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 Post subject: RUMOR -- Lelie for Duckett
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2006 10:32 pm 
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I read this on another board and thought I would toss is out here and see what people think.

Personally, I can't see this one making sense since we both run similar systems and Duckett is already miscast in ours. Why would Denver want him? Plus, I am not sure I see a whole lot of upside in having Lelie here. At best, he would be our #3, but perhaps even or #4 and I think he is on a one year deal like Duckett. What's the point?

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PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2006 2:28 am 
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Yeah, this trade doesn't make much sense from Denver's standpoint, let alone ours. Both Dayne and Tatum Bell would be ahead of Duckett in Denver, as both are better fits in the scheme and have shown they can be very productive. Duckett, the most yards he's rushed for in this scheme in a single game is 75. Bell has hit that point already 5 times.

Also Lelie is a gifted vertical threat, but that's basically all he is. It's why Denver has been fed up with him. If he's not making a big play 40 yards down the field, he's doing absolutely nothing. I know some people love the deep threat, but you have to be able to catch all the passes to be a reliable starter in the NFL. THat's something Eddie Kennison has become. What once was a pure vertical threat now is a competent all-around receiver. Perhaps Lelie will develop that down the road as it took Kennison a while, but frankly, I doubt he does it here in Atlanta. White is already about to fill that role, and the team likes Jenks as the underneath guy? So where is the PT for Lelie. Not to mention any supposed "character" concerns with Lelie that may cause McKay & Co. to sour on him. His work habits have been questioned in the past.

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PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2006 1:00 pm 
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I agree with the both of you, it wouldn't make any sense...I remember A.L. was really high on everyone's list in the War Room, but i always thought he was a little too one dimentional. Just trade TJ for a 5th rounder and let us play with that pick next year.


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PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2006 4:32 pm 
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we already have the extra 4th from the Broncos and we may net out a FA conditional pick as well. I like the idea of loading up McKay's hand so that he can work the draft next year.

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 2:23 pm 
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Bob, Atl Ga: Come on Green been a loyal solider for you! U think atlanta will offer duckett for Lelie? 2 former first round picks that can use a change to restart their disappointing careers?

Jeremy Green: I think it makes a lot of sense. They are similar offensive teams so it would fit both teams. I know Shanahan is down on Lelie, but I think they are hoping they can get him to change his mind-set and give that offense three solid receivers for Plummer to go to.

------

Jim (CT): What teams are interested in Ashley Lelie, and what do you think his value is?

Jeremy Green: The front-runner is the Eagles. Atlanta will also be in the mix. San Diego has interest, but I don't think you can justify trading him within the Division. He has 3rd to 4th round value because of his size and speed. He has not played to that value though.


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 Post subject: hmm
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 5:58 pm 
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I don't like it. You don't want to set back White and Jenkins development any further, so I would not like bringing in anybody that can take snaps away from them. I like Finneran as a #3, so I don't know how it will help. I would trade Duckett for draft picks or a case of beer. I know he's not washed up, but we can clear that cap space and invest in a player that will see the field more.

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 9:05 pm 
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Isn't Jeremy Green the same guy that has been indicating a Matt Schaub trade was just on the cusp for much of the past 3 months?

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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 2:49 am 
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Pudge wrote:
Isn't Jeremy Green the same guy that has been indicating a Matt Schaub trade was just on the cusp for much of the past 3 months?



maybe...but it was everyone and his/her ghost writer that was saying that Schaub was gone. I stuck to my guns and.......well we know how that turned out.


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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 11:41 am 
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- Seems to me that the square peg/round hole will keep this trade dead in the water. Theres no way they're getting a 1st for Lelie from anybody (well except maybe the Skins, lol).

Mile-high price tag: Why have the Denver Broncos been so slow to move wide receiver Ashley Lelie in a trade? The price. The Broncos want a first-rounder for Lelie or a running back. The teams that are interested in Lelie don't have the type of running backs that interest the Broncos. No one is willing to give up a first-round choice for Lelie.


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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 3:49 pm 
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Trades, at least significant ones at this point in the off-season are highly unlikely. If a prominent player is going to moved, it's likely to occur on draft day. There maybe a few more deals that take place between now and October, but what usually is the case is that those players are swapped for late round conditional picks.

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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 6:11 pm 
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Why does everyone want to trade Duckett so bad? I realize last year he did not perform as good as we would all like. But I still would rather have Duckett then a 5th rounder for next year. If we get rid of duckett, do we really have a power back? I dont know, I see why people want to get rid of him, but I still think that he can pound the ball and is worth keeping unless we got something good for him (and i dont think a 5th rounder is good)


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 3:36 am 
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AtlGraff07 wrote:
Why does everyone want to trade Duckett so bad? I realize last year he did not perform as good as we would all like. But I still would rather have Duckett then a 5th rounder for next year. If we get rid of duckett, do we really have a power back? I dont know, I see why people want to get rid of him, but I still think that he can pound the ball and is worth keeping unless we got something good for him (and i dont think a 5th rounder is good)


Question #1: Because he really is bad.
Question #2: We don't have a power back WITH Duckett. We have someone who SHOULD be a power back, but plays like he has 30 pound weights tied to each leg.


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 10:42 am 
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BB you can definitely claim otherwise, but the stats clearly show that Duckett is one of the top short-yardage and goalline backs in the NFL. In this case, the stats don't lie.

Despite what people say, Duckett was having his best year before that 5-week collapse at the end of the year. Sure, he wasn't racking up huge numbers, but he was averaging 4.1 yards per carry on 82 carries through 9 games before his late season collapse. He was running harder with much greater burst and quickness than he ever had in his career. Had he continued at that pace he would have been the top rusher in the league last year that did not start a single game, obviously making him one of the top backups in the league. Speculate all you want about why his performance slipped, I don't really care as to why or how it happened, just so that it doesn't happen again.

In terms of not being tackled behind the line of scrimmage (i.e. gaining positive yardage), Duckett was 2nd in the league to Mike Anderson. Dunn ranked 5th and Bettis ranked 11th. He was tied with Corey Dillon for being the best back rushing inside the 3-yard line and 5th when rushing inside the 10. He was 20th in the league in rushing on 3rd and short (less than 3 yards). And that last figure is so low because he was 1 of 5 in those situations over those final 5 games. Prior to that in the season, he was 5 of 6 in such situation which had he continued at that pace would have placed him 2nd in the league behind Shaun Alexander (BTW who was successful on an uncanny 95% of those situation).

So Duckett isn't really "bad." He's inconsistent, which wouldn't make him the sole exclusive inconsistent player on this team. Duckett knows that this season could make or break his career. He comes out and plays his best he's played in his career, some team is probably going to take a chance on him as their feature back in a LaMont Jordan kind of way next season. If he comes out and hits the status quo, he'll likely get a payday somewhere, but not that high and probably only on par with a top situational runner. Also he knows that if he wants to continue playing in Atlanta and be the frontrunner for replacing Dunn in 2007 or 2008, he is going to have to show the coaching staff a ton, now that he has Norwood and Cobb looking over his shoulder.


Am I expecting Duckett to eclipse the 1000 yard mark this year? No, but I do expect him to contribute somewhere between 500-700 yards, which amounts to about 40 or so yards per game, which was right around where he was at through the first 12 weeks last year. But even if Duckett achieves numbers like he did a year ago, his 8 TDs alone make him much more valuable than a 2nd day draft pick.

As Graff said, a 5th round pick basically equates to a special teams player.

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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 10:52 am 
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still, tho Pudge, none of those numbers amount to the 18th pick in the 1st round.

The bottom line to me is that this staff is happy with a RBBC approach as they had in SF with Hearst and Barlow. There, you had Barlow getting 5+ a carry and everyone wondering why he wasn't getting more time. Here, I think Duckett has been given the opportunity to win the feature role but he hasn't been able to do so. Some may claim that it was simply based on Dunn picking it up (which is true), but Duckett is also to blame for coming to camp in poor condition and seemingly lacking the desire to be "the guy." Personally, I think he does better in shirt yardage situations near the stripe than elsewhere on the field.

In terms of fit, I think he is more of a north / south runner who needs to know where the hole is going to be. In our zone scheme, he lacks the quickness to make the cut and go. So I don't think he'd be a great fit in Denver either.

As far as part timers go, Bell, Anderson or Dayne all had a higher YPC figure than Duckett (that is speculation, but I think it has to be true). Fast Willy did a great job filling in for Staley, and Ricky's numbers in Miami weren't so bad after being out of football for a year. I really don't see Duckett as the super sub, but more of a situational player who needs to make the most of every opportunity and start living up to his first round pedigree.

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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 5:41 pm 
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Funny that when stats are used to show that Vick sucks as a QB, the "fans" claim that stats do lie...but "winning percentage" doesn't. But the facts are Duckett made his reputation on running the 1 yard plunge into the end zone. BFD. Dunn could have done it as well. 85% of the backs in the NFL running behind our MVP #1 Rushing line could have done the same. Duckett has a motivation problem, a "head" problem. I don't want players like that on my team. Players whom you really aren't sure when they will show up, if at all.

* He still had a 3.1 Average yard per carry...that is BAD.
* He had a 1.5 YPC on Grass, where a monter back, ala Bettis should thrive.
* Last 8 games of the year he had a 2.6 YPC...horrible for a stretch run.(76 carries)
* Against the NFC South , 47 carries...for a 2.1 YPC...again BAD...very BAD.
* Against Carolina...10 rushes for ZERO Yards...bad...very bad....
* Normally you figure your "big back" is the guy to get better as he goes along...well in his career, he has declined when he gets the ball more than 10 times in a game. His 11-15 carries numbers are 2.1 YPC...16-20 are 1.5...he is out of shape, not motivated and is too slow hitting the hole.
* Last year 16 third down carries resulted in 24 total yards. He had 3 4th down carries, which resulted in (you guys remember this well) -3 yards.
*His stats take on an even uglier glow when you consider his runs in obvious passing situations. First Down and +8-10 yards to go he was 50 -161, and 2nd down +6 yards to go he was 31-167. This means when teams were playing the pass is when he did the majority of his "damage"...most backs in the NFL could do as good or better.


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 7:26 pm 
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personally i was satisfied with justin griffith's performance as the short yardage back when duckett was out for a game or two. i think it's a good way to get the most out of griffith's talents because he was often underused last season.


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 9:38 pm 
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Again, BB i'm not going to judge Duckett solely on a 5-game stretch. His stats in those games were terrible. I can't say otherwise. That to me is not the real Duckett. It was his worst 5-game skid of his career, never before in his career did he play so poorly over such a long period of time. But at the same time, I don't judge a player solely on what they do over a month or so. On the opposite end of the spectrum, I saw the month of November, about a 5-game stretch for Vick alst year as the best of his career. But should my view be limited to that month alone? No. Despite Vick having a 100 passer rating in the month of November last year, the team was 2-2. Does that mean that Vick is capable of putting up Pro Bowl passing numbers, but the team will be limited to a .500 record? No, in November we saw the very best of Michael Vick, IMO, and rather than that becoming the "norm" it now becomes the goal. The goal that if he can play at that level for 10-12 games a season, the Falcons will be unstoppable. For Duckett, we saw the very worst of his play. No, the norm for Duckett is being a back that averages 4 yards a carry and practically is unstoppable in goalline/short-yardage situations.

One of the things I've tried to maintain since January when evaluating our roster is not to put too much emphasis on how players performed in 2005. To me, almost every player on our team had their worst season or had more bad games than good ones, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. Besides Dunn, hardly anybody else on the roster was consistently above average or good. Even Crump, I believe dropped more passes in both number and % than any other Falcon receiver over the 2nd half of the season. I believe he had like 5 drops in 8 games, while the next "worst" may have had 1 or 2. Kerney had one of his worst years of his career. Hartwell was a non-factor in all but 1 game. Forney took a step back. I could name more names, but I don't think I have to. I'm a bit more willing to give a guy the benefit of the doubt if the performance we saw in 2005 was the worst we've seen from that guy over recent years.

Sure, I won't argue that Duckett has not lived up the status of being the 18th overall pick. But as you said John, he is a square peg in a round hole here in Atlanta. Had Randy Moss been drafted by the Titans in 1998, would have had gone on to have the success he's had in the NFL? Absolutely not. Considering the Titans were purely a 2-TE run the ball 30 times a game team, Moss wouldn't have been able to shine so early as an unstoppable deep threat, rather being forced to block more than catch. Would Moss had still been a threat in Tennessee? I'm sure he would have, but he probably would not have turned into the future HOF receiver that he is today. And that's the difference between a player like Moss and a player like Duckett. Moss would have been able to overcome somewhat. Duckett has not. Great players can overcome poor circumstance. Duckett's career clearly shows he is not a great player. It's a shame, but there's no sense in getting huffy puffy about it (not accusing you of doing that). I'm not going to lambast a guy for not living up to greatness.

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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 12:34 pm 
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I guess this would be my bottomline take on Duckett. Has he warranted a first round pick, NO. Has he been the short yardage/pounding back we hoped, NO. Has he been servicable, YES. Would it be advantagous for us to give him up for a 5th rounder, NO. Too me, even with his limitations, he's more valuable than that. Keep him this year, let him try to make something happen(cause it's now or never), and if he still hasn't done any better, take what you can get, cause a fifth doesn't help us at all right now.


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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 1:11 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
Again, BB i'm not going to judge Duckett solely on a 5-game stretch. His stats in those games were terrible. I can't say otherwise. That to me is not the real Duckett. It was his worst 5-game skid of his career, never before in his career did he play so poorly over such a long period of time. But at the same time, I don't judge a player solely on what they do over a month or so. On the opposite end of the spectrum, I saw the month of November, about a 5-game stretch for Vick alst year as the best of his career. But should my view be limited to that month alone? No. Despite Vick having a 100 passer rating in the month of November last year, the team was 2-2. Does that mean that Vick is capable of putting up Pro Bowl passing numbers, but the team will be limited to a .500 record? No, in November we saw the very best of Michael Vick, IMO, and rather than that becoming the "norm" it now becomes the goal. The goal that if he can play at that level for 10-12 games a season, the Falcons will be unstoppable. For Duckett, we saw the very worst of his play. No, the norm for Duckett is being a back that averages 4 yards a carry and practically is unstoppable in goalline/short-yardage situations.

One of the things I've tried to maintain since January when evaluating our roster is not to put too much emphasis on how players performed in 2005. To me, almost every player on our team had their worst season or had more bad games than good ones, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. Besides Dunn, hardly anybody else on the roster was consistently above average or good. Even Crump, I believe dropped more passes in both number and % than any other Falcon receiver over the 2nd half of the season. I believe he had like 5 drops in 8 games, while the next "worst" may have had 1 or 2. Kerney had one of his worst years of his career. Hartwell was a non-factor in all but 1 game. Forney took a step back. I could name more names, but I don't think I have to. I'm a bit more willing to give a guy the benefit of the doubt if the performance we saw in 2005 was the worst we've seen from that guy over recent years.

Sure, I won't argue that Duckett has not lived up the status of being the 18th overall pick. But as you said John, he is a square peg in a round hole here in Atlanta. Had Randy Moss been drafted by the Titans in 1998, would have had gone on to have the success he's had in the NFL? Absolutely not. Considering the Titans were purely a 2-TE run the ball 30 times a game team, Moss wouldn't have been able to shine so early as an unstoppable deep threat, rather being forced to block more than catch. Would Moss had still been a threat in Tennessee? I'm sure he would have, but he probably would not have turned into the future HOF receiver that he is today. And that's the difference between a player like Moss and a player like Duckett. Moss would have been able to overcome somewhat. Duckett has not. Great players can overcome poor circumstance. Duckett's career clearly shows he is not a great player. It's a shame, but there's no sense in getting huffy puffy about it (not accusing you of doing that). I'm not going to lambast a guy for not living up to greatness.


well said...


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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 4:27 am 
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I watched him play at MSU, and enjoyed his style of play. But even then he would disappear during huge moments in the games, and for a few games at a time. His reputation at MSU was a little like it is now. I'm not sure I bashed him at all, I was just giving you a "Stat salad" to illustrate how stats can be used to reflect any argument. I also didn't see where i bashed him for not living up to "greatness". I never thought he was great in the first place, so my expectations weren't destroyed when he turned out to be a joke. And finally , most of the stats I quoted weren't just the final "5 games", they were inclusive of the whole season or against certain teams, on certain playing surfaces, in certain situations. You can go back and see some of the same stats in past years as well, so it just isn't the "last five games", although i will give it to you that his level of sucking did dive even further.

Just because I see or feel that a certain player isn't playing well or giving 100% doesn't mean I don't like the guy. I have read where you said I "hate Vick". I don't hate Mike, I just don't think he is a very good QB, and he is over hyped and over rated...I want Schaub as the QB. But that doesn't mean i hate Mike. I think he is a good person, and some of the time he has the best interests of the team in what he says or does. But most of the time it is about him, not the team.This year will be the year...the last time the team went into a season with so much promise Vick broke his leg. Then we didin't have a good enough backup to keep on going, this time we do.


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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 3:11 pm 
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BirdBrain, but Duckett's stats are skewed by his last 5 games. If you look at his numbers through his first 22 games in this system (which exclude his last 5 games), he ran the ball 186 times for 846 yards (4.5 avg) and 14 TDs. To me, that's good numbers for a guy that didn't start once during that period. It's not great numbers, but I can't see how you say he's a joke. His stats "overall" from last year are because of how bad those last 5 games. You can look at Favre's stats and see a similar thing. His numbers took a sharp drop when compared to last year, mostly because of his final 5 games: His TD:INT ratio over his final 5 games was 1:10. That's going to kill anybody's QB rating. Prior to that it was 19:19. My point is that if you look at Duckett's first 9 games, you can't deny that he was playing well. He did exactly what the coaching staff wanted him to. He spell Dunn for 8-10 carries a game, and was rushing for 4 yards a carry. When the Falcons needed a 1st down on 3rd and short, he got it. When they needed a TD on 1st and goal, he got it. So when you say things like he's a joke, that to me tells me you aren't even puttng his play thru the first 9 games into the equation, only focusing on those last 5 games. His play during that time was a joke, no doubts there. But if you look at everything else Duckett has done as a Falcon under Mora, Knapp, and Gibbs, he's played well.

One of the things I did for The Huddle Report in the past month was go back 5 years and look at the 2001 Draft and do a hindsight 1st round mock draft. I plan on doing it again next year for the 2002 draft. But from doing some "pre-search" for it, I realize taht Duckett has not turned out to be a 1st round caliber player, meaning he has not been one of the Top 30-40 players from that draft class. But he's not that far behind. But I'm sure if I really wanted to rank the players from that draft class, I'm sure Duckett would be in the Top 100. So in my mind, his value to this team has been that of a late 2nd or 3rd round pick. IMO, we've gotten more value out of him than the BRowns did out of William Green. I think we've gotten just as much value out of him as the Panthers have from DeShaun Foster. From that draft class, I'd only definitely put Portis and Westbrook ahead of him.

The fact that Duckett has performed like a 3rd round pick indicates in my mind that he's not a joke as you put it. An underachiever? Yes. A bust? Possibly. A disappointment? Definitely. But not a joke.

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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 6:49 pm 
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Agree to disagree. Once again in the off-season we have no where to go but up. There are a handfull of players who have a lot to prove, both in their attitudes and their play on the field. Duckett, Vick, a few OLineman, and the defense had moments where they quit last year. While last year may be an aberation due to the injuries,(which i do believe as well), I think the character of the players in question is ingrained. TJ has a chance in his contract year to really make a difference, and I hope he does. But the fact that he quit last year really sticks in my craw as a fan. I don't like to see a player play his "start up the diesel" crap, then act like a shot buffalo on a critical 4th down play (3 times)..to me that is just bull....can he win my affections back????? Sure he can..but he will have to show some guts and some fortitude....both of which he didn't have the last HALF of the year, not just the last 5 games. TJ will not be back next year, and may not even make it through training camp if he doesn't come to camp on a mission. So to me he is just a joke, a brief experiment in using a #1 draft choice on a 3rd down back...a very poor decision by the old regime...any other back could have done what he did, he didn't do anything special. We used him in those situations, not because he was great in them, but because he was the #1 draft choice and we had to use him.....well those days are ending...get it in gear TJ, maybe you will have a job as a doorman in the future.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2006 5:40 pm 
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I just was watching NFL Live on ESPN today, and John Clayton was talking about the possibility of Lelie getting traded. He said that the Broncos asking price of a 1st round pick or a RB was unlikely to be met due to the likely teams involved in wanting Lelie. None of the teams interested were willing to give up that high a draft pick or had a RB the Broncs were interested in.

But Clayton added on that probably the only way something could be done is if it's a 3-way trade. He speculated that perhaps the Falcons could be involved in this deal and Duckett along with it. He said the Falcons weren't in need of a WR, implying that if a 3-way deal did happen, the Falcons would probably receive a draft pick rather than Lelie.

So what do you think of this? From the way Clayton explained it, it seemed confusing:

Falcons get: Draft Pick
Broncos get: RB from other team
Other team gets: Lelie & Duckett?

Unless the 3rd team is Cleveland and the Browns ship away Lee Suggs and a 1st/2nd round pick, I don't see that trade any more likely than a straight Lelie for Duckett deal.

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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 11:10 am 
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How about:

Cleveland -- gets Duckett & Lelie (goal line back to Droughns and Edwards out until at least October if not longer)

Denver -- gets Suggs and Atlanta 6th round pick

Atlanta -- gets Cleveland 3rd rounder

Who knows? Both of these teams were trading partners in the last few months.

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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 11:57 am 
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Sounds good John....wasn't you who nailed the Denver-Atlanta trade as well???? :lol:


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