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Extended Shots - Patriots Links 3/1/2009

From time to time, reading stories Marima has linked to in her most excellent Shots Heard 'Round the Web, I come across things I like to expand on (is rant the right word?).  Today is no exception.  With the fur flying about the last few days' events, there's plenty of fodder to go around.  Join me, won't you?

Dan Shaughnessy

Most of the time, I can't stand Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy, but he actually makes sense in his sunday column entitled, Cassel trade is a loud statement.  9 out of 10 times, he's a website hit mongering loud mouth who takes the alternate point of view to appear smarter than everyone else, a kind of "doesn't anyone see this?" attitude that irks me to no end.  At any rate, he seemed to pen a balanced piece this sunday.  He writes about our willingness to follow into the abyss with His Hoodiness, but that relationship may be tested:

This blind allegiance will be tested in upcoming days, weeks, and months, because Belichick has swapped rising-star quarterback Matt Cassel and popular veteran linebacker Mike Vrabel to the Kansas City Chiefs for the 34th pick in this year's NFL draft.

Shaughnessy goes on to say:

The market for Cassel was limited because not many teams could afford him. A second-round pick from Kansas City is more like a late first-round pick because the lowly Chiefs draft at the top of the deck. You can get a quality player at No. 34. Vrabel was past his prime, going into the last year of his contract.

Intellectually and strategically, the deal makes sense, especially if the Patriots come away with another player like linebacker Jerod Mayo in the draft. They can get younger and they have new money to spend.

And offers a decent fan perspective:

But emotionally, it's asking Foxborough fans to swallow a gummy hairball. Cassel and Vrabel for a second-rounder? Might Chiefs fans someday think of this as their version of Derek Lowe and Jason Varitek for Heathcliff Slocumb?

Ron Borges a big, fat, poopy head.  In his latest vomitous invective, he essentially says Belichick royally screwed his former co-worker and longtime friend, Scott Pioli:

Scott Pioli soon may learn there is no such thing as friends in the NFL, especially when they used to employ you as their gofer.

Gofer?  Hmm... Well Ron, at this moment, Scott Pioli is in charge of almost every football decision for an NFL franchise.  His previous job?  VP of Player Personnel with one of the most storied franchises of the last decade.  Sounds like a gofer to me, dontcha think?

In the end only time will tell if Cassel is a player worth the money he’ll be paid, if Vrabel can justify his $3.2 million salary this season and if Brady’s knee is sound. But from what we know today it looks like Belichick didn’t do his old friend any favors, which is no surprise because he’s not in the business of doing favors. He’s in the football business.

Oh boy.  Apparently, you don't think very highly of Pioli.  In fact, I'd go so far as to say you think he's an idiot for allowing that deal to happen.  Have you even read his bio?  Or are you just mad because he wouldn't let you set foot in his office for an interview while good writers were welcomed?  This most excellent link from CHFF (props to NESilver) says it all: Ron Borges should be fired.  Dolt.

Whatever you think about the goings on these past few days, we now have roughly $19 million in cap space to play with.  To be cold and heartless, that's what counts.  Halfway into the season, when Brady is AGAIN on track for a record breaking season and our younger, faster defense is firing on all cylinders, this weekend will be a distant memory.