First time posting to this site so here goes nothing.
I decided after all our offseason dealings in FA and Draft and all the so called experts giving their takes that maybe I could drop my 2 cents as a fan. Also, recently we have been getting burned by a lot of online/ Vegas book estimates. So I wanted to evaluate last year to this year by specific player/position and see how we improved/regressed to start the upcoming season.
I created a simple 0-10 point system for each player/position and picked the most influential positions per scheme along with the players who seemed to get the most action justifying that system. I know usually a standard 11 man team on either side as starters would be sufficient, but with injuries, lack of production and new systems a few more players ten to get involved and have an impact, whether it’s a QB that goes down and backup has to step up, or a 2-TE system that works well in the confines of one team opposed to another. I came up with 15 integral Offense position/players: QB1, QB2, HB1, HB2, FB, TE1, TE2, WR1, WR2, WR3, LT, LG, C, RG, RT(150 total pts) and 12 Defensive position/players: LE, DT, RE, LOLB, MLB1, MLB2, ROLB, CB1, CB2, CB3, FS, SS(120 total pts). I understand defensive/offensive schemes can be different but the amount of integral players should be roughly the same(example: changing out a MLB for another DT). The 2012 players were chosen by GP or system ran and production/stats.
The point system is rather simple but I believe gives a good value for where a team was at and has upgraded to. It goes like this:
0-1…..Find a new job
4-5…..3rd string/backup at best
8-9…..Pro bowl regular
10…….Hall of Fame
Understand that if a player is in the lower half of his category he is either seriously on decline, lacking production or has an injury history within that skill level; whereas the higher score could easily mean they are on the cusp of upgrading to next level with time. I did not account for improvements of current players initial point scale but will add something at the end I think will suffice justification, and the rookie scores are fair I believe until further evaluation. Right now they are more based on college potential and team need. So here goes nothing:
2012 2013 Upgrade/downgrade:
QB1 – Matt Cassel(5) A. Smith (7) +2
QB2 – B. Quinn(3) C. Daniel(4) +1
HB1 – J. Charles(9) J. Charles(9) E
HB2 – P. Hillis(5) N. Davis(5) E
FB – P. Dimarco(3) A. Sherman(4) +1
TE1 – K. Boss(3) A. Fasano(6) +3
TE2 – T. Moeaki(4) T. Kelce(5) +1
WR1 – D. Bowe(8) D. Bowe(8) E
WR2 – J. Baldwin(4) J. Baldwin(4) E
WR3 – D. McCluster(4) D. Avery(5) +1
LT – B. Albert(7) B. Albert(7) E
LG – J. Allen(6) G. Schwartz(7) +1
C – R. Lilja(6) R. Hudson(7) +1
RG – J. Asamoah(6) J. Asamoah(6) E
RT – E. Winston(6) E. Fisher(7) +1
TOTAL: (79) (91) +12
As you can see this is a nice improvement and we have upgraded significantly on the Oline and TE positions adding for more receiving and blocking threats. We also upgraded the most important offensive position, the QB, which should help improve everyone across the board, confidence wise. I believe this is much improved Offensive picture than last year.
2012 2013 Upgrade/downgrade:
LE – T. Jaxson(6) T. Jaxson(6) E
DT – D. Poe(6) D. Poe(6) E
RE – G. Dorsey(6) M. Devito(7) +1
LOLB – J. Houston(7) J. Houston(7) E
MLB1 – D. Johnson(8) D. Johnson(8) E
MLB2 – J. Belcher/B. Siler(4) A. Jordan/N. Johnson(5) +1
ROLB – T. Hali(9) T. Hali(9) E
CB1 – B. F lowers(8) B. Flowers(8) E
CB2 – S. Routt(4) S. Smith(7) +3
CB3 – J. Arenas(4) D. Robinson(7) +3
FS – K. Lewis(5) S. Commings(6) +1
SS – E. Berry(7) E. Berry(7) E
TOTAL: (74) (83) +9
A very nice improvement in key positions, specifically in the secondary with an entirely new look backfield. In todays passing NFL a deep secondary is crucial to sustaining shutdown play, and teams could only hope to have a depth as good as the KC Chiefs do this year.
Now if you were to add a half a point for practical improvement for each player who kept their position on team within their scheme you could add an adiitional 3 points on Offense(totaling 94) and about 3 point on Defense(totaling 86) for next years lineup.
I even took the Liberty of adding in Head Coach and his teams OFF/DEF to add some more depth to the justification of improvement.
2012 2013 Upgrade/downgrade:
R. Crennel (4) A. Reid(7) +3
Significant upgrade in leadership and scheme for team, head coaches alone can account for 4-6 W/L a year with or without talent.
So where does all this info get us? I think this system shows a simple justification for an improved fan outlook. I think it shows how Vegas/NFL gurus are overlooking this team by paying too much attention to last year as if they still had a bad taste in their mouths they cant spit out. I believ last years team was better than 2-14 on talent alone but not by much…….maybe 4-12,5-11. But this goes to show you how each player can impact a team along with how important a good HC can be. These are all assumptions and do not take into effect next seasons injuries while taken last seasons, but that is why I doubled down on some positions because of their importance for depth in todays NFL. From the assumption we were better than our record, along with all the improvements from top to bottom with players, positional schemes, and coaching. i could easily see an 8-8, 9-7 team here, maybe even better if other teams regress or have significant injuries like we've dealt with the last 2 years.
Please be as critical as you like if you do not agree, or if you do please let me know where ideas could be added. Like I said before this is just a simple 2 cents I thought was fun and still very true to our team!