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Old 10-25-2013   #207
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Default Re: Rick Smith's poor job of managing the cap has closed our window for the time bein

Originally Posted by Rey View Post
I was not a huge Winston Fan, but in hindsight he was leaps and bounds better than anything we have now. Not even close.
Not hindsight. Remember this thread? Winston was playing well his last season here. There was some Pro Bowl chatter. He had his limitations, but they were the sort of limitations that most above average but not elite tackles have.

Originally Posted by dream_team View Post
I don't know about you, but I was high on Butler. Check old forum posts and I know I wasn't the only one. At the time, I felt for the amount of money we'd save, and the minimal amount of production we'd lose, cutting Winston was the right move. BTW, it's not like he's been playing well since he left either.
I never felt like Butler was an adequate replacement plan. I gave Newton the benefit of the doubt early on, since he was young, but neve rfelt good about him either. Here are some of my posts from the offseason/preseason after Winston was cut:

Originally Posted by eriadoc View Post
That's one way to look at it. Allow me to present the other side of the argument.

The team was a QB and maybe a WR away from being serious Super Bowl contenders this past season. They were a Jacoby Jones away from potentially moving on to the AFC Championship game even without that QB and WR (full strength AJ). Since then, the only personnel change to the team has been a net loss of players.

1.) Mario - let me get this out of the way first. I'm a big fan of Mario I was one of the few people cheering when they announced the night before the draft they were taking him. The guy caught a ton of unjustified flack while he was here and played well when he was healthy. WHEN HE WAS HEALTHY is why I'm perfectly OK with him moving on. You don't pay a guy 96mil for missing games every season and/or ineffectively playing through injury. I think we all suspected Mario would be gone, and I think the FO made the only choice they should have to maintain long term viability. Thank you Texans for not mortgaging the future on Mario.

2.) Schaub has missed significant time 3 of the 5 seasons he's been a Texan. TJ Yates is a possible replacement someday, but we all saw that he's not quite there yet. Just wanted to point out that they're still potentially a QB away from being a serious SB contender.

3.) WR - Jacoby sucks. I've been saying it for a long time, and my hatred for him as a player (not person) is pretty far from objective after the playoff game. He's still here. AJ is great WHEN HE'S HEALTHY. He's missed more games in the past 5 years than Matt Schaub. Maybe people don't realize or want to accept that; I don't know.

4.) Myers - glad he was re-signed, but I'm not buying the hype that's been put out there about him. He's had one really bad year, one really good year, and the rest has been solid. You didn't fire him after his really bad year, so don't blow smoke up my ass about his really good year. Make him do it again. You made Foster do it a second time, after all.

5.) Brisiel - not to be confused with a HOF guard or anything, but he's consistently beaten Caldwell, even coming back from a bad leg, twice. He's just a flat out better player than Caldwell. So saying they have his replacement on the roster is pretty disingenuous.

6.) Winston - occasional liability in pass protection, but if Butler is better, why didn't he beat out Winston for the job? Either he's not as good or Kubiak wasn't playing the better player. You decide which of those options you like best, I suppose. I hope he gets better than Winston this season, at any rate.

7.) Ryans - Everyone knew it was going to take 2 years to come back from that injury. He started playing his best football toward the end of last year, so they traded him away.

8.) Vickers, Allen, Dreessen, etc. - All of these guys filled roles that kept other players off the field. Casey didn't supplant Vickers as a blocker or Dreessen as a TE. Graham didn't supplant Dreessen as a TE. KJax couldn't keep Allen off the field. Brandon Harris never saw the field, despite being a 2nd round pick. McManis and his random contemporaries couldn't break through either. So again, either these players were the best options to help the team win, or the coaches were making bad decisions.

Any of these moves can be rationalized. Taken as a whole, however, they weaken the team. They may not weaken the business side of things, but that's not going to help the W-L column unless they use that money to bring real replacements in. There's still a draft left to go and they'll undoubtedly get a couple impact players. Let's hope it's enough. I have hope for Sharpton and Kareem Jackson, so that's a positive. Brooks Reed is going to be a very good player. But like I said above, the moves when taken as a whole are hard to rationalize away.

Also, while I have a ton of faith in Wade Phillips to put a top notch defense out there no matter what, Smithiak has earned no such trust from me. They've had way too many WTF moments in personnel for me to blindly trust that they know the best course of action.

But hey, I hope you sunshiners are right, since I rather enjoyed the first good season immensely. I'm just a little irritated that they seem intent on blasting my optimism since the season ended. And deep down, a little part of me knew they would. So no, the sky isn't falling, but it's hard to tell if those clouds rolling in are just an afternoon shower or a full blown hurricane. We'll see.
Originally Posted by eriadoc View Post
I just think some people are trying to convince themselves that Winston was worse than he is and the OL will be better off without him and Brisiel. If Caldwell was better than Brisiel, he would have beaten him out in one of the many opportunities he's gotten. If Butler was better than Winston, he would have been receiving the sort of playtime rotation that Caldwell was getting, or some sort of greater opportunity.

It's going to be an issue going forward. Luckily, the QB and RB will minimize the impact but when you get into tight spaces, that right side is going to come up short a lot more than Brisiel and Winston. JMO. We'll see.
Originally Posted by eriadoc View Post
As for the contract restructure/pay cut, I have my own question about it, relative to other offseason activity. Walter has not only played in most of the games since he started playing for the Texans (his 2nd year here, I think), but he's been a starter. Why would you ask a guy like Walter to take a pay cut and then make him the starter? I mean, I get that he makes a little too much money for what they want him to do, and they recognize that, and also they have a ton of other offseason considerations like Myers, Foster, and Duane Brown. But if a guy isn't producing like you want, teams most often just cut them. You don't generally see starters asked to take a pay cut and then remain as a starter. Now add to that line of thinking that they never even asked Winston to take a pay cut. They just cut him outright. He's a far better tackle than Walter is a WR in most fans' opinions (so, grain of salt and all that). But he was just unceremoniously cut loose. They didn't even try to get anything in return.
I think there's a little revisionist history going on these days.

Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
I get what you are saying. However, it's not as if Winston went on to play solid football the next few years... He was done. So, I give the team credit for making that call when they did. Then, I am critical of the fact that they have failed to patch up the tackle position. They weren't replacing an all-pro. They were replacing a borderline NFL tackle (at the point of his release). So, good recognition on Winston and good, tough decision. But, then, come on! Coach someone up or bring in a veteran presence to sure the spot up.
You can't have a salary cap discussion without discussing the lack of ability to replace players. Otherwise, we could just all propose that they replace everyone with vet minimums. Winston was a better tackle than anyone the Texans had in the pipeline, and he was under contract. And in case everyone forgot, the Texans never even attempted to renegotiate his contract! They just outright cut him as a complete surprise. They gave us that BS rationale that they respected him too much to try and renegotiate his contract, while they forced Walter to take a pay cut and renegotiated AJ's contract. Guess that means they didn't respect the latter two players, huh?

That kind of crap is on Rick Smith. IF you're going to cut a solid player, you better damn sure have a replacement plan and a contingency plan or you run the risk of looking like a dumbass at the very least, and costing your team some wins very possibly.
Hey O'Brien: "How do you tell a guy who is used to catching 80 balls a year that he was going to catch 40?"... You jackass.
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