General Manager Notes: Not much of a draft, 'ey?
That's what you get for dealing picks.
Okay, that's easy to say and all, but what value did I get out of this 2092 draft by pretty much trading out?
|2094 2nd BOR|
|trade up from 2093 4th to 2nd TUC|
|1.30||2093 2nd BOR||bonus pick from 2091 trade|
|2.27||LT Chase Springer||part of trade 2.29 for 2093 2nd MOO, turned into 5th MOO, which was traded for Springer|
|2.29||2093 2nd MOO||bonus pick from 2091 trade|
|3.29||G Hayden Gaylor||part of trade 2.29 for 2093 2nd MOO, turned into 6.27 that was used on Gaylor|
|4.29||2093 6th NPL||part of trade 2.29 for 2093 2nd MOO, turned into 7.28, then traded 2093 6th NPL|
|5.29||nothing||part of trade 2.29 for 2093 2nd MOO|
|6.29||C Lewis Azzolini|
|7.29||nothing||part of trade 7.28 for 2093 6th NPL|
So, at the end of the draft week, we:
* turned the bonus 1st into a 2nd next draft
* turned the bonus 2nd into a 2nd next draft
* turned our 1st into Bordeaux' 2nd two drafts away, traded up from 4th to (late) 2nd in the next draft
* turned our 2nd into a 2nd next draft
* turned our 3rd-7th into a veteran backup LT, rookie G, rookie C and 6th next draft
And if you still lost track on that second attempt, here's attempt #3: our 2092 draft resulted in three backup linemen and four extra 2nd round picks in the next drafts (3x 2093, 1x 2094).
It may sound like we lost here or there, but this off-season getting under the cap was more vital than replacing the less than a dozen players that we'll be losing.
* So far we lost our QB2 Brandon Bell, but I feel safe to replace him with Francisco Farley and give kick holding duties to one of the 2nd year guys Bert Martin or Nate Marek.
* We lost rotation DE Andy Russell (we can either yank up playing time for the other 3 guys, or squeeze in the new guy Trent Donovan. DT A.J. Ritt is out of contract, I'd like to bring him back, but cap space is a real issue here, we'll try to bring in a young free agent or two as an insurance. All in all, last season we rotated 8 guys on the OL, maintaining enough depth to keep them fresh is a goal for late free agency and pre-season.
* Our backups on the O-line are all likely to depart. C Jared Labbe won't come back, hence we drafted Azzolini, but may go with 2nd year Brady Burke. LT Myron Hamilton will be replaced with LT Chase Springer. And G Marvin Silvan will be attempted to bring back, but probably will be replaced by drafted Haden Gaylor. In case of injuries, keeping Silvan would be crucial, if we go free of that, it'll be a non-issue.
* TE5/mentor Sherman Bridges won't re-sign with us, which opens up the 53rd roster spot. For now have no idea how to use it. I was ready to give it to CB Matthews (pick 1.29) or TE Velazquez (pick 1.30), but since we traded both to Bordeaux, I hope to be able to be flexible with our last roster spot. Most likely it'll be a project player, yet to be discovered in the undrafted rookies player pool with as much upside as the 16 guys on roster that we picked up as undrafted rookies after the previous 6 drafts. Maybe one of the guys that I was eyeing with the late 7th round picks...
So, all in all, that sounds like we'll be replacing 7 players this off-season. That's almost like what a true Merchantmen off-season would look like: keep all the guys on roster and replace the retired and guys with the least upside with 7 rookies. Cohesion should be moving up again, close to, if not back to being top of the league in that area. In that regard, it's going to be crucial to see what happens with Moe Sheldon, 5th year on team now. I'd like to squeeze in more playing time for 2nd year WR Rickey Lyle, but between 3rd year George Stuckey, 2nd year TE Clarence Gore and 3rd year Clay Gaynor, the true cohesion relies on 11th year WR Theodore Bondy, our 5th year backup tight ends Jeffery Blake and Renaldo Crawford, and 6th year WR Branden Sandlin.
Speaking Sandlin, he signed a pretty expensive new 5-year contract in Maassluis, which in the short terms (say, next 3 seasons), means we can't cut him without a dead cap hit that will nullify of the base salary. We'll have to consider whether 2 catches per game really is worth a $10M cap hit, the option of releasing him, that ship has sailed already. He'll be a prime cap out candidate for the next 3 off-seasons.
It's maybe a case of thinking past the retirement of Theo Bondy. I hope he sticks around as long as the guys ahead of him on the all-time league receiving tables, most of them played for 13 or 14 seasons. Bondy is 8th all-time in receptions, 374 behind the #1 spot. That's probably out of reach, but moving into the top5 all-time this season isn't unreasonable as he's 68 catches away from it. The yardage numbers are much heftier, but he's basically a 1,000-yard season away from breaking into the top10. Although, with Frederick's Christian James also lurking at jumping in, top 10 status means he'll have to gain 1,400 yards. With the emergence of Clarence Gore, it will be really interesting to see where the catches will go, and where the double coverage will go. The staff expects Gore to exceed Bondy's reputation of drawing the double coverage, as is the case for the underdeveloped Rickey Lyle, who, as Theo Bondy has discovered that he can be a mentor now, should start to benefit from playing on the same team...
Oh yeah, all that on a run first offense, but I think we're in good shape to build on last season's success and not drop back to how horrible we've been. If we can survive pre-season without having guys running into brick walls...