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WhoDat 03-03-2003 01:40 PM

Well, as you probably all know by now, Ashley Ambrose has signed with the Saints, returning him to his home town. This seems great for Ambrose, who is probably in the twilight of his career, but my question is - is this really good for the Saints?

Consider: Ambrose is a good corner, but I'm not sure if he is a substantial upgrade over Fred Thomas. It seems to me like we just signed yet another nickel guy (Thomas, Craver, Irvin, and now Ambrose), and still don't have our impact player at corner. Further, this signing seems like it makes the Saints going after Woodson much less likely. That was a deal that I felt was perfect for the Saints. A star corner, with a few years of experience, for only a first rounder. That becomes an even better deal if the Saints trade Turley for a first or early-second rounder this year. So, is this the best deal for the Saints?

The same can be said for Ruff. I like the guy and think he is a substantial improvement over Clemons. But again, is this the impact player we were all hoping for? I had my heart set on Takeo Spikes. That seems significantly less likely now.

Finally, let's hope the Aint's make a move for Chester McGlockton. He's exactly the kind of DT they need to make major improvements in that area.... But anyway, what are your opinions on Ambrose and Ruff?

billyh1026 03-03-2003 08:50 PM

Ambrose is a good addition. He\'s a lot better than you give him credit for. It\'ll make our D backs much better with him than without him. Is he an upgrade over Carter(undrunk) & Thomas? Not really. Is he an upgrade over #\'s 3 thru 6? Yes. Would I have liked Woodson over Ambrose? Yes. But hey, they\'ve got their reasons for signing him. I\'m happy with the kid. As for Ruff..he\'s just like Clemons was when we signed him....Career backup that we hope can be a starter. I\'m getting a woody over him just yet....

WhoDat 03-03-2003 11:31 PM

OK, so here\'s what we do. Deal Turley for a first rounder and then deal that to Oakland for Woodson. After getting rid of Turley\'s salary and then adding Woodson\'s there should be a net zero change to our cap position, which currently sits at about $8 mill under. We get rid of Hand, which frees up another $5 mill, bringing us back almost to where we started. Go get Takeo Spikes and a stud Safety (a la Tebucky Jones), switch back to the 3-4, and save the rest of our cap room for our draftees.

God - our starting D would be Grant, Jackson, Howard, Allen, Ruff, Spikes, Hodge, Woodson, Carter, Mitchel, Jones. I\'d say that would probably be the largest single season upgrade in talent in a single season ever. Use the draft picks for best available athlete, and make sure to get a back up for Deuce and TE and maybe wide out using everything else for defense. Not bad eh?

JOESAM2002 03-03-2003 11:57 PM

Whodat, you got my vote. Now let\'s see what gets done. Hey we can always wish.

nocloning 03-04-2003 03:19 AM

We can always wish and dream, but Loomis\' job is dealing with reality. And I don\'t think he\'s doing such a bad job right now. Bringing in a LT to replace Turley if or when he is traded - good move. Bringing in Ambrose and Ruff to make sure the defense doesn\'t fall apart any more than it did last season - good move.
All the other deals are speculative.
The Bengals really want to keep Spikes and the Saints are not known for paying outrageous salaries (ok, with exceptions - or an exception), so they might never get him. Probability of Spikes in a Saints uniform next year: 10%
Charles Woodson for a first-round pick? Still a rumour. Let\'s see if the Raiders deal him away at all and how that deal looks like. For now: Probability less than 10%.
Tebucky Jones (I repeat: The franchise player for the Patriots) in a deal for Turley or Hand? Once again, I don\'t think so. Probability less than 10%.
And what if Jackson doesn\'t get his weight down? The fat nose tackle who can\'t stop anything in the last quarter ...
Just don\'t get too excited just yet. Our defense will stink this year, maybe not as much as last, but still.
Just my 2 cents of a reality check ...

WhoDat 03-04-2003 09:15 AM

That\'s not realistic, that\'s pessimistic. Regardless of whether they get Woodson or not, they still have the ability to add a lot of talent. Dropping Hand gives them another $5.5 mill to work with.

Look, the Saints aren\'t dumb. Turley is leaving one way or another. He has made it very clear that he doesn\'t want to be in New Orleans. That\'s why they signed Gandy. Now, they can trade him now and get some value for him, or wait until next off-season when his contract is up and get nothing. They\'re not stupid. They\'ll get another pick for Turley.

Then, they\'ll have a whole lot of early picks. I think the likely hood of them using one to get a top-level player is pretty good. Maybe they don\'t get Woodson. Fine. Maybe they still draft a corner. Maybe they go after guys like Corey Ivy, Tyrone Poole, Bryant Westbrook, Terrell Buckley, or Chris McAllister. That still adds talent at corner.

At linebacker maybe they don\'t get Spikes. But that doesn\'t mean that they can\'t go after Quarles, Claiborne, or Colvin.

At safety maybe they don\'t go after Jones, but that still leaves Jackson, Little, Lassiter, Carpenter, Stoutmire, Branch, Cota, Darius, Flowers, etc. Again, upgrading is possible.

You can do the same with the DT position. Use the draft or use free agency. I personally like Chester McGlockton.

The point is that by getting rid of Hand and trading Turley they can get two, possibly three, more young experienced defensive players in the top-part of the league in their position and still have plenty of money for their draftees. This defense will be vastly improved defensively, even if they don\'t sign anyone else and use the draft to fill holes. I agree that it won\'t be great as long as Venturi is around, but it will not stink. It can at least be in the lop 16 in the league, which should be more than enough for our offense.

JOESAM2002 03-04-2003 09:53 AM

Good work Whodat. I completely agree. :)

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