Looking back on the last three seasons we’ve all started to notice trends about how this regime deals with the roster, free agency and the draft.
The first off season under Papa Pete was marked with massive roster turnover, and while at first the approach seemed scatter shot what has become clear now is that first season Pete and John were clearly trying to infuse youth and competitiveness into a roster that had become old, stagnant and slow. The focus of that first season clearly was an overall and massive cultural shift. While younger and still inconsistent the team showed toughness and swagger that was nowhere to be found in Homgrens last year and Mora’s only year. The result was a 7-9 season and a miraculous earth shaking (literally)playoff victory over the visiting defending champs.
The second season under PC saw the focus narrow. They very clearly said they wanted to focus on getting tougher and that we knew we had to address the offensive line. Enter Tom Cable, Paul McQuistan, James Carpenter, and John Moffit and they re-signed Breno Giacomini. Toughness indeed. They also got bigger, faster, younger and tougher in the secondary. Insert Brandon Browner for an injured Thurmond, insert Richard Sherman for an injured Tru and insert Kam in place of Lawyer Milloy and the Legion of Boom was born.
Last off season PC told us plain as day, “we need to get faster”. What do they do? They went out and got Bruce Irvin, Bobby Wagner, DangeRuss, and Robert Turbin. That’s some serious speed on both sides of the ball.
So what did we learn here?
*This front office tells us exactly what they’re going to do. Not in specifics, but they tell us.
*This front office, outside of Sidney Rice and Zach Miller don’t generally spend a ton of cash on high priced free agents.
*This front office, when it identifies a need, will make multiple moves to strengthen a position(s), not just one or two.
What does that mean for this offseason? While I couldn’t tell you specifically, I can tell you that Pete said we need more pass rusherS. Plural. But I don’t see them breaking the bank to do it in free agency. So even though there probably won’t be too many block buster deals this March around the league due to teams saving cap space for the next couple of years I highly doubt we see Henry Melton or Randy Starks at the VMAC come training camp. I would be shocked however, if Desmond Bryant out of Oakland wasn’t targeted. I would also not be surprised at all to see our first 3 picks of the upcoming draft spend on Defensive Linemen. One Defensive End, One 3 down 3 Technique DT, one third down pass rush specialist for the interior and let them compete with Scruggs and Jay Howard. I don’t see Alan Branch coming back. Maybe Jason Jones gets another one year deal.