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WhoDat 03-25-2003 04:47 PM

Just like I did in the Brooks/Delhomme debat I will once again call out those guys who are slinging mud at me. I'm challenging the two of you to a debate. I have obviously been very clear in my opinion that the Saints just aren't going in the right direction during free agency, and unless things change, they will not be successful next year.

Apparently, according to you two, that makes me a whiny b-tch in need of medication. Yet, the two of you have done little to dispute anything I've said. In fact, all that you've done is question my loyalty to the Saints and mental state. Well, here's your chance to prove to everyone on this board how wrong I am. Go ahead. Prove me wrong. I'll even let you start the debate.

You tell me why this team will be better next year then it was last year. Show me all the things that they've done in the off-season so far that makes you feel that it has been anything other than a let down. Prove me wrong......

BlackandBlue 03-25-2003 05:00 PM

Is this where the hand slapping and pulling of hair will commence?

WhoDat 03-25-2003 05:10 PM

Hey man - you weren\'t around way back when for the Delhomme/Brooks arguments. You think this one is bad, you should have seen those.

I\'m just trying to start a forum where the issue at hand is discussed. So far, I think I\'ve done a pretty good job at laying out why I feel the way I feel about the Saints at the moment. If anyone wants to hear it yet again, just let me know and I\'ll spell it out for you again. These two guys want to insult me, but I haven\'t heard a single argument for either of their opinions. Well here\'s their chance. I just want to hear them talk about the Saints. I know how they feel about me... but they haven\'t made one good argument about the Saints in who knows how long. Here\'s their chance to show off what they think and why.

I\'m not slinging mud in here. I haven\'t made one derogatory comment about either of them in this thread. So let\'s hear it you two. Why will the Saints be a better team next year? Hell, Black and Blue if you can add some insight go right ahead.

lumm0x 03-25-2003 05:11 PM

I\'m not one of the 2 but I\'ll tell you why:
The team has squashed the QB controversy that was about to brew and added a capable back-up the fans won\'t be screaming to see in the game ahead of Brooks. They have dumped a oon field and locker room problem in Turley and added a better pass protector in Gandy. Who by the way has alot of experience blocking for a mobile, shifty QB. They have added a more experienced CB to the secondary in Ambrose. A definite upgrade over Irvin, also a guy who can mentor a young project CB we can draft and he knows the ins and outs of our biggest rival we couldn\'t beat last year. Carter will likely be around all year and with a better grasp of the defense. Ruff will play more like a MLB should and hopefully the athleticism of Allen and Hodge can offset any growing pains he has. A young high potential DT can platoon with our current DT group and add some speed and push. Grant and Howard will only get better. Until Knight and Bellamy are officially gone, they are still Saints. Same thing with Clemons, Hand, etc. We have basically traded Ambrose for Irvin, get Carter full-time, have Ruff to push Clemons (until he signs elsewhere), and our offense was great and will only improve with continuity and a small turnover in this area. That sounds like an upgrade. We have had no impact losses on the team at all and have added bodies to the roster. Granted it\'s no blockbuster advancement but it\'s better than before.
We also have a fistful of picks in the draft to add to overall team speed, depth and the possibility of getting the next immediate impact player like a Urlacher, Kearse, Woodson, etc just out of the draft.
We have a year of video to study the Vick run Falcons, the Gruden run Bucs and the Fox run Panthers (whose QB we also know well). They had already had a few years film of Haslett\'s Saints with Brooks and Horn to watch. We have the upper hand this year moreso than last because of this. Last year they were all unknowns and we did quite well getting a 3-3 division record because of that.

BlackandBlue 03-25-2003 05:18 PM

Moves that have made us a better team this offseason:

Hiring Jerry Palmieri
Signing Gandy (which basically gave us a good LT and a 2nd round draft pick in next years draft)
We\'ve gotten deeper at positions with other FA signings, but nothing significant

That\'s it.

WhoDat 03-25-2003 05:32 PM

Hey man - that\'s exactly the kind of post I want to see in here. Great one lumm0x.

I\'ll disagree with you on some points though. For starters, there wasn\'t a QB controversy until Brooks got hurt. Delhomme was a great backup and it\'s yet to be seen wether he will be better than Bouman. Personally, I liked having him, b/c regardless of what your opinion on Brooks is, he was a proven backup that had been in the system for five years. Further, if Brooks doesn\'t pan it out would be nice to have another guy who may be starter quality to come in and give it a try.

I\'ll agree that Gandy is better for the Saints than Turley. I think they\'re play will probably prove to be pretty even, but the lack of distractions will help. Mark one up for the Saints on that move... although I liked it from the start, just for the record.

I don\'t think Ruff is the answer at middle linebacker, nor is Ambrose at corner. Ruff is as big of a question mark as Clemons, if not bigger. Our money could have easily been spent on a player like Chris Claiborne, who would have undoubtedly been an upgrade. Ruff may pan out, but he may just be worse, thus hurting our defense.

Ambrose is a good nickel guy, but we already have a good nickel guy in Thomas. Again, that\'s money that could have been better spent on a shut-down type corner. He is an improvement over Irvin, but Craver is already here and he will fight for the number two and three spot as well. Try to remember how well he played early last year before he got hurt. There were many saying that even if Carter came back Craver would continue to start. That was far-fetched to me, but my point is that if we are going to spend money on the secondary it should be on a true shut-down corner, or a safety (which looks to be a much bigger area of need right now).

As for Knight and Clemons, etc... I was under the impression that they had voided the last year of their contracts so they were gone. Maybe I\'m wrong on that - but it\'s hard for me to imagine Sammy Knight being a Saint next year. That leaves a big hole at safety. There\'s also a big problem up front where our DTs are less than stellar. Both of those spots make this defense worse.

So, with every other team in our division have better talent and/or an offense playing better than when we faced them, staying where we are on defense, which is bad to begin with, leads to larger problems and tougher struggles in conference.

If you think not knowing what a team was going to do on offense hurt us last year, then how did we beat the Bucs twice, but lost to long time division rival Atlanta? Vick played in at least one game against us two years ago... I was there. Plus, I expect Carolina to look totally different on offense with the addition of Delhomme, Davis, and Dyson.

In any case... I hope you\'re right and this team does get better. I\'m just not convinced yet. If nothing else, I thank you very much for actually debating the issue. I enjoy these kinds of discussions. You obviously know your football and you\'re a great addition to this board. Keep up the good work man.

D_it_up 03-25-2003 05:35 PM

I belive I\'ve stated enough of my opinion on my last post of the other thread. Once again, WhoDat. You started with the insults. Don\'t try to make yourself look like the victim. If I didn\'t feel offended, I would have never come back at you like I did. I\'m an easy-going guy and even easier to get along with until someone shows disrespect. At that point, I show just how much of an ******* I can be. If you don\'t believe me, just try me. What I\'ve said so far is NOTHING to how bad it could get. So we can do one of two things. We can keep going like juvenile school kids, or we can call it a truce. Choice is yours. more thing....My wanting to call this off is NOT a show of surrender. You haven\'t impressed me enough to get that far.

lumm0x 03-25-2003 05:43 PM

Thanks WhoDat.
My point in all of this is that we\'ve turned a dollar into a dollar and five cents. Maybe not into two dollars, but more than we started with. That is progress. Just like a runner the first steps are shorter and less ground gaining than the later steps. I think letting free agency play out a bit is smart. We have seen the value of certain players and your Ruff/Claibourne comparison is a good one. Claibourne was better value IMO than Ruff after this played out. Had we waited and found what values players are getting may cost us some good names but may get better value on other good names. If Flowers, Knight, etc start getting less than astonishing values we might get Lassiter or Jones for less than we originally thought. Turley is a good example of this as well. A team like the Broncos could have jumped on him and given up a solid LBer or higher pick, but it helped the Rams get him cheaper because they saw no one was showing great interest and the longer he sat the more he devalued himself. I think they found the line where he couldn\'t make his own value any lower by opening his mouth.
We may end up getting Lassiter or Jones still, maybe get a really solid LBer after the June 1st cuts. And you are right, Clemons and Knight did void and that essentially shuts the door, but their names remain property of the Saints until signed or final roster is declared.
Take care.

WhoDat 03-25-2003 10:41 PM

D_it_up - I\'ll say this. You did call me out specifically and you called my posts nothing more than belly aching and whining b/c the Saints weren\'t doing what I wanted (implying that I was actually that egotistical). You are right though. It was Iceshack that cast the first stone with his medicine comment - not you. Your post prior to my first that was \"aggressive\" didn\'t exactly cast me in a great light, but I will admit when I\'m wrong, and I think I jumped on you more than you deserved. Iceshack was far more deserving of my words.

However, that doesn\'t change the fact that I still haven\'t heard a compelling argument from you as to why you think the Saints will be better. You talked about how bad Mora and Ditka were. You talked about how bad we have been or how things could be worse, but you didn\'t ever say why you think they could be better. My post may not be the most positive in the world, but I\'m not 100% negative either. I\'m trying to be realistic. Maybe you see that as pessimistic, but I\'m also applying the past and present to try to make some stab at the future. I haven\'t seen you make much of an argument for WHY the Saints will get better. So I\'m inviting, again, to do so. Lumm0x did that and look at how I responded. I will always respect a person who can make a good argument. I\'m sure you have good reasons for why you feel like you do... let me hear them.

Lumm0x - again, you prove yourself as a good evaluator of what\'s going on. My concern is that while we\'ve made our dollar into a dollar five, our NFC South opponents have made a buck fifty. We\'re unable to buy the sure winner million dollar lotto ticket (offense and special teams) b/c we can\'t seem scrounge a dollar together on D, despite having two kentwood bottles filled with change in the corner.

WhoDat 03-25-2003 11:18 PM

Welcome to Conflict Resolution 101 with Gatorman as your professor. Of course they\'ve gotten better since the Ditka days. The thing that is most frustrating to me is that no coach before Haz ever had anywhere near the kind of talent we have on O and special teams. We\'re squandering it b/c they don\'t want to spend money on D... or at least, they still think they\'ll find nothing but diamonds in the rough, which they really haven\'t done since Joe Horn. Albert, AKA \"I like to steal from my teammates\" was obviously a HUGE bust. Sloan hasn\'t been spectacular to date. They misjudged Clemons talent. Now I think they\'re misjudging Knight and Ruff. Why should I think Ruff will work out better than Sloan did? Even Pathon was average at best. Go get someone you know is good. You can still find VALUE - if that\'s what you\'re so worried about. Hell, we could have signed Claiborne for $500,000 to $1,000,000 less than we\'re talking about signing Jones for, and without giving up any picks. Instead we got Ruff. I cannot tell you how excited I am.

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