Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

28 Jul 2011

Running Thursday Free Agency Thread

Here's a rundown of all the trades, cuts, and signings for Thursday, July 28.

9:00 AM EDT
Washington trades DT Albert Haynesworth to New England for a 2013 fifth-round pick.
Miami and New Orleans "agree on framework" for a trade for RB Reggie Bush.
Arizona signs G Daryn Colledge (GB)
Dallas re-signs G Kyle Kosier

9:50 AM EDT
Philadelphia signs DE Jason Babin (TEN)
Chicago signs P Adam Podlesh (JAX)
Pittsburgh releases WR Antwaan Randle El
San Diego re-signs DE Jacques Cesaire

10:30 AM EDT
Washington releases DT Ma'ake Kemoeatu
Washington releases DE Phillip Daniels
Washington releases C Casey Rabach
Atlanta re-signs LB Mike Peterson

11:00 AM EDT
Washington releases WR Roydell Williams
New England releases DT Marcus Stroud

11:30 AM EDT
New York Jets re-sign K Nick Folk

12:10 PM EDT
Jacksonville to release G Justin Smiley
Washington releases P Sam Paulescu
Minnesota signs DT Remi Ayodele (NO)
San Francisco to release CB Nate Clements (for real this time?)

12:50 PM EDT
Seattle re-signs RB Michael Robinson
Chicago signs TE Matt Spaeth (PIT)
Washington signs DE Stephen Bowen (DAL)
New York Giants re-sign DE Mathias Kiwanuka

2:30 PM EDT
Green Bay releases LB Brady Poppinga
Green Bay releases DL Justin Harrell
Tennessee releases DT Tony Brown
Detroit releases LB Jordan Dizon
New Orleans re-signs OT Jermon Bushrod

2:45 PM EDT
Philadelphia trades QB Kevin Kolb to Arizona for CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second-round pick. Kolb signs five-year extension.
Jacksonville signs LB Clint Session (IND)
Buffalo signs WR Brad Smith (NYJ)
Chicago releases TE Brandon Manumaleuna
Carolina signs S Sean Considine (JAX)

3:45 PM EDT
Cleveland signs S Usama Young (NO)
Washington signs OL Chris Chester (BAL)

4:10 PM EDT
Minnesota releases DT Jimmy Kennedy
Minnesota releases S Madieu Williams
Minnesota releases WR Freddie Brown

6:00 PM EDT
Pittsburgh re-signs T Willie Colon
Cincinnati trades WR Chad Ochocinco to New England for "late round picks," Ochocinco agrees to a new contract as part of the deal
Chicago trades TE Greg Olson to Carolina for a third round pick

7:30 PM EDT
New York Giants release FB Madison Hedgecock
Oakland releases CB "the other" Chris Johnson
Oakland releases G Cooper Carlisle

8:15 PM EDT
Houston signs CB Johnathan Joseph (CIN)
Philadelphia releases FB Leonard Weaver

9:15 PM EDT
Cleveland signs RB Brandon Jackson (GB)
Jacksonville releases G Justin Smiley
Jacksonville signs G/C Jason Spitz (GB)
San Francisco signs K David Akers (PHI)

10:00 PM EDT
Kansas City releases G Brian Waters

11:00 PM EDT
New Orleans signs RB Darren Sproles (SD)
Philadelphia signs QB Vince Young (TEN)
Tampa Bay re-signs G Davin Joseph
Tampa Bay signs P Michael Koenen (ATL)

Posted by: The Outsiders on 28 Jul 2011

170 comments, Last at 30 Jul 2011, 1:31pm by dryheat


by Jimmy :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:10am

Great move by Belichick. Shoe horn the chubby git into a uniform and let him rush the passer from a three technique. How much four man line did the Pats play last year?

by Anonymous Patriots Fan (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:21am

More than the writers worrying about how H. will fit into a 3-4 seem to realize (hopefully someone will get actual numbers). The Pats were experimenting with 4-DL alignments last preseason, and I expect to see more of the same.

by Kulko :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:25am

My understanding always was, that the Pats run a 3-4/4-3 hybrid defense at least until the Linemen started to go down like flies.

by MJK :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:07pm

The problem with trying to characterize how he might fit in is that the Pats 3/4 and their 4/3 is different from many other 3/4 and 4/3 alignments around the league. Whether they're in a 3/4 or a 4/3, their D-linemen usually are playing a two-gap technique--the idea is that their D-linemen are supposed to clog things up, and force everything to flow to the athletic linebackers and safeties.

There's no doubt that Wilfork and Haynesworth in the middle provide a formidable amount of cloggage. But I thought that Haynesworth's beef with Shannahan was that he was being asked to be a clogger, and he wanted more glory that one gets playing a 1-gap.

On the other hand, if he does play ball, it could trickle down to improve their pass rush. With Wilfork and Warren essentially tying up the entire middle of the O-line, it frees the other DE and the LB's to be more aggressive in their pass rush.

But it's also possible he doesn't make the Pats final roster, and they wasted a 5th round pick. Still, probably worth the experiment.

by Anonymous1 (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:11pm

This isn't the case at all. When NE plays 4/2/5 nickle, the team rarely uses 2 gap principles. 2gap is only on downs when you are concerned about the run. Why would a DL wait to read the play on 3rd and 12? He's busting his ass upfield just like on every other defense.

by DisplacedPackerFan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:28pm

He and Wilfork, assuming Fat Al would do what needed to be done, are the right body types and skill sets if NE wanted to emulate Green Bays 2-4-5 alignments as well. But you are right that NE does enough right now where Haynesworth can play the style he prefers.

by Independent George :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:19pm

What's the Over/Under on Haynesworth's weight after the lockout? 380? 400?

by Harrison Bergeron (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:14pm

He's currently stuck in the opening to the Ted Williams tunnel. Once they get him out, they'll weigh him.

by BroncosGuyAgain :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:47pm

This is simply not correct. While most 3-4s, including Washington's, ask for a lot of 2-gap, New England's is (relatively) unique in that it calls for more 1-gap. Not exclusively, but much more than the typical 3-4. Even when the nose is lined in a zero, he is often tasked with a single gap to exploit. We don't know, yet, how Coach B. will utilize Haynesworth, but to assume at this point his role is as a Ted Washington two-gapper is unwarranted.

by Karma Coma :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:08pm

Sorry, but you have this backwards. New England plays a modified Fairbanks-Bullough defense, and one of its key features is the two-gap principle. Even last year when Belichick was fielding questions about the possibility of playing more 4-3 fronts, he maintained that even when they were in their 4-man fronts, there would still be mainly 2-gap responsibilities. Other teams, such as the Cowboys and Chargers use a 1-gap system.

by Stewart (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:52pm

They run more 2 gap in their 3-4 than most teams. They do however play a whole pile of substitution packages. They don't leave that 2-gap 3-4 on the field when the Colts trot out their 'base' set with 3 wide receivers, gun, small RB, small TE, small O-line. They put a 4-2-5 nickel out there. They have depth and flexibility and they will match and take away the opponent's greatest strength. This is great because no matter what Haynesworth agrees to do, refuses to do, or is simply incapable of doing, they will figure out where he can have his best impact, and put him there. Average players (BJGE, Danny Woodhead, Mike Wright, etc) look good in New England, and good players look great, because they adjust the scheme and strategy to the players available.

by RichC (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:23am

They're all over the place as far as positional stuff.

I've got a feeling that Haynseworth's beef really wasn't with not rushing the passer, but with working for a shitty organization. Its funny how many morale issues winning 14 games can fix.

by Johnny Socko (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:04pm

Winning games is only a temporary fix. See Moss, Randy as example #1. Fat Albert will be a problem by November.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:06pm

Cap-wise, the Pats can just cut him at any time, correct? Washington got stuck with the bonus and the resultant cap hit, so can't the Patriots just dump him whenever he becomes troublesome?

by ktismael :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:17pm

You mean Haynesworth might only set a half dozen records his first year and continue to be a productive top 20 in his position player for the following 2 years?

I think I'd take those odds.

by Johnny Socko (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:27pm

You are proving my point. Moss was actually productive and yet the Pats still saw the need to get rid of him. Albert is not likely to ever play as well as he did 3 years ago, and yet he will be just as much trouble. Of course, as porous as the Pats d-line is, maybe Albert can just lay-down on the job and still be an upgrade.

by ktismael :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:39pm

Then I must misunderstand your point. Because as short a timeframe as most player careers are, 3 excellent years seems well worth it to me. Moss was an excellent pickup for the team, when he proved untenable they cut their losses. If Haynesworth is half as useful as that it will also be a great pickup. Nothing lasts forever, if you can pick up a player and get to the superbowl, its worth it. If you can pick up a player and marginally improve while finding a replacement, it's worth it.

So I have a hard time figuring out what your point might be, unless it's "Haynesworth is fat," in which case we agree. If it's that Randy Moss was a bad pickup for the Pats because they only got three excellent years out of him, then we have very different definitions of the word bad. And even if Haynesworth only plays to 70% of his ability in TN, it would still be a great pick up, if only for a few years.

by Johnny Socko (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:53pm

I never said Moss was a bad pickup. His production was off the charts. My point is that "bad attitudes" don't just magically go away. It is a personalty flaw and no amount of wins or Belichick magic can change a dude's personality.

My point is that Albert's production won't be half as good as Moss, and yet the problems he creates will likely be even bigger; therefore, I suspect will be cut by November. Like you say "no big loss", but no big gain either.

by ktismael :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:06pm

Right, agreed then. I still think its worth the risk because if they can even hold him together for a season at a modest level of effort it will pay off. And they've pulled off such (temporary) miracles before. But yeah, the odds are probably good this will implode.

Though in his defense Washington did use him kind of stupidly. You don't hire the worlds greatest classical violinist for a ton of money and then have him call your square dances. And he can be excused somewhat for being annoyed at being asked to. So I think the blame can be spread between both parties in his Redskins tenure.

by RichC (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:48pm

Bad attitudes don't go away? How bout Corey Dillon? Rodney Harrison?

by Stewart (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:01am

Hindsight is 20/20. The Pats got Moss for a 4th rounder on draft weekend because there was 'no way' he'd ever match his production from Minnesota. He went from an ideal situation to a bad team and one of the most dominant players in the league washed out. Three years later, and the Patriots dumped Moss for MORE than they paid for him.

Haynesworth was an absolute beast in Tennessee. When Tennessee was still undefeated mid-season he was talked about as an MVP candidate. He'll never have 45 snaps a game to put his head down and go nuts in New England, but the ceiling on this deal is still a big boost to NE's pass rush, something a lot of people say needed an upgrade. And I don't really see what problems Moss created for anyone but himself. When he blew up that situation the team didn't skip a beat, it was Moss who was left in the dust wishing he'd kept his mouth shut. New England can't lose.

by RichC (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:46pm

Moss was dealt because he was no longer EFFECTIVE, not because of his attitude. The guy is old.

by jackgibbs :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:56pm

and he started whining about his contract after week 2, and the team knew they had no intention of resigning him, and actually got something in exchange for him. it's not like they just flat out released him a month after acquiring him...

by fooBarFooFoo (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:00pm

He was cut because he wasn't a good fit for the Patriots offense under Bill O'Brien.

2007/2008 was under Josh McDaniels.

I believe there were issues in the communication between Moss and O'Brien, which is why Belichick shipped him out of town to protect his OC. Everybody would agree that McDaniels was a excellent offensive coordinator/QB coach. Even if Bill O'Brien grows into a coordinator who is as good as McD, I guess there might have been some run ins between Moss and his OC last year.

I believe Belichick still has a very high regard for Moss.

by Anonymous1 (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:12pm

NE played nickle on 57% of their snaps, though some of those were in a 3/3/5 set.

by Stewart (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:02am

Even then, 3-3-5 doesn't mean two gap necessarily.

by John (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:39am

Great PR move. Kraft rescues the season, then hires Haynesworth of all people?

(Might retile the page so that replies are possible without editing the too-long subject.)

by John (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:40am

retitle. Thanks, Lion auto-correct.

by Temo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:21pm

Kraft rescued the season? Is he getting all the credit now for that deal?

by Anonymous1 (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:21pm

You didn't see the press conference where Jeff Saturday said there wouldn't have been a new CBA without Robert Kraft?

by Lance :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 2:12am

I heard Kraft is announcing a solution to our energy problem next week.

by RichC (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:29am

Anyone happen to know how Haynesworth's cap numbers look going forward?

by boone88rr :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:50am

$5 million for this year.

I believe he has 3 years, $17 million left on his current contract.

by RichC (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:58am

Thats not bad at all.

I wonder if this means anything as far as Ty Warren's hip.

by Stewart (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:04am

It's more than that. He signed for 7 years, two of which he served in Washington.

It's my understanding that he's up for 5.4m this year and 6.7m next year. In 2013, a 20M roster bonus kicks in, so presumably if he's still in NE he either restructures or gets cut at that point.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:33am

So, Reggie Bush to Miami? Is there some kind of RB-highway I didn't know about from NO to southern Florida? How did Deuce McAllister miss out on his chance to hang out on South Beach?

by johonny (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:04am

I guess Bush helps with all the Chad Henne dink and dunking, but he hardly seems worth getting when the market is flush with backs atm. He certainly isn't a rotation back they could use like Williams or Brown. I guess it's all part of the new offense they are going to install in 1 months time.

by Rupps (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:09am

I wouldn't mind it if he was a compliment to some other stellar back but apparently he's been told he is the feature back for the dolphins... not getting anyone else

by trill :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:23am

Hopefully they'll give most of the between-the-tackles work to Daniel Thomas. Bush can't hold up as a "feature back," but he's a better pass blocker than folks give him credit for and he's versatile of course. Rumors abound that the Fins are after Kyle Orton; an offense with Orton/Bush/Marshall has a much higher ceiling than what they've got going now.

by Yesimadolphinsfan (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:49am

Yeah, they've said all along (at least from what I've read from Omar Kelly and Ben Volin) they want a veteran to pair with Daniel Thomas, using Thomas as more of a brusier between the tackles and a quicker back for the other option. I'm fine with this as long as the cost in draft picks and contract isn't too high. I have no idea what the split will be, I'm guessing it will just depend on how each one looks in the new system.

And of course I really want to see Orton in Aqua and Orange. Can't believe that hasn't been confirmed yet.

And I'd still like to see them sign a better Free Safety. I wanted Weddle, but I'd settle for Huff too.

by Dean :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:12pm

Where have you gone, Don Shula?

Man, this franchise is being run into the ground. I'm sure Reggie will be happy to have all his hype and celebutards hanging around him on south beach.

I actually feel bad for Dolphins fans. If he was coming on as a role player, it might make some sense, but as a feature back? Ted Ginn revisited.

by Yesimadolphinsfan (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:20pm

I really don't think he's going to see 20 carries a game like a "featured" back. At most it will be a Ronnie/Ricky split and even that is being more generous to Bush (again, all speculation).

Early, un-confirmed, word is that the Dolphins traded a 6th round pick and $10M for 2 years. If that's true I think its a great deal for the Dolphins.

And I think you're forgetting how bad Ted Ginn was. A 6th round pick isn't like using the #9 overall on a kick returner. Even if they were to only use Bush as a kick returner, 6th rounder for a great one isn't really that bad.

by Dean :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:27pm

Two thoughts:

1) even $10 million is a million or two/year too much.

2) who's the other back supposed to be? (allegedly) They sold it to Reggie as if he's the guy.

The Ginn comparison wasn't about the draft pick. It's about a speedster from a football factory who is all show and no go. But to be fair, Bush's game is much better than Ginn's. Now, if he was 1/10 as good as he thinks he is, he'd already be in Canton.

You didn't overpay in terms of the draft pick, but you did in terms of the contract.

by Yesimadolphinsfan (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:39pm

The other back will be Daniel Thomas, their 2nd round draft pick this year. They obviously like him a lot, as they traded up to get him. He went to Kansas State, somewhat big for a RB, but apparently had a problem with fumbles in college which worries me a bit. He was a QB in high school and I think even a year or two at Kansas State so (supposedly) still has more to learn at the position.

I tried to find some data on RB cap numbers because I don't really have any info. All I could initally find is a table from USA today of '09 cap numbers.

Guys with cap numbers above Bush for the Dolphins:

Bush himself (of course)
L. Tomlinson
S. Jackson
B. Westbrook
D. Sproles
J. Lewis
F. Gore
C. Portis
M. Jones Drew
R. Brown
B. Jacobs

First few guys below $5M a year:

D. McFadden
W. Parker
R. Grant

Looking at all of those it doesn't seem too bad. There are definitely guys above who were more overpaid. Although if you look at a million less per year, you're in Cadillac Williams, Jonathan Stewart, Derrick Ward territory. Which seems much more reasonable.

Either way, stop raining on my parade!

by Joseph :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 1:46pm

Well, as was said in one of the ESPN articles about him, I hope you get from him what we got in NO--4 or 5 highlight plays per year, 1 or 2 games where he makes a difference, and 6-8 where he's injured.
I agree with the commenters here--if the Fins acquire Orton, that offense leaves the Wildcat behind and becomes pretty good. Of course, a couple of Wildcat end-around-style plays with Bush would be a good change-of-pace too.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:02pm

5 highlight reels plays a year seems over-stating it - I guarantee if he didn't have name vlaue, most of his "highlight reel" plays wouldn't end up on Sportscenter. Sorry, Dolphins fans, you lost the Reggie Bush lottery...

Also, Wildcat doesn't mean splitting a guy out wide and having him run an end-around - there's no reason to think Bush has any of the skillset required for the authentic wildcat that Miami runs...

It's going to be funny when the Saints rebound on offense this year because they won't repeat their RB injury luck - does anyone doubt losing Bush means nothing to them?

by Kyle D (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:10pm

Well, the Saints coaching staff definitely liked him. I'm not saying they won't adapt and still be a good offense, but if Payton thought he was valuable to the team, who am I to argue with him?

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:23pm

If Payton thought he was essential, NO wouldn't have let him walk. You can argue that Bush wasn't terrible, but the Saints agree that he is now overpaid.

by jackgibbs :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:58pm

he didn't say that he was essential, he said he had value. which he does. 5 million dollars worth of value? that can be argued

by Yesimadolphinsfan (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 8:49am

He may be considered overpaid in a vaccum, but consider this:

He only has a two year contract. Hopefully he'll have something to prove and work to get better, especially since next year will be a contract year for him. And we all know players tend to "magically" have their best years in contract years. And in the event he doesn't live up to what they want, he's an FA after two years and doesn't take up the cap space anymore anyway.

I wanted Bradshaw more than Bush. The local media saw Bradshaw walking out of the Dolphins facilities and reports from sources said that he wanted more money than they were willing to pay him. How much more is Bradshaw worth than that $5M (especially in a long term contract) a year considering these are RBs we're talking about?

His cap number, I'd imagine (again all speculation), is less than or about what Ronnie Brown's would have been had they resigned Ronnie (Ronnie's on his last contract was over $5M a year). I absolutely loved Ronnie, but he's getting old for a RB and never played a full season either.

So they're getting a younger, faster back albeit with the same injury concerns, but they're not overpaying for the position considering the other contracts being awarded this year. Unless you really think he's not worth more than an RB2 on any team I guess.

Maybe I'm just grasping at straws, but I still can't see too many negatives for the Dolphins. No matter what I think he makes the team better.

by Kyle D (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:01pm

Overpaid is quite different than saying they won't miss him at all, which is what you originally said. Teams are forced to give up players they wished they could keep all the time. And it's abundantly clear by both what Payton has said in the past about Bush and how they used him that they valued him as a part of the team.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:14pm

Gosh, by this low standard EVERY player on the roster has "value" if a coach simply says nice things about him. But what are we arguing here?

I'm saying, I think production-wise, they won't miss him one bit. I think their offense production is almost certain to rebound because if their extreme injury issues at RB last year. If it doesn't rebound, it won't be because Reggie Bush is gone - it will be something like Brees gets injured or the o-line collapses.

Additionally, I think the Saints agree because they let him walk rather than pay even second-tier money for him. If he was a crucial piece and playing the decoy, blah, blah, blah (we all agree his conventional and DVOA numbers were really underwhelming, right?) they would have kept him around.

Anyway, I can't believe after 5 years of sucking, people still think Reggie Bush is somehow objectively more valuable than not-very-valuable players like Jerome Harrison...

by justanothersteve :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:29pm

He could fill a feature role like Percy Harvin in MN. Some plays in the backfield, some in the slot, some split wide, and still be on the field in over half the plays because sometimes he'd be a decoy.

by Kyle D (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:05pm

"I actually feel bad for Dolphins fans. If he was coming on as a role player, it might make some sense, but as a feature back? Ted Ginn revisited."

Daniel Thomas is going to end up as their feature back. Bush isn't going to be able to carry that load and it's clear they're not going to ask him to. It sounds as if they may well have a new QB in Orton before long. This is shaping up to be their best offensive team in quite sometime.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:16pm

Their offense does look much improved which starts to make them look like a very strong team. They have a good, young improving secondary, a solid defensive line, Crowder and Dansby are a fine tandem inside and Misi and Wake provide the rush.

Orton is a great fit in Miami because they have the offensive line to protect him. While he can get rid of the ball quickly he does get banged up and then his play suffers but Miami should be able to keep him upright.

I think Miami should be right in the thick of a tough Eastern division.

by Kal :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:14am

He helps more if you think of Orton running the offense with Marshall and Bush. Then it becomes a bit scarier of a concept.

by zlionsfan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 1:44pm

I don't know, I think there were some pretty good weapons in New Orleans ... there was just one season (2009) in five where he was even reasonably productive, and he still wasn't the most productive back on the team. I really don't see him adding that much value in a weaker offense.

by Joseph :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 1:47pm

He was pretty productive as a receiver in his rookie year, too.

by Kulko :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:49am

There is an article on thestar.com which puts his Number for the Redskins at $5.4 Million.

by t.d. :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:11am

well that doesn't seem fair

by Led :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:48am

If Haynesworth is motivated and in shape, a line with him, Wilfork and Warren is pretty formidable no matter what defense they're playing. I hope he stays fat and lazy!

by justanothersteve :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 12:33pm

Don't know for how much Colledge signed in Arizona, but he thinks he's better than he is. The good - he rarely gets injured, is rarely out of position, and he tries his best. The bad - he's not physical enough to be a guard and not quick enough to be a tackle. He's not bad. He's just not that good either.

by 5thforce (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 1:48pm

NE played nickle on 57% of their snaps, though some of those were in a 3/3/5 set.

Where can you go to get more info like that?

by Nathan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 1:59pm

Ernie Adams.

by John (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:13pm

Wish I could remember the sports commentator who wrote an article explaining why Indianapolis should be willing to trade its entire draft that year for the rights to grab Bush, because he would make the Indy offense virtually unstoppable.


(Captcha λAff - that took some digging)

(And watch the long page titles, FO.)

by Harrison Bergeron (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:35pm

Besides the fact that Bush hasn't panned out, that commentator has no idea what he's talking about. They had a back who already did everything Bush was supposed to be able to do in Marshall Faulk, traded him away in favor of a more conventional between-the-tackles guy in Edgerrin James, and went from 3-13 to 13-3 in one year.

Granted, that was 13 years ago, and correlation doesn't equal causation, but the Colts have had the same front office and QB over those 13 years, so it probably implies something.

by Temo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:23pm

Washington trades DT Albert Haynesworth to New England for a 2013 fifth-round pick.

New York Jets re-sign K Nick Folk


by trill :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:48pm

Woo! OL depth :D I hope they can still fit Nicks/Goodwin/Strief under the cap.

by trill :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:54pm

So now PHI has two ballhawks that don't like to tackle at CB. Hakeem Nicks can't wait to run slants against those fools.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:46pm

Uh, it's been several years since the Giants beat the Eagles, so I doubt he's salivating about too much - probably just hoping to contribute to a Giants win against the Eagles, which hasn't happened since he's been on the team. Has he ever even had a good game against them? And if the likes of Ellis Hobbs/Dmitri Patterson, guys who can neither tackle nor cover, can shut him down, I highly doubt adding DRC will make the situation better for him...

by Stats are for losers (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:45pm

So now PHI has two ballhawks that don't like to tackle at CB. Eli Manning can't wait to throw interceptions to those fools.

Fixed that for ya!

by Dave Bernreuther :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 2:59pm

I actually kind of like Kolb... but that is a ridiculous price to pay for an unproven QB that doesn't really even fit your offense all that well.

by trill :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:08pm

Especially one that reacts to pressure as poorly as he does. Maybe they'll have luck with a veteran LT before they all get snatched up.

by Dean :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:07pm

It's about the same price as what Houston paid for Schaub, and that worked out OK for them. Kolb has 7 starts and has been Player of the Week twice. That's more of a pedigree than Schaub had. Yes, there are also some stinkers there, but what young QB is great every week that early in their career? Not evey Peyton.

by jackgibbs :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:17pm

yeah, I don't see how his skill set is ill suited to arizona...isn't he of the same mold as kurt warner? probably not as good as warner, but an accurate pocket passer type seems like he should do okay.

I was kind of hoping vince young would go to arizona. he could be like rothlisberger-lite for ken whisenhunt's offense, and fitzgerald has proven he's capable of catching less than accurate passes

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:08pm

I can't believe they've given up a 2nd for Kolb and to throw in a talented if rather flaky cornerback just makes this larceny.

I just don't get how the eagles get away with this, there are already rumours that they'll pull the same trick with Mike Kafka in a few years. It's similar to the way the Pats manage to collect draft picks by trading up into future drafts. Why on earth would you deal with them, they make someone look foolish every year, just don't pick the damn phone up! This isn't a criticism of either team, if I was a fan of theirs I'd love it but I do find it exasperating that the rest of the league lines up to get f***ed like a group of sullen faced hookers in a low end Estonian brothel.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:21pm

Yeah, this trade makes me very happy. It almost (but not quite) makes up for letting Mikell go and wildly over-paying for a sure-to-be-bust in Babin.

by Stats are for losers (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:47pm

shhhh.... they get away with it because everyone's more focused on the ridiculous deals being made farther up I-95.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:57pm

Also, if they manage to do it with Kafka, that's going to be a fucking heist, just an absolute magic trick of a rip-off. That dude is not even equipped to be a 2nd stringer.

I think it's interesting that the Eagles have gotten so much not just in production from their QB position, but trade value as well in the past decade. Can any team compare to what they got from on the field and then in trades for McNabb, Garcia, Feely, Vick and now Kolb. There are franchises that haven't gotten as much the position in their entire history...

by dryheat :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:06pm

Green Bay? Aaron Brooks, Mark Brunell, Matt Hasselbeck...

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:20pm

Any coincidence that Reid coached with the QB's there for Brunell & Hasselback as well?

by Stats are for losers (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:15pm

Bledsoe to Buffalo; Cassel to KC?

The difference, I think, is that the Philly fan might admit that they have a good QB System, rather than a series of superhuman QBs with undefinable "clutch" abilities.

Garcia had already proven himself elsewhere; McNabb was an established Pro Bowler going to a team that loves to overpay.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:21pm

Oh, my point is that it's in no small part the coaching and front office - I'm well aware Garcia flopped just before and then after his time in Philly, Feely was almost certainly not a "real" starter and Vick and McNabb were raw athletes that had their skills harnessed and honed by a good coach - it's easy to imagine McNabb having Vick's Atlanta career if in some alternate reality he didn't ever come to Philly.

by Dean :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:36pm

Careful - party line is Reid is a terrible coach, remember? He's a terrible coach with terrible players who somehow still every year wins 10+ games.

At some point in October, the Eagles will be somewhere around 8-3 and all of Philly will be scrambling aboard the Super Bowl bandwagon. Then, 2 weeks later they'll be 8-5 and those same fans will want Andy fired again.

by Danish Denver-Fan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:03pm

No way you ever, in any way make a case that Andy Reid is a bad coach. In fact, and I might be out of touch, I've never heard anyone try to make that case.

I think the partyline revolves around his clock management...

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:07pm

You must not know many Philly fans. The most vocal ones are 100% convinced he's a born loser who will never win a Superbowl because he's big, fat, losing loser. Like McNabb.

by Danish Denver-Fan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:20pm

Well, either that or you know too many :)

You can find poeple who believes all kinds of things - there are idiots everywhere. Rationally though: you can not make a coherent case that Reid is a bad coach and I think calling it a partyline is a strech.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:32pm

Well, the party line is that he loses big games and gets out-coached by the "real" coaches (the roster of "real" coaches changes from year to year.) The "bad clock management" thing (which was really, truly a McNabb and not a Reid problem) is just the prime example in argument of him being a bad game-day coach who gets out-coached in big games by more brilliant football minds.

I wish it weren't a party line, but it's all over the place. In 2009, every Philly article about him referred to him as being on the hotseat and playing for his job. When they concluded the season with back-to-back blowout losses to the Cowboys, you couldn't find a voice in the media suggesting they should stay the course. The result was McNabb got jettisoned - but just as many sport op-ed's were demanding Reid be sent packing as well.

by Southern Philly :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:47pm

I agree with all of this except to say that the clock management thing was partly Reid's fault. How many timeouts a year were burned and how many times were they called for delay of game because they couldn't the play in in time? Too many in my opinion.

by Aaron Brooks' Good Twin (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:27pm

The most vocal ones are also half-literate cast members on Jersey Shore.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:58pm

Otherwise known as the most literate cast members of Jersey Shore.

by Southern Philly :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:44pm

Garcia did not flop after Philly, you're selling him short. He was a Pro Bowler in 2007, taking Tampa to the playoffs with a season that was as statistically as good as what he did in Philly.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:39pm

That's true - my only memories of him in TB are in that very sad playoff game in 2007 vs. the Giants, though.

by ashok (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 4:28pm

Your comment, sir, is the comment of the year. I am bookmarking it for future reference.

Full disclosure: I am an Eagles fan. For the record, I've been to that brothel. It's a lot better than you say it is.

by Harrison Bergeron (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:21pm

What I don't get is why the Cardinals threw in the pick when the Eagles literally had no other options for a trade.

Keeping Kolb around for another season then losing him for nothing was untenable, and who was willing to ante up for him? The 49ers look satisfied with Smith and Kaepernick, the Seahawks appear willing to to with T.Jack and Whitehurst, and the Dolphins appear to want Orton. I can't think of another team willing to pay a ransom for a promising but unproven passer.

If the Cards would have negotiated harder, they could have paid a lot less.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:36pm

Yeah, but this deal was supposed negotiated a while ago, back when Seattle and the Dolphins were still in the serious bidding. Arizona won out because they had the best offer. I suppose Arizona could have waited things out and then reneged after the other possible destinations dried up, but Philly would have been happy to just decline the trade and keep Kolb as a back-up and then try again next year.

by BaronFoobarstein :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:36pm

Maybe the pick was required in order to beat competing bids from the 49ers, Seahawks, and Dolphins each of which made other arrangements when Arizona claimed the trade.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:23pm

Why on earth would any NFL team honour such an agreement when the coircumstances change so dramatically. The Cardinals should have planned to wait and then try to extort the Eagles.

There are still two legitimate qbs who could become available; I reckon that Carson Palmer could force Mike Brown's hand by showing up to camp, they wouldn't want to pay him and if he showed up then Brown could pretend that his hand wasn't forced by Palmer (to himself at least). The second option is Vince Young, who has put up pretty decent figures by both conventional and Schatztistical standards in the past two years. He also helps the running game as his bootleg action holds the backside pursuit. His ability to buy time behind their line would help and he'd probably work well with Fitzgerald, who'll catch pretty much everything you hurl near him.

Then, if they still weren't happy and hadn't been succesful they'd be able to offer a 2nd and DRC to trade up and get one of the qb wunderkinden that are being touted as top picks next year (though they would also have to use their 1st round pick).

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:27pm

Yeah, but the Cardinals more than anything want to keep Fitzgerald happy. They absolutely could not go another year with Leinart/Max Hall types throwing him the ball and wait until next year for a rookie. And then another year or two after that for the rookie to hit his stride - that would amount to blowing three or four years in a row of Fitzgerald's absolute prime.

I highly doubt a guy who appears to be washed up like Palmer would make him happy, either - even if Palmer performed well, you're getting a guy on the downside of his career and I can't imagine Fitzagerald would be thrilled with another temporary solution. "Hey, maybe the last few years have been an illusion and he's still got something" is not an exciting prospect. It's basically the same situation with Young: take a big risk this year on player with a ton of downside and you're wasting more of Fitzgerald's prime and ending up right back where you started next year - a bad year from either and you have to cut the cord immediately.

Kolb is the lowest risk QB on the market and the one with the most upside. If you're trying to keep your star WR happy, that's the way to do it. And Arizona has (rightfully) made clear over and over that giving Fitzgerald the best chance to shine is their top priority. Kolb has not performed at an above average level yet - but he has had several very impressive games; enough 350 yard, 3TD games against good defenses to know he's capable of doing so several times a season. Plus, he's ready to play NOW, there's no development time like with a rookie and, if he work out, they're getting him in his prime with 5 years on his contract. It's the right decision for Arizona.

by trill :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:17pm

If this is ARI's line of thinking then they have to be honest with their prospects for this year. QB is their biggest need but it's by no means their only need. While they've got a fighting chance due to their division, their run game is pretty crappy, their defense is old at key positions, and their overall depth is poor. They're not built for a playoff run, especially in a shortened off-season.

I can't advocate their taking on Palmer's contract, but for all we know Young just needs a change of scenery. It's possible that Wisenhunt's track record with Leinart had an effect on the decision, and since Young is still on the market we might assume he's damaged goods. But boy, a (good, not great) starting CB and a chance to add another quality starter, PLUS a real-life contract is a lot to pay for somebody with all of 7 NFL games on tape.

by BaronFoobarstein :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:36pm

Are you suggesting?

1) Dolphins make offer.
2) Cards make larger offer.
3) Dolphins decline to outbid cards.
4) Eagles accept cards offer.
5) Dolphins make deal with another party for another QB.
6) Cards say "haha j/k" here's a lower offer.

"Why on earth would any NFL team honour such an agreement...?" Well, how about exactly that, honor. If that doesn't float your boat, how about the desire ever to do business with any other team again?

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:42pm

Exactly. Also there's fact that the Eagles made clear they were happy to delcine a lower offer and keep Kolb as a back-up. The suggestion the Cards could have reneged and still gotten what they want is faulty at almost every level.

by Shattenjager :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:20pm

There's also the fact that at step 4 there is mutual assent.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:40pm

You are presenting the process as an auction but unlike an auction there is no stipulation that the price only goes up, it's a complex market where many factors are in play. My general point is that the cards should have waited and rejected the idea that Kolb was worth a 1st or a 2nd and a player. I think the Cards gave up quite a lot for a qb who's only produced at a lower level than the other Philly quarterbacks and has had his better games against pretty lacklustre opposition.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:13pm

The only risk the Pats have in the Haynesworth trade is the 5th round pick. If he continues to be fat and lazy then cut him, which would have an upside as it would demonstrate that even a player as talented as Haynesworth is going to be held to account.

I can see them using him to srew up blocking schemes on third down even if they can't convince him to play end. He's probably going to be a little more motivated anyway as he won't want to get cut after preseason when most teams have used their cap room.

by JonFrum :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:31pm

There's more risk than that. They won't cut him the first time he acts up, so he can be a drag on the team if he does. He's taking up a roster spot that could have been used on a guy who really wants to play football. AH has proved that he doesn't particularly care. Plus, he could take half the season to play himself into shape, even if he is motivated.

by RickD :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:15pm

They won't cut him the first time he acts up


Why not?

Have you been keeping track of all the players that BB has let go the past couple of seasons who had dubious attitudes? Richard Seymour, Adalius Thomas, Randy Moss, and others...(though Moss actually behaved pretty well for BB over the years)

He benched Wes Welker for the start of a playoff game.

You really think he gives a damn what Albert Haynesworth thinks? If AH is out of shape, he'll be benched. If he doesn't obey team rules, he'll be benched. If he complains about being benched, he'll be cut and nobody else will want him.

by Purds :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:35pm

I agree. Because the Pats are not handicapped by a big contract, they will have an easy time with AH. Washington made a ton of mistakes as did AH when the two were together, but AH had the leverage because of the money. NE can just cut AH if he is a problem or is not physically good enough any more. I suspect he'll be out of shape today, but he will get it together and BB will find a way to use him well -- all of which is a bummer for me as a Colt fan.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 3:54pm

Hey, any Arizona fans have an analysis of DRC? I always wrote him off as the product of hype, getting all his fame from the name value of his somewhat over-rated cousin. Now that he's on the Eagles, I'd like to hear that I'm wrong... but I guess the Eagles got great production of Roderick Hood, so there's at least a team-to-team point of comparison. How does DRC compare to Hood?

by jimbohead :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:09pm

my impression (NFCW, not cards, fan) is that rodgers-cromartie is a pretty similar cb to asante samuel style-wise. Athletic, loves to jump routes when he can, but bites on double moves.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:17pm

Does Samuel bite on double-moves? That seems like one of those made-up criticisms that sticks for some reason - I almost never see it happen with him. Does it happen on a regular basis with DRC?

Samuel is the 3rd best CB in the league and a very deserving Pro-Bowl fixture - is DRC on that level or simply a lesser version of Samuel? He certainly can't be a worse tackler.

by Rupps (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:42pm

he half asses tacles.... the thing with DRC is him being so fast. He can screw up and recover. Problem is he trusts his recovery speed too much so he ends up gambling too much, hence the double moves. Since he played in a smaller school, his athletic ability let him get away with a lot of things, basically in AZ he was also known for questionable study habits and a tendency to doze off in the freaking field. He accepted he sometimes got distracted in the middle of games. Oh and some maturity issues.

It looks like i´m piling on him... but let me say this, if he gets his head on straight he can def be top 5. Whwn he is focused he id really good

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:32pm

Jeez, this is just exactly the kind of player the Eagles have avoided since Reid took over - even TO was a consummate pro on the field. I have no idea how this will pan out - the Eagles are the anti-Patriots in that they don't have any history of getting top level performance from players with a history of being difficult and/or lazy like Moss, Dillon and Harrison. This defense is so young too that I worry about having a head-case in the locker room - there's no leader on this squad, especially since Trent Cole is so reserved and quiet and Bunkley essentially got demoted out of a leadership role...

by Southern Philly :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 9:48pm

"[the Eagles] don't have any history of getting top level performance from players with a history of being difficult and/or lazy"

Only if you ignore Vick.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 8:00am

They got excellent production out of TO for the first year.

by chemical burn :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 10:29am

That's why I mentioned TO specifically: he was always a dedicated, hard-worker who gave everything on the field. That's of course very different than "guy who goes to sleep in the middle of games."

Vick seems like an odd case because he was brought in as a back-up in very high profile and strange circumstances - the Eagles had no risk and could have let him go at any moment. In fact, if Kolb hadn't gotten injured, Vick almost certainly wouldn't have seen the field and had the career rebound he did. DRC is expected to come in and start, he doesn't have to earn his job and there's zero depth behind him.

But, yeah, maybe the success of Vick could give me hope? I don't know, it just seems anomalous - a very specific player in a very specific situation, not standard grade "lazy talented guy" like DRC apparently is.

by TomC :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 5:23pm

Hey Brandon Manumaleuna, don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out. I am so angry we paid $6M upfront for that useless tub of lard. That could have gone towards so many more useful things last year (like keeping Alex Brown so the Idonije could have stayed at tackle, or maybe an NFL-caliber offensive lineman).

by tuluse :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:06pm

I think Manumaleuna was a condition of getting Martz as he wanted one of his guys to help teach the system.

by Nathan :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:09pm


by BJR :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:12pm

Are we allowed to discuss that here or do we leave that to people on twitter?

by jackgibbs :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:16pm

this was so obvious I'm surprised it took so long. He's been begging to come to new england for three years, and Belichick's been blowing him kisses from every podium he's stood behind

by Misty (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:41pm

Let's do a lockout every year. This week is absolutely sick. Lovin every bit of it.

by Dave Bernreuther :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:47pm

I think Aaron Hernandez should refuse to give up number 85.

Think of how funny it'd be seeing OCHOCINCO above an 86 on a Pats jersey...

by tuluse :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:50pm

I heard he was changing his name back to Johnson.

by akn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:56pm

Why? Ochoseis doesn't roll off the tongue?

by Jeff M. (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:16pm

I heard he was changing it to Funfundachtzig.

by Theo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:22pm

Why not N'dan Mb'Nk'duwa.

by jackgibbs :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 6:39pm

on the field today he was wearing 85. I guess aaron hernandez has a shiny new car or something

by dryheat :: Sat, 07/30/2011 - 9:46am

Maybe. Hernandez was 81 at UF, but Moss was wearing it last year. He may have put in for the new number before the trade.

by dryheat :: Sat, 07/30/2011 - 1:31pm

"Nothing [exchanged]. It was Mr. Hernandez's way of greeting me here. He gave me the number, I didn’t have to pay anything. I just shook his hand and said, 'Thank you.' I was probably going to give Mr. Hernandez -- I drive a Toyota Prius -- so I was going to let him use the Prius on the weekend. That’s the best I can do right now, and I have some leftover McDonald’s coupons."

--from Ochocinco's meeting with the media today.

by dbostedo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 6:56pm


by Dennis :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:30pm

I think Chad will more than fairly compensate Hernandez for the number.

by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:36pm

Does anyone know if Reggie Bush can throw, if so the wildcat could be pretty savage.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:18pm

Well, he can't play RB or do anything when split wide, so I'd imagine he can throw at about the same level...

by rd (not verified) :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:34pm

He threw an INT before he got a rushing TD his rookie season

by Jonadan :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:06am

So that's... yes? no? maybe?

by Harrison Bergeron (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 9:41am

I think it's "yes, but not well."

by tuluse :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:38pm

So Greg Olsen got traded to the Panthers for a player and a pick.

I'm not exactly sorry to see Olsen leave. He was always more potential than production. However, I'm going to have to see what they got to see if I like this trade.

Edit: I also really like the signing of Spaeth. A nice steady TE who can block is exactly what this offense needs. Well after an offensive line, Johnny Knox learning how to run a slant route, and one of the other receivers breaking out.

by Theo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:49pm

Be happy, Spaeth is a perfect number 2 tight end.

by tuluse :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:14pm

I'm not sure if this is supposed to be sarcasm, but that's basically all the Bears need from the TE position. That's all Martz wants, and it doesn't make sense to spend additional resources in that area.

However, the story has been updated and the Bears got a 3rd round pick. That seems fair really. I was hoping for a bit more, but you take what you can get.

by Jerry :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 2:11am

Theo's not being sarcastic. Spaeth was never a threat to move past Heath Miller on the depth chart, but he's a useful NFL tight end.

by Theo :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 8:58am

I mean it exactly as you read it.
Like Jerry said, he's not a #1 TE if you already have one, but he'll block a few guys and catch a few passes.

by Theo :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 7:46pm

I want to know the track record of Bill Bilicheck now.

by chemical burn :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 8:33pm

Aw - Leonard Weaver is gone? Well, we'll always have 2009. And only 2009.

by justanothersteve :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:16pm

So far, three GB free agents sign with another team. TT is probably happy with his potential extra picks next year and none are big losses. Really like the Olsen trade. I think GB fans appreciated him more than Chicago fans. Think Joseph is a smarter pickup than Nnamdi for Houston. Younger and probably cheaper, and still a huge upgrade for their secondary.

by tuluse :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:21am

I just checked and appropriately Greg Olsen leads all Bears receivers in yards against the Packers since he was drafted. I still don't think he's that good though.

by justanothersteve :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 8:38am

That may be why I have my perception of Olsen. But I still think the fault lies more with the Bears OC's (and the string of mediocre QBs before Cutler).

by tuluse :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 4:49pm

Olsen's best year was actually with Orton.

by rageon :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 1:03am

Joseph and Manning for about what Nnamdi will sign for.

Haven't teams learned by now that it's always better to sign the superstar (even it if it means "overpaying) over numerous mediocre players (which Manning is pretty much the definition of).

I must be missing something on Joseph. I don't see how signing him instead of possibly the best defensive player in football is a smart more, even for $5M less per year.

by Marko :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 1:27am

Danieal Manning gets to face Peyton Manning twice a year now. Texans fans better hope he knows his coverage responsibilities better than he did the first time he faced Peyton (in Super Bowl XLI). His blown assignment (which happened because he did not hear the defensive call correctly) resulted in arguably the biggest play in that game, the long TD pass to a wide open Reggie Wayne for the Colts' first TD.

Manning does add value as an outstanding kick returner. Of course, that value may not be as great now because of the new kickoff rules.

by Mr Shush :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 6:22am

If the worst thing you can say about a player is that he once got toasted by Reggie Wayne when he was a rookie, that player represents a big upgrade to the Texans secondary, the rest of whom get toasted by Reggie Wayne many times every year . . .

by Marko :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 1:26pm

I understand your point, but my point wasn't that there was one play in which he was toasted by Reggie Wayne. That implies that he was just beaten physically, which wasn't the case. On the play I referred to, Manning didn't correctly hear the defense called in the huddle, resulting in him completely ignoring Wayne, who was his coverage responsibility. The Bears led 7-0, and the Colts hadn't done anything offensively. It was something like 3rd and 8 or 3rd and 9 near midfield, and Manning went to cover the tight end, who was running a short route near the sticks. However, the tight end was someone's else responsibility (I think a linebacker) and was well covered. Meanwhile, Wayne went straight down the field, right past where Manning was supposed to be. Because he wasn't covered at all, he was open by at least 20 yards and just waited for the ball to come to him.

After the game, Manning admitted that he wasn't sure of the coverage call and should have double-checked to make sure he heard it correctly. So it really was a mental mistake. Yes, Manning was a rookie at that time, but he seemed to make a lot of mental mistakes in the following years as well. Part of that may have been due to the fact that he never really settled in at one position, as he constantly bounced around between FS, CB, NB and SS. He finally settled in last year at SS and played pretty well. However, he didn't really make a lot of plays. He was solid but not spectacular. And yes, I know that would be a huge upgrade for the Texans.

by Karl Cuba :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 5:04pm

You're slightly understating the nature of Manning's brain fart against Reggie Wayne, as Dallas Clark ran a ten yard in route Lance Briggs had his outside shoulder and Uralcher was waiting for any throw to his inside. Rarely in the history of football has any tight end been covered on a play by that many Hall of Fame calibre linebackers.

Manning decided to help out instead of covering the probowl wideout running into open space, whether you've heard the call or not there wasn't any reason to help out on the tight end.

by Marko :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 5:28pm

I didn't mean to understate the nature of Manning's mistake (although I didn't remember that Clark was not just well-covered, but double-covered). And I completely agree that whether you've heard the call or not there wasn't any reason to help out on the tight end.

I was just trying to make the point that it wasn't a matter of him being beaten physically. It was a colossal mental mistake, and, as you suggest, it was compounded by Manning's utter lack of awareness/instinct to abandon what he thought was his responsibility and cover the Pro Bowl WR streaking by him for one of the easiest TDs you will ever see.

This goes to the larger point that Manning was prone to mental mistakes and lacks good instincts. He can carry out his assignment and be solid, but if something happens that requires him to adjust, he can't do it (or at least he can't do it quick enough to make a play). And as one of the Bears' beat writers observed today, he didn't make a lot of plays. Some safeties have a knack for being around the ball and making big plays (such as Ed Reed, Troy Polamalu and, when he was healthy for the Bears, Mike Brown). Danieal Manning is not such a player.

I saw somewhere that the Texans plan to put him at FS. I think that is a big mistake. He played far better at SS. Putting him at FS as your last line of defense is asking for trouble.

by Mr Shush :: Sat, 07/30/2011 - 5:28am

I understood what you meant - I was just being flip. I don't know which way round Quin and Manning will be used, or indeed whether there's a huge difference in the roles and required skill-sets of the FS and SS in Phillips' defense - certainly I'm assuming it doesn't call for a box-only run-stuffing/blitzing SS, or they'd just have re-signed Pollard (and Roy Williams would have had a better career). Manning and Quin are almost exactly the same size (5'11 202 and 6'0 205 respectively) so there's no obvious conclusion to be drawn from that.

I know Manning's not a star - he's not getting paid like one and he doesn't have to be one. All he has to be is better in coverage than Troy Nolan and better at returning kick-offs than Jacoby Jones, and he will be worth it. That's not a high bar.

by Mr Shush :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 6:28am

Joseph is really, really good, and he's three years younger than Asomugha. Manning may not be a stud, but he's a vastly better cover safety than anyone the Texans have had there, and with Weddle and Mikell gone he was at least arguably the best option left on the market at a position of glaring need. Would I rather have had Asomugha and Weddle? Sure. But I'm very, very happy indeed with what we've got.

Any Redskins or Patriots fans have opinions on whether Kemoeatu or Stroud have anything left?

by tuluse :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 6:53am

I actually really like what the Texans have done. I'm not sure the other poster is correct that one superstar is what the Texans needed. Their secondary was so bad even if Asomugha erased one option, there would be 3 other guys wide open. What the Texans need is 4 players who are at least average just so they can slow the bleeding. Well they've got 2 guys now who fit the bill, and Joseph should be a good deal better than average.

Also, in terms of coverage abilities Manning might actually be superior to Weddle. I haven't seen a lot of Weddle, but I was under the impression that he wasn't considered that good at coverage.

by Mr Shush :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 7:54am

Weddle's not Ed Reed, but I think he's pretty good in coverage - for me, at least, there's a reason why he's getting paid close to twice what Manning is.

Glover Quin was actually a perfectly decent CB2 (who regrettably was asked to be a CB1). It will be interesting to see how he performs at safety, but I wouldn't be surprised if he was pretty solid there as well. I guess the hope is then that either Jackson takes a big step forward (to merely slightly rubbish, for example) or that Brandon Harris can be serviceable immediately. It would still be no bad thing to add another non-awful veteran, but good God this is a step in the right direction.

by MJK :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 11:50am

Obviously, I never saw him play (for the Patriots...he just signed with them this spring), but I wouldn't expect too much from Stroud.

He averaged 3.6 "touches" (tackles, assists, PD's, etc.) per game last season, which is right about average for a defensive line starter, and is pretty much in line with his career average, so he clearly was playing at full starter level. However, he is going into his 11th season, and he is reportedly coming off some kind of surgery (shoulder?) last January.

So he probably has a little left on the tires, but I wouldn't expect him to be a major contributor or a savior.

by Southern Philly :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 7:56am

"I must be missing something on Joseph. I don't see how signing him instead of possibly the best defensive player in football is a smart more, even for $5M less per year."

You're assuming that Asomugha was ever going to go there. It seems pretty clear to me that they had no shot at getting him, so they moved on to other players.

by justanothersteve :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 8:34am

I'm not keen no Manning either, but he's probably still better than either current Texans safety. And Joseph is a lot better than most people know.

by Mr Shush :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 9:22am

He's miles better than Pollard or Wilson, both of whom are free agents and will not be resigned, and they in turn are considerably better than Troy Nolan and Dominique Barber. Whether he's better than Quin remains to be seen, but I will be surprised if Manning-Quin isn't the best safety pairing in franchise history. You know who has the second most starts at safety for the Texans all time? None other than C.C. Brown, with 47.

by Southern Philly :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 10:53pm

Saints sign Darren Sproles, 2 years.

by Tim Wilson :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:13pm

Little odd, no? Draft a back, already have Ivory and Thomas in house...I get that Sproles brings something different to the receiving game, but seems like a logjam at the position.

by Southern Philly :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:27pm

Definitely surprising. Earlier he was rumored to be down to the Chargers, Rams and Eagles. That does make for 4 RBs, which is an usual amount, perhaps they won't be carrying a FB?

by Dave Bernreuther :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:33pm

They're preparing for another 7-man RB IR list this year.

by sundown (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 11:13am

Well, they have had injury issues and I think Sproles will give them some of what they liked about Bush. I think he'll do well there and won't be overburdened by having to carry a huge chunk of the load.

by TomC :: Thu, 07/28/2011 - 11:40pm

Two questions for Chiefs fans: 1) Does Waters have anything left in the tank? 2) Has he ever played center? I've always loved this guy, and I hope very much that the Bears go after him.

by Ryan (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 12:36am

Chris Ivory and Pierre Thomas are questionable coming off of their surgeries, per Payton in today's presser. Trust me, there is a reason we have all these backs.

by sundown (not verified) :: Fri, 07/29/2011 - 11:18am

If Vince Young is going to make it anywhere, Philly will be the place. Reid did so well with McNabb and while I don't think Young is as good as McNabb was, reading defenses also isn't his strong suit, so some of the same magic may well work with him. Worth the risk, I think. And kind of ironic because Young is sort of an athletic freak of nature like Randall Cunningham was...though I don't know if he can punt!