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wpr  
#1 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 7:33:54 AM(UTC)
It is very apparent the Ron Wolf was not afraid to go out into the FA market and sign big names to fill specific needs.

Quote:

C Frank Winters, 1992: Signed in Plan B free agency, he played a huge part in quarterback Brett Favre's development.

WR Kitrick Taylor, '92: Also signed in Plan B, he jump-started Favre's career with a game-winning catch.

DE Reggie White, '93: Helped return Green Bay to a place championships could be won.

OG Harry Galbreath, '93: Gave coach Mike Holmgren a shot of athleticism he needed upfront.

S Mike Prior, '93: Core special teams player who did his best to fill in at safety despite lack of speed.

DE Sean Jones, '94: Sack artist who made it tough for teams to double-team White all the time.

DT Santana Dotson, '95: Turned coordinator Fritz Shurmur's defensive line from good to great.

KR/PR Desmond Howard, '96: Broke an NFL punt-return record and won a Super Bowl MVP.

OT Bruce Wilkerson, '96: Critical piece of Super Bowl XXXI team, filling void at left tackle late in the year.

WR Don Beebe, '96: Perfect for a young receiving corps even if his contribution was limited.

P Sean Landeta, '98: Had a superb year at age 36 and should have been re-signed.

Others: OG Tunch Ilkin, WR Mark Clayton, WR Mark Ingram, NT Bill Maas, RB Reggie Cobb, S Pat Terrell, OG Guy McIntyre, LB Fred Strickland, LB Ron Cox, OG Raleigh McKenzie, RB Raymont Harris, DE John Thierry, LB Mike Morton and NT Russell Maryland.


Ted often appears to be afraid that he if spends the bucks of a high profile player at top dollar and it doesn't work out that he will be criticized. He prefers to shop in the discount department so if it doesn't work out he can act like the FA wasn't really apart of his plans after all.
Quote:

CB/S Charles Woodson, 2006: Turnover-causing machine and defensive MVP won a long-awaited Super Bowl.

DT/DE Ryan Pickett, '06: Resurrected his career and is the most under-rated of all Thompson personnel moves.

S Marquand Manuel, '06: Washed-up player who couldn't earn the respect of his teammates and was ineffective.

CB Frank Walker, '07: Tough, scrappy corner who should have been kept around longer.

LB Brandon Chillar, '08: Versatile backup who knew how to blitz and cover tight ends.

DE Anthony Hargrove, '12: Couldn't overcome four-game suspension he was facing and was cut in camp.

C Jeff Saturday, '12: Big drop-off from Scott Wells and was benched before end of the season.

Others: OT Adrian Klemm, OG Matt O'Dwyer, LB Ben Taylor, WR Marc Boerigter, OL Duke Preston, DE Phillip Merling, DT Daniel Muir.


source
Wolf gets a B+. Thompson a C-
steveishere  
#2 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 7:54:33 AM(UTC)
I highly doubt Ted makes his decisions based on how much he will possibly get criticized. If the guy has shown me anything it's that he doesn't give a shit what people think of his ideas.

How often do you hear him make an excuse for a bad move or pat his own back for a good one? Whether it's criticism or praise he usually sticks to his "we don't discuss personnel" philosophy.

More likely is he doesn't feel shelling out huge amounts of cash to high calibre free agents is a move that usually pays off for teams.
User is suspended until 5/28/2018 11:54:40 AM(UTC) DakotaT  
#3 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 8:47:57 AM(UTC)
Both guys had success and failures with free agency, but Wolf put the Packers into cap hell, whereas Thompson is very fiscally responsible. I know that is not glamorous and the average fan only cares about the final product on the field, but without fiscal responsibility, the Packers quickly become the Washington Redskins or Dallas Cowboys. I'd rather be a ten win team year in and year out and have a chance at the Lombardi every year.
PackerTraxx  
#4 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 10:36:51 AM(UTC)
Differnt league, different rules and different era when Wolf was GM. I don't believe he would do as well as Ted Thompson at this point.
nerdmann  
#5 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 11:41:38 AM(UTC)
PackerTraxx said: Go to Quoted Post
Differnt league, different rules and different era when Wolf was GM. I don't believe he would do as well as Ted Thompson at this point.


Agreed.

Wolf wasn't as good in the first round as Ted.

And as I've stated before, Ted unearths gems like Sam Shields, DuJuan Harris, Dez Moses, Don Barclay. He consistenly picks up dudes off the street who can play.
wpr  
#6 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 1:38:11 PM(UTC)
steveishere said: Go to Quoted Post
I highly doubt Ted makes his decisions based on how much he will possibly get criticized. If the guy has shown me anything it's that he doesn't give a shit what people think of his ideas.

How often do you hear him make an excuse for a bad move or pat his own back for a good one? Whether it's criticism or praise he usually sticks to his "we don't discuss personnel" philosophy.

More likely is he doesn't feel shelling out huge amounts of cash to high calibre free agents is a move that usually pays off for teams.


Never said he did. I know he is going to use the same line all the time. That is his style. There are no doubts at all he doesn’t want to shell out large sums for FA. He has proven that many times.

Point is this team could have been more competitive in the playoffs if he would have picked out one or two big names.

DakotaT said: Go to Quoted Post
Both guys had success and failures with free agency, but Wolf put the Packers into cap hell, whereas Thompson is very fiscally responsible. I know that is not glamorous and the average fan only cares about the final product on the field, but without fiscal responsibility, the Packers quickly become the Washington Redskins or Dallas Cowboys. I'd rather be a ten win team year in and year out and have a chance at the Lombardi every year.

Very true.
The cap woes came about because Wolf liked resigning his veterans while Ted cuts them loose as we have seen this week.
Totally true I don’t care if Ted ever signs a FA if they win 5 SB in his tenure. But a key QUALITY addition from time to time is more likely to help than not. To revise your line I would rather win 5 SB in 10 years interspersed with 2-3 down years while they reload than to have 10 years of first or second round losses.
PackerTraxx said: Go to Quoted Post
Differnt league, different rules and different era when Wolf was GM. I don't believe he would do as well as Ted Thompson at this point.

I expected this to be mentioned.

nerdmann said: Go to Quoted Post
Agreed.

Wolf wasn't as good in the first round as Ted.

And as I've stated before, Ted unearths gems like Sam Shields, DuJuan Harris, Dez Moses, Don Barclay. He consistenly picks up dudes off the street who can play.


No one said he wasn’t. This was about signing FA not draft picks. And as you pointed out getting street FA certainly has helped the team.

Wade  
#7 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 2:27:03 PM(UTC)
There is a big range of approaches to free agency between Ted Thompson (never go after high tier names and never never go after them early) and Daniel Snyder (always go after them and always go early).

I think what Wayne is saying -- and if he isn't, then I'll say it -- is that the Packers would be better if he *occasionally* took a Tier 1 kind of risk. No one is arguing he should start acting like Snyder or Jones or the idiot in Miami.

But look at that list again. The only two names on that list that were Tier 1 players were Woodson and Pickett. And they were seven years ago. And if Tampa hadn't had its head up its ass (another idiot owner/management team), Woodson wouldn't even have been sniffable with Ted's approach.

Pickett was an amazing pick up, and so was Woodson. That kind of quality is almost never there late in free agency. Look just at 2006 ("two home runs in one year, Ted!") and its amazing judgment on his part. But look at the long term ("twice in eight years") and you see there just isn't going to be much there. Role players, yes. But Tier 1 impact. You might as well leave it to the craps table.

You want to add that quality to your team, you gotta take more risk and you gotta take it earlier in the process.

Everyone keeps saying that Wolf and Thompson were different eras. Sure. Get that.

But you don't think doing what he did to get Brett Favre and then Reggie White wasn't a major risk? Forget Jones, Dotson, and all the other FAs. Assume they had never happened. If Wolf hadn't taken the Favre and White risks, we'd be talking about 40 years in the desert not just 30. And salary cap or not, White's contract would have hamstrung the Packers' budget for years.

People here will say, I predict this, that "no OL is worth the contract Jake Long or Ryan Clady just got from team X." But you know what, not a single lower tier "affordable" OL free agent Ted has picked up in eight years has been worth the contract. Not one. And with the exception of Josh Sitton, not one Packer OL drafted in the fourth round or earlier in the Thompson era has yet realized a potential that would make him worth his contract either. We're still holding out hope on some of them, but as yet its still about potential rather than about proven value.

Ted, you're fantastic at skill position drafting. But you're mediocre at best at drafting OL. Maybe that Shilts OLOLOL! guy's been wrong. Maybe what you need to do this year is go skill position instead of OL in the high rounds. Instead go after and get one of those stud OL that will be available for a couple days in March.

Maybe its time to take a Reggie White risk on a free agent for that left side. Put a second proven stud there to protect the franchise and let the rest of those servicable lunch bucket brawlers do what we know they can rather than hope for this year to be different from all the other eight and potential to finally be realized.

Never happen of course.



steveishere  
#8 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 4:18:55 PM(UTC)
Pickett wasn't really a huge risk type of signing they only gave him 3.5m/year. I don't really see the big tier 1 guys even occasionally working out too well. Lately those guys have been terrible decisions (M. Williams, Asomugha etc..) overpaying big for even 1 player in FA is stupid.

Woodson while they gave him a good size contract wasn't exactly a day 1 pick up. Only 1 other team was even interested in him and they didn't offer him a contract.

If you want quality on your team jumping into FA big and early even occasionally isn't the way to do it. How often do you see perennially successful teams doing that? Look at Pittsburgh, NYG, Baltimore, New England. How often do those teams overpay for any FA? Ted isn't the only one who does things his way.
porky88  
#9 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 9:01:47 PM(UTC)
If I recall correctly, Woodson was an April signing. The only teams interested were Tampa Bay and Green Bay. I believe he wanted to play cornerback and the Packers were willing to play him at corner. The Bucs wanted to convert him to safety. I also believe the Packers offered the most money, so it was one of those circumstances where the player fell into Green Bay's lap.

For what it's worth, the Packers made an effort to get Randy Moss. They wanted a two-year deal and New England gave him a one-year deal. They also made an effort to get Marshawn Lynch, but Seattle had a better offer. I might need some fact checking there, but I think the Packers were in on both players. In fact, I know they were close on Moss. Reggie McKenzie admitted as much on television.

Thompson just failed to close those deals on two high-profile players. There’s no telling whether Ron Wolf would’ve done the same thing or gone in a different direction. There’s no telling Ron Wolf would’ve even been interested in either player.
wpr  
#10 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 10:09:39 PM(UTC)
porky88 said: Go to Quoted Post
If I recall correctly, Woodson was an April signing. The only teams interested were Tampa Bay and Green Bay. I believe he wanted to play cornerback and the Packers were willing to play him at corner. The Bucs wanted to convert him to safety. I also believe the Packers offered the most money, so it was one of those circumstances where the player fell into Green Bay's lap.

For what it's worth, the Packers made an effort to get Randy Moss. They wanted a two-year deal and New England gave him a one-year deal. They also made an effort to get Marshawn Lynch, but Seattle had a better offer. I might need some fact checking there, but I think the Packers were in on both players. In fact, I know they were close on Moss. Reggie McKenzie admitted as much on television.

Thompson just failed to close those deals on two high-profile players. There’s no telling whether Ron Wolf would’ve done the same thing or gone in a different direction. There’s no telling Ron Wolf would’ve even been interested in either player.


Good point. However there is no telling what FA got away from Wolf as well. So we just have to use the list we have or if Wolf would have been the one to ante up a little more to bring them on board.
Wade  
#11 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 5:40:18 AM(UTC)
Yes, Pickett and Woodson were both bargains.
And yes the Packers went after Moss ... but only at a bargain price.
(I don't know about Lynch.)

My point is that those kind of FA pickups -- high tier players who also are available late or at a bargain price -- are few and far between. 2 or 3 every 8 years, if you will.

My point is that if you want to get "enough" help in free agency, you ought not to limit yourself to bargain hunting and close dealing. You need to take major buck risks once in a while.

Not several times a year. Not every year. Not even every other year. But once in a while.

And Ted Thompson has never taken that risk. He's never risked a first round draft choice on another team's backup. And he's never taken the financial risk that an early Tier 1 (or even most tier 2 signings) requires.

Wolf did both. What Packer fan thought Favre was a good trade when it was made? And lest we forget, Reggie White was already 31 when he joined the Packers.

I don't want him to become Dan Snyder or some of the other clowns in the Spoiled Billionaire's Club. But I do wish he'd take a bigger risk in FA every so often.

But I don't ever expect him to.



wpr  
#12 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 6:36:00 AM(UTC)
Wade said: Go to Quoted Post
Yes, Pickett and Woodson were both bargains.
And yes the Packers went after Moss ... but only at a bargain price.
(I don't know about Lynch.)

My point is that those kind of FA pickups -- high tier players who also are available late or at a bargain price -- are few and far between. 2 or 3 every 8 years, if you will.

My point is that if you want to get "enough" help in free agency, you ought not to limit yourself to bargain hunting and close dealing. You need to take major buck risks once in a while.

Not several times a year. Not every year. Not even every other year. But once in a while.

And Ted Thompson has never taken that risk.
He's never risked a first round draft choice on another team's backup. And he's never taken the financial risk that an early Tier 1 (or even most tier 2 signings) requires.

Wolf did both. What Packer fan thought Favre was a good trade when it was made? And lest we forget, Reggie White was already 31 when he joined the Packers.

I don't want him to become Dan Snyder or some of the other clowns in the Spoiled Billionaire's Club. But I do wish he'd take a bigger risk in FA every so often.

But I don't ever expect him to.






exactly. 1 player who could put them over the top on the DL. It would have been nice to have Julius Peppers to complement Raji on the line and CM3 in pressuring the QB.

Perhaps someone at S after Collins went down.

I don't see going for a tier 1 player on the OL, WR maybe even RB positions as they were critical needs. But the defense should would have benefited with the infusion of a pro bowl caliber player over the past 3-4 years.


steveishere  
#13 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 6:48:29 AM(UTC)
Wade said: Go to Quoted Post

And Ted Thompson has never taken that risk. He's never risked a first round draft choice on another team's backup. And he's never taken the financial risk that an early Tier 1 (or even most tier 2 signings) requires.



and he only has a Superbowl title and one of the winningest teams in the league since he became the GM to show for it...
wpr  
#14 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 7:19:46 AM(UTC)
steveishere said: Go to Quoted Post
and he only has a Superbowl title and one of the winningest teams in the league since he became the GM to show for it...


No one is saying we hate Ted. (most of those posters have gone away.) What we or at least I am saying with a little judiciousness GB might have had 3 SB appearances by now with more to come.

Ted is what he is. He isn't going to change. We certainly are not going to change him. It is the off season. there is very little going on why can't we discuss this aspect? Do you have anything else to talk about?
steveishere  
#15 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 7:41:56 AM(UTC)
wpr said: Go to Quoted Post
No one is saying we hate Ted. (most of those posters have gone away.) What we or at least I am saying with a little judiciousness GB might have had 3 SB appearances by now with more to come.

Ted is what he is. He isn't going to change. We certainly are not going to change him. It is the off season. there is very little going on why can't we discuss this aspect? Do you have anything else to talk about?


I never meant to infer that I think you hate Ted. A little judiciousness could just as likely have led to 3 years completely missing the playoffs as 3 Superbowl appearances. Ted believes in his system and his system works, that's all I'm saying. That's why several of the top teams in the NFL run things that way. I completely disagree that you should even occasionally pay for the "big" FA. You definitely do not NEED to take "major buck risks" every once in a while. Consistency is what is needed. You have to be a great team every year to have a shot at winning a couple titles. Not put all your eggs in one basket every so often.
Jlapp  
#16 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 7:43:23 AM(UTC)
wpr said: Go to Quoted Post
exactly. 1 player who could put them over the top on the DL. It would have been nice to have Julius Peppers to complement Raji on the line and CM3 in pressuring the QB.


Where would the $14m/year it took the Bear's to sign him come from? It isn't like the packers could have just added him without doing anything else.

Not to mention Peppers was probably the only top FA that has come close to meeting expectations. I'd even say he is vastly over overpaid for what he provides. Most rarely end up as good deals for the team that signs them.
steveishere  
#17 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 8:04:00 AM(UTC)
Jlapp said: Go to Quoted Post
Where would the $14m/year it took the Bear's to sign him come from? It isn't like the packers could have just added him without doing anything else.

Not to mention Peppers was probably the only top FA that has come close to meeting expectations. I'd even say he is vastly over overpaid for what he provides. Most rarely end up as good deals for the team that signs them.


One thing to keep in mind with the Peppers signing too is that he was signed during the season there was no salary cap so they basically dumped 20 million of his money into that season which is not really something you would want to do now. That contract would have hurt a lot more if it was signed any other year.
Pack93z  
#18 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 8:28:37 AM(UTC)
My opinion.. is the economics of the game are much different today than Wolf's era.. at least the part where he set the tone. Reggie White.

Back then, the cap was going to be introduced in 1994 and many were trying to figure it out more so than today when each team has a group dedicated to nothing but managing the cap. I think Wolf was ahead of his time in understanding the economics of the game and thus how we managed to compete salary wise to land White. And honestly, in today's world, a Reggie White talent isn't on the FA market to begin with. Don't even try and compare Peppers, Haynesworth and the likes.

Basically, Wolf was feeding (feasting if you will) off the mismanagement of other teams and collecting talent in a deeper FA pool.

It doesn't diminish the job Wolf did to land talent, but the point is talent was available on the FA market because teams were struggling to understand the impacts of the cap being introduced. Guys like Santana Dotson, Andre Rison, and Eugene Robinson we being cut loose.. where as today, few impact players are on the market each year and they are too expensive for a cap managed team to realistically compete in year in and out. Those three we just a couple of many impact type players to hit the market annually. And yes I know Rison was let loose for other reasons than just cap.

Ted has shown that when talent is on the market with reasonable salaries attached, he becomes engaged in the fray. Sometimes he lands them.. sometimes he doesn't. But it isn't like he hasn't been in the mix for players that could help.

Basically after that babble.. I just don't know how realistic it is to compare the two without factoring in the changes in the economic and management of the rosters and their costs.
wpr  
#19 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 8:56:08 AM(UTC)
steveishere said: Go to Quoted Post
One thing to keep in mind with the Peppers signing too is that he was signed during the season there was no salary cap so they basically dumped 20 million of his money into that season which is not really something you would want to do now. That contract would have hurt a lot more if it was signed any other year.


nice point steve.
wpr  
#20 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 9:23:24 AM(UTC)
Pack93z said: Go to Quoted Post
My opinion.. is the economics of the game are much different today than Wolf's era.. at least the part where he set the tone. Reggie White.

Back then, the cap was going to be introduced in 1994 and many were trying to figure it out more so than today when each team has a group dedicated to nothing but managing the cap. I think Wolf was ahead of his time in understanding the economics of the game and thus how we managed to compete salary wise to land White. And honestly, in today's world, a Reggie White talent isn't on the FA market to begin with. Don't even try and compare Peppers, Haynesworth and the likes.

Basically, Wolf was feeding (feasting if you will) off the mismanagement of other teams and collecting talent in a deeper FA pool.

It doesn't diminish the job Wolf did to land talent, but the point is talent was available on the FA market because teams were struggling to understand the impacts of the cap being introduced. Guys like Santana Dotson, Andre Rison, and Eugene Robinson we being cut loose.. where as today, few impact players are on the market each year and they are too expensive for a cap managed team to realistically compete in year in and out. Those three we just a couple of many impact type players to hit the market annually. And yes I know Rison was let loose for other reasons than just cap.

Ted has shown that when talent is on the market with reasonable salaries attached, he becomes engaged in the fray. Sometimes he lands them.. sometimes he doesn't. But it isn't like he hasn't been in the mix for players that could help.

Basically after that babble.. I just don't know how realistic it is to compare the two without factoring in the changes in the economic and management of the rosters and their costs.


They certainly were two completely different areas. The game has changed so much both on and off the field. But then that is part of the fun of comparisons. How would Hutson do in the game today? It is fun to speculate.

You hit on one of their differences. Wolf feasted on the mismanagement of other teams. I think Wolf was a little more aggressive then Ted is. Sometimes that is a good thing. Sometimes it bites you in the butt.
There is no doubt when Ted came in GB was in salary cap hell. He did an incredible job of working out of it as quickly as he did. That could taint hi outlook. He probably never wants to get anywhere near that situation again. Thus he is willing to pass on higher priced players.

Keep this in mind. I have said it about teams for more than 20 years. Typically it is more lucrative for a franchise to consistently second than it is for them to pony up for the player or two or three that it takes to put them over the top and win it all. There is very little or no incentive on Ted's part to pick up the tier 1 type FA that they could use to win it all. They sell out every game. The concession stands do huge business. People flock to buy ceremonially stock. The sporting good cloths, jerseys and such, are one of the highest year in and year out. Spending money on quality players will not increase the revenue stream very much. Prob not as much as the expense stream increases.
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