Apologies to The Hill - I finished writing this before I noticed he posted something similar.
Note: not an Idiot’s guide, but rather the exact opposite.
- The GENIUS switches to primarily a 4-3 full time
- Patriots willing to spend cash. Lots of it.
1. Franchise Wilfork, non exclusive – allowing him not to sign and the meantime negotiate with other teams. Once he finds a suitable contract, trade him for a 1 and a 3. I think he’s worth that, if Cassell is worth a high second.
2. Package one of the 2’s (no. 48) with a later round pick (say 6th) for Anquan Boldin. Pay him for three years. He will be 30, 31, 32 for the next three seasons. A great number 2.
3. Sign a "CPR-able" veteran WR, like Deion Branch if he is cut. Didn’t work with Galloway, but need insurance here.
a. In this scenario, the Pats would have Moss, Welker/Edelman, Boldin, Branch, Tate, and Aiken. That should be enough.
b. Also introduce some "double slot" plays putting both Edelman and Welker on the field together when healthy.
4. Sign Banta Cain; move him to the other side.
5. Sign Peppers. Pay him – even though he will underachieve and be Rosie/AD part 3. Just do it – for the appearance of a pass rush. Also – turn him loose like Burgess and TBC were this year. No playing out of position. Make it easy. See quarterback, hit quarterback.
a. With Peppers and Banta-Cain on the outside - Rotate Pryor, Wright and Warren on the inside.
b. Need insurance here – so sign a veteran low price FA for the inside coupled with Brace and push Warren outside if need be. Crable is insurance for the outside too – only if the insurance company was AIG. Sick of counting on that guy for nothing.
6. With the Wilfork No. 1 (call it in the teens) pick the best CB available (Kyle Wilson or Joe Haden).
7. Re-sign Bodden.
a. Start the season with Bodden, Butler, the rookie (nickel) and Wilhite (dime). Perhaps both the rookie and Wilhite can mature a bit in those positions. Wheatley can be another AIG guy. Whoever wins each position – great.
b. Safety appears set with the 4 young guys back there all 26 years old or less.
8. With 22nd pick – pick Brandon Spikes from Florida.
a. Make him SAM.
b. Make Mayo MIKE.
c. Make Guyton WILL.
d. AIG guys – McKenzie, Ninkovich, possible low tier FA.
9. At no. 42 – pick best available RB (Dwyer, Matthews, McKnight, Best)
a. Mix in with the soup that is Taylor, Morris, Mauroney, and Faulk (if resigned). Hope Rookie emerges.
10. At no. 53 – draft best available TE – preferably more of a pass catcher than a blocker. Dickson, McCoy and Hernandez all work.
a. Baker, rookie TE and scrap heap training camp casualty FA get it done.
11. Resign Mankins long term.
12. Same for Gostkowski.
13. Cut AD.
14. I know this ship sailed, but name Pepper D –coordinator. I think the locker room would respect rewarding a long tenure guy and being a former player won’t hurt. Give Patricia more responsibility and tell him to pay more dues.
15. Use the 3rd rounder to get interior O-Line help. And hope that Connolly, Ohrnberger (another AIG guy) and the rookie can fill the Neal gap and any potential injuries. Start Vollmer at RT. Kaczur is insurance.
16. PAY TOM BRADY. And continue to let Hoyer percolate. I don’t know how the Hoyer coffee will taste but it sure smells good so far.