Re: Dreessen, Ryans, Winston, Brisiel, Leach.
With Winston, Briesel, and Dreessen, we'd have 14 wins and be heading to the Superbowl, IMO. However, to do that, we would've had to do things financially that would have sacrificed the next few years. Now, we go into next year with a relatively healthy cap situation, 3-4 compensatory picks, and a group of young players that have gained valuable experience. Brooks, Jones, and Newton will likely be much improved next year and will be competing with other young talent acquired as a result of the extra picks gained in this year's blood-letting.
I'm guessing we may cut Wade Smith, let Caldwell go, do something in free agency to address one of the guard positions or RT, and then draft a couple guys in the middle rounds. I would expect, also, a TE to be selected by round 5. Other than the possible loss of Barwin, I think most of the team's talent returns next year- more experienced with more competition and a much deeper bench. This team is in great position for a long, successful run. Those hard decisions hurt this year but keep the prosperity going forward. This is what happens to all the successful organizations (New England, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, New York Giants)... Interesting to see how Philadelphia has fallen apart as they have moved away from this philosoph and began to covet and over pay veteran players. That defense is full of veteran stars in their prime, all being paid at a premium... How bad were they?! As much as I miss Demeco, who got the better end of that deal? As an Eagle fan, giving up a 3rd and a 4th for Demeco has to look a lot like our Phillip Buchanan trade of '05.