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  • Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

    Smart NFL teams spend little in free agency

    I love what the Green Bay Packers have done thus far in free agency.

    Nothing.

    Absolutely nothing.

    The Packers haven't signed any players in free agency nor have they lost any. The Indianapolis Colts also haven't signed any players.

    Football is figuring out what baseball discovered in the 1970s you can't buy a championship. Which is contrary to public perception.

    There's a frenzy in the fan bases of 32 NFL teams each off-season. Spend. Buy free agents. The bigger the contract, the better the signing. If you're not spending, you're not trying to get better as a football team.

    Au contraire.

    The Green Bay Packers haven't panicked in free agency at the thought of Aaron Rodgers or another quarterback in charge. The Cowboys, Cleveland Browns, San Francisco ***** and Seattle Seahawks each signed a free agent to a contract in excess of $39 million last off-season. In addition, the Washington Redskins gave aging middle linebacker London Fletcher a $10 million signing bonus, and the Jacksonville Jaguars gave journeyman offensive tackle Tony Pashos another for $9 million.

    All the while, the New York Giants were sitting out the spending spree. To borrow a Jerry Jones term, the Giants were "keeping their powder dry."

    The Giants wound up signing one free agent to fill a specific hole on the depth chart, bottom feeding in late March for linebacker Kawika Mitchell. They gave him a modest one-year, $1 million deal.

    Mitchell is now wearing a Super Bowl ring and 2007 multi-millionaires Leonard Davis (Cowboys), Eric Steinbach (Browns), Nate Clements (*****), Patrick Kerney (Seahawks), Fletcher and Pashos are not.

    In 2006, the Indianapolis Colts signed only one free agent, and he wasn't even a position player kicker Adam Vinatieri. The Colts wound up winning the Super Bowl.

    In 2005, the Pittsburgh Steelers also signed only one free agent wide receiver Cedrick Wilson to a four-year deal worth less than $10 million. He didn't even start for the Steelers. But guess who won the Super Bowl that year?

    Free agency never has been and never will be the answer. Teams are realizing the game's best players no longer become free. So the smart teams invest their salary cap dollars in re-signing their own players.

    Back in the 1990s, you could sign a difference-maker like Reggie White or Deion Sanders in free agency. But with each passing year, the quality of free agents decreases, yet the quantity of the money increases.

    I had breakfast with an NFL head coach last week, and he shook his head at the fiscal craziness, saying that average players are getting superstar money.

    There were 112 players signed in free agency through the end of business last week. Only 28 of them were primary starters in 2007.

    The annual list of signees has become a litany of older players (safety Sammy Knight and offensive linemen Alan Faneca and Damien Woody), players coming off injury (guard Justin Smiley, defensive tackle Chuck Darby and cornerback Jason Webster), players who have lost starting jobs (running back Chris Brown and defensive backs Drayton Florence and Tank Williams) and underachievers (offensive tackle Kwame Harris and wide receivers Jerry Porter and Keary Colbert).

    In short, expendable commodities.

    Talented young starters still in their 20s such as running back Michael Turner (Atlanta), linebackers Landon Johnson (Carolina) and Demorrio Williams (Kansas City), and safety Gibril Wilson (Oakland) in this year's class of free agents are few and far between every off-season.

    You can count on the fingers of two hands the free agents this decade who have played to the level of the money and duration of the contract.

    So the smart teams don't overreact to the market and offer superstar money to non-superstar players. You rarely get what you hope for and what you pay for in free agency. The smart teams don't sign contracts they will live to regret teams like Green Bay and Indianapolis.

    Smart NFL teams spend little in free agency | Sports News | Dallas Morning News | News for Dallas, Texas
    Last edited by ramsplaya16; -03-22-2008, 04:31 PM. Reason: LINK
    Built RAM tough

  • #2
    Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

    Green Bay have since signed Chillar..

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

      well to look at the pack...(i hope im wrong as i want it to be the rams) i think they are gonna be the team to beat over the next 3-5 years,they have so much young talent,in virtually every position and those that are not,a good vet is filling the hole!

      im not sure there was any strategy by the Giants to win the SB this time last year....TC altho held onto his job,was really a "dead-man walking" (i liked TC before he slightly mellowed a teensy weensy bit,long time good coach IMHO!)the Giants altho gave him another shot,didnt have a great deal of faith in him..so were tight on the purse-strings rather than saying something like "Tom you a great coach with a great team ,that only needs one more average player and we can start getting measured for rings"!

      in general,the teams that dont add much in FA are of play-off calibre to begin with.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

        I agree Ramblin, Their line two years ago was rookies that learned on the job and gelled. last year they took Farve to the NFC championship. Now they have a young QB, young, fresh RB, young, but experienced O line, and a trio of wideouts that are all unique to themselves. The defense is more veteran, but that can be fixed in the draft, namely the best corner available when they pick. They could use another TE, just wait till the Rams start shedding dead weight.

        They've done very well for themselves and they looked primed to stay atop the NFC for a few years at least.
        I believe!:ram:

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

          Green Bay did infact sign Chillar...


          But, I guess its right. The other two guys above me are right. Green Bay is a young team with an experienced line. I think after this year and next year's draft, we could very well be like that.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

            i`ll have some of that!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

              One thing to note here is that they didn't sign anybody, but they didn't lose anybody either. Kind of makes you wonder how things might have gone if we had been able to retain guys like Bryce Fisher or Kevin Curtis (whose departures have contributed to turning former team strengths into weaknesses).

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                Originally posted by 81~BIG-GAME View Post
                Green Bay have since signed Chillar..
                Okay, but does that somehow negate the main point of the article?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                  Green Bay, Seattle, NYG... I'm sorry, but these are all terrible examples for you're article. GB and NYG didn't spend money in FA cause they didn't need to. Sea, did and it helped their team was again very competitive last year.

                  We cheer for a team that has too many holes to fill in one or even two drafts when you look at the fact that generally only your first two picks ever become starters.

                  You made a nice arguement but, theres no way it holds up. WE NEED TO SPEND.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                    Originally posted by itsguud View Post
                    Green Bay, Seattle, NYG... I'm sorry, but these are all terrible examples for you're article. GB and NYG didn't spend money in FA cause they didn't need to. Sea, did and it helped their team was again very competitive last year.

                    We cheer for a team that has too many holes to fill in one or even two drafts when you look at the fact that generally only your first two picks ever become starters.

                    You made a nice arguement but, theres no way it holds up. WE NEED TO SPEND.
                    Green Bay didnt need to spend? last time i checked they finished the same as us in 2006 at 8-8. we dont need to spend huge either, we were decimated by injuries last year, without those injuries we could have been at LEAST an 8-8 team, and that would have been worst case scenerio.

                    The Giants also had an 8-8 season in 2006, so what makes you think that teams that had the same exact record as us in 2006 didnt need to spend, but we do?
                    Built RAM tough

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                      Originally posted by itsguud View Post
                      ...these are all terrible examples for you're article...You made a nice arguement but, theres no way it holds up. WE NEED TO SPEND.
                      He didn't write this...it's a repost of an article. We do need to spend, but with the little cap space we had we would have had to blow it all on one guy, and then had none left to resign Jackson. We have to get out of this cap hell and it's gonna take us a few years to do it.
                      Last edited by RamFan_Til_I_Die; -03-22-2008, 04:33 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                        Originally posted by RamFan_Til_I_Die View Post
                        He didn't write this...he plagarized it from Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News.
                        i posted the author of the source in the title...its not like i took credit for it
                        Built RAM tough

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                          Originally posted by ramsplaya16 View Post
                          i posted the author of the source in the title...its not like i took credit for it
                          I didn't notive that...my bad.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                            no prob, its all good, just wanted 2 make sure you didnt think i intended to
                            Built RAM tough

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Smart teams spend little in free agency/Gosselin

                              I'm wondering as well, why we NEED to spend? We need to grossly overpay for subpar talent? We need to do that? How about we find a few fair priced, solid and on their way up guys like Bell and Brown, and then have a good draft where we find a number of rookie role players.

                              The Giants had an amazing draft that put the team together. That's how they won. They had holes too, they needed a corner, they needed wide receiver depth, they needed TE depth. But that's the key. They needed depth players. Only one of their rookies actually started the first game.

                              The Packers had three rookies starting on their line in 2006 I believe(I could be wrong). Jennings and Jones are 24 and 23 respectively. They got where they are because of their drafting. The best argument you can have against that is Ryan Grant. They didn't overpay for him, though, they traded a late round pick for him at the end of the preseason for depth.

                              So no, we don't NEED to spend. We need to sit our butts down and see who is out there. We need to look hard and find the bargain player who will be able to succeed in our schemes. Then, we need to draft the same way and get some solid role players from that. Look at the Patriots. They spend all kinds of money last year in free agency. They won free agency. But are they wearing XLII rings? I think not.
                              I believe!:ram:

                              Comment

                              Related Topics

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                              • HUbison
                                It's a free-for-all for the free agents
                                by HUbison
                                It's a free-for-all for the free agents
                                By Jim Thomas
                                Of the Post-Dispatch
                                03/26/2005

                                The competition for talent early in free agency has become so keen that neither the team nor the player wants to mess around.

                                Almost every year since the start of the current NFL free agency system, the top players go quickly, and this year has been no different.

                                On March 2, at the start of the free agency period, the Post-Dispatch listed the top five free agents in nine positional categories. Of the 45 players listed, only eight are still looking for jobs just 3 1/2 weeks into free agency.

                                So the feeding frenzy hasn't changed. If anything, it has become even more frenzied. It used to be that free agents visited several cities before deciding on a new team.

                                Remember the Reggie White "Tour Across America" in 1993? The late Minister of Defense visited enough towns to have a division named after him before deciding on Green Bay in '93, the first year of the current system. But such tours are nearly nonexistent these days. Players usually go to a city to sign a contract. No fuss. No muss. Some sign without even taking a visit.

                                "This year, it seems to have been very dramatic," said Jay Zygmunt, the Rams' president of football operations. "I don't know the exact percentage, but so many players are not making the multiple visits."

                                The competition for talent early in free agency has become so keen that neither the team nor the player wants to mess around.

                                "The best players are available early on," Zygmunt said. "The most money's available early on. And it's almost like there's a synergy that just says, 'Hey, this is the time to make a deal.'"

                                This year, the Rams did just that, signing linebackers Dexter Coakley and Chris Claiborne on the first two days of free agency.

                                Similarly, Dallas made waves early in free agency by signing cornerback Anthony Henry (Cleveland), defensive tackle Jason Ferguson (New York Jets) and offensive guard Marco Rivera (Green Bay). Those three players accounted for nearly $28 million in signing bonus money.

                                Carolina jumped on cornerback Ken Lucas (Seattle) and offensive guard Mike Wahle (Green Bay), for a combined $16.4 million in signing bonus.

                                "Everyone's looking for the big splash," Zygmunt said.

                                But the best players aren't necessarily the ones with the most name recognition. Teams frequently fall into the trap of buying "names" instead of buying players.

                                "As you well know, the best players (often) are the guys signed that the public doesn't even know who they are," Zygmunt said. "As opposed to signing the aging veteran, which everybody does. ... Sometimes you get caught up in the thrill of the chase."
                                ...
                                -03-27-2005, 03:12 PM
                              • eldfan
                                Frustrated by free agency so far? Patience
                                by eldfan
                                by VanRam on Mar 5, 2010


                                Anyone thinking the St. Louis Rams would move as fast this year in free agency as they did last year is bound to be a little disappointed. I can only counsel patience.

                                Last year, the stars aligned a little better for the Rams in free agency. They had some prime targets that directly addressed important needs for the team. C Jason Brown was on the radar immediately, with the team setting up a meeting within 48 hours of the start of free agency. They worked out a deal with CB Ron Bartell, who was an unrestricted free agent, within a week. There was talk about signing SS James Butler in the early days of free agency too, but the team didn't reach a deal with him until two weeks into free agency.

                                This time around it's not so easy. None of the big names in FA to sign thus far, less than 24 hours in, would have been good fits for the Rams. Nate Burleson, not exactly the WR we're in need of. Did you see how much the Bears gave Julius Peppers? That wasn't realistic for the Rams.

                                Here's a pretty telling point from Mike Sando today: of the 43 unrestricted free agents with a Pro Bowl appearance, only one is younger than 29-years-old.

                                The hardest pill to swallow is the report that the Seahawks are bringing in Broncos WR Brandon Marshall for a visit. Marshall, a RFA, would cost a first round pick, if signed away from the Broncos. Seattle has two of those.

                                All is not lost. If you're starting to despair that A.J. Feeley might be the only roster move the Rams make, be patient. It's telling that the Rams had scheduled a visit with RB Darren Sproles during the brief window when it looked like he would be a free agent.

                                As for trades, I expect the Rams to at least explore some options via that route, but those take time to hammer out deals.
                                -03-06-2010, 08:30 AM
                              • HUbison
                                Rams figure to be busy as free agency begins today
                                by HUbison
                                Rams figure to be busy as free agency begins today
                                By Jim Thomas
                                Of the Post-Dispatch
                                03/01/2005

                                With Pisa Tinoisamoa (50) moving to strong safety, the Rams are in the market for linebacker help.

                                By design and financial necessity, the Rams usually are little more than interested spectators this time of year. With rare exception, St. Louis sits out the feeding-frenzy stage of free agency, and has done so ever since the 1999 Super Bowl championship season.

                                Let the other teams overpay and throw greenbacks around like Monopoly money. In most instances, the Rams had little to spend and used most of it trying to re-sign their own players.

                                Last year, for example, the Rams re-signed guard Adam Timmerman and quarterback Marc Bulger and matched outside offers on restricted free agents Jerametrius Butler (cornerback) and Brandon Manumaleuna (tight end). But they couldn't afford to keep defensive end Grant Wistrom and defensive tackle Brian Young.

                                This year promises to be different. The Rams could be active early players in the free agency period, which begins today. The team enters free agency with about $7 million in salary cap room, a figure that could swell to more than $10 million if left tackle Orlando Pace - and his new agents - can strike a multi-year deal. That would remove the burden of Pace's $8.4 million franchise tag from the team's salary cap.

                                And unlike most recent offseasons, the Rams don't have much in the way of priorities on their own free-agent list, which numbers 13 unrestricted free agents.

                                Among that group, the Rams are resigned to losing defensive end Bryce Fisher. They have had conversations with his agent, but Fisher's strong final month of the season and team-high sack total (8 1/2) almost certainly have priced him out of the Rams' market.

                                The Rams appear to have little to no interest in re-signing linebacker Tommy Polley, whose much-improved play over the final third of the season only made one wonder what the problem was during the first two-thirds of 2004.

                                Safety Antuan Edwards seems intent on shopping the market, so the Rams rescinded what's believed to be a three-year offer Tuesday and will look elsewhere.

                                Injured guards Chris Dishman (knee) and Tom Nutten (toe) are expected to head back to retirement. The team isn't expected to offer safety-cornerback Aeneas Williams a contract, either. He's 37 and ended the season on injured reserve with an arthritic shoulder.

                                The only other unrestricted free agents who saw much playing time for the Rams were tight end Cam Cleeland - who caught only seven passes in the regular season - and safety Rich Coady, who had several rough moments in coverage.

                                So the Rams are expected to use most of their money on outside free agents, and for a change will try to spend at least some of it early....
                                -03-02-2005, 06:24 AM
                              • rammiser
                                I'm beginning to hate free agency.
                                by rammiser
                                Free agency is getting out of control. As I watch average player after average player get signed to record deals and the really good ones get even more it really is out of control. This is something the NFL should look into. I dont know how they can do it but they need to figure this out. Performaced based maybe? Do you think the Whiners believe Clements is worth his contract from last year. He's a nice player sure but he's not worth more money than Bailey. It's just getting out of control every year the free agents get rediculous contracts that set the price tag for an even higher payoff the next year. Most of the time it isnt even worth what you paid. The draft is almost the same way, the number one pick get all this money and for what? Being the best college player? I like the NBA's system where there is a cap on how much you can make based on how long you've been in the league. It can be tough on older vets but it's not getting out of control anymore. I want the Rams to get some good players but I hate to see them get an average player for top tier money and that is free agency in a nutshell.
                                -02-29-2008, 12:35 PM
                              • Sanantonioram
                                December 23, 1975
                                by Sanantonioram
                                A date that will live in infamy. That is the date that Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally ruined professional sports forever when they successfully challenged the reserve clause and brought about the mess we have witnessed for the last 30 years. Free agency with all the agents and money-grubbing and the inability to build and keep a team. Man, how I yearn for the good old days when you drafted a player and built a team around him...those were the days.:sad:
                                -03-16-2006, 11:17 PM
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