2021 Pats: Looking Ahead – Roster Planning

RedOctober3829

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With the money they have available, of course this is an option. Not sure that's who they want or where they want to put their $$, but there's a need, he's a terrific player that's available, and the Pats have the cash to afford him.
There's a reason he's available. He's 32 years old and coming off season ending shoulder surgeries the past 2 seasons. He's just a name.
 

Old Fart Tree

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Doesn't Samuel kind of suck, though? Just got his production really inefficiently with a ton of targets? Has weight issues? Or am I misremembering?
 

Captaincoop

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If they move him, I would expect a 2nd round pick.
That may be overly optimistic, IMO. He's coming off an injury and has one year of control - during which he's going to be pissy with the new team if it doesn't work out an extension and more pay.

Maybe a 3rd if they're fortunate to find a dance partner.
 

RedOctober3829

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That may be overly optimistic, IMO. He's coming off an injury and has one year of control - during which he's going to be pissy with the new team if it doesn't work out an extension and more pay.
Oh I think they could get a 2nd for him. The injury is not serious and a team that so chooses could franchise him for another year of control. He's still an elite CB.
 

BigSoxFan

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Maybe they'll trade him with #15 to the Cowboys, who need defensive help but don't (likely) need a QB, to move up five spots to #10 to grab a QB two spots ahead of SF.
Possible since it would allow Dallas to bypass one of the available corners like Surtain or Horn and go for OL help. Turning 10 into 15 and Gilmore would be a great move for them.
 

Ferm Sheller

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Possible since it would allow Dallas to bypass one of the available corners like Surtain or Horn and go for OL help. Turning 10 into 15 and Gilmore would be a great move for them.
And it would keep that hypothetical QB the Pats would be moving up to take (say, Lance) from going another NFC foe, such as SF or Minn or even the NYG.
 

Captaincoop

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Moving from #15 to #10 should cost a 3rd round pick (according to the trade value charts). That's where I would value Gilmore...if the Pats value him more highly they might hold out for another player from Dallas, or a second, lower pick.
 

tims4wins

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I'd probably do that trade gun to my head if Lance is on the board, though I'd probably offer 15 + Gilmore for 10 + 75 to start, with the hopes of gaining back the stupidity penalty pick we lost. I'd be happy with 106 too.
 

BigSoxFan

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I'd probably do that trade gun to my head if Lance is on the board, though I'd probably offer 15 + Gilmore for 10 + 75 to start, with the hopes of gaining back the stupidity penalty pick we lost. I'd be happy with 106 too.
Yeah, I could see that type of deal. If the teams are interested, they could easily make it work. First goal would be to see what kind of pick we can get for Gilmore. A 2nd would be very helpful in moving up for a QB if the opportunity presents itself. You have to figure that BB will get that lost stupidity pick back at some point during the draft through trading down. Doubt he wants to go from 46 to like 97 without a pick.
 

bsj

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Mariota on a one year flyer + Ertz + Fuller + Devonta Smith

What would that eat...$30 mill? 35?

Thoughts? Not super in love with Mariota, but still an upgrade over Cam. We can still look for a young QB later.
 

DJnVa

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Mariota on a one year flyer + Ertz + Fuller + Devonta Smith

What would that eat...$30 mill? 35?

Thoughts? Not super in love with Mariota, but still an upgrade over Cam. We can still look for a young QB later.
He's under contract, so it would take assets to get him.
 

rodderick

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Mariota on a one year flyer + Ertz + Fuller + Devonta Smith

What would that eat...$30 mill? 35?

Thoughts? Not super in love with Mariota, but still an upgrade over Cam. We can still look for a young QB later.
I'd be fine with that, but wouldn't give more than a 3rd to get Mariota.
 

SMU_Sox

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Mariota on a one year flyer + Ertz + Fuller + Devonta Smith

What would that eat...$30 mill? 35?

Thoughts? Not super in love with Mariota, but still an upgrade over Cam. We can still look for a young QB later.
Respectfully all-out. The WR class this year is great. Spending a first rounder on a 6'1" sub 175 pound guy (didn't weigh in at the senior bowl) when there are guys on the front 7 or OL you could draft seems like a waste to me. You can get receivers day 2 and day 3. Bill has size requirements for the position and he's never drafted or spent significant capital on any WR less than 180 pounds let alone 175 at... 6'1". Draft analysts are tripping over themselves telling you it doesn't matter but show me how many guys with his body type have actually succeeded in the NFL. I would rather some other team take that risk. I like Smith - I just don't want the Patriots to be the team that takes the risk on him.

Ertz is toast imo. I watch a ton of Eagles too as they are my 2nd team. He is old and injured and even before his injury last year looked like he was running through mud. Guy can't get off safety james anymore. He is a shell of his former self. If he can be had for cheap he's worth a flyer, I guess, but I wouldn't count on him to produce.

Fuller never stays healthy and is coming off a PED suspension. Most games he has played in is 14, his rookie year. Never played in more than 11 games since then. Plus you'd have to spend assets to get him.

Mariota played 1 game last year and looked good in it but hasn't shown he can perform well over the course of an entire season and his accuracy has always been questionable at best especially since his nerve damage in his throwing elbow. I get that they have a bunch of shitty veteran options and nothing sounds or looks good at QB. I would be ok with spending a 4th on Mariota because he might be the best option they have. That's damning with faint praise.

If they don't go QB at 15 I feel that they need to take front 7 or OL. And more than likely front 7 because OT and OL have depth this year but edge/IDL does not.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Is there any actual evidence that Mariota would be any better than Cam, especially when you factor in that Cam already knows the system and Mariota would be coming in fresh?

And even if Mariota would be a bit better, is the difference enough to give up even something like a 4th round pick when there’s little chance the Pats will be a contender next year regardless?
 

Cellar-Door

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Is there any actual evidence that Mariota would be any better than Cam, especially when you factor in that Cam already knows the system and Mariota would be coming in fresh?

And even if Mariota would be a bit better, is the difference enough to give up even something like a 4th round pick when there’s little chance the Pats will be a contender next year regardless?
Nope. That's what's weird. Mariota is a traditionally worse QB than Cam, he played 1 decent game against the Chargers (against whom we won 45-0 with Cam btw) and people forgot that he his career is one decent year in 2016 and nothing else.
 

bsj

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Nope. That's what's weird. Mariota is a traditionally worse QB than Cam, he played 1 decent game against the Chargers (against whom we won 45-0 with Cam btw) and people forgot that he his career is one decent year in 2016 and nothing else.
Cam quite simply cannot throw. He bounces and overthrows wide open guys. I'm not in love with Mariota but I firmly believe a one year try with him would produce a more capable QB performance than another year of the Cam we know is all done.
 

Cellar-Door

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Cam quite simply cannot throw. He bounces and overthrows wide open guys. I'm not in love with Mariota but I firmly believe a one year try with him would produce a more capable QB performance than another year of the Cam we know is all done.
If you think Mariota is going to throw more accurately than Cam you;re in for a surprise. His accuracy is not good at all and hasn't been for some time. Even his decent game last year... he had a lower on target % and higher bad throw % than Cam's season.
 

nighthob

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I'd be fine with that, but wouldn't give more than a 3rd to get Mariota.
Mariota sucks like an aging ex porn star. No way I’d give up anything more than a 7th round pick for him. If someone is willing to give up more for that mediocrity they can have him.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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Respectfully all-out. The WR class this year is great. Spending a first rounder on a 6'1" sub 175 pound guy (didn't weigh in at the senior bowl) when there are guys on the front 7 or OL you could draft seems like a waste to me. You can get receivers day 2 and day 3. Bill has size requirements for the position and he's never drafted or spent significant capital on any WR less than 180 pounds let alone 175 at... 6'1". Draft analysts are tripping over themselves telling you it doesn't matter but show me how many guys with his body type have actually succeeded in the NFL. I would rather some other team take that risk. I like Smith - I just don't want the Patriots to be the team that takes the risk on him.
Gotta be honest, John. I was DYING to prove this wrong because I really like Devonta Smith.

I just cant.

There's guys with low BMI that have been successful. Randy, Harrison, Bruce, Antonio Brown, Desean, Travis Benjamin, Hilton etc. But as thin as those guys were, Smith's BMI is still SIGNIFICANTLY lower than theirs.

So I moved to the closest players in his tier. Aside from basically Robby Anderson, Josh Doctson, and Dede Westbrook, NONE of them produced. And even then, the players that produced had a BMI a decent amount higher than Smiths.

The other thing you'll notice with a lot of the guys in the low BMI category for WR's is that they tend to be injury prone. While thats not shocking, what was mildly surprising is that plenty of the injuries aren't impact injuries. Its hamstrings, feet, legs, etc. Their lack of size doesn't appear to help them against these injuries, and one can wonder if their top end speed/acceleration simply leads to more soft tissue injuries.

I honestly hadn't been paying attention, but this dude is a fucking beanpole. Its easy to assume that "NFL Strength & Conditioning" and "HGH/Steroids" will fix this issue for him. But this kid didn't come from some small D2 school. Hes been at Alabama for four years. They're a top notch program and they know how to get kids strong. The first thing they did to Smith when he came to practice was hand him a triple cheeseburger. Over the next 4 years at a top D1 school, he added less than 15 pounds total. Hes going to need to add another 15 to be a viable receiver in the NFL. The fact is, his frame just may not be built to support it.

You shortchange the importance of weight. I was blown away at the history of WR's with low BMI. Not just would he be an outlier at the bottom of the spectrum, but he would be the lowest BMI player in the league over the last several seasons. Based on the peers in his weight class, he has a HUGE uphill battle to put up average stats in the NFL.

TL;DR - I no longer want the Patriots to draft Devonta Smith.
 

bsj

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If he's willing to sign for short money, does DeSean Jackson have ANYTHING left? Could he be a decent deep option at a couple mill? I feel like in that 25% of the time he is truly healthy he still has wheels...but that 75% is the problem.
 

E5 Yaz

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If he's willing to sign for short money, does DeSean Jackson have ANYTHING left? Could he be a decent deep option at a couple mill? I feel like in that 25% of the time he is truly healthy he still has wheels...but that 75% is the problem.
If he has anything left, HIS first option would be a team with a realistic Super Bowl chance.
 

54thMA

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Mariota sucks like an aging ex porn star. No way I’d give up anything more than a 7th round pick for him. If someone is willing to give up more for that mediocrity they can have him.
Are we talking Julia Ann or are we heading towards Nina Hartley territory; I need specifics in order to wrap my head around how much he sucks.
 

BigSoxFan

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Gotta be honest, John. I was DYING to prove this wrong because I really like Devonta Smith.

I just cant.

There's guys with low BMI that have been successful. Randy, Harrison, Bruce, Antonio Brown, Desean, Travis Benjamin, Hilton etc. But as thin as those guys were, Smith's BMI is still SIGNIFICANTLY lower than theirs.

So I moved to the closest players in his tier. Aside from basically Robby Anderson, Josh Doctson, and Dede Westbrook, NONE of them produced. And even then, the players that produced had a BMI a decent amount higher than Smiths.

The other thing you'll notice with a lot of the guys in the low BMI category for WR's is that they tend to be injury prone. While thats not shocking, what was mildly surprising is that plenty of the injuries aren't impact injuries. Its hamstrings, feet, legs, etc. Their lack of size doesn't appear to help them against these injuries, and one can wonder if their top end speed/acceleration simply leads to more soft tissue injuries.

I honestly hadn't been paying attention, but this dude is a fucking beanpole. Its easy to assume that "NFL Strength & Conditioning" and "HGH/Steroids" will fix this issue for him. But this kid didn't come from some small D2 school. Hes been at Alabama for four years. They're a top notch program and they know how to get kids strong. The first thing they did to Smith when he came to practice was hand him a triple cheeseburger. Over the next 4 years at a top D1 school, he added less than 15 pounds total. Hes going to need to add another 15 to be a viable receiver in the NFL. The fact is, his frame just may not be built to support it.

You shortchange the importance of weight. I was blown away at the history of WR's with low BMI. Not just would he be an outlier at the bottom of the spectrum, but he would be the lowest BMI player in the league over the last several seasons. Based on the peers in his weight class, he has a HUGE uphill battle to put up average stats in the NFL.

TL;DR - I no longer want the Patriots to draft Devonta Smith.
I’m going to throw out a name. He wasn’t a star so it supports the argument to not spend #15 on him but Todd Pinkston for Philly in the early 2000s was a pretty solid player and had a comparable build.

He was more of a deep threat if I recall and not nearly as talented as Smith but he was listed at 6’2 174 and was a solid NFL player before the achilles injury ended his career. Best season was 2002 when he had 798 yards and 7 TDs in 15 games.

Ultimately, I find it hard to argue with SMU’s point. It’s basically like sub 6 foot guards older than 30 in the NBA. There is a reason why these slight WRs don’t make it big in the NFL. But, like you, I love his game.
 

E5 Yaz

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Belichick binky Hunter Henry has a request

“I want to play somewhere where there’s a good quarterback. That’s huge for our position. It makes things a lot easier. … Playing with a good quarterback always makes things better. You’ve got to look at both. You’ve got to look at some of the financial stuff but not dive too deep into it that you go chasing it, because I also want to play with a good quarterback.”
 

Harry Hooper

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It may be time to put to bed the idea of the Pats benefitting from a much-anticipated salary cap crunch. Said crunch may not happen:

The National Football League wants to charge its current network partners double what they’ve been paying to broadcast games — but Disney is pushing back, citing the high price tag for Monday Night Football.

The NFL is in active discussions on renewal rates with all four of its existing network partners — NBC, CBS, Fox, and Disney-owned ESPN, according to people familiar with the matter. The NFL is hoping to get its primary package renewals completed by March 17, before the start of the new NFL league year, CNBC reported earlier this month.
...
The league has asked Disney to pay the same type of increase as its other partners because Disney is asking for more from the NFL this time around — including double-header Monday Night games, where one game airs on ABC, the Disney-owned broadcast network, the people said. Disney also wants ABC to become part of the Super Bowl rotation with NBC, CBS and Fox. ABC was the home of Monday Night Football until 2005.

Disney also wants flexibility in terms of streaming rights as the company considers selling ESPN as a direct-to-consumer product. The NFL plans to include streaming rights as part of each network package, the people said.

Further, the NFL wants to add an 18th week of regular-season play as soon as next season. That’s an extra game for Disney — and every other broadcast partner.
CNBC
 

axx

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It may be time to put to bed the idea of the Pats benefitting from a much-anticipated salary cap crunch. Said crunch may not happen:
Pretty sure it shouldn't affect the cap number this year. Teams could very easily get around it though if there's confidence the cap will be much higher in 22-23.

Honestly it's amazing they are even getting an increase given that ratings are going down. Other sports TV ratings must really be terrible.
 

DJnVa

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Evan Lazar's podcast said that for players getting their 2nd contract, usually look for the most $$$ they can get. There are a lot of good players in that bracket. Guys getting their 3rd contract are more likely to take discounts to ring chase. Or at least playoff chase.

He thinks the Pats will make a big splash---that they're going to get a #1(ish) WR.
 

Cellar-Door

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One guy I wonder about is.... Jonnu Smith.
He was off to a huge start before TEN lost their starting tackle and used him inline more. He's big, a mismatch in coverage and a good blocker. He's going to be expensive, but the Patriots have a ton of space, and a mismatch TE who can also block would be huge, especially if as is likely, we have either a subpar QB or rookie QB, or both.
 

Average Game James

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One guy I wonder about is.... Jonnu Smith.
He was off to a huge start before TEN lost their starting tackle and used him inline more. He's big, a mismatch in coverage and a good blocker. He's going to be expensive, but the Patriots have a ton of space, and a mismatch TE who can also block would be huge, especially if as is likely, we have either a subpar QB or rookie QB, or both.
The concern I have with Smith is that he was really just a short area target guy/YAC for TEN - the past 2 years he finished second to last and third to last in average depth of target among all qualified receivers (4.8 yards in 2019, 5.8 yards in 2020 - most decent receiving TE are in the 7.5-9 range at a minimum) and more than half of his yards come after the catch. That's not to say he can't be valuable in an offense that has gotten next to no production from the TE position in the past couple years, but he's not going to threaten defenses in the same way guys who run more seam routes would. Smith doesn't have a reputation as anything more than an average blocker either. At the right price, would be happy to see him on the Pats, but if he's going to command a big contract I'd rather see the Pats look at cheaper options elsewhere (Everett? Mo Alie-Cox?).
 

Zincman

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Respectfully all-out. The WR class this year is great. Spending a first rounder on a 6'1" sub 175 pound guy (didn't weigh in at the senior bowl) when there are guys on the front 7 or OL you could draft seems like a waste to me. You can get receivers day 2 and day 3. Bill has size requirements for the position and he's never drafted or spent significant capital on any WR less than 180 pounds let alone 175 at... 6'1". Draft analysts are tripping over themselves telling you it doesn't matter but show me how many guys with his body type have actually succeeded in the NFL. I would rather some other team take that risk. I like Smith - I just don't want the Patriots to be the team that takes the risk on him.

Ertz is toast imo. I watch a ton of Eagles too as they are my 2nd team. He is old and injured and even before his injury last year looked like he was running through mud. Guy can't get off safety james anymore. He is a shell of his former self. If he can be had for cheap he's worth a flyer, I guess, but I wouldn't count on him to produce.

Fuller never stays healthy and is coming off a PED suspension. Most games he has played in is 14, his rookie year. Never played in more than 11 games since then. Plus you'd have to spend assets to get him.

Mariota played 1 game last year and looked good in it but hasn't shown he can perform well over the course of an entire season and his accuracy has always been questionable at best especially since his nerve damage in his throwing elbow. I get that they have a bunch of shitty veteran options and nothing sounds or looks good at QB. I would be ok with spending a 4th on Mariota because he might be the best option they have. That's damning with faint praise.

If they don't go QB at 15 I feel that they need to take front 7 or OL. And more than likely front 7 because OT and OL have depth this year but edge/IDL does not.
This is so spot on. This draft is rich in WR and OL, both of which are needs for the Pats. Its not a deep draft for TE, DT, Edge and LB. My question for SMU is, if we cant make a reasonable effort for one of the 4 top QBs (Lawrence, Wilson, Lance and Fields) do you think it might be better to trade down and acquire assets in order to take multiple swings at WR and OL.
 

Harry Hooper

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Pretty sure it shouldn't affect the cap number this year. Teams could very easily get around it though if there's confidence the cap will be much higher in 22-23.

Honestly it's amazing they are even getting an increase given that ratings are going down. Other sports TV ratings must really be terrible.
The NFL has already told teams that $180 million is the floor, and the league wants the new broadcast deals in place before the 2021 league year starts mid-March. That 2021 salary cap number likely will be closing in on the 2020 cap amount, if not higher.
 

axx

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The NFL has already told teams that $180 million is the floor, and the league wants the new broadcast deals in place before the 2021 league year starts mid-March. That 2021 salary cap number likely will be closing in on the 2020 cap amount, if not higher.
Pretty sure the cap is mostly based upon the previous season revenue although adding the 17th game might increase the cap just by itself since I think the players share increases a bit. The 180 floor is part of a cap smoothing they are implementing so they don't have something like a 160 M cap in 21 and then 200+ in 22.
 
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Mystic Merlin

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Pretty sure the cap is mostly based upon the previous season revenue although adding the 17th game might increase the cap just by itself since I think the players share increases a bit. The 180 floor is part of a cap smoothing they are implementing so they don't have something like a 160 M cap in 21 and then 200+ in 22.
Not a chance the cap is as high in ‘21 as it was in ‘20. My guess is it will be north of five percent lower or so.

Prospective TV money isn’t gonna change that.
 

SMU_Sox

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My question for SMU is, if we cant make a reasonable effort for one of the 4 top QBs (Lawrence, Wilson, Lance and Fields) do you think it might be better to trade down and acquire assets in order to take multiple swings at WR and OL.
That’s a tough call. So one of the things we have talked about here and others have brought this up but if you look at the Pats and the draft you’ll see the Pats don’t take edges early. One guy in top 50 picks not including Hightower who is a hybrid. Usually by the time the Pats pick 3-4 edges are gone. Here he might have his choice at edge/OLB or Edge/OLB/ILB. He also might want to draft Barmore at IDL. Usually Bill goes front 7 with high picks and he might have his chance at them.

If not and none of the edges are there or other blue-chippers I’d like to try and play New Orleans, Chicago, or Pittsburgh for a 2022 first and they can draft Mac Jones at 15.

Exception: if they think someone they like to will be there 5-10 picks later and they can pick up an extra day 2 pick that’s an attractive option too. I could see Jaycee Horn or Zaven Collins as the picks later on in the first.

The rumors right now is there is even less group think this year than last year and nfl teams are more all over the place with their boards than perhaps ever before because of COVID. Could be a wild draft season.

I have also heard rumors about Fields sliding because of processing concerns. I can only hope he slides to 7+ so the Pats can trade into the first and grab him at a reasonable price.