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Old 03-03-2012   #101
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

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I agree with your assessment of Reed, though I do have hope that he will continue to develop. I'm not excited about Reed's ability to replace Mario. Perhaps I've not been clear about that. I do think that Reed and Barwin's ability to drop into coverage (increasing disguise of the defense) does help to overcome the loss of a player like Mario. I simply don't trust Mario to stay on the field and stay motivated on the field. While that is clearly a knock on Mario, I would be extending this argument to all but a dozen players in the league. I simply do not believe in paying one player (other than a QB) the kind of money Mario is going to command. I've been very bullish on Rick Smith also and trust him to continue to add talent to the team.
I have to wonder if the sheer fact of Wade's 34 Defense using FOUR linebackers is what has made this team's D what it was in 2011.

Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't Reed and Barwin a bit taller/larger than the typical 43 Defense LB? They're not giants or anything, but they are also not short(er) like Ryans and Cushing are. They're that mix of DE and LB.

I think the combination of using smaller LBs and larger LBs, which in essence gets you four LBs out there instead of the normal 3, is what has made this defense rebound.

They grabbed a quality, dependable CB and S in free agency. They hit on a quality DL in JJ Watt in the draft. One of those "larger" LBs I'm talking about was our 2nd rounder in the previous draft, as well. And then you have Cushing and Barwin as returning LBs to mix in with those 2011 free agents I just mentioned. Antonio Smith and a mix of Cody and Mitchell added consistency, too.

You look at all of that, and it's frankly easy to see how this D succeeded without Mario. I think the idea that Mario wants to go to a team that has a 43 Defense is plausible. Then again, it's just as plausible he would see that he can excel in Houston in 2012 with all that's around him.

There's tough decisions to be made on all sides. Mario has to determine if he wants a big payday or what will likely be a lesser payday for the sake of having a comfort zone of being in as sure of a thing as anybody could be in. The Texans have to determine what they can reasonably pay him. And then there's teams who will woo him and tell him HE is their focal point in a 43 Defense.

Oh, then there's Arian Foster. And a slew of other Texans to take care of.

I happen to think Brooks Reed, Connor Barwin, JJ Watt, Antonio Smith, and Brian Cushing are the anchors of our defense up front. Joseph and Manning handle the backside. Everyone else is a role player who holds down their assignments and takes what they can get, when the times come their way.

I'm fine with Brooks Reed. I think he was a bargain in the 2nd round. Should have gone in the first round. These guys are young, too--Another bonus.
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Old 03-04-2012   #102
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

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I have to wonder if the sheer fact of Wade's 34 Defense using FOUR linebackers is what has made this team's D what it was in 2011.

I think the combination of using smaller LBs and larger LBs, which in essence gets you four LBs out there instead of the normal 3, is what has made this defense rebound.
I've said it before. The biggest difference in the 2011 defense & the 2010 defense was that Wade understood that it all started with getting pressure on the LOS. Whether getting after the QB or stopping the run. In 2011 you saw our boys playing behind the LOS, just like you did in 2009.

I chalk that up to Frank Bush's inexperience.
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They grabbed a quality, dependable CB and S in free agency. They hit on a quality DL in JJ Watt in the draft. One of those "larger" LBs I'm talking about was our 2nd rounder in the previous draft, as well. And then you have Cushing and Barwin as returning LBs to mix in with those 2011 free agents I just mentioned. Antonio Smith and a mix of Cody and Mitchell added consistency, too.
As good as they were, this was a "career" year for Jjo. Quin looked "good" but 2009 Pollard "looked" better.

The key was the pressure generated by the front 7. 2009 we generated much pressure from that group. in 2010 not so much. 2011 we generated much pressure again.

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You look at all of that, and it's frankly easy to see how this D succeeded without Mario. I think the idea that Mario wants to go to a team that has a 43 Defense is plausible. Then again, it's just as plausible he would see that he can excel in Houston in 2012 with all that's around him.
dalemurphy has a point. A smaller more athletic linebaker who can drop into coverage would add more versatility to the defense, making them more unpredictable.

However, I've seen nothing to indicate Reed or Barwin are any more athletic than Mario. Personally, I don't think they are any better in coverage than Mario. Our success, I think is that we bring an extra safety in on passing situations. A safety is a better coverage LB (basically). Bigger than a CB, better tackler...... smaller than a LB better pass protector.

What Mario lacks in agility, he makes up for in brute strength. Being able to drop to 4-3 DE & effectively rush the passer makes him the perfect player for Wade's system.

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I happen to think Brooks Reed, Connor Barwin, JJ Watt, Antonio Smith, and Brian Cushing are the anchors of our defense up front. Joseph and Manning handle the backside. Everyone else is a role player who holds down their assignments and takes what they can get, when the times come their way.

I'm fine with Brooks Reed. I think he was a bargain in the 2nd round. Should have gone in the first round. These guys are young, too--Another bonus.
At the end of 2009, we had a very similar list.

Bullman was IR'd before the 2010 season. Barwin IR'd week 1. Cushing got pregnant, missed the first 4 games. Demeco tore his Achilles & missed the last 10.

Eugene Wilson lost a step (I know, some called this before the 2010 season). Bernard Pollard was exposed. Kj didn't meet expectations.


What could go wrong in 2011?

My whole contention, is if we bring Mario back, our defense is set. We can dedicate our 2012 draft on the offensive side of the ball. We can focus on BPA if we want.

Without Mario, one of the first two picks should address outside pass rush. Nothing against Barwin or Reed, but we need a better rotation than Brahman & Nading provide.
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Old 03-04-2012   #103
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My whole contention, is if we bring Mario back, our defense is set. We can dedicate our 2012 draft on the offensive side of the ball. We can focus on BPA if we want.

Without Mario, one of the first two picks should address outside pass rush. Nothing against Barwin or Reed, but we need a better rotation than Brahman & Nading provide.
No. Without Mario, we need to get a quality replacement in free agency. There are a number of guys available that will cost 1/2 (or less) than Mario will. I do not want to let Mario go and not replace him with a veteran. Here is an incomplete list of potential FA replacements:

Cliff Avril
Robert Mathis
A. Spencer
Matt Roth
Jarret Johnson
M. Lawson
A. Maybin
M. Anderson....

I had Ahmad Brooks on the list but he has re-signed a 6yr $43 million deal.
The two most compelling reasons to let Mario go are these:

1. Be able to re-sign and lock up the following: Duane Brown, Foster, Barwin, Myers, etc.. and maintain good cap health moving forward.

2. Have flexibility to grab quality veterans at WR, CB, OLB so that we enter the draft without any glaring needs.
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Old 03-04-2012   #104
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

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No. Without Mario, we need to get a quality replacement in free agency. There are a number of guys available that will cost 1/2 (or less) than Mario will. I do not want to let Mario go and not replace him with a veteran. Here is an incomplete list of potential FA replacements:

Cliff Avril
Robert Mathis
A. Spencer
Matt Roth
Jarret Johnson
M. Lawson
A. Maybin
M. Anderson....

I had Ahmad Brooks on the list but he has re-signed a 6yr $43 million deal.
The two most compelling reasons to let Mario go are these:

1. Be able to re-sign and lock up the following: Duane Brown, Foster, Barwin, Myers, etc.. and maintain good cap health moving forward.

2. Have flexibility to grab quality veterans at WR, CB, OLB so that we enter the draft without any glaring needs.
cliff avril wants big money..cant see why us signing him vs. keeping mario is a big difference.

mathis is probably the only guy that can play a 3-4 if the new coach decides to go that route.

spencer has been failure for the cowboys in the 3-4..why would you want to bring him here?

you get the picture...signing any of these guys isn't a guarantee & we may still end up picking a guy up in the draft. u know what is a gurantee though? Us losing a bonafide elite pass rusher if mario bolts.
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Old 03-04-2012   #105
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cliff avril wants big money..cant see why us signing him vs. keeping mario is a big difference.

mathis is probably the only guy that can play a 3-4 if the new coach decides to go that route.

spencer has been failure for the cowboys in the 3-4..why would you want to bring him here?

you get the picture...signing any of these guys isn't a guarantee & we may still end up picking a guy up in the draft. u know what is a gurantee though? Us losing a bonafide elite pass rusher if mario bolts.
I'd rather have Avril for 5yrs and $40 million than Mario for 6yrs and $100 million. I don't know for sure that those would be the numbers, but I believe this is the ballpark we'd be talking about.

Spencer has been a success and a failure. I trust the Texans' brass, in conjunction with Wade, to determine whether he would be productive for the Texans or not. I'm not too caught up in names... I'm just trying to point out that other, cheaper options are our there and I would want a veteran replacement.
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Old 03-04-2012   #106
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I'd rather have Avril for 5yrs and $40 million than Mario for 6yrs and $100 million. I don't know for sure that those would be the numbers, but I believe this is the ballpark we'd be talking about.

Spencer has been a success and a failure. I trust the Texans' brass, in conjunction with Wade, to determine whether he would be productive for the Texans or not. I'm not too caught up in names... I'm just trying to point out that other, cheaper options are our there and I would want a veteran replacement.
Avril would not sign a 5 year 40 million deal which is why he is going to get franchised by the Lions. And Anthony Spencer is so far away from Mario Williams in terms of athleticism and talent we'd be better off just drafting a guy and hoping he's good while he's cheap than overpaying a guy like that in FA. Why overpay any one of those guys over a player like MW?
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Old 03-04-2012   #107
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I'd rather have Avril for 5yrs and $40 million than Mario for 6yrs and $100 million. I don't know for sure that those would be the numbers, but I believe this is the ballpark we'd be talking about.

Spencer has been a success and a failure. I trust the Texans' brass, in conjunction with Wade, to determine whether he would be productive for the Texans or not. I'm not too caught up in names... I'm just trying to point out that other, cheaper options are our there and I would want a veteran replacement.
Unless these guys see the Texans as contenders, we're going to have to over pay.... that's the way FA works.

As the #2 DE (according to Scout.com) in FA, we'll have to over pay to get Cliff Avril (remember Antonio Smith?). So if my choice is to over pay Cliff Avril or get Mario for fair value, I'm going for Mario for fair value.

I've said plenty of times we should not over-pay for Mario.

Now, you may be right, the Texans may be a destination FAs think are contenders.... we really won't know till after the FA period. Or, maybe we've had enough success that Rick Smith can sell this organization as a contender..... would be nice, but we won't know until he does.

If we're not going to over-pay, we'll have to sit around & wait to see who no one else wants.... which doesn't sound like a good plan to improve your team.

Also doesn't make sense to let the best outside pass rusher in FA (arguably the best defensive FA, maybe best FA period) go & search for his replacement in the same FA period.
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Old 03-04-2012   #108
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Unless these guys see the Texans as contenders, we're going to have to over pay.... that's the way FA works.

As the #2 DE (according to Scout.com) in FA, we'll have to over pay to get Cliff Avril (remember Antonio Smith?). So if my choice is to over pay Cliff Avril or get Mario for fair value, I'm going for Mario for fair value.

I've said plenty of times we should not over-pay for Mario.

Now, you may be right, the Texans may be a destination FAs think are contenders.... we really won't know till after the FA period. Or, maybe we've had enough success that Rick Smith can sell this organization as a contender..... would be nice, but we won't know until he does.

If we're not going to over-pay, we'll have to sit around & wait to see who no one else wants.... which doesn't sound like a good plan to improve your team.

Also doesn't make sense to let the best outside pass rusher in FA (arguably the best defensive FA, maybe best FA period) go & search for his replacement in the same FA period.
I don't recommend overpaying. It's a strong free agent class and about half the teams (most of the good ones) have little money to spend. Therefore, while I can't sit here and identify names, many quality players will be available at a discount. I have no idea whether that will be Avril, Spencer, JJohnson, Mathis, or any one of a dozen others.
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Old 03-04-2012   #109
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I don't recommend overpaying. It's a strong free agent class and about half the teams (most of the good ones) have little money to spend. Therefore, while I can't sit here and identify names, many quality players will be available at a discount. I have no idea whether that will be Avril, Spencer, JJohnson, Mathis, or any one of a dozen others.
WR is the strength of this free agency class. I would much rather get a guy like Reggie Wayne for 3 years 18 mill rather than trying to sign a 4-3 de and switch him to OlB. That way we can dedicate the first or second round pick to OLB to replace Mario instead of a WR. Wade drafted Reed last year, I think he can find another guy like him.
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Old 03-04-2012   #110
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WR is the strength of this free agency class. I would much rather get a guy like Reggie Wayne for 3 years 18 mill rather than trying to sign a 4-3 de and switch him to OlB. That way we can dedicate the first or second round pick to OLB to replace Mario instead of a WR. Wade drafted Reed last year, I think he can find another guy like him.
^^^^
This

Plus letting MW walk gives the Texans the ability to sign all of their 2012/2013 FA's.

Unless MW is willing to sign a below market deal before March 13th. 10-12 mil plus a 20 mil signing bonus.
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Old 03-05-2012   #111
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I can't foresee a world where at least 2 or 3 teams WON'T throw stupid crazy cash at Mario and make it hard on him to choose to stay in Houston for less.

And I can't foresee a world where no team attempts to sign Foster to an offer sheet and thinks they can steal away a great RB for a first rounder and a lot of cap space they have this year.

Both of those, IMO, are very real possibilities. At that point, then umm...yeah, Texans better have some stuff figured out and ready to make their choice.

Just like they had to exit the Aso sweepstakes last year, and go grab a CB and a S instead...they might (key word is "might") have to make a choice here.

What team would NOT try to upset our apple cart? We wanted this level of fame and notoriety, we are getting it! Teams have painted bulls eyes on our chests. One is labeled Mario and the other is Foster.

The stakes are high. I feel confident that McNair is not a noob owner now. I feel certain that he and Rick got this. I really do.

EDIT: I also happen to think that it's possible that agents for both Mario AND Foster are not signing and maybe not even entertaining Texans offers yet...they're going to sit and wait and see what another team serves up on March 13. That franchise tag might get slapped on Foster March 12, folks. Then the Texans can have all of 2012 to work the long-term deal. Bet you donuts to dollars that Foster's agent is having him hold off on any Texans offer until offer sheets come in for their consideration! You have to have something to leverage against the Texans, but the Texans can tag slap Foster and avoid that mess. Yeah, I bet Foster gets tagged. I said it on March 2 at 1:07 p.m.
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Old 03-05-2012   #112
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Avril would not sign a 5 year 40 million deal which is why he is going to get franchised by the Lions. And Anthony Spencer is so far away from Mario Williams in terms of athleticism and talent we'd be better off just drafting a guy and hoping he's good while he's cheap than overpaying a guy like that in FA. Why overpay any one of those guys over a player like MW?
Good call. Also Spencer getting franchised.
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Old 03-05-2012   #113
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Can I have my now?
Doh!

I would pay you now, but ummm...well, ya' know...I'm gonna' have to catch ya' later. Thanks for understanding! LOL.
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Old 03-05-2012   #114
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Thumbs down Re: Pat Kirwan article

Pat Kirwin does not have his numbers right.....the only ones who do and know what it is are the Texans front office......period. So any story coming out saying for example "How to resign Mario...." are not trueful and are fiction. They should be treated as such...because they dont have the numbers right.
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Old 03-06-2012   #115
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

So dale,how does that 5yr 40m for avril looking after the deal mathis just signed? In fact,how is that 8m signing bonus for barwin looking after that deal?
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Old 03-06-2012   #116
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So dale,how does that 5yr 40m for avril looking after the deal mathis just signed? In fact,how is that 8m signing bonus for barwin looking after that deal?
You have totally missed the point regarding Barwin. The fact that Barwin has a year left on his relatively inconsequential contract means that the Texans could tear it up for a new one this year, giving him more money in 2012 in return for a smaller cap hit in 2013 and beyond. I said over and over that the numbers were simply hypothetical in order to illustrate that point.

Regarding Avril/Mathis: they are among a dozen guys that I'd be interested in as free agent replacements. I expect a number of the free agents to be very good financial value given the number of teams up against the cap and the unusually strong free agent market. Matt Roth, Jarrett Johnson are two guys I think might fit nicely for a relatively low price... but, we'll see.
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Old 03-06-2012   #117
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You have totally missed the point regarding Barwin. The fact that Barwin has a year left on his relatively inconsequential contract means that the Texans could tear it up for a new one this year, giving him more money in 2012 in return for a smaller cap hit in 2013 and beyond. I said over and over that the numbers were simply hypothetical in order to illustrate that point.

Regarding Avril/Mathis: they are among a dozen guys that I'd be interested in as free agent replacements. I expect a number of the free agents to be very good financial value given the number of teams up against the cap and the unusually strong free agent market. Matt Roth, Jarrett Johnson are two guys I think might fit nicely for a relatively low price... but, we'll see.
No incentive whatsoever for Jarrett Johnson to come here. He's already on a stout defense that has won for years. The only way we get him over here is if we overpay...in which case we don't even know if we're going to have the cap space after arian's deal...& then maybe Meyers & Brisiel's deal...& then a quality FA WR signing.

Matt Roth....uh who?

I keep hearing people throw around getting a "quality" this.... or a "quality" that with the money we supposed to be saving by letting MW walk. but i'm looking around at what's left after yesterday's franchise tag/contract signings...i'm not seeing a whole lot of that left in FA as all the quality guys at positions of need for us are getting locked up..or will be. & the ones that are left will have plenty of suitors with lots more money to dole out than us. So my question is where is this supposed quality coming from?
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Old 03-06-2012   #118
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No incentive whatsoever for Jarrett Johnson to come here. He's already on a stout defense that has won for years. The only way we get him over here is if we overpay...in which case we don't even know if we're going to have the cap space after arian's deal...& then maybe Meyers & Brisiel's deal...& then a quality FA WR signing.

Matt Roth....uh who?

I keep hearing people throw around getting a "quality" this.... or a "quality" that with the money we supposed to be saving by letting MW walk. but i'm looking around at what's left after yesterday's franchise tag/contract signings...i'm not seeing a whole lot of that left in FA as all the quality guys at positions of need for us are getting locked up..or will be. & the ones that are left will have plenty of suitors with lots more money to dole out than us. So my question is where is this supposed quality coming from?
Other than last year, this is the deepest pool of quality free agents in many years. There are a few buyers. Beyond those, there's not much money out there for all the talent... just like last year.

How on earth do you know what motivates Jarret Johnson and whether he'd be interested in coming here? I have no idea, but I know it is a possibility.
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Old 03-06-2012   #119
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

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Other than last year, this is the deepest pool of quality free agents in many years. There are a few buyers. Beyond those, there's not much money out there for all the talent... just like last year.

How on earth do you know what motivates Jarret Johnson and whether he'd be interested in coming here? I have no idea, but I know it is a possibility.
Sure it's a possibility, but let me take a stab at it..

He's likely gonna want to start in which case that's doubtful if he comes here....or at least it should be.

he's likely gonna want to get paid...how much would you pay for a 30 something olb that's never had more than like 5 sacks in any season?

His former d-coordinator is now HC for the colts........& the Colts need a ton of help defensively...nothing like a vet that's familiar with the system already to teach the new guys........oh yeah, he'll probably get a chance to start over there as well.

Dude's not even that good...hardly quality imo.
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Old 04-20-2012   #120
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Default Re: Pat Kirwan article

So leebigeztx, how does that Pat Kirwin article looking now?


Sorry but some need to re read this thread.
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