Yesterday via twitter (follow me at @AsherMathews) I asked my followers to complete this statement: "The NFL team I'd most like the Raiders front ofice to pattern themselves after is _____."
The answers, of course, varied but there were only 8 teams that were submitted (outside of joke answers…unless someone really wants the Raiders to pattern themselves after the Browns). Unsurprisingly, most of the teams mentioned are recent Super Bowl winners or teams that are considered to be up and comers.
The answers, in order, were:
San Francisco 49ers
New England Patriots
Green Bay Packers
New York Giants
Based on those answers, we’ll consider these 8 the elite teams based upon their recent successes.
So, yesterday when the league went spending crazy, it makes sense to want the Raiders to follow the lead of some of the elite teams, right?
Which begs the question: what did these 8 teams do on the first day of free agency (historically when teams over pay the most for slightly above average talent)?
The answer: not much.
Outside of the teams resigning their own players, most of the teams didn’t sign any other free agents.
In fact, on the first day of free agency 5 of the 8 teams didn’t sign a single player that was on a different team in 2012. The five were Green Bay, Seattle, San Francisco, New England and Atlanta.
Pittsburgh and Baltimore each signed one free agent yesterday.
Only the New York Giants, of the list above, signed more than one player yesterday and they have a whopping two.
The Raiders, of course, didn’t sign any players that weren’t on their team yesterday, either.
So, today when you hear which teams “won” the first day of free agency remember that list will likely not include any of the teams that recently won the Super Bowl.
If I had to pick a team - I'd say SF. But personally, I'd rather we blaze our own trail. You don't separate yourself from the pack by emulating what everyone else is doing. That's a sure recipe for mediocrity imho. One thing that has been established since the onset of free agency is you cannot build a winner by buying up players. That's never worked anywhere. You can add a piece to a team that's almost there or you can pick up some undiscovered gems for cheap if your building, but one only has to look at the last attempt at buying a championship - the "Dream Team" Eagles - to see what happens EVERY time someone spends big on a lot of big names... FAIL. Sidebar: Eagles cut Nnamdi - too bad we can't pick him up cheap.
One some of the other stuff... Vince Young? Why? Dansby - malcontent who subscribes to the Randy Moss philosophy of only playing hard when he feels like it. So pass on those two, imho. But Palmer has to take a pay cut (unless his contract is guaranteed... then we're screwed) - no reason to pay anyone top dollar when we're probably looking at another sub-.500 season.
I like how they haven't struck that much yet. There are so many players they can make a move on cheap. I also like that they are talking with Vince Young about a possible workout. I think that will give them some leverage for Palmer to take a pay cut, especially if the workout is great. If Palmer doesn't take a pay cut, I bet they could trade him at the salary he's supposed to make (Arizona or Buffalo would be a good fit).
They just announced the signing of LB Kaluka Maiava (Cleveland), defensive tackle Pat Sims (Cincy) and defensive end Jason Hunter (Denver).
Other Free Agents I think they should look at that they could sign cheap:
Karlos Dansby at LB.
Cary Williams would be a good pick up at CB from the Ravens.
They can also look at Alan Branch (DT, SEA), or Ricky Jean-Francois. A sleeper back up/potential starter is Amobi Okoye (DT, CHI). At DE, we could be waiting to see what Denver does with Dumervil. That would be money worth spending.
Chris Ivory would make a great backup to McFadden. There are a plethora of safeties that we can pick up cheap that are young. Corey Lynch (SD), Quentin Demps (Hou), Josh Barrett (NE), Sharrod Marting (Car), and Bernard Pollard (Bal); to name a few. There is also the possibility of looking at different holes to fill from the CFL. A CB that may be worth looking at is Deon Beasely. He is a heavy hitter, and probably could play safety.
@AsherMathews I did read it Asher. I take little solice in the realization of how far below the bar our Organization really is. It's tough.
@NtotheWild No sweat. We are all passionate and want the same thing. I seek out and value different perspectives. It's all good.
@insuraider Have we lost any other players in the last hour??? Everytime I check online we lose another player
%s all we want is the same thing: a winning team! And I just want us to be good again like you and the rest of %s
RT %s Stevie Johnson called DHB a playmaker... I had no idea dropping passes was considered "playmaking" %s
@ScottSully24 Fair point. The jury is still out on whether these changes will yield the results we all want. The transition is painful.