QB-Good, with excellent upside. Brooks can put up pro-bowl numbers and win games by himself. What more can you ask? Maybe not to fumble or smile? Bouman has given me a newfound appreciation for Aaron.
RB-Deuce-Nuff said, and Stecker is the perfect role player in a solid 1-2 punch.
FB- Really doesn't matter when he only plays 30% of the time but this kid is a T-rex clone, with hands.
TE- It appears we have as good a set of TE's as any team in this league. Too many forget about Conwell because of an off-season and injury last year. Hall is as good a blocking TE as there is and an excellent ST player.
OL-Good, but not great. The upside of this unit is its depth. Its not dominant but its filled top to bottom with quality players. If they gell as a unit their grade would be better, but until then...
WR-I have mixed feelings about this group. It has the potential to be one of the best and deepest units in the entire league, but pre-sesaon shows the drops may still be a problem.
Grade B- (With A+ or C- potential)
DT-Uhhh, I don't know, and you don't either. Another season of untapped potential from Sully? This unit could dominate just as easily as it could flop. My bet is that Pease's rotational plan should pay dividends as the year wears on.
OLB-I feel its the weakness of this team. Hodge really hurt us in that he was really the only other SLB on a team with 7 WLB's. Of all the off-season griping about the woulda-coulda-shoulda free agent acquistions this one holds the most water. I love the Bockwoldt kid, but when a spunky 7th rounder in dire need of a few years of strengthening makes the squad, it says quite a lot about the rest of your squad. I like Rodgers, and have high hopes for Allen, but this unit is the weak link.
MLB-I feel good about the Mike now. Watson is going to be a solid player in this league and I admire Ruff for busting his rear this off-season trying to get faster.
CB-A lot like our O-line. No superstars but is deep with quality players. I'm still scratching my head about Ambrose starting, but I like what I've seen in Craft and Brown. Montgomery seems to have become a gamer. Was it just because of 2nd string comp or can he play?
S- I feel much better about Tebuckey. It appears he may be the FS we hoped for. Bellamy is solid and Mitchell will only get better. I hoped Harper would make the squad over Gleason. I was pleasantly surprised to see both make it.
Just a small bit of my input on Gleason. I\'m not surprised that he made the team, just for the fact that he\'s a gunner on special teams. They needed that experience there to hopefully stop the big returns. He\'s a heads-up guy.
Danno - I noticed two things about your grades:
1. If you\'re basing on potential, you\'re probably right - but saying there are only two positions on our team that are average, while all others are better than average (in terms of performance) may be a bit optimistic.
2. Those two \"average\" positions - which to me are more like Ds, happen to be at interior line and OLB. Not good for a team wanting to stop the run. Bad DTs and a rookie MLB who can\'t get much help from his OLBs = soft underbelly. Soft underbelly combined with either A) DEs that persue upfield without first getting containment, or B) DEs who cannot rush the passer well b/c they have to worry about the run too much equals real bad news for our secondary. Yes, I know this may be a bit extreme, but these things are all related. Everything on defense for us this year starts with stopping the run. If we don\'t do that well, we\'re screwed. Stopping the run starts at DT and LB, don\'t you think? Again, bad news for us.
QB- C good numbers, no leadership
RB- A+ best depth ever
FB- B will need to step up to clear lane
WR- B donte\', devery, pathon great. HORN good years behind him trade.
TE- B don\'t know why all the boo talk here recently but hey hes too slow to play rec.
OL- A this can be a very good o-line if all healthy
DT- A+ great great great. go howard green show em how u do it
DE- A+ too much depth can trade for a cb or lb howard prob best bet to trade
LB- hodge once out of trouble will be good, cie, watson, and eventuall colby will be solid
CB- D- horrible ambrose couldn\'t start on most div.1 college schools
S-C+ would have been nice to get sean jones out of draft from georgia
As far as QB position goes...I say more like a C+ or B- based on Brooks lack of consistency and the back up situation.
QB: B- Aaron Brooks can become a top 10 NFL QB, and if he can reach the potential that Haslett sees in him, look out! The grade itself is lower because of Todd Bouman and J.T. O\'Sullivan and their pathetic preseason performances.
RB: A Deuce McAllister. He alone will make the unit shine. And with Aaron Stecker on the team, look for a stronger 3rd down back who can play.
FB: B+ Mike Karney alone can change a 2 yards gained play into a 7 yards gained play.
WR: B+ This corps is insanely deep. Joe Horn can post monster numbers, Stallworth is healthy, and Pathon can still play.
TE: B- I haven\'t bought into all of the Boo Williams hype, mainly because I\'ve never really seen him. But if he\'s better than Ernie Conwell, then I\'ll have to believe in him.
OL: B Sure, they do have weaknesses. But the best lines are the ones that stay together the longest. By NFL standards, these guys have spent decades together.
DT: C Brian Young has an A+ work ethic but maybe B- raw talent. Howard Green could be either good or bad. I think he\'s starting over Sully only for the coaches to see if Sully will work hard enough to get his spot back.
DE: A Well, when Darren Howard leaves next year, someone even better than him will be taking over...
OLB: C+ Derrick Rodgers is the only good linebacker. Colby Bockwaldt may have looked good in preseason, but that was against 3rd teamers and below. James Allen must make the most of his time as a starter, and prove that he can step up and play.
MLB: D+ Rookie LB\'s never do well, especially MLB\'s. Where\'s Cie Grant when you need him?
CB: D Except for Fred Thomas, this is still a mess. A trade for the right players would do the trick...
S: B+ Tebucky Jones is starting to live up to the potential, and that\'s good. Jay Bellamy is still a solid tackler, but I want to see Mel Mitchell try and out-play him.
K: B- John, understand that Saints fans are like elepahnts; we never forget.
P: A You won\'t see him in highlight reels, but defenses crave solid punters who can really boot a ball and pin an offense inside their red zone.
[Edited on 9/9/2004 by themightyduck]
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