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Old 01-02-2006   #1
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Default Rookie O-Line Draft Choices vs. Free Agency

Folks,

If anyone has some insight on the following topic, I would appreciate the education...Do rookie offensive lineman usually start and/or have success during their first year in the league? As we debate our draft choices vice free agency pickups, I was wondering if they are not as successful in their first year, if we can afford to simply go the draft route or we are going to be forced to grab one or two vets. I am not sure that the franchise is ready to dedicate next season as a building block year, so we may need at least a couple of OL that can step in immediately. Thanks for your thoughts.
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Old 01-02-2006   #2
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Left Tackles will usually NOT be starter material their first year.. at least at the LT position. The really elite prospects, alot of the time, are good enough to play Right Tackle though.

Rookie Guards, i beleive, have more success in their first year.. as well as Centers. Though no player is a sure thing to start.

As for Free Agency. To my Knowledge, there are NOT many good tackles available in free agency this season. There are some good Guards available though.. such as Steve Hutchinson from Seattle.. and there is at least one good Center in FA.. cant remember his name, he is from NO... dont be surprised to see him get franchised or something like that though.
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Old 01-02-2006   #3
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its not unheard of for rookie linemen to contribute immediately...consider the chargers line last year. furthermore, the impact on the cap will play a definite factor. ideally you spend far less money by drafting a player and cultivating him in your offense. when your 2-14 your gonna have to break the bank to attract a quality free agent however.

i'd like to see a solid quality fa aquisition but i doubt it.
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Old 01-02-2006   #4
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Orlando Pace, Jonathan Ogden started. Alex Barron and the guy from Oklahoma this year are both starting at RT and LT. Jordan Gross split time at RT and LT and still does.
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Old 01-02-2006   #5
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Well, that is encouraging news. I would imagine that putting a rookie at LT could be a very risky move - especially from Carr's point of view. However, starting them at RT and gradually moving them over sounds like it could work.

I would prefer to draft some young O linemen rather than go the FA route. What do you guys see out there in the early second and third rounds? As a 'Cane I have been a little disappointed in Winston's play this year. Due to his struggles, is it possible for him to fall to our second round pick?
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Old 01-02-2006   #6
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Winston and Scott are both possibilities to slide to the second round.

Id like us to pick up a Center in FA, or in the 3rd/4th round.

Then id like us to try and get OG Steve Hutchinson from Seattle in Free Agency, and Draft OG Max Jean-Gilles.

THEN id like us to try Seth Wand at RT, and possibly pick up Scott or Winston with the #33 pick.

That would be Bush at #1..and 3 Olinemen in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rounds... sounds about right.

Then id like us to let Wiegert, Washington, Weary, and Brown go.

Our Oline next year would look like this


RT: Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade/Jean-Gilles
RG: Hutchinson/Jean-Gilles/McKinney
C: Hodgdon/Rookie/McKinney
LG: McKinney/Jean-Gilles/Hutchinson
LT: Pitts/Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade

That would be 9 Olinemen total. Pitts, Wand, Wade, McKinney, Jean-Gilles, Hutchinson, Hodgdon, Scott/Winston, and the Rookie Center.

Last edited by Grid; 01-02-2006 at 10:16 PM.
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Old 01-02-2006   #7
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Default Stop the panic train!

Our O-line is not that bad, esp with Pitts moving back to LT. I would like to see an starting line-up like this next year

LT- Pitts
LG- McKinney
C- Hodgon
RG- Weigert
RT- high draft pick or FA

Our line gets SO much better with McKinney moving back to Guard and allowing the infinitely more athletic Hodgon to play C. Weigert is an above average RG but below average RT (still better than Todd Wade). If we can make just one solid quality addition, it can make a world of difference.
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Old 01-02-2006   #8
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Grid,

I actually like that lineup quite a bit. Is Seattle going to fight us for Hutchinson? I thought they really liked him out there? My only concern is that none of those draft picks/FA signings would help us on the defensive side of the ball. Maybe a change to the 4-3 would allow us to do more with what we have there...
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Old 01-02-2006   #9
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Default I defer to Grid

Nice post Grid- I agree almost completely, I'm just not ready to give up on Weigert yet. I would rather see him at RG than Wand at RT. I do agree than we should go Bush, then O-line in rounds 2,3 and 4.

Need other defensive help in the latter rounds- DB in particular. Petey should never be more than a nickle corner.
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Old 01-02-2006   #10
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I think that a change of coaching staff is gonna help our defense alot more than more players will. I think the root of our problems on Defense was Fangio and how much he made our guys think, instead of playing on instinct.

We DO need to add a CB in my opinion.. and we could use more guys on the Dline but I think that can wait till next offseason if necessary. We might be able to get our CB in Free Agency.. if not.. one of our 2 3rd rounders may be a possibility.. though I dont know if there will be any quality CBs available in the 3rd this year.


*EDIT* oh.. and yah they like Hutchinson in Seattle.. I dont know how hard it would be to get him.. but he is a very good guard, and still young. Plus, with Seattle playing so well this year.. convincing a guy whos team MAY be in the superbowl this year.. to come over to the worst team in the league....may be kinda difficult. But ya never know.. maybe someone on our new coaching staff will be one of his old coaches or something

*EDIT AGAIN* If Hutchinson WONT come.. Max Jean-Gilles looks really good and im betting he could start at RG... then we could just hold on to Wiegert for depth.
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Old 01-02-2006   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grid
Winston and Scott are both possibilities to slide to the second round.

Id like us to pick up a Center in FA, or in the 3rd/4th round.

Then id like us to try and get OG Steve Hutchinson from Seattle in Free Agency, and Draft OG Max Jean-Gilles.

THEN id like us to try Seth Wand at RT, and possibly pick up Scott or Winston with the #33 pick.

That would be Bush at #1..and 3 Olinemen in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rounds... sounds about right.

Then id like us to let Wiegert, Washington, Weary, and Brown go.

Our Oline next year would look like this


RT: Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade/Jean-Gilles
RG: Hutchinson/Jean-Gilles/McKinney
C: Hodgdon/Rookie/McKinney
LG: McKinney/Jean-Gilles/Hutchinson
LT: Pitts/Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade

That would be 9 Olinemen total. Pitts, Wand, Wade, McKinney, Jean-Gilles, Hutchinson, Hodgdon, Scott/Winston, and the Rookie Center.
Well thought out. Just a question, if, and this is probably a big if, we landed Hutchinson or the center from the Saints, what would you like to try to get in the 3rd & 4th rds? I think we should address some other needs as well and would like to know your thoughts.
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Old 01-02-2006   #12
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Grid,

I really appreciate your insight on the topics raised. While I am a fan of grabbing Bush, I want to make sure I am properly educated on our OL positioning. I also agree with your assessment on the defense side. If Babin can build off of his recent performances and Peek steps it up, it will make life much easier for our struggling secondary. A CB would be nice, but I don't see much talent making it to the third round.
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Old 01-02-2006   #13
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yah getting a rookie CB in the third that could come in and be an immediate starter would be quite a feat. FA may be our best bet there.

Yah Peek and Babin will be better in a defense that cuts them loose.. Both are very athletic and are capable of being monster pass rushers. And there is also Orr.. who really came into his own this past season.

We will also have Wong back at ILB.. and DaShon Polk looked like he may be starter quality at ILB as well.
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Old 01-02-2006   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dat_boy_yec
Well thought out. Just a question, if, and this is probably a big if, we landed Hutchinson or the center from the Saints, what would you like to try to get in the 3rd & 4th rds? I think we should address some other needs as well and would like to know your thoughts.
lol, you answered my questions while I was typing this. Pls disregard me question.
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Old 01-02-2006   #15
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There is a quality FA CB available, but darned if I can remember the name. Someone brought him up, seemed like a high number to get him.
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Old 01-02-2006   #16
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Dat Boy.. if we managed to fill needs at Guard and Center in FA.. id still like us to grab Max Jean-Gilles. McKinney doesnt have all THAT much left in his tank.. and even though he will be alot better at Guard than he was at Center.. he will probably only be with us a couple more seasons..if that. Jean-Gilles is an elite guard prospect.


But if we have free picks in the 3rd and 4th.. id think we would be best served by addressing the Dline. good 3-4 tackles can be found in the middle rounds. Maybe not Casey Hampton quality tackles.. but talented enough to at lease provide depth..and we may get lucky and find a starter.

It also might be a good idea to look for a Free Saftey. In our pass happy division.. the secondary is very important.. and as much as I like both CC Brown and Glen Earl.. I think both of them are more suited to the SS position.. a taller, and faster ballhawk at FS would be nice.
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Old 01-02-2006   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grid
Winston and Scott are both possibilities to slide to the second round.

Id like us to pick up a Center in FA, or in the 3rd/4th round.

Then id like us to try and get OG Steve Hutchinson from Seattle in Free Agency, and Draft OG Max Jean-Gilles.

THEN id like us to try Seth Wand at RT, and possibly pick up Scott or Winston with the #33 pick.

That would be Bush at #1..and 3 Olinemen in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rounds... sounds about right.

Then id like us to let Wiegert, Washington, Weary, and Brown go.

Our Oline next year would look like this


RT: Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade/Jean-Gilles
RG: Hutchinson/Jean-Gilles/McKinney
C: Hodgdon/Rookie/McKinney
LG: McKinney/Jean-Gilles/Hutchinson
LT: Pitts/Wand/Scott/Winston/Wade

That would be 9 Olinemen total. Pitts, Wand, Wade, McKinney, Jean-Gilles, Hutchinson, Hodgdon, Scott/Winston, and the Rookie Center.
I'd almost go with that grid, but you lost me on a couple things. There is no way that I want to see McKinney as anything other than depth, and would prefer to see him as depth on another team. That would mean that they suck worse than we do. The other thing you lost me on is getting rid of Weigert. When he is healthy, he is one of our two best O-Linemen if not the best.
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Old 01-02-2006   #18
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i like the fact of us keeping pitts at tackle, but at some point (assuming we draft a LT) would pitts return to LG or move to a RT where i think he would absolutely dominate?

i would like to see mckinney and both reserve G to be out of here. weigert should be able to handle things for another year but his contract might become an issue eventually...and why we played him at RT when wand is just standing around suited up is beyond me.
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Old 01-02-2006   #19
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Eh.. Wiegert...I wouldnt be against keeping him.. but I think he is a worse guard than McKinney personally.

McKinney was never a center.. I dont even know why we played him at Center.. he was always a guard. When Hodgdon was in and we played McKinney at LG..he looked great. Him and Pitts worked very well together.

I think we might have an easier time, cap wise, getting rid of Wiegert as well.. though im not positive on that. Plus.. Wiegert seems to have some major durability issues..has he played a full season for us yet?

Personally.. had I the choice.. id make sure to get a good tackle prospect at #33, and id cut Wade.. but that would kill our Cap.
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Old 01-02-2006   #20
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CCDude.. I like Pitts at LT.. but if one of our young players.. Wand or Scott/Winston..or even Max Jean-Gilles if he surprised us.. was able to beat Pitts out for the job, then id definatly want to move Pitts to RT. I agree..I think he would really dominate there. And personally I wasnt impressed with him at LG.. I think he is better suited to the Tackle position.
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