Tuesday, March 20, 2012

8 comments MMQB Review: Denver Replaces a Running with a Quarterback Edition

So as I started to finish this post, I heard the Broncos are starting negotiations with Peyton Manning and are then going to look into trading Tim Tebow. Needless to say, I wish that information had been available before I wrote MMQB on Monday morning. It just means some of Peter's speculation feels like old news. Regardless, it is still fun to imagine a world where Manning had not made a decision and Tim Tebow was not going to be traded. This gives Peter a chance to imagine where Peyton Manning would go and how it would affect quarterbacks around the NFL. I mentioned this on Twitter, but has any team upgraded the quarterback position so much from one year to the next than Denver has in going from Tim Tebow to Peyton Manning?

Last week Peter King quoted Bob Glauber, who had this to say about the Peyton Manning visits to Denver and Miami,

"I give Peyton a ton of credit. Only meeting with teams he's legitimately interested in. Not playing leverage game w/others. Moving quickly.''

-- @BobGlauber, the prescient Newsday football writer, Sunday night as Manning flew to his offseason home in Miami.

My response was to suggest it had only been less than a week since got released, so let's hold off on sending Manning kudos for his quick decision-making time. I have no issue with Manning taking some time to make a decision. I do find it funny certain parts of the media compliments Manning for being so decisive, cover every little thing he does/says/indicates, and then eventually turns on him when he doesn't make a decision quickly enough. In a 24/7 sports cycle, giving a quarterback two weeks to make an important decision would seem logical, but the media grows impatient quickly.

This week Peter discusses the ripple effect of Manning's decision, his thoughts on beer and coffee, and his thoughts on the NCAA Tournament even though he hasn't watched college basketball all season. At least Peter holds off on making official proclamations about which players are going to make it in the NBA and which players are not based on two weeks of watching college basketball. Peter leaves these misguided proclamations up to Bill Simmons.

Well, Peyton Manning's doing a terrific job of not telegraphing his intentions.

Which he is not obligated in any way to do.

One top official from one of the three teams told me Sunday night his team hadn't heard from Manning all day Sunday and, in his words, "We don't know if we're in or out. He told us he'd call when he knew what he was going to do, and we're taking him at his word. No pressure.''

"I'm telling a national columnist that Manning hasn't called us in an effort to say we don't know which way he is leaning. So I am reporting to Peter there is no news to report. I am telling Peter King fully knowing he will put it in a nationally read column that we haven't heard from Peyton. There's no pressure on Manning, of course by my stating this in a nationally read column. I'm just saying we haven't heard from Manning and we believe him when he said he would call. So we know he will call, but we aren't sure when he will call. We don't know anything and we want Peter to report we don't know anything, but we will continue waiting by the phone. But no pressure on Manning. It's just we haven't heard anything, but we don't need to hear anything, but we also haven't heard anything so there's nothing to report. I'm not even sure why I'm saying all of these words because there's nothing to say. So no pressure, we don't expect to hear anything, even though we would like to hear something at some point soon in order to go with our Plan B...but no pressure on Manning. We'd like a decision though."

So, folks, we're all guessing here. So let's not guess.

Yes, let's be done guessing, but spend the majority of this MMQB speculating where Peyton Manning will go and what effect this will have on other teams and quarterbacks. It's like guessing, but much more presumptive.

Tennessee is in the division he knows intimately, and he loves familiarity.

(Cue Florida Gators fans making jokes about how Peyton Manning can come back to Tennessee, but he still can't beat the Gators.)

San Francisco may have the NFC disadvantage, but it also has the best team.

Last year. San Francisco had the best team last year. Peter has to know things change on a yearly basis in the NFL. So he can't just say "San Francisco has the best team" and ignore the team's mediocrity the years before last year. Yeah, the 49ers may be good again next year, but the 49ers are also playing a first place schedule this year and won't be sneaking up on teams again. Things change quickly in the NFL.

Denver has a good confidant, John Elway, running the show, a young franchise receiver in Demaryius Thomas and one of Manning's very good friends (Brandon Stokley) living in town. He could win at any of the three places. He'd win biggest in San Francisco, most likely.

Most likely he would win biggest in San Francisco? Based on last year's results, which we all know in the NFL last year's results are not always very similar to the upcoming year's probable results. The Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl a year ago by winning three games on the road and this year they couldn't win a home playoff game. Last year's results are not always very similar to the future year's results. I would argue it isn't most likely Manning would win in San Francisco and it is nearly impossible to guess (outside of a few franchises that are consistently good, but they already have good quarterbacks) where Manning would be most likely to win.

While Manning mulls, here's my read on who, and what, is being swept up in this story that may have 48 hours yet to wash over us all:

Everyone. We are all washed up Manning's world. In fact, Manning's world has now affected Tim Tebow. God is going to be so pissed off about this chain of events. You just wait and see, Manning is going to suffer a terrible injury caused by lightning striking him in the first preseason game. You don't mess with Tebow.

Alex Smith. Sure seems like a jilted quarterback to me. How many times has coach Jim Harbaugh staunchly defended this criticism magnet over the past 14 months? Daily, it seems. They're so tight Smith caddied for Harbaugh at the AT&T golf tournament last month. But I think Smith (an unrestricted free agent) was getting some cold feet about his long-term love from the team before the Manning/Niner interest surfaced.

So now that Manning has signed with the Broncos, do the 49ers talk real sweet-like to Smith and try to get him to come back and play for them? The 49ers have been giving Smith the whole "sure, we'll call you soon" talk about a new contract and then went out and pursued another quarterbacks in free agency. I think Smith will come back to the 49ers, but he is probably pretty hurt right now.

He thought the contract being discussed should have been structured more favorably to him in the first year or so of the deal, and he was thinking of looking around in free agency before learning of the Manning workout for Harbaugh and Roman.

These kinds of things happen when you take a team to the NFC Championship Game and that team doesn't make an overly concerted effort to sign you to a contract extension. Quarterbacks tend to get upset over these things. I suggest the 49ers come to their next contract negotiation with Alex Smith holding chocolates, a Teddy Pendergrass CD and some really pretty red roses.

After Smith met with the Dolphins Sunday morning, he went to the Fort Lauderdale airport to catch a flight to Seattle. But the Seahawks had him hold on for a bit, then told him not to come. They'd just agreed to terms with Matt Flynn. And Sunday night, Mike Klis of the Denver Post reported Miami was negotiating to try to bring Smith to terms before Manning made his call. Stay tuned.

Does it really matter? After all, the 49ers are going to be good this upcoming year anyway. It's just a matter of which quarterback they choose to sign. The 49ers were good last year, so they'll be good this year too. They should just pick a quarterback to sign and then go and be good. It's simple.

Would Smith rather rub it in 49er GM Trent Baalke's face and run off to a bad team, and would he rather pray for Manning to pick Tennessee or Denver, enabling Smith to go back to where he has the best chance by far of making a Super Bowl run? Ireland may have to do what he loathes -- overspend for an OK player -- just to deodorize the stink of the last few years in Miami.

Because overspending for an OK player is going to make it all go away. Right, Washington Redskins? All the Redskins' problems are forgotten because they have Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan. Overspending for an OK player has never been a bad idea, it covers up all previous mistakes, and it is a really great way to get fired.

Randy Moss. At 35, does he have anything left? At 32, he caught 83 balls for 1,264 yards and 13 touchdowns. He'd likely be significantly jacked up to catch balls from Manning after catching them from another all-timer, Tom Brady, for three-plus years. More jacked up, I'd imagine, than catching balls from Josh Johnson.

At least the 49ers know that Randy Moss has a history of not trying hard when he doesn't like either (a) the quarterback throwing him the ball or (b) he doesn't think he is getting enough passes thrown his way. So no pressure to fill that quarterback position, San Francisco.

Colt McCoy. If Manning picks Tennessee and Hasselbeck is imported by Cleveland, McCoy would have a big challenge beating out Hasselbeck in an offense he played every year of his pro career in except 2011 in Nashville.

Well, that and McCoy would have a huge challenge beating out Hasselbeck because Matt Hasselbeck is simply still a better quarterback than Colt McCoy is. Tim Hasselbeck may even be a better quarterback than Colt McCoy.

Ok, I may have gone a little overboard there.

The Broncos. Seemed like the ballgame was theirs to lose six days ago. Cold and hot doesn't matter here, so who knows? Manning may be just making sure he's made the right choice -- or he might be seeing some zits the further away from the Broncos he gets.

We know by now that Manning gave the Broncos his final rose and they are the winners in the Manning sweepstakes.

Tim Tebow. If Manning picks Denver, I'd be the only person alive who'd think Denver shouldn't trade Tebow; I'd love to see him be the jack-of-all-trades runner-receiver-very occasional thrower who'd keep defenses honest.

Sounds great, except I'm pretty sure Manning and the Broncos had a conversation like this one:

(John Elway) "We'd really like you to join us, Peyton."

(Peyton Manning) "Sounds great, if I join the team then what is the plan for Tim Tebow?"

(John Elway) "We'll probably keep Tebow around as a change-of-pace---"

(Peyton Manning) "You aren't understanding me. What is the plan for Tebow? I don't see it as beneficial to have two starting quarterbacks on one team."

(John Elway) "We will probably trade him (looks at Manning who is nodding in agreement) and then try to get more draft picks for him. Tebow is gone if you come to Denver. Who needs two starting quarterbacks on one team?"

(Peyton Manning) "Certainly not any team that plans to sign me."

Basically what I am saying is Peyton Manning in no way would sign with the Broncos if they planned to keep Tim Tebow. He wants no part of that circus or have Tebow over his shoulder the entire time he is playing quarterback for the Broncos. So Manning may not have come out and said Tebow has to go, but I would guess it is understood. Peyton Manning has no inclination to play on the same team as Tebow and fight off the enraged and passionate fans of Tebow. I can't blame him for feeling this way either.

I think it would be. I'd keep him unless I could get a third- or higher.

Or unless Peyton Manning told the Broncos to rid themselves of Tebow, which is highly likely. If the Broncos keep Tebow, I can't imagine Manning would be happy.

The deal is for three years, with $10 million guaranteed. Depending on his skill level and whether he starts, Flynn could earn between $19.5 and $24 million from the contract, or $26 million if he performs at a top-quarterback level. But chances are he'll play two years of the deal and then the Seahawks will make their decision for the future on him.

I think this is a really reasonable amount to pay for Matt Flynn. It is enough money to where Flynn would be well compensated as a starter and there is some risk tied in with Flynn, but not too much money to where the Seahawks have too much tied up on Flynn. A reasonable contract secured in the early stages of free agency? You don't say?

But nobody wants to talk about smart free agency moves do they? Let's go negative.

This is possibly the most over-covered week of anything we do in writing about the league, this first week of free agency. I knew it had gotten totally out of control on Saturday when Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News tweeted: "Amazingly, I'm sensing angst among some Giants fans again about Jerry Reese's lack of offseason action.''

Who ever knew fans of NFL teams could be impatient and want to see action and movement by a team? What an unpredictable set of events that Giants fans have gotten impatient.

Williams signed a six-year, $96 million deal with the Bills on Friday, but as ProFootballTalk.com pointed out, the deal is really a two-year, $40 million contract -- with a $10.6 million roster bonus set to activate the final four years of the contract, similar to the way the $28 million option bonus would have activated Peyton Manning's final four contracted years with the Colts had they chosen to exercise the option.

See, this is what striking out in free agency and getting an expensive free agent can do for a team. The Bills have signed Mario Williams and now everything is fixed! The Bills defense now has zero holes in it and the Bills offense will never struggle again. See what investing a lot of money in one player can do? It can help you become successful in March, which is really the most important month to achieve success in the NFL.

But I thought the most compelling part of this deal was that Williams never left Buffalo once he got there Tuesday night.

That is compelling. Does Peter have a long, drawn-out story to relate to us about this? Of course he does.

"I'll tell you exactly how it happened,'' Nix told me Saturday. "When you're a rookie, you're bright-eyed, and you're excited, and you've never had this kind of money. Mario went through that before as the No. 1 overall pick in 2006. And he's a country boy who wasn't into the bells and whistles. In fact, he sold me on the plane ride back to Buffalo. He told me, 'I'm not a vocal leader. I'm not gonna make a lot of speeches.

$96 million for a player who doesn't want to be and isn't a leader? Forget having me sign on the dotted line, I will create my own dotted line upon which to sign.

Said Williams: "When I saw Jim's house, and the deer and turkey out there, it felt like really a country, home-type feeling. At least that's home to me. It was really important to me that I see the town, because I didn't know it. I'd never been here before. I like the small-town atmosphere. Plus, I knew Toronto was just a short trip over [the U.S.-Canada border]

Well of course being close to the U.S.-Canada border is important. Mario Williams needs access to free health care. Even someone making $96 million over five years doesn't want to overpay for health care.

New York's close by plane, Boston's close.

You are a millionaire. Anywhere is close when you signed a rookie contract worth $26 million guaranteed and later signed a $96 million contract.

The cold doesn't bother me.

If it does bother you, then purchase a house somewhere warmer. Hell, purchase three houses somewhere warmer. Hell, purchase an entire very small city and put a dome over it while blasting heat into it all day. You can do all of these things with $96 million.

I just wanted to find the right fit for me, and from the beginning, they showed me love.''

No matter what anyone tells you, love is money. So when he says the Bills showed him love, he means they paid him a lot of money.

I asked him if he traded the chance to win long-term for more money than he'd have been able to make elsewhere.

Williams went to N.C. State to play football. He knows there is more to life than winning football games.

"If I'm not mistaken,'' Williams said, not angrily but stridently, "this team beat New England last year. This team almost beat the Giants.

"BUT," Peter King said in response, "the Bills weren't a very good team last year and that means they won't be a very good team this year."

This is an any-given-Sunday league. I don't buy that we can't win. This is the NFL. New teams win every year. If that wasn't the case, teams in the big cities, the better cities, would win all the time. And you see that's not true.''

Peter King will hear none of this. The Bills were bad last year, so they will be bad again this year.

"Almost like it was destined that he come here,'' said Nix. "A couple times during the process I thought, Why'd we get into this? The downside was huge. If we lose him, I don't know how long it'd take for our fans to recover. They wanted him so bad. But you know, you've got to step up to the plate to have a chance to get a hit. Buffalo's got an inferiority complex. That's why it was so important we get Mario.''

Reasons given by the Bills General Manager, Buddy Nix, for signing Mario Williams:

1. It was destiny.
2. The fans wanted the Bills to sign him.
3. Buddy Nix needed to step up to the plate.
4. Buffalo has an inferiority complex.

I wonder where "he makes our team better in the short and long term and can help us win a Super Bowl" is on the list?

Reminds me what Texans owner Bob McNair said to me before the '06 draft -- Houston was drafting Williams over Reggie Bush and Vince Young because there was no way they could consistently beat Indianapolis without pressuring Peyton Manning.

So how did that go again? The Texans were 1-6 when playing the Colts when they had Peyton Manning and the Texans had Mario Williams. Clearly, this isn't Mario Williams' fault, but I think it serves the broader point that it takes more than one player to pressure an elite quarterback. Mario Williams is one step in that plan for the Bills.

In the last 10 years this franchise has been the most luckless, clueless, hapless club. To wit:

Peter is talking about the Miami Dolphins. I wouldn't focus too much on the luckless part and focus more on the hapless and clueless part.

3. The one you've all forgotten. Two days apart in early 2007, soon after Saban skulked off to Alabama (can't use that phrase enough), Miami interviewed two coordinator prospects -- among others -- to succeed Saban. The Dolphins favored offensive coordinator Cam Cameron of San Diego over Minnesota defensive coordinator Mike Tomlin. Cameron got the Miami job. Tomlin got the Pittsburgh job. Cameron went 1-15 and got fired. Tomlin went 10-6, won the AFC North and is 55-25 since, with a Super Bowl win.

Doesn't the fact Tomlin ended up as the head coach for the Steelers, which is as stable and successful franchise as the NFL has ever seen, count for anything. Are we really to believe if Tomlin had been hired by the Dolphins he would be 55-25 and have a Super Bowl victory at this point in his coaching career? Not at all. So Peter can criticize the Dolphins for the Cam Cameron hiring, but he should also acknowledge that Tomlin was hired by a more successful and stable organization. This most likely helped to contribute to Tomlin's success.

The Ross-Ireland daily double has failed to lure Jim Harbaugh and Jeff Fisher, and has failed to land Peyton Manning or Matt Flynn either.

It's absolutely amazing how much failure the Dolphins have endured in the last 10 years. And the way this year is beginning -- losing out on Fisher, Manning and Flynn -- I'm amazed that Ross is putting up with it without blowing a gasket.

This is not the right time to blow a gasket. The correct time to blow a gasket was earlier in the offseason, not one month before the draft. If Ross isn't putting the right people in charge to make the Dolphins successful then he only has to look in the mirror to see who is really to blame for the team's lack of success.

The other day, Browns president Mike Holmgren inferred strongly to his season ticket holders in a conference call that he felt the trade St. Louis made with Washington was influenced by the relationship between the two coaches involved -- good friend Mike Shanahan of the Redskins and Jeff Fisher of the Rams.

But according to Rams GM Les Snead, that's not the whole story

Wait, wait...so Mike Holmgren is alleging the Rams and Redskins benefited from a close relationship between their head coaches and the Rams response was to deny this? Yet another shocking turn of events. I thought for sure the Rams would immediately acknowledge this is true.

Coming in Tuesday's column (barring a Manning decision or other big news): A one-week review of free agency hits and misses.

Looks like we aren't getting that one-week review of hits and misses. Can't say we aren't better for it.

I'm amazed that the Dallas Cowboys paid Orton -- who I consider the best of the available backups, and not by a small amount -- a $5 million signing bonus for a five-year deal that will likely void to three years. I understand sleeping better at night, which the Cowboys will do now that they have maybe the best backup quarterback in football as insurance for Tony Romo instead of the iffy Stephen McGee. But I've never heard of paying a guy you hope will never play a $5 million signing bonus.

Is this really a bad move? Nearly anyone who follows the NFL knows that when the starting quarterback for a team goes down, it can ruin an entire season. Ask the Colts, Texans, Dolphins (to a lesser extent), and the Rams...and that's just for the 2011 season. So is paying $5 million for three years really that crazy for a guy who can win games for a team when the starting quarterback goes down? Absolutely not.

Not every team can afford to do this, but if a team has the money then why not spend some of that money in case your starter goes down in order to ensure you have a decent backup quarterback? It makes sense. And no, I am not saying this because I think Kyle Orton is an incredibly average to above average starter and I have defended him in the past. I'm saying this because it makes sense to have a good backup quarterback if you can afford it. I think this was a really smart move.

I didn't travel anywhere in the past seven days, but I did have a bit of an odd New York experience. Saturday was the first St. Patrick's Day I have experienced as a Manhattan resident. I just figured, OK, big St. Patty's parade up Fifth Avenue, lots of people, everybody in green, whatever.

On Sunday morning, when Bailey and I went out for her morning spin through the neighborhood (and you know how dogs are -- they like to eat whatever their tongues can scrape off the sidewalk), I had to, in the span of six blocks, tug her past three areas of, shall we say, human sickness. Aaah, the benefits of living in the center of the universe.

Yeah, New York isn't the center of the universe. Peter King typing those words and letting the public read them pretty much reinforces my previously held opinion of him. New York is a great city. It is not the center of the universe, no matter how much Peter wants to believe it is.

"Congrats to Mario Williams signing in Buffalo... far away from the NFC North, thanks big guy''

-- @AaronRodgers12, the Green Bay quarterback, Thursday afternoon, after it was announced Williams would be signing with the Bills.

Meaning: Thank God he'll be in the AFC and not signing with the Bears.

Thanks for the explanation Peter. We're all really stupid and are glad you had to explain this to us.


-- @Staff_9, Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, Thursday afternoon, after Rodgers' tweet.


Yeah Peter, we fucking get what this means. Your readers aren't stupid and don't need every little thing explained to us. There is intelligent life outside the center of the universe.

1. I think I still don't understand Reggie Wayne's rush to re-sign with Indianapolis, unless he was sure the new Peyton Manning team wouldn't want him.

Maybe he wanted to continue playing for the Colts? Or is too obvious of an answer?

5. I think the cream of the crop was pillaged in my top 50 free agents, to the point where only four of the top 23 are left as of Monday morning: Peyton Manning (No. 1), Stephen Tulloch (9), Brodrick Bunkley (10) and Alex Smith (13). I'm a little surprised left tackle Demetrius Bell (30) and running back Mike Tolbert (31) aren't gone yet, because teams are interested.

A few hours after Peter wrote this Manning and Tolbert were signed. I'm not sure I can appreciate a list that has Marquis Colston listed below Chad Henne, Brandon Lloyd, and John Abraham though. How is Colston below these three players on Peter's list?

9. I think the Patriots signing Anthony Gonzalez is borderline insignificant, the equivalent of the Red Sox signing a Carlos Silva.

As always, a Patriots signing can only be sufficiently explained when compared to a Red Sox signing.

"The signing of Adalius Thomas is just like the Red Sox signing of John Lackey!"

He's had hamstring, knee, ankle, groin and concussion issues since 2009. Good camp guy with speed, but it'll be an upset if he's anything more than that.

So you can see how the comparison holds up. Anthony Gonzalez is a fast, injury-prone wide receiver while Carlos Silva is a 280 pound pitcher whose durability hasn't really been a huge concern. The signings are really the same.

a. I had Bobcat Fever over the weekend. Yes, I'm an Ohio U. alum, and there's a good chance this column would have been up sooner this morning if I hadn't been so totally wound up by my alma mater's win over South Florida Sunday night.

They got two. Now they'll be greedy and unafraid, I expect. All they have on the horizon is North Carolina. And then maybe Kansas.

Yeah, "maybe Kansas." Good luck with that. Ohio has beaten an overrated Michigan team and South Florida team that can't score points. Up next, a team that isn't overrated and can score a ton of points. After playing North Carolina, I see the Ohio Bobcats next playing basketball competitively against each other in practice or at a pick-up game in the university gym.

c. OK, all you Tar Heel grads. I'm open for bets on OU-UNC Friday night.

I bet UNC wins by 15 points at a minimum, with or without Kendall Marshall.

k. Coffeenerdness: Memo to restaurants everywhere: Why do you not respect espresso and coffee drinkers? I've almost given up on finding good coffee after a meal.

You can't find good coffee in the center of the universe? What kind of world do we live in that a person can't find good coffee after a meal? This is America, not some poor poverty stricken country that Peter visits for two weeks and talks about how terrible life is there only to come back to America and demand decent after-meal coffee. Good after-meal coffee isn't a luxury, it is a necessity.

m. Same thing every year: I watch 10 seconds of college basketball all season, and then I can't wait for the tournament to come on. I think it's the sudden-death component of it all, and the glee from teams like Norfolk State and Lehigh. Fantastic.

There were no overtime games this year. The NCAA Tournament was fun, but a bit underwhelming when it comes to exciting finishes. But hey, I'm glad Peter still loves it.

o. Happy 14th birthday, Emma Pacifico.

I'm pretty sure this isn't even a real person. I feel like Peter is wishing Happy Birthday to fictional characters now.


rich said...

Alex Smith. Sure seems like a jilted quarterback to me.

In his best year as a pro, the year where he "put it all together" and all that... he had 3200 yards and 17 TDs.

Sorry, if your ceiling is 3500 yards/20 TDs, you don't get to be jilted when they try replace you with one of the best to ever play your position.

Smith absolutely sucked ass for five years and the Niners let him start a sixth year. I don't get it. He sucked, the Niners brought him in for one more year to show the world what he could do when any other team would have sat his ass on the bench or let him walk.

So all this talk about "oh going after Manning was insulting to Smith" is so full of stupid it's unbelievable.

When you have a SB caliber defense, of course you're going to go after the guy who could put up 3500/20, even with a busted up neck.

If Smith thinks the Niners owe him, especially given that the Niners didn't cut him ala Joey Harrington, Jamarcus Russell, etc. and allowed him to show the NFL that he might have some sort of ability, then he needs to grow up and put his big boy panties on.

Basically what I am saying is Peyton Manning in no way would sign with the Broncos if they planned to keep Tim Tebow.

I'm not entirely sure about this. I think Manning would be okay with this in so far as he's Peyton fucking Manning. Even if Manning is rusty at the beginning of the year, they're not going to sit him and there's no coach on the planet that would be dumb enough to take the ball away from Manning to let Tebow run the wildcat.

I think that the Broncos realize that there's only so much you can do with Tebow as your QB and someone (Jacksonville?) is likely stupid enough to give you a first round pick.

The best move for the Broncos might be to hold on to Tebow this year, give him a year to study under Manning and get another year of work in with the coaches. Fix his delivery, fix his footwork, help him learn to read defenses, teach him how to throw a pass to a WR who has a DB within 5 feet of him.

However, if I'm the GM of the Broncos and someone ponies up a first round pick for him, I'd strongly consider it. A first and a third and I'm laughing my ass off.

What an unpredictable set of events that Giants fans have gotten impatient.

Here's the thing though, who are these Giant fans? We all knew Manningham was gone and Ross likely was too once they resigned T2. With Webster, Prince and T2... why bring Ross back?

They didn't have a ton of cap space, so they got cheap options to fill in some holes - Bennett at TE, bringing back T2, etc.

Personally, I think this is just the case of a sportswriter tweeting shit out of his ass and trying to make a story. Who the hell were the Giants going to get?

New teams win every year.

hahahaha. Right. Of the past 22 Super Bowl competitors (11 super bowls), four teams (NYG, Pitt, NE and Indy) account for 12 of those appearances.

You don't go from 6-10 and a -62 point differential to "winner" by signing a DE whose team improved without him.

Oh and ya, they beat NE week three; then got killed by 28 points in week 17 by that same NE team.

Buffalo isn't winning shit unless they get better DBs and a QB who doesn't suck.

Justin Zeth said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Justin Zeth said...

You asked if any team has ever upgraded its QB position more in one year; I submit the 2004 Steelers, who upgraded from Tommy Maddox to Ben Roethlisberger. I would rather have 2011 QB Broncos than 2003 Maddox, and 2004 Roethlisberger is probably about as good as 2012 Manning (Roethlisberger is historically unique in that he was a great quarterback who entered the league already as good as he would ever be). But that's semi-cheating since the Steelers went into 2004 with Maddox as the starter and Roethlisberger got to play when Maddox got hurt in Week 2.

The Vikings upgrading from Tarvaris Jackson to QB Vikings was also very similar, in that they replaced a glorified running back with a Hall of Famer near the end of his career.

Your hypothetical conversation between John Elway and Peyton Manning might well have happened; I'm sure you nailed Manning's perspective on it. But John Elway has always wanted rid of Tim Tebow, and one of the great things about signing Manning from Elway's perspective is that it is the ONLY way Elway can get away with dumping Tebow without getting lynched. So I think they were in total agreement on that point from the beginning and in fact Elway probably made clear that Tebow is gone before Manning could even bring it up.

Mike Tomlin is well regarded because he looks so damn cool and he has coached a very talented team. He is pretty much a J. Random NFL Head Coach that makes 99% of the same decisions every NFL head coach does. Let's see how well regarded he is five years from now, after Pittsburgh has gone through two or three years of Cap Hell and its inevitable 4-12 records. Assuming he's still in Pittsburgh by then.

Bengoodfella said...

Rich, I don't think Smith is jilted but I find it very funny the 49ers are all about talking up Smith and Harbaugh let Smith caddy for him at a golf tournament...then they go pursue another quarterback. I'm not sure if jilted is the right word, but it has seemed all offseason like the 49ers wanted him back and then they pursued Manning. I can't blame them for pursuing Manning, but you get the feeling they aren't serious about Smith over the long-term.

I really believe it is understood that if Manning comes to the Broncos then Tebow is gone. I say this not b/c Manning is a bad person, but he doesn't want to deal with the bullshit that a certain set of Tebow fans will force him to put up with. Just like he is Peyton Manning and isn't concerned about getting beat out for the QB job, he is also Peyton Manning and how do you think he would feel if he looked in the crowd and saw a large percentage of #15 jerseys? It's the vocal minority of Tebow fans that would cause him to want Tebow off the team, simply because of the way they feel about Tebow.

It would be nice if Tebow could learn a bit from Manning, but even if Tebow isn't over Manning's shoulder in terms of talent, I can't help but think in terms of popularity he is equal with Manning in some ways. They could co-exist, but I can't see Manning wanting to.

I don't know who these Giants fan are...especially since the FA strategy worked last year for them. Bennett was a great signing, but I do wonder which fans are being impatient. I see a ton of impatience in the CAR fan base. There are some straight-up idiots who share a common team with me.

That's what I think is so interesting a/b the signing of Williams. It is a great move, but there are quite a few moves that need to be made. The Bills are getting a good D-line together, but they still have holes. Sometimes I think big signings are used to compensate for lack of overall talent on the roster.

Justin, I keep forgetting to call him QB Broncos. I need to attach a post-it note to my computer in order to remember to do this.

Those are two good choices as well. I would say Carolina upgrading from Clausen to Newton, but it is way too early to say that was a brilliant long-term move. Maddox to Roethlisberger is a good one.

I do agree. I think while Manning wants QB Broncos (there we go) gone, Elway and Fox did too. You can't get mad at Elway for signing Manning can you? How can you hate his signing a HoF QB. It's brilliant. They sign Manning and can't keep QB Broncos on the roster, so they trade him. Then Elway drafts another QB in a couple of years that is "his guy" to replace Manning and he can forget Tebow ever existed. It's a clean break.

I do think Tomlin is a good coach, but much like Bill Cowher, I also wonder how much being with a well-run organization has to do with their success. The Steelers draft well, they have stability at the top, and the owners do what they can to put a competitive and well-built team on the field. The coach obviously deserves credit, but do we really think Tomlin has a Super Bowl if Miami hired him? I doubt it.

Justin Zeth said...

By the time you remember to call him QB Broncos, he'll be QB Jaguars. Might as well write that on the Post-It note.

The Steelers actually haven't drafted anything but wide receivers very well in several years now, which is why their o-line, d-line and secondary are a shambles. It's very odd but a few years ago they abruptly stopped (a) drafting well and (b) managing their cap well, which may have something to do with Art Rooney II assuming total control from his father Dan, or may just be random. Either way, the Steelers are (imo) about to truly suck for the first time in 40+ years, starting in 2013.

Bengoodfella said...

Justin, maybe I will just call him QB on the Trade Block in the meantime? Though that is not in any way shorter than Tim Tebow.

The Steelers have definitely drafted WR well. I think they did ok with Ziggy Hood, Pouncey, and Worilds. I have high hopes for Gilbert and Heyward as well. I will never bet on the Steelers truly sucking until I start to see it happen or get a real feeling for myself. Clearly, you are closer to the team than I am.

I hope for the Steelers sake it isn't a result of Art Rooney II assuming total control. I have faith in them drafting better, incompetent ownership is hard to get past.

Justin Zeth said...

And by "QB Jaguars" I meant "RB Jets".

Bengoodfella said...

Seems like the Jets don't want to pay Tebow. He's not RB Jets quite yet.