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Worth reading: MM's and TT's future, possible GM candidates

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by captainWIMM, May 4, 2014.

  1. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    My thinking has always been along those lines. I don't know whether to believe Brandt or not. Good sense would dictate when your QB is 35 years old and has been threatening to retire you'd be looking for a Plan B, but Brandt doesn't mention that as part of the thinking, as much as that strains incredulity. ;)
     
  2. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    I think that Brandt's story is believable in that he's relaying what he saw in the draft room that day. Yet, it's important to remember that he was the contract negotiator and not the GM, so he doesn't actually know what was behind the pick. Really it's TT that would have to say whether it was truly about trusting the board or not.
     
  3. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    I don't know how anyone can argue Rodgers wasn't the best player available at #24 in that draft. It's one thing to argue to what degree QB was a need pick but this statement doesn't make any sense to me. As a matter of fact, here's a poster you no doubt respect that says,
    Unless you disagree with this poster, how can picking the "consensus #1/#2 pick at #24, not be taking the best player available, irrespective of your hiney? ;)

    As I've posted I think the Rodgers pick was the best examples of Thompson staying true to his board. I don't Thompson or any other GM strictly picks BPA, but this was an instance where the best value available obviously matched the best player available. IMO what Brandt says, having been in the war room at the time, is solid evidence. And what Thompson didn't do in the war room also serves as evidence. If there was great concern about finding Favre's successor, IMO Thompson would have been inquiring about trading up to grab Rodgers, a player you have rated as the consensus #1/#2 at the most important position and who, in your opinion, represented a significant need.
     
  4. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    Right, and Thompson is not about to tell all; itemizing the pros and cons of a decision is certainly not his style, and especially not now with attempts at a Favre rapprochement in progress.

    Like you, I question the unstated "and" in Brandt's retelling. I don't doubt that Rodgers was their highest-value player on the board at the time of the pick "and"....

    Thompson is nothing if not risk averse. Or perhaps the better way to put it is that a risk/reward calculus is applied to each personnel move. That he would not perceive the high risk associated with having all eggs in the Favre QB basket would be out of character, and in fact quite foolish, not to put too fine a point on it.

    In addition to examining the matter with 20/20 hindsight, when this most recent (of many) iteration of this time honored debate began pre-draft, I attempted to illustrate the point using New England as a prospective example.

    Brady will be 37 at the start of the season. New England was interviewing a few QB's projected to the upper rounds, including Manziel and Garoppolo.

    I argued that New England spending a high pick now on a QB they liked would make perfect sense.

    Mallett will be a free agent after 2014 and though we don't know precisely what Belichick might think of him, there is the distinct risk that whatever Mallett might have brought to the table initially is in the process of irreparably decaying on the bench. I can't imagine they will re-sign him with the distinct possibility that he will not have played competitive football for 6, 7, 8 years when Brady is most likely to hang it up.

    Now would be a good time for New England to start looking for a potential successor, I argued. This would be a guy available to start no later than his 4th. year (at which time Brady will be 40). Further, by picking a provisional successor now, time serves as insurance against a mistake. If a draftee taken this year is not developing as expected by year 2, there is likely still time for a second shot in the draft.

    This argument made so much sense, in fact, New England did draft Garoppolo in the second round.

    The point I've been making is this: If one chooses to believe that Rodgers was merely a "trust the board" pick with no specific plan as to how this first round pick might be used before he went to seed on the bench, then one should be disappointed at the shortsightedness of the principals involved in the decision, and at the same time regard Favre's tearful retirement as a lucky happenstance. Personally, I don't see it that way; the point being one can't have it both ways.

    I believe that once Packer management had sufficient confidence that Rodgers could keep the team competitive, they seized the opportunity to exit the Favre era when he, Favre, presented them with the somewhat predictable opportunity. Had Rodgers shown bust-like characteristics by year 2, they would have in the hunt for a second shot at a successor.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  5. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    You misread the post. My contention was that it wasn't a BPA pick by the Packers. I did not contend that Rodgers was not the BPA.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  6. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    HRE - I pretty much agree with everything that you wrote.
     
  7. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    And I’m misreading – or you are mistyping it again. Here you are saying Rodgers wasn’t a BPA pick, (and turning the double negative around) Rodgers was the BPA.
    Thompson has made the point many times that depth at a position in August doesn’t always equal depth at that position in-season. That and mostly because it’s foolish to pass on a player who is clearly the BPA (although that rarely happens) because that player may become a difference maker is the reason for Thompson’s adherence to BVA. Favre’s iron-man status at the time of 2005 draft did not guarantee he wouldn’t incur a serious career-threatening injury, so of course there was a plan for Rodgers: Like other backups on the team he was to be ready to take over if the need arose. And if he fulfilled his potential, he would become a very good QB (at least).

    Regarding them seizing the opportunity, remember less than one month after Favre’s tearful and embarrassing “retirement” press conference, Thompson was ready to welcome him back, only to have Favre change his mind yet again. Also, the Favre situation was unique: We saw the PR cluster schtoop involved with moving onto Rodgers. It would have been even worse if it came out that Favre quickly changed his mind and wanted to return in April and the Packers wouldn’t let him (and Favre’s camp would have made that known).

    IMO the evidence is clear Rodgers was not picked to fill an immediate or critical need. Brandt’s “testimony” includes the fact (according to him) that Thompson did not attempt to trade up for Rodgers. I have yet to read an explanation from HRE or El Guapo of why Thompson didn’t make that attempt if he viewed the need at backup QB to be a priority. Certainly there was no guarantee Rodgers would last to #24, even at picks #17, #19, #21, etc. And to get a player at the most important position in football who was rated #1 or #2 (according to El Guapo) or IMO certainly top 5, by trading pick #24 and (for example) their third rounder would have been a no brainer had QB been viewed as a position of need.

    The point I’ve been making is this: QB was not a high priority going into the 2005 draft. Thompson’s board didn’t tell him to select Rodgers, it screamed at him to do so. It is not hindsight to say Rodgers represented a HUGE value at pick #24. It was the rare occasion in which the BPA by far made him the BVA by far even though it was not at a position of perceived need at the time.
     
  8. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    The body of evidence indicates Thompson has never viewed the backup QB position in that way. Other than Brohm in the second round, Thompson has spent little on backup QBs for the young (and still young) Rodgers, and for good reason...the risk/reward proposition is poor when you have a young entrenched starter. This view is typical in the NFL; few GMs will expend a valuable first round pick for a backup that might never play. Had Favre been 30 years old and pre-serial-retirement threats, I doubt Rodgers would have been picked regardless of the board.

    Career ending injuries among young QBs are relatively rare given the rules. As I've stated many times, the backup QB model when there is a youngish entrenched starter is to have a guy who can come in and give you a chance to win against poor-to-middling competition for a few games. That's exactly what we got out of Flynn which should serve as the prototype of the backup QB value proposition in the Thompson view, just as it is around the league.

    As far as Brohm being an exception, it is worth noting that Rodgers had not yet started a game when that pick was made. That was a need pick...insurance against Rodgers being a bust, or to compete if Rodgers had turned out to be a mediocrity. After the 2008 season, when it could be reasonably judged that Rodgers was at least at the "quality starter" level with enough to flashes to suggest more upside, nothing has been spent to secure a reliable backup...until the Flynn rebound who, we should note, cost little.

    I don't think that view captures the essence of the situation.

    First, important needs are not necessarily "immediate". In the NFL, the QB position is unique in this regard. With any other position, elite players can be secured on relatively short notice if one is willing to spend money in free agency. Franchise QBs are rarely available at any price, and when they are there is usually some considerable risk involved like advanced age and/or a broken neck. For succession planing to be successful, a multi-year view must be taken.

    Second, Favre presented a unique risk in that he'd already been noodling about retirement prior to the 2005 draft while at the same time being a 35 year old guy with considerable game mileage, a history of durability not withstanding. Insurance would be of value and would be a perceived need. While the need was not "immediate", there was a need nonetheless; since it was not immediate one could wait for an opportunity to arise to meet the need and get the needed immediate insurance in the bargain. Rodgers happened to be an opportunity that does not come along every year matching up to the long term need and the need for risk mitigation with the mercurial Favre.

    As far as "seizing the opportunity" to install Rodgers as the starter, while some lengths were taken to allow Favre to reverse his decision, I don't recall any extraordinary measures being taken to coax him back. There were expressions of "you're still our guy if you want to be" and borrowing a private jet for a face to face...but no offer of a pay bump, or a private locker room for that matter as the Jets provided, or any other ego-stroking perks.

    Clearly they were not going to force him out for the obvious PR reasons and the fact he could still play. They were so concerned about the PR issues they later offered to pay him 8 figures to sit on the bench or to take some non-existent PR/marketing position. But I did not see any evidence of begging him to play or deep regret once the die was cast. It looked like an opportunity seized, if perhaps earlier than expected, but one for which the organization was prepared.

    And in the final analysis, does anybody think that Rodgers wasn't drafted with an expectation he'd be Favre's successor before his 5 year rookie deal was up at which point Favre would be 40 years old? And that (1) lining up that successor when the opportunity arose while (2) having insurance in the event Favre bailed before such time while (3) affording a "second shot" in the draft if Rodgers turned out to be a bust, was not filling a need?

    I go back to New England's Garoppolo pick as a parallel example of a need pick. While Brady has not gestured retirement, he's 2 years older than Favre was at the time of the Rodgers pick, so I'll call that a wash. Brady will be going on 42 when Garoppolo's rookie deal is up. And if Garoppolo shows signs of being a bust by year 2, they'll still have time to take a second shot in the draft. Since this view is not affected by 20/20 hindsight, I think it helps to illustrate what long term planning for a long term need looks like.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  9. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    Well, you're misreading a post of mine again.

    I clearly said that it a backup QB was a need, but not a priority as you asserted.

    I'm not sure why you're picking on me here, but I can take it.

    You said pretty much the same thing above as I said it my long post. We are in agreement more than you're willing to acknowledge.
     
  10. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    I think that all happened in the span of 15 minutes. The Packers went from addressing the backup QB position in the mid-to-later rounds to drafting a first round QB. When a team drafts a QB in the first round, it is a definite sign to the incumbent QB. Your days are numbered. In that 15 minute draft window, the Packers went from finding Favre a backup and potential successor to actually selecting his successor - effectively putting Favre on the clock. None of us believe that was a planned move, but when a player like Rodgers became available it pushed up the timeline. Everything changed in the blink of an eye.
     
  11. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    I would say "yes" and "no".

    There were bound to have been some discussions about Favre succession planning and the risks involved in him making good on gestures toward retirement. Obviously, Rodgers was scouted, just as teams scout many, many players they don't expect to be available to draft. There are a variety of reasons that scouting would take place, but that would be a topic for another thread.

    That he was available at #24 was likely a surprise so some quick rethinking needed to be done as in any situation where one's expectations are suddenly upended.

    It probably was not 15 minutes, though. By the time he dropped out of the top 15, it would have been evident something was up that was worth paying attention to.
     
  12. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    El Guapo, the reason I addressed you in this thread was your posting, “Best player on the board my hiney”. The common reading of that sentence IMO is you don’t believe Rodgers was the best player on the board. (Ala ‘so and so my a$$’) I think it’s obvious Rodgers was the best player on the board – by far - and you agreed with that by calling Rodgers the #1 or #2 player in the draft. How does that not contradict “Best player on the board my hiney.”? It’s one thing to discuss whether or not it was a need pick, but it was obviously a BPA pick. BTW, I have no idea why you think I’m picking on you – I am disagreeing with your (IMO confusing) opinion. I haven’t been disrespectful or dismissive (the “irrespective of your hiney” remark was meant as a joke and was followed by a smilie.)

    As for HRE, the point about Favre “retiring”, “unretiring” and “retiring” again refutes your idea that, “they seized the opportunity to exit the Favre era when he, Favre, presented them with the somewhat predictable opportunity.” They seized it and then they “un-seized” it. It was only Favre’s facilitation that brought on the Rodgers’ era in 2008.

    IMO what Brandt wrote refuted your idea about Rodgers being a need pick (“imagine my disappointment”) so you are now attempting to redefine “need”. Not an immediate need, not a priority need…

    And again for those who believe Thompson thought it was any kind of an important need, how do you explain his not attempting to trade up to secure such a high rated player at that position of important need?
     
  13. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    If you choose to only focus on one sentence in a post and not the entire post, well then, I guess that's where we are at now. At least I know.

    For the record, I'm not redefining a thing. I said from the start and still believe that a backup QB was a mid-round need in 2005, not a priority like safety was in this year's draft. Your spitting out marbles from your mouth.

    ...and also for the record, what Brandt wrote (pasted below since your memory seems to be ailing) does not refute one thing that I said. He said that they trusted the board. It doesn't refute that they had a need for a backup QB, but I'm sure you're going to find a way to defend yourself and explain how. It said that they had a first round need for defense, which I also agree with.
     
  14. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    Good lord. Do you care to explain that one sentence or not? And second, re-read my post: Every after "As for HRE,..." applies to HRE and not to you.
     
  15. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    Sure.

    Do you want me to address this another way? I wasn't saying that Rodgers wasn't the best player on the board, I was saying that the Packers weren't selecting him because he was the best player on the board.

    I'm tired of this discussion and won't be checking it anymore.
     
  16. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    For cry'n out loud you respond to things I directed at someone else as if I was directing them at you. How clear can "As for HRE" be? And no matter the reason they took him Rodgers was the BPA and Brandt, who was in the organization and in the war room said that's why they took him. What reason would he have to lie?
    Good.
     
  17. brandon2348

    brandon2348 GO PACK GO!

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    learn something and shut up!
     
  18. brandon2348

    brandon2348 GO PACK GO!

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    get out the way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  19. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    A point of no return was established with Mr. Favre. Management siezed that opportunity. Just because it wasn't in March or May doesn't mean it didn't exit. Having Rodgers in their hip pocket obviated the need to bow, scape and beg. And yes, that Favre would one day push the matter too far was fairly predictable.

    I don't know why the concept that a need can be important without being acute or immediate escapes you. They occur all the time, everywhere. And when talking about replacing a franchise QB, that would certainly be the case for the reasons amply stated previously. There is rarely a circumstance necessitating a binary position of "need" or "no need"; in fact it is counterproductive.

    I think there was something in your comments about my not responding to your query as to why we did not trade up for Rodgers if he was a need pick. Well, Sherrod was a need pick. Perry was a need pick. D. Jones was a need pick. Clinton-Dix was a need pick. There was wide consensus in each case that these players' respective positions were priorities for upgrades. We did not trade up for any of them. If not trading up is some kind of indication that need was not a consideration, then Thompson hasn't been in need of much of anything for some years now, and that proposition is absurd.

    "Imagine my disappointment'...there was a tinge of sarcasm in that statement, though I was in fact disappointed to hear Brandt put it the way he did. Consider it part of the dialectic.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  20. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    This is my last post on this unless I'm asked a question.

    I don't know why you don't understand the concept that Favre could have returned even after he "retired". That was in Favre's control, not the Packers (according to the Packers). That would have meant Favre being the starting QB in 2008 and perhaps beyond.

    I understand you were disappointed to read what Brandt wrote because it directly contradicted your opinion about Rodgers being a need pick. Brandt was very direct - it was an example of Thompson staying true to his board.

    When someone continues to modify the meaning of a word central to their argument, their argument has lost merit.

    The reason I believe the absence of an attempt to trade up is further evidence refuting your argument is twofold: 1) Rodgers was rated very highly in that draft, 2) Unlike the examples you gave he plays the most important position in football. If Thompson saw backup QB as an immediate, critical, important, etc. need, IMO he would have traded up to be certain he secured a player many expected to be gone in the first five picks of that draft.

    I believe the evidence is clear: The Rodgers pick represented a rare occurrence in the draft in which a player was available late in the first round whose grade was so much higher than the others available it would have been (and was) foolish for any GM to pass him up at that stage of the draft, regardless of need. And Brandt, who was in the war room, stated bluntly it was Thompson being true to his board: Not a need pick.
     
  21. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    I already highlighted that point...twice. I don't know why you don't understand the concept of the risk involved with the mercurial Favre who could leave you holding your d*ck for the next half decade provided you're not fired first. The signs and symptoms were already present in 2005. Clearly there was a point in 2008 when Favre could not return after he retired. Rodgers' 3 years of preparation for the job afforded that opportunity.

    That's another point that continues to elude you. I wasn't disappointed in being wrong. I was disappointed in Brandt's retelling, taken at face value, evidencing lack of organizational foresight. You missed the hint of sarcasm in that disappointment as well, even after I flagged it for you. Foresight is a hallmark of good decision makers. So I noted twice the fact you can't have it both ways...you can't claim foresight while maintaining blind adherence to the board. Besides, you've failed to consider the possibility of the unspoken "and" considerations in Brandt's comments; there would be very good reasons why Brandt would not want to highlight them if he were privy to them.

    Besides, if memory serves you've commented on past occasions that you believe need may be introduced when constructing the board. That presents you with a problem.

    Well, that didn't happen. If qualifications and nuance are not understandable in your newly found binary definition of "need" I can't help that. I'm amused that you introduced the "immediate" qualifier mid-course. It was you who keeps shifting his definition.

    There are those pesky qualifiers again. What happen to your binary "need"/"no need" point from yesterday? You seem to understand the concept that need resides on spectrum and has different aspects but can't seem to apply it.

    If Rodgers Jr. presented himself in the draft today, Thompson would not take him. He might find somebody hot for a QB who would trade for the pick, and that's as far as it goes. By the time his 4 year rookie deal was up, without having seen much of the field, his trade value would be nil...a wasted pick.

    I would note that Thompson's lack of loquaciousness in the press extends to the war room. I was watching the war room feed off and on in this last draft and did not see Thompson utter a single word. There's a lot going on between his ears that he does not talk about...to anybody...as if I need to tell you that. We've probably expended more words on this topic in the last 2 days than Thompson utters in an average week. I would not necessarily believe that Brandt is privy to the whole story. In fact, as noted previously, I simply cannot hold the incredulous opinion that Thompson would be so lacking in foresight because of the implications.

    No questions were posed above. This is a rare treat...somebody granting me the last word.

    Thanks for that.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2014
  22. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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  23. yooperpackfan

    yooperpackfan Cheesehead

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    Sign him to a "futures" contract. :D
     
  24. PikeBadger

    PikeBadger Cheesehead

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  25. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    delete
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2014

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