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View Full Version : What to do about our D?


McDman
10-17-2009, 10:05 PM
I have been thinking about this for awhile now, and I'd like to see what everyone else thought. I'm sure everyone knows we have a very seasoned defense, especially secondary, and we're going to have to address it very soon.

The question is how soon do we have to address it and how do we address it. I'd say with this current defense we have two to three years max with many of these players to be playing at the level they are right now. On defense we have Dawkins-36, Holliday-33, Goodman-31, Bailey-31, Hill-30, Davis-30, and Peterson-30. That's seven out of eleven starters over thirty and all of our secondary.

Do we draft players mostly defense this year and groom them and hope Williams, Smith, Bruton, and McBath can also grow into their roles, or do we continue to do the free agency thing.

Also, do we have to win within two or three years before our defense is pretty much a whole new squad? Also Nolan will likely be gone son enough. What do you guys think?

Broncoman13
10-17-2009, 10:16 PM
I have been thinking about this for awhile now, and I'd like to see what everyone else thought. I'm sure everyone knows we have a very seasoned defense, especially secondary, and we're going to have to address it very soon.

The question is how soon do we have to address it and how do we address it. I'd say with this current defense we have two to three years max with many of these players to be playing at the level they are right now. On defense we have Dawkins-36, Holliday-33, Goodman-31, Bailey-31, Hill-30, Davis-30, and Peterson-30. That's seven out of eleven starters over thirty and all of our secondary.

Do we draft players mostly defense this year and groom them and hope Williams, Smith, Bruton, and McBath can also grow into their roles, or do we continue to do the free agency thing.

Also, do we have to win within two or three years before our defense is pretty much a whole new squad? Also Nolan will likely be gone son enough. What do you guys think?

Pretty sure you already answered your own question. Jack Williams, Alphonso Smith, Darcel McBath, David Bruton, Robert Ayers, Chris Baker, Marcus Thomas, and who knows, maybe even Spencer Larsen. I'd say Josh McDaniels is probably already a step ahead of you.

As for Nolan being done "son"... Perhaps. You would think he'll get another shot at a HC gig sooner or later. But you also have to realize that we have three coaches under him on defense that are tremendous. I'm not sure any of them would be "as good" as Mike Nolan, but I think Martindale, Donnely or Donatell could step in and get good production out of our defense. Lets just hope that Mike Nolan pulls a Dick Lebeau and Pat Bowlen decides he should be one of the higher paid DCs in the league.

USMCBladerunner
10-17-2009, 10:21 PM
First off, I think Nolan will be around for a couple more years at least. This is barely over one quarter of one season. He's doing a hell of a job (brownie!), but he'll need to demonstrate continued success to get another head coaching job.

You are right about the age of the players and their likely timeline, but I don't think it equates to a 2-3 year window of opportunity. I'm amazed at McDaniels' and Nolan's ability to cobble this together in one offseason, so I'm looking forward to how they build the defense over several seasons. I expect to see Alphonso Smith and JMFW in the mix over time for sure. I'm not sure we'll see a focused draft to address the secondary, much like we didn't see one this year to address the DL. If we see one, it's because the player value was in those positions, not because we felt compelled to address a need.
Remember, all of McDaniels' experience is from the Patriots (Blueflame hisses), so his attitude toward over-30 vets is going to be pretty positive. If there are areas where free agency can help, then he'll use it as he did this past season.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:21 PM
1. It's always the draft. They went with FAs this time because the cupboard was left completely bare.

2. DBs historically have been able to play at a higher level for longer. Bailey, Goodman, and Hill aren't old for DB standards. You have to hope that Smith, Williams, Bruton, McBath, etc. grow into their roles, it's what every draft pick has to do at some point. Unlike in year's past though, for now it looks like they won't be forced into too quickly. There will always be people who start screaming "bust" if a pick isn't starting in Year 2, but with that group if they're not, it still means the entire starting secondary from this year is back. I'd love to see that quartet play special teams and slowly get intergrated into the defense over a couple years rather than get thrown to the wolves quickly because there's no one else.

3. I think the focus of the '10 draft still needs to be the Front 7. Knock on wood, but things could go south very quickly if injuries started to pile up there. There is depth in the secondary and Wiegman aside, the offense is a very young unit. Conceivably, you're only looking at C and LG that might need a new starter in the next year or two.

4. Maybe Nolan doesn't want to leave? There are guys who get their shot at HC and realize they'd much rather be a coordinator. Also, if Denver makes the playoffs, he can't get hired away until they're eliminated. Teams move fast for new HCs. IIRC, they interviewed Spags, but hired McDaniels before the Giants were eliminated so Spags never seemed to be a real option. Shanahan, Holmgren, and Cowher will all be at the top of everyone's list. Fisher and Fox will get new jobs if they're fired from their respective teams. There will always be a young hotshot like McDaniels, or Raheem Morris, or Mike Tomlin that someone will take a chance with. I don't think it's a foregone conclusion Nolan wants to leave, or even if there will be a job out there for him to take this offseason.

Or at least that's my dream for Nolan.

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:22 PM
Pretty sure you already answered your own question. Jack Williams, Alphonso Smith, Darcel McBath, David Bruton, Robert Ayers, Chris Baker, Marcus Thomas, and who knows, maybe even Spencer Larsen. I'd say Josh McDaniels is probably already a step ahead of you.

As for Nolan being done "son"... Perhaps. You would think he'll get another shot at a HC gig sooner or later. But you also have to realize that we have three coaches under him on defense that are tremendous. I'm not sure any of them would be "as good" as Mike Nolan, but I think Martindale, Donnely or Donatell could step in and get good production out of our defense. Lets just hope that Mike Nolan pulls a Dick Lebeau and Pat Bowlen decides he should be one of the higher paid DCs in the league.

Well if he's like Belicheck in anyway I could see us going the older free agency route.

and yes, I made type, I sincerely apologize.

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:25 PM
What do you think we do with Champ, he's gotta restructure next year or I could see McD getting him out of here. Let's hope he wants to end his career in Denver.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:25 PM
Well if he's like Belicheck in anyway I could see us going the older free agency route.

and yes, I made type, I sincerely apologize.

Those guys are always to bring leadership and supplement what they need. Every team is looking to bring in that older, veteran FA that brings something your team is lacking. Shanny tried it every offseason too.

TheReverend
10-17-2009, 10:26 PM
The draft AND free agency.

Our offensive core is established. Retaining Marshall and Kuper this year (and possibly Kyle if he continues Sunday's play) will be key.

BroncoInSkinland
10-17-2009, 10:26 PM
Also, we practically put this secondary together in one year through FA. Granted you are not going to get as lucky every time, and FA not the way to build a team long term, but we have shown a pretty good 1 year sample of being able to fill gaps through the open market. Smith, Williams, and one or two of the others mature into starters, we draft a few more to groom and fill gaps in the meantime with high caliber and character veterans to mentor our growing crop of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd year players.

As for Nolan, he tried the HC gig and it didn't turn out so well for him. He might be more comfortable at DC for a few years, and despite an unbelievable performance this year, some teams might be a little leary of promoting him again. I say this one is a don't yell fire til you see the smoke situation. No sense worrying about what MIGHT happen, lets deal with what IS happening first. Besides McD, Xanders, Bowlen, someone in that group knows how to find a talented DC, and with Shanahan gone (which I do still mourn), at least we have a good shot at getting another guy that is light years ahead of Slowick.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:28 PM
What do you think we do with Champ, he's gotta restructure next year or I could see McD getting him out of here. Let's hope he wants to end his career in Denver.

Why? Because everyone's under the assumption that Belichek would do it?

Champ's a future HOFer who is still one of the best at his position, a position that is incredibly difficult to fill. You don't get rid of someone like that just to save a little bit of $$$.

Popps
10-17-2009, 10:33 PM
Good thread.

The question has been answered pretty well already, but keep in mind... New England had a history of picking up older players and squeezing production out of them. I'd expect to see that continue, as we've done so far.

So, the question now is... can we be as productive in the draft going forward as we have been in FA in McD's first season. I like what we did last season, and I've got a lot of confidence in this staff to continue to build out a nice core.

That said, I think almost every one of these guys on the defensive side of the ball can/will be back next year to contribute, so I think we'll be 2 years out before we're needing to replace any big-name starters. (Dawkins, Bailey, etc.)

I think a big-time ILB is a must in next year's draft. I love Davis, but I'd like to see us develop someone to eventually step in as a starter.

It's funny, because in one off-season, we went from a team with gaping holes all over... to a team that appears to have a little depth and can actually just draft best athlete on draft day, and fill need via FA.

Good times.

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:36 PM
Why? Because everyone's under the assumption that Belichek would do it?

Champ's a future HOFer who is still one of the best at his position, a position that is incredibly difficult to fill. You don't get rid of someone like that just to save a little bit of $$$.

It's a lot a bit of money! No, I didn't say anything about Belicheck in regards to Champ, I just think it makes sense we ask him to restructure. Maybe we can get him to sign a two year extension with a signing bonus and backload the contract again.

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:39 PM
The draft AND free agency.

Our offensive core is established. Retaining Marshall and Kuper this year (and possibly Kyle if he continues Sunday's play) will be key.

I agree with our offensive core being set. If we resign all of the players we need to we really only need to draft a couple lineman, especially to replace Casey.

I really hope we get Marshall, Kuper, and Doom signed before they hit free agency, I pray we don't franchise one of them and just get them in here for good.

BroncoInSkinland
10-17-2009, 10:41 PM
Good thread.

The question has been answered pretty well already, but keep in mind... New England had a history of picking up older players and squeezing production out of them. I'd expect to see that continue, as we've done so far.

So, the question now is... can we be as productive in the draft going forward as we have been in FA in McD's first season. I like what we did last season, and I've got a lot of confidence in this staff to continue to build out a nice core.

That said, I think almost every one of these guys on the defensive side of the ball can/will be back next year to contribute, so I think we'll be 2 years out before we're needing to replace any big-name starters. (Dawkins, Bailey, etc.)

I think a big-time ILB is a must in next year's draft. I love Davis, but I'd like to see us develop someone to eventually step in as a starter.

It's funny, because in one off-season, we went from a team with gaping holes all over... to a team that appears to have a little depth and can actually just draft best athlete on draft day, and fill need via FA.

Good times.

I agree that most of those we have we can get another years production out of, BUT, I would hate to have to replace all of them in the same year. I think slowly integrating some key contributors each year will be necessary. I think the Smith pick might have been the first shot in that battle, so I have faith in McDaniels (felt weird saying that) to properly address the situation by a slow and steady trickle of talent there. I think Nolan will be here, working his magic to fill gaps with underestimated players, long enough to give us a good amount of depth at almost every position.

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:44 PM
Good thread.

The question has been answered pretty well already, but keep in mind... New England had a history of picking up older players and squeezing production out of them. I'd expect to see that continue, as we've done so far.

So, the question now is... can we be as productive in the draft going forward as we have been in FA in McD's first season. I like what we did last season, and I've got a lot of confidence in this staff to continue to build out a nice core.

That said, I think almost every one of these guys on the defensive side of the ball can/will be back next year to contribute, so I think we'll be 2 years out before we're needing to replace any big-name starters. (Dawkins, Bailey, etc.)

I think a big-time ILB is a must in next year's draft. I love Davis, but I'd like to see us develop someone to eventually step in as a starter.

It's funny, because in one off-season, we went from a team with gaping holes all over... to a team that appears to have a little depth and can actually just draft best athlete on draft day, and fill need via FA.

Good times.

We'll see if McD follows Belicheck's mold. I don't mind getting older free agents and letting them do their thing, but it's always nice to have a good draft and get a good core group of players in here.

I agree with drafting an ILB as our top defensive choice, the question is who? I don't quite know what to look for in a ILB 3-4 prospect. I guess it's good I'm not a scout for the team.

I could also see us going secondary with our pick, that's clearly the oldest position on the field, how awesome would it be to trade up and grab Berry?!

I feel we're really set a D-line, granted they continue this level of play, and hoepfully we can develop Baker and Pedisclueax.

Bronco Yoda
10-17-2009, 10:45 PM
I say pay Champ until the wheels fall off.... then move him over to Safety.... fatten him up so more years later and push him into a revolving LB'er position (he has the mentality for it) buy the time he's 50 maybe he'd like to be a player/coach...lol

McDman
10-17-2009, 10:45 PM
Also, who do we see as the first old guy to be replaced? If I had to guess it'd be Goodman.

TheDave
10-17-2009, 10:52 PM
It depends how Orton and the rest of the QB's develop... If we don't have to go QB fishing in the draft we can focus more on the defense.

I still would like to see additional help along the Dline especially at NT.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:53 PM
It's a lot a bit of money! No, I didn't say anything about Belicheck in regards to Champ, I just think it makes sense we ask him to restructure. Maybe we can get him to sign a two year extension with a signing bonus and backload the contract again.

It's not our money. If Bowlen is willing to pay it, more power to him. It's an uncapped year and for the most part, I can't think of anyone who is owed a lot of money as know. Champ also earns every cent he's paid, he's not like some of the prior signings on this team.

For all our speculation that Pat might not want to pay for what we thought would be a Top 5 pick next offseason and that's why they traded with Seattle, maybe Pat knew it would be an expensive offseason with Champ, Marshall, Elvis, and Kuper all needing new deals instead, and that is his priority?

Champ needs to be extended not because of what he's due next year, but because next year is the last year of his contract and they need to keep him around.

TheDave
10-17-2009, 10:54 PM
Also, who do we see as the first old guy to be replaced? If I had to guess it'd be Goodman.

To be honest I think both Champ and Goody will be here for several more seasons. That was one of the reasons I was shocked that we gave up what we did for Smith.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:54 PM
Also, who do we see as the first old guy to be replaced? If I had to guess it'd be Goodman.

Right now? None of them because there's no need to.

In the next year or so, it'll be the older guys in the Front 7.

Hercules Rockefeller
10-17-2009, 10:55 PM
To be honest I think both Champ and Goody will be here for several more seasons. That was one of the reasons I was shocked that we gave up what we did for Smith.

Too many teams run 3 or 4 wides consistently now, gotta have at least 3 corners who can play.

TheDave
10-17-2009, 10:58 PM
Too many teams run 3 or 4 wides consistently now, gotta have at least 3 corners who can play.

I understand you need them, I was just surprised we gave up a #1 for a dime/nickle back... at lest for the next few seasons.

At the time I thought our weakness was along the Dline. Obviously they knew more than I did about the lines talent level.

McDman
10-17-2009, 11:03 PM
I understand you need them, I was just surprised we gave up a #1 for a dime/nickle back... at lest for the next few seasons.

At the time I thought our weakness was along the Dline. Obviously they knew more than I did about the lines talent level.

I wasn't really upset about the pick. For one, I didn't think we we're going to very good this year so I thought it would save us from having to pay top ten money.

I am now more confident than ever in McD and if he feels Smith was worth it, I'm gonna believe him. The only thing I really don't agree with is the Quinn pick, it just really doesn't make much sense to me right now, maybe we're plannign on letting Graham go after the year.

ward63
10-18-2009, 12:13 AM
I know the likelihood of it happening is slim unless Chicago tanks (but they do have a tough schedule) is I would LOVE to get Brandon Spikes and put him next to DJ. Who doesn't want to see that?

cutthemdown
10-18-2009, 12:24 AM
Broncos IMO will rebuild team every yr. I think Mcdaniels will each yr look at FA market and say what players are versatile and can help us win, then he will try and sign them.

I think with all the young players already in the secondary Broncos already grooming replacements.

SpringStein
10-18-2009, 01:01 AM
I know the likelihood of it happening is slim unless Chicago tanks (but they do have a tough schedule) is I would LOVE to get Brandon Spikes and put him next to DJ. Who doesn't want to see that?

I don't think Spikes going in the 20's is out of the realm of possibility - and I'd be real happy with that.

baja
10-18-2009, 01:03 AM
I know the likelihood of it happening is slim unless Chicago tanks (but they do have a tough schedule) is I would LOVE to get Brandon Spikes and put him next to DJ. Who doesn't want to see that?

Thank God it's Chicago's pick and not ours.... ;D

cutthemdown
10-18-2009, 01:13 AM
Broncos linebacker playing so well. I'd still like to see Broncos though get someone like Spikes, or some more beef for the NT. Anything that keeps making us stouter up the gut and in the middle of the field I am all for.

If you can rule the middle and force teams to the edges, you can make a lot of big plays.