A while back, I made an argument that the time for the Patriots to 'load up' was now, to get the top FAs they could, and structure the contracts in a way that you have to 'pay the piper' a couple seasons down the road.
You can read my 'fanpost' and the following debate here: Load Up article and debate
The question of whether Kraft feels the need to build to win NOW while Brady is still capable was posed to him on Friday, and his reply was: Kraft doesn't agree
Any fan that has been a fan for the last couple decades understands the "Patriot Way" and how business is done... keep it balanced, don't overpay, don't sell out tomorrow for today.
We all bought in, we all enjoyed the success they have had, despite some tough losses along the way...
But now we have been ten years without a Championship... the team is close, but its been close seemingly every year... and many of us (myself included) feel strongly that close is not good enough anymore.
Its a very real fact that Brady's time is coming to a close... and its a very real fact that BB's time will be coming to an end not too far off in the future either.
I think the best Owner in the NFL is off the mark on this one... many of us fans are tied to BB+Brady, their legacy in a way is our own... unlike Denver that went out of their way to buy a championship, they don't own Manning's past, they aren't tied to it... some of those fans foolishly talk like they are, but what Manning did in Indy belongs to those Indy fans... the current Broncos fans will never feel what they felt with Elway... the years of struggling and coming close with him, only to lose Championship after Championship, until finally they did win it all,..
We have stood by BB and Brady, through years of coming close, from falling short of 19-0 and the incessant accusations brought on by Spygate, through heartless performances like the 2009 loss to the Ravens in the playoffs, through this year's injury plagued effort... we rode the rollercoaster...
And now we want to see every effort made to get BB and Brady #4... yes we know there may be a down season or 2 or 4... so what? There is going to be a down season or 2 or 4 anyway... its going to happen... eventually Brady will decline... or BB will quit.... or the next QB won't be any good... whatever causes it, it is going to come.
And chances are, it will begin in just a couple of seasons... and whether they stay the course or not... its going to happen. Its the way of things, no team stays on top forever, what goes up must come down... fans understand this.
What will make a HUGE difference in how we view that decline... is whether or not they achieved the ultimate success on more time... or not.
What many of us WON'T understand, is a team that believes in its system so much... it is willing to sacrifice the couple remaining years we have of BB and Brady for it.
If Robert Kraft doesn't understand how important it is to MANY of us, that BB and Brady can stand shoulder to shoulder with Walsh and Montana, and Knoll and Bradshaw.. and be considered the best of all time... he is way off on getting the pulse of his fans.
To me any year that they don't win the Championship is a bad year... this is BB and Brady... this isn't some floormat team that has no shot, so we should be happy if they just made the playoffs... this is BB and Brady... they have NFL history in their sights, they have records that can be set that will never be matched in our lifetimes... this is BB and Brady... who have given their all to try and win #4 each and every season for over a decade...
IT's TIME for them to get it.
That means signing Alex Mack, the best Center in the NFL... that means.getting Greg Hardy or Eric Decker or Dennis Pitta and taking the hit a couple seasons down the road for going out and signing the best.
Much like the Ravens did in 2009/10 so that they had depth and talent nearly everywhere... much like the Broncos did going out and getting Manning and Welker and Phillips and others, taking a good core team and getting the very best FA players they could to fill in where needed.
That's what the Patriots have now... a very good core team, a team with the depth, and youth, and QB it needs, but it needs those final few pieces, those final few key players to really put them over the hump for the next couple of seasons. They need a top tier Center, not a make-shift Center, they need a top tier Pass Rusher, not a PS back-up subbing in or filling in if Jones or Ninko are out.
Two years ago the Broncos were missing some important pieces, they were the Tebow-show, until they paid big bucks to a few players to get where they are now. And yes, they will suck in two years time... that's the price a team pays... and if the Patriots want to get there, they are going to have to pay it too... or watch some other team that does, win it all instead of them.