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this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Hey, I agree with you RDOX. All around....

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Old 01-19-2005, 06:06 PM   #41
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Hey, I agree with you RDOX. All around.
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Old 01-21-2005, 08:26 AM   #42
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Hey, all. I\'ve been in seminars all week - still am today - just wanted to drop my two cents.

Whoodi has a point. The natural order of things in the NFL is up and down, up and down. It\'s cyclical. Teams succeed, get old or eaten up in FA, suck, rebuild, and away you go. Examples: Patties, Steelers, 49ers, Colts.... all at one extreme or the other. The cycles can be long - it can take 15 years to go from up to down or vice versa. The Saints however, seemed to be mired in average or slightly below average purgatory.

I think a big part of that, right now, is reactive to the Ditka situation. Ditka was a risk, and people had high hopes. He took even more big risks - i.e. the Ricky Williams move. It didn\'t work out. Now, the organization, after having been scarred, is more content to sit around and fill the seats in the Dome than take a shot at truly being a winner, for fear of being a loser. Right now they just kind of are...


Starting the season with Venturi isn\'t a risk Danno - it\'s a guarantee of another subpar performance by the defense. Bringing Haslett back means the FO has a known commidity... It\'s sad, but then, it\'s the Saints.

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Old 01-21-2005, 09:16 AM   #43
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I don\'t really buy this \"natural\" cycle thing.

There is a reason for some cycles - as you point out. When a teams best players are taken, they need to get new ones (sometimes that can take a year or two).

Another thing that can contribute to a cycle is coaches - some coaches take some time to warm up to the team or their game plans become to predictable over time. When these things happen often a new person is brought in who will change these fact, creating what appears to be a cycle.

It seems pretty clear to me that there is no natural law that generates the cycle. Furthermore, saying things like \"a cycle can take as long as 15 years\" seems to me to be admiting there is no cycle. If a team was good once and isn\'t for a long time, is that a cycle that dictates that they will be bad again someday? If that is all you mean by this, fine; however, I don\'t see why we would talk about cycles then and rather just who is currently good or bad. Are our boys on a cycle, when are we going to be good? If the \"cycle\" theory doesn\'t really predict anything, then I say it isn\'t very interesting. And, I don\'t see how it predicts that if we keep our coaches, that is a guarantee that we will be bad - that just doesn\'t seem to follow. Maybe I\'m missing the point.

I think the suggestion that we are still reeling from the Ditka era is interesting, but I think that is an unlikely explanation of our current situation. There are very few Ditka players left, we\'ve gained a few extra picks in trades to make up for what he did, Haz\'s players have had a chance to grow up now, we have a relatively good offense (something Ditka didn\'t have), and a few different choices (i.e. Trufant instead of Sully, etc.) and we\'d have a good defense too. It seems to me that our inability to get solid defenders in FA, our Sully pick (which is something that happens in the NFL - 1st rounders can be busts), letting Glover, Knight, and Roaf go (for whatever reason), and some very strange coaching decisions are more likely the explanation of our \"sucking\" this time around.

These are all things that can be fixed, repaired, and/or changed in the here and now, so I see no reason to think not changing a couple of coaches will MEAN our next campaign will be a loss (and certainly not because of \"cyclicality\"). We may have a bad campaign next year, but that will be for the same reasons (roughly) we did this year, not some magic yin-yang of the NFL.

[Edited on 21/1/2005 by JKool]

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Old 01-21-2005, 10:10 AM   #44
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I think you did miss the point Kool. What I was getting to and WhoDat simplified was a good deal of the teams who are good now were bad previously. We are neither. We are not in the cycle. We are mediocrity personified. There is no ebb and flow just the same monotony. We are in the same position year after year after year. So while the Eagles do bad enough to get McNabb, we are picking 18th. While the steelers are bad enough to get Ben, we are picking 19th. The point isn\'t that WE are in a cycle, the point is we aren\'t even on the cycle. San Deigo was down, now they are up. As was Indy. Hell even Dallas before and after Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer. Falcons go up and down, they get Vick and Denagelo Hall last year. They were in a Superbowl previously. Teams on the cycle tend to swing wildly from time to time. Our team just cruises along because we are afraid to be on the downside of that cycle. So no these coaches won\'t take us in any direction on the cycle, cause we aren\'t on it.
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Old 01-21-2005, 10:18 AM   #45
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It seems to me that our inability to get solid defenders in FA, our Sully pick (which is something that happens in the NFL - 1st rounders can be busts), letting Glover, Knight, and Roaf go (for whatever reason), and some very strange coaching decisions are more likely the explanation of our \"sucking\" this time around.
agreed..I haven\' tfigured out who is drafting the players-but our philosophy stinks..

moving up from having two draft picks to draft sullivan was a stupid move-even the \"experts\" were scratching their heads at that..we could have gotten him and one more person if we had just waited...and thus filled more holes.

SMith last year wasn\'t a bad pick though..especially since the players that we wanted were already gone..so maybe things are changing.
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Old 01-21-2005, 02:53 PM   #46
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Thanks for the agreement baron; also, good optimism.

Whodi, I see the point now, thanks; but I now disagree again - for different reasons.

It is unclear what constitues something that is going to make you go up or down. I just don\'t believe in a magical cycle. Teams like the Niners were just good for a very long time - they didn\'t need a \"cycle\". Once again, I agree that sometimes you have to be bad to get good, and sometimes when you get good you end up getting bad (other teams steal players in FA or players get old - as Who suggests). However, there are other ways, otherwise teams would not stay good for 15 years (like the Niners). What they did was replace the old guys with new guys (and not high draft picks because they were winners and did not get high draft picks) and keep other teams from snatching their good players when no replacements were ready.

Thus, I conclude that you do not have to be in a cycle to get good (espc. in an age with Free Agency). I also deny that this cycle thing is the key to winning in the NFL. Good teams keep winning long after the reasonable plunder-lose-rebuild- draft-change cycle (which is probably about 2 to 5 years these days) has passed - thus, either there is a natural law of cyclicality (to which there are obvious counterexamples) OR cyclicality is only one way to get a good team.

Also, my point stands that merely retaining a couple of coaches is no certainty of the same kind of year. Haz is a paradigm case of changing his strategy from year to year - perhaps he\'ll hit on the right one, perhaps not - either way, no reason to think it\'ll \"be the same\".

"... I was beating them with my eyes the whole game..." - Aaron Brooks :cool:
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Old 01-21-2005, 03:11 PM   #47
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Kool, you know I love you man, but here we go again. 49ers team, different era that the world off football we live in today. Not only did their players want to be there, players WANTED to go there and play for them. That\'s hwo they stayed so good. They never got the chance to be bad cause good players always wanted to be there. Free agency and the cap hit, and where are they now? First pick in the draft. Their cycle was just longer than most.

Also, show me teams that have been at the top consistently just in the last 10 years. Very few. Free agency lends itself to a cycle. Who woulda thought the Pats would be a dynasty? All it takes is a few correct moves here and there. and a team that has been on the bottom ca be on the top and they usually stay there a few years and sink again. Ravens were bad as the Browns, won a Superbowl, now can\'t make the playoffs. Colts were bad, 3-13 Peyton\'s first year, now look at them. Pats were bad, got Bledsoe, got Parcells, went to a Superbowl, muddled for a few years. now are elite. Eagles, good with Cunningham and that D, muddled a few years, did real bad, got McNabb and Simon, boom elite. It\'s not flawless, but it explains how teams who hit bottom are doing a better job of bouncing back than us.

And you may be right about Haz, if we give him 10 years he may happen upon a strategy that works, but hasn\'t the past 5 years taught us anything at all?
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Old 01-21-2005, 08:06 PM   #48
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I think the suggestion that we are still reeling from the Ditka era is interesting, but I think that is an unlikely explanation of our current situation. There are very few Ditka players left, we\'ve gained a few extra picks in trades to make up for what he did, Haz\'s players have had a chance to grow up now, we have a relatively good offense (something Ditka didn\'t have), and a few different choices (i.e. Trufant instead of Sully, etc.) and we\'d have a good defense too.
That\'s not the point. The problem isn\'t with the players. The Ditka players were fine - they took Haslett to the playoffs. The issue I\'m addressing is in the psyche of the front office. Those things have long-term effects. My new organization is scared sh!tless of open-source technology for the web b/c they got burned 5 years ago when inexperienced people tried to use it and got burned. Now they shy away from LINUX, APACHE, JAVA, MySQL, PHP... etc. If you don\'t know, those are industry leading standards these days - and they\'re free. Instead, the organization poors money into proprietary software b/c there\'s support. Better to overpay tremendously and be a little behind, but have support than to do more at much less the cost. Why? B/c they once got burned. Same concept - just apply it to coaches.

\"Excuses, excuses, excuses. That’s all anyone ever makes for the New Orleans Saints’ organization.\" - Eric Narcisse


\"Being a Saints fan is almost like being addicted to crack,\"
he said.[i]\"You know you should stop, but you just can\'t.\"
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Old 01-22-2005, 12:16 PM   #49
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Whodi, fine points as always, but the comparison in this case will do. Also, it was Who who mentioned the Niners. I was merely using them to demonstrate two points: (1) the idea of cyclicality is a bit silly if you stretch it out to 15 years, and (2) teams can do well without having to go through a cycle.

For (1), no one seems to be disagreeing.

For (2), you make the following point:
All it takes is a few correct moves here and there. and a team that has been on the bottom can be on the top and they usually stay there a few years and sink again. (Bold mine)
So, say I drop the Niner comparison, to avoid another discussion of what constitutes an apt comparison, a few things are still note worthy. You agree that all it takes for a team to go from the bottom to the top is a few good moves. Now a few good moves can come from the draft, FA, coaching changes, etc. Thus, my point stands - elite teams can remain elite or at least quite good by making adjustments that don\'t involve losing a lot of games. This is how the Pats can remain quite good for longer than other teams - they make the few correct moves they can even in the absence of a high draft pick (e.g. groom replacements better, evaluage talent later in the draft better, scheme better for the guys they have, acquire good coaches, make good trades, etc). You seem to agree with this point too, admiting teams \"usually\" stay good for a few years then sink - this leaves open two possibilities that agree with what I\'m saying: (1) the \"cycle\" is too erratic to be called a cycle (since it can be anywhere from half a season to fifteen years apparently), and (2) it is POSSIBLE to remain good for more than a few years by making \"the right moves\".

Thus, I still conclude (even without the Niners comparision) that getting on the cycle is not the only way to become good. Also, I still conclude that there is no reason to believe we\'ll suck again next year merely because we have the same coaches and are drafting 16th instead of 5th or higher.

Also, I see no reason to think that it will take Haz 10 years. The evidence to me is this: (1) either each year is an independent trial (as he changes his strategy quite a bit each year), and there is no real prediction as to our success next year on this ground, OR (2) the trials are not independent, and (a) we have a coach who can only appear to win when he is an underdog, which surely we will be next year (with people doubting our talent, which makes sense with us 8-8 over and over again and our boys understanding they are not as good as people thought they\'d be the last two years), and we will be winners, OR (b) we will continue to be 8-8 (if coaching really is the single biggest factor in wins and loses - which I doubt).

What say you my good man?

[Edited on 22/1/2005 by JKool]

"... I was beating them with my eyes the whole game..." - Aaron Brooks :cool:
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Old 01-22-2005, 12:25 PM   #50
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Who, apologies for the misinterpretation, but now I\'m a bit confused.

What are the things that Ditka did that we\'re affraid of in the FO?

1. He used the draft poorly. We seem to excell at that still.
2. He neglected the defense for workmen on O. Hmmmm. That doesn\'t sound much different.
3. He disciplined players fairly harshly. I guess we don\'t do that, so you may be right there.

I suppose also you mention these:
1. Ditka was a big risk. Wasn\'t trading two first rounders for Sully a big risk? Trading Rickey was a big risk (though Duece showed flashes, he wasn\'t a proven commodity) wasn\'t it? Dale Carter - pretty big risk?
2. The FO did things that were \"flashy\" to try and improve the team in the Ditka era - like get Ditka, allow him to make a ridiculous trade to get Rickey, etc. Trading two first rounders is pretty flashy, isn\'t it? Getting Jones was flashy (even if it didn\'t pan out). McKenzie, pretty flashy.

I guess, I see your point, and I think there is something right about it; however, I just don\'t see that our FO is any more gun shy now than it was back then. Our \"big\" decisions still don\'t pay off, which seems to me to be the same. I think our FO sux, but I just don\'t see that it is a result of the Ditka era.

PS - Nice analogy with the software stuff; it was very clear.

[Edited on 22/1/2005 by JKool]

"... I was beating them with my eyes the whole game..." - Aaron Brooks :cool:
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