needs to realize where we're at now. We need to look long term.

And Keenum isn't the man. I gave him a chance this season. Sorry, not for me. 

Taken in a vacuum, no, that wouldn’t be the worst thing.

Problem is, because Ellis sucks at his job and screwed up the stadium naming rights issue, we need to win as many games as we can right away and become as relevant as possible as soon as possible in hopes of securing more primetime and nationally-televised games to make shelling out eight figures for naming rights is more appealing to some corporation out there. 

The business side of things is, unfortunately, affecting the football side of things. And not for the better. 

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3 hours ago, jsthomp2007 said:

Accept for the backups that are in there now who are not great, but serviceable. 

Valid argument

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4 hours ago, BaldyBronco said:

The only reason is at this point he is depth on the cheap.  My initial list has him because I can’t find an option. It would be great to sign a more athletic OG and move on. Just hard to see at this point

Even cheap I don't think he's worth it. An immediate liability when he steps on the field. Our backups where an upgrade when he went down. Thats kinda awful.

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