What we learned from Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff

 

 

OPENING STATEMENT: Obviously this is the roots of personnel and we’re all excited to be back here, those of us with a personnel background. We had an interesting 2011 season. 2012 is now upon us and our focus is definitely on building our football team. The Atlanta Falcons are focused on being a better football team in all facets of the game. We have had a lot of changes already within our organization from a coaching standpoint [and] organization standpoint. We had some very fine football people leave our organization. We said at our post-season presser that there were going to be some changes and they weren’t going to be tweaks, they were going to be significant changes. That’s come to fruition so far and quite honestly we haven’t even kicked off our player acquisition and player moves. There is a lot still to be done within our organization at this point.

Q: Where are the Falcons with their post-season evaluations, considering that free agency is around the corner?
A: As most of you know, we have 18 unrestricted free agents on our team. Our focus is going to be on re-signing the players on our team that we deem as very important players for us to continue to build and be that better team that we want to be. That’s where our focus will be at the outset. Obviously, we are looking out in the market and if certain things present themselves, I won’t get into the specifics on that. We have the draft around the corner that we’ve been planning for. Though we don’t have a first-round draft pick our focus has been approaching it with [number] 55 being our No. 1 pick.

Q: Will there be some quality for you all at 55?

A: There is some great quality in this draft. There are some positions that we think there is some great depth. I’m really impressed with this draft class. Fifty-five for us in the second round, there are always players that you can get that can significantly impact your football team and we think that we are dialed into some players at that point already.

Q: What can you say about Les Snead and what kind of GM do you think he’ll be?

A: Les has had an opportunity to be schooled throughout the Atlanta Falcons organization as well as Jacksonville. He’s learn the ups and the downs of the business. We had a chance to spend a lot of time over the last four years. Since 2008 he basically had the opportunity to live through my trials and tribulations as a general manager. We talked everyday about so many different things. I think it’s going to be very beneficial for him to step into the role that he has in St. Louis. He’s an adapt evaluator. He’s a very hard worker. A very passionate man as far as football goes. He’s got a very unique and open-minded look at the National Football League. He’s going to bring some very fresh ideas and he’s going to work very well with Jeff Fisher.

Q: How is the running back class?

A: It’s a fine running back class and I think there is some speed there and some versatility. You have some big guys that are going to tote the rock with a lot of power and you have some guys who can catch the ball, run and create. As it stands, compared to other running back classes, this is one where throughout the draft you can [select] some very significant players.

Q: How do you feel about the trade with the Browns after a year?

A: We talked about it within our organization before and leading into the draft, throughout the season and [post-season.] It’s something that I’ve said from the very beginning, our move and our desire to have Julio Jones on our team was something that we feel very, very comfortable with. We accomplished, in our minds, becoming more explosive. We also believe that we need to continue to grow as an offense and we will never look back on our move as being one that was overly expensive. It was something that we deemed was right for the organization at the time. Again, Julio was brought into our organization not for the here and now only, but for the future of the franchise.

Q: Was there something that was holding him back this season?

A: I think Julio had a fine rookie year. He missed three games with a [hamstring] injury [and a major part of two others because of injury.] He was just shy of 1,000 yards. He led all rookies in touchdown [receptions.] He made an impact on our football team that we enjoyed on so many levels. The fan-base obviously enjoyed watching him. He was a guy that you’re always on the edge of your seat waiting to watch. . . We have [high] expectations for Julio in the future

Q: Will offseason workouts help him even more?

A: I think for Julio they will be incredibly beneficial. He’s the kind of guy that’s very passionate about the game. He works very hard. Athletically, he’s right up there with the top ones in the league. I think now, going into the offseason, having the ability to work with Matt Ryan and work on the timing of the game – which is very, very important in this game – it will help him significantly.

Q: What were the obstacles to making a big draft-day trade like that?

A: The idea of giving up picks, I think in today’s game, it’s very important that your picks are there to acquire [players] but they are also there, in my mind, to use as trade fodder. I think that’s very important. I don’t think that in this day in age that you can just sit on your hands and wait for things to always come to you. If you have a desire and you know what you want as an organization, I firmly believe that you need to go after it.

Q: You and sitting at 55, do you all make another splash move this year [to get back into the first round?]

A: Our desire was never to make a splash move. We’ve never made any move in mind to try to boost the brand. . . We’ll always analyze what’s in front of us and the possibility of going after something in the draft as far as moving up and evening moving back. Our history, since we’ve been here since 2008, has been not to move back. Again, that’s probably more the personality of myself, Mike Smith and our owner Arthur Blank.

Q: How does Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon stack up?

A: I think most people would agree that Julio Jones and A.J. Green were at the top of their draft boards and there was a lot of interest. A receiver like Blackmon is going to garner a lot of interest. There are going to be a lot of people contemplating being aggressive about going up and getting a receiver that can be an impact player in this league.

Q: How do you all rate the quality of pass rushers in this draft?

A: The edge pass rushers are something that we covet. They are not always easy to come across. There is a good group of guys that get up the field and turn the corner athletically and burst to the quarterback. We are all searching for that and they come in all different kind of packages. They don’t all have to be 6-4 and 270 pounds or 265. They at times can be 6-1, 6-1 ½ 230 pounds. It depends on the system that you are playing and there are certain systems out there that allow some to rush out of a wide-tackle nine and be very productive. Those same players might not be very productive in another system.

Q: On the value of wide receivers and if it’s higher if they play special teams?

A: When you are talking about the top rated receivers that’s not on our mind as much as personnel men; ‘wow, we want a guy out here who can be incredibly adapt in the special teams category or the return game.’ . . . Versatility is very big in this league at the receiver position when you are talking about the third, fourth and fifth receiver. When you are talking about one and two, most people would agree that you want those people to be lined up for your offensive plays and make sure that they are making an impact on your offense.

Q: [Something on improving the defenses in the pass-happy league.]

A: I believe the defenses are changing. In this league we talk about going as your offense goes and the explosive powerful offenses that are scoring 30-plus points are the ones who are capitalizing on their opportunities and winning a lot of games, winning Super Bowls and championships. With that said, we also believe that you have to have an accomplished enough defense to hang in there with these powerful offenses. The way that the league is set up right now, it’s not the days of old where we are shutting them down and we’re having those 9 -6 games all the time. I think the matchups are very, very important for the defensive players now. We talk about that all the time. You need to match up speed and athleticism and you need to match up power-to-power along the front. I think when you get into building a football team or coaching a football team we always talk about matchups and how incredibly important that is.

Q: With the overall cap room, will there be more activity in free agency?

A: Well, this is a very big free agency class. . . People really like that we’re going back to having free agency before the draft. . . It allows us to make moves in free agency and it takes the stress over the precariousness of how the draft is going to land. I think that is an aspect of team building that I would suggest most of us as coaches, general managers and team builders, would believe that is very beneficial for us. I do believe there is going to be a lot of movement because of the sheer numbers of this year’s class.

Q: Is there another level that Matt Ryan’s play can reach?

A: I believe that there is. I believe that Matt Ryan – I’ve said point blank before and after the season – Matt Ryan is one of the top 10 quarterbacks in this league. I like where Matt is. I like where his development is. Matt is his harshest critic, which I like as well because he’s going to do all that he can to continue to improve, continue to win games and [learn how to] win in the post-season. Again, I love the fact that we have a quarterback like Matt Ryan who’s the consummate leader in the locker room as well as out on the field. He leads by example. I know that he’s going to do all in his power to continue to improve with the years to come.

Q: Is Akeem Dent ready if you all lose Curtis Lofton?

A: Akeem Dent showed this year that he’s got a real firm understanding of the defense for us. He played very well for us on special teams. He’s a guy in our mind that if he’s put in a situation where he’s going to have to step up and take starter reps, he’s going to be competing for that job like the rest of our linebacker group. I said this the other day, we would like to have Curtis Lofton back. He’s a fine football player. We are in the process of negotiating with Curtis and his representatives. That’s been an amicable negotiation and we’ll continue to work on it.

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

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55 comments Add your comment

Gritz Blitz

February 24th, 2012
4:48 pm

I believe we will get the most out of this draft that we can, and we will resign most of our core players. Falcons will fly even higher next season.

Najeh Davenpoop

February 24th, 2012
5:02 pm

We learned that the Boy Wonder was all hype, and the Hawks will always be better. You Falcons fans should wise up and support a winner. Buy Hawks season tickets, and you’ll see.

Jeff B

February 24th, 2012
5:13 pm

Thanks for getting this DOL. I can’t wait to see what we do in FA!

ricky neal

February 24th, 2012
5:19 pm

from ricky i wonder who free agents are that on falcons gm list of players

Mikefalcon63

February 24th, 2012
5:20 pm

I think we should let Lofton “test the market”. I doubt there are many teams out there who will pay top dollar for a 2 down backer. I heard Lofton say on 790 he believes he is a 3 down backer…. Really? Maybe against Valdosta State. The guy got lucky on his int. That said, I do like Lofton a lot. I want 5-0 back. But he is not a franchise money linebacker.

Also, what is with all the questions about wide receivers in the draft? Free agents aside, we have Julio, Roddy, and Meier. My guess is we would re-sign either Weems or Douglas, which gives us the prototypical slot man. Is the press really thinking we will pick a receiver in this draft considering we only have 5 picks, with needs on the offensive/defensive line, tight end, and safety? Not to mention we need depth at linebacker. Receiver is not a position that concerns me right now.

Chub Rock

February 24th, 2012
6:02 pm

We have Roddy and Julio but I would not even bother mentioning Meier. Lets see if the guy can stay healthy long enough to catch a pass in the NFL first. If big moves are in the plans at other positions in free agency, resigning HD or Weems might not be in the picture. No way I would count on Meier to play the slot. Therefore WR is a valid topic.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 24th, 2012
6:15 pm

Wanted to get this up quickly. Polishing off now.

TDnoclue

February 24th, 2012
6:17 pm

TD has no clue. Check his draft record.

JSS

February 24th, 2012
6:32 pm

Wow, they are chasing shadows! He’s ride or die, man this guy is tied to his mistakes. Well, it is going to be interesting to see if it goes down like the Andrea Doria or list aimlessly like the Italian cruise ship?

I’m stunned at his assessment of Blackmon, Julio is talented but that kid is just freakish to go along with that upside. He’s is going to be special unless he goes Dez Bryant or gets hurt…

Mikefalcon63

February 24th, 2012
6:34 pm

Chub Rock… Logic is simple. We have receivers on this roster and practice squad who are likely as good or better than what we could get in the later rounds of the draft. We only have 5 picks, and there is no way we are considering a receiver with our first 3 picks. Not going to happen. So that leaves you with a 6th and 7th round pick. I don’t see another Colston out there, though I have been wrong before. Too many other areas to address.

JSS

February 24th, 2012
6:47 pm

He panicked last year with Green and Jones at the top of the draft. Most folks saw that Blackmon was going to out there this year and that some really good (not great UFAs) were going to be out there as well…

@ Ledbetter…
Has Julio said anything to the media about his hands? Or does he just pooh-pooh the matter?

Chub Rock

February 24th, 2012
7:25 pm

Mikefalcon63- It’s a question by a reporter dude it’s not a pick in the draft. Just because a reporter asks a question about a WR in the draft does not mean TD is gonna run out and draft one. Is it a valid topic… yes just like asking about the QB position in the draft is a valid topic. Chris Redman isn’t getting any younger but if they ask about QB’s please don’t think that means TD is then determined to draft one. Now is that logical enough for you?

ricky neal

February 24th, 2012
7:27 pm

from ricky is their any change we can qb david garrard from jacksonville if we release chris redmon i heard david garrard got let go from jacksonville jags

Chub Rock

February 24th, 2012
7:41 pm

Mikefalcon63- I believe the GM and the coaching staff have a very good idea of the talents levels on the roster and the practice squad.
” We have receivers on this roster and practice squad who are likely as good or better than what we could get in the later rounds of the draft.” This statement is nothing more than your opinion. The only WR on the roster other than Roddy and JuJo is Meier and saying this guy guy is gonna be anything other than a tackler on special teams is again, merely your opinion. You certainly don’t have one shred of proof that he will be a productive WR in this league. Obviously Meier is the best of the rest of the crop ie practice squad or someone would have taken his spot on the depth chart by now. So again I say the question, the mere asking of the question is a valid topic to raise.

Unca' Bob

February 24th, 2012
7:48 pm

D-Led,

Thanks for posting anything from the Branch. It seems it’s few and far between if or when they speak. I’ll go back and reread your post to see if I can pick the fly specks from the pepper. Thank you my friend.

Great Falconi

February 24th, 2012
7:52 pm

Dimitroff doesn’t know what he’s doing. This franchise has had more success with him as GM than at any other time in its history. He doesn’t know what he’s doing.

Falcon Friend

February 24th, 2012
8:06 pm

D-Led: Ignore those who trash you. They are probably underpreforming employees who want to take their misery out on others.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 24th, 2012
8:23 pm

Unca’ Bob — Crazy day. Had three deadlines. About 10 interviews and the Abraham story breaking. Fun day really! Just rushed up TD stuff so the “Real Fans” could have something to read & view over the weekend.

Hugh Jass

February 24th, 2012
8:26 pm

What does “this day in age” mean? P.S. If we do not get a better O-Line and some heat coming on the QB we will lose yet again in the playoffs or possibly not make the playoffs.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

February 24th, 2012
8:35 pm

Falcons Friend — Slackers?

Tom G

February 24th, 2012
8:50 pm

I would like to see if we could get Harvey Dahl,OL, back from the Rams. The Rams need alot of help everywhere, maybe it could get done. The OL and DL is where we need to concentrate. About H Dahl, he brings a meanest with his game, plays to the whistle and sometimes afterward. I think he makes Clabo a better player, being next to him. Would like to here others comment, thanks?

Tonyv-atl

February 24th, 2012
9:14 pm

Dump Grimes,Lofton, Abraham and Turner.
Sign Mario Williams and hope Nolan can
make Dunta a player again.

The Falconator

February 24th, 2012
9:38 pm

Don’t waste time speculating about this draft. At 55th and beyond, game changers and impact players are long gone and the Falcons need both in several well-publicized areas. Doesn’t mean you can’t get lucky, but the 2012 Falcons can only be made more competitive via FA. TD’s record drafting any kind of lineman is spotty at best and his glaring mistakes on either side of the ball are painful to consider. The 2012 draft will be hyped big time but, realistically, shapes up as a real snoozer.

DawgNole

February 24th, 2012
9:46 pm

Najeh Davenpoop

February 24th, 2012
5:02 pm

We learned that the Boy Wonder was all hype, and the Hawks will always be better. You Falcons fans should wise up and support a winner. Buy Hawks season tickets, and you’ll see.
_________________________

The Hawks better?! Better than what? Than another team that’s never won a championship?

Support a winner?! A winner of what? Nearly a half-century in this town w/o a championship.

If you’re satisfied with mediocrity, then mediocrity is what you’ll get. And you’re obviously satisfied with it since you’re calling the Hawks a winner.

Joshua Malavenda

February 24th, 2012
10:26 pm

mileslong-
what isnt insightfull about this “We said at our post-season presser that there were going to be some changes and they weren’t going to be tweaks, they were going to be significant changes. That’s come to fruition so far and quite honestly we haven’t even kicked off our player acquisition and player moves” I dont know what that means to you but that means to me that he plans on making some big time moves in the offseason. Gve dled a break he rushed it for us the fans to watch that. . just saying
Dled- thank you so much for your effort and I really appreciate what you do for the falcons fan base. was that you who asked the first question in the press confrence?

My thoughts-
td haters are you kidding me come on man last four years he has given us the best players avaliable to us for the hole we need to fill its not his fault that the coaching staff doesnt know how to intrergrate them into their scheme. Homeboy isnt superman he makes misteakes like drating peria jerry over clay matthews and wasnt his fault that dunta didnt play up to his potential. At the time he was the best player aviailable to us and he got him. He has been the best gm we have had in years. I fully trust in td will put us in the best possible postion to win a championship.

Whopper Dawg

February 25th, 2012
1:03 am

TD sounds like a huckster, a corporate shill and a con. Anyone connected to football that uses the words “dialed in” should be beaten immediately.

Hmmm, let’s see where we are, big time Oline problems, one dimensional straight line RB, TE in his last year, no pass rush to speak of and the only one that can do that is out the door, best cover guy may be gone, and only five picks in the draft. Sheer genius that comrade.

He is completely overrated.

SawThat1nce

February 25th, 2012
1:40 am

I just hope that Dimitrof can field a good OLine in 2012, and maybe some kind of a pass rush on D side, that can put some pressure on the good QBs in the league.
It would also be nice if the Falcons can diverify the running attack on the O side.

The Real Falcon

February 25th, 2012
6:53 am

Dent is NOT Lofton! Re-sign him!

Double Zero Eight

February 25th, 2012
8:45 am

If the Falcons don’t significantly improve their pass rush,
they will be “one and done” in the playoffs again.

Sam Baker needs to work on his foot work. Ryan needs
to hit the weight room. Turner needs to lose some weight.

Carolina is only a year or so away from giving the Falcons
some stiff competition in the NFC South, They are on the
verge of becoming the Falcons new nemesis.

TD only has a “small window” to produce a serious contender with
this core.

Mario Williams

February 25th, 2012
10:00 am

If you sign me, we’ll win the Super Bowl. Your offense is set with a few more O-linemen, but with me and Edwards in your new defensive scheme, we’ll go far.

Freddie

February 25th, 2012
10:01 am

@ Double Zero Eight, when was the last time Carolina beat Atlanta?

Dr. Don

February 25th, 2012
10:13 am

DOL: Please check on the use of adapt vs adept – you did it twice

Samuel

February 25th, 2012
10:49 am

With only five picks in the draft, free agency will be crucial you have to get it right. Besides free agency picks will be needed to replace some of the players you can’t resign……..

Bunch of Fools

February 25th, 2012
10:54 am

To all you TD bashers, you’re all a bunch of Forrest Gumps. Stupid is as stupid does. That about sums up your football thinking. Leave it to the adults.

[...] Atlanta Falcons This entry was posted in Atlanta Falcons and tagged Dimitroff, Falcons, from, learned, Thomas. Bookmark the permalink. ← NFL roundup: Ravens S Reed returns for 2012 (Yahoo! Sports) [...]

Jesus Christ

February 25th, 2012
11:42 am

Repent and I will save your butt.

Bird Man

February 25th, 2012
11:42 am

Boy wonder talks about systems,he should be a proctologist. Also, BW has the genious to tell us that he hopes Matt can learn to win in the playoffs. BW butt will be out of here before Ryans.

AlanFalcon

February 25th, 2012
11:43 am

You’ll have been putting down TD since his arrival and yet we have had back to back to back winning seasons and playoff opportunities from the get go-looks like most of you have no appreciation, wish you could have been with them from the start-damn, wonder what you would have been saying back then !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GO FALCONS AND GO SOUTHERN RUSH !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

zachreb

February 25th, 2012
11:48 am

We need to go for a free agent offensive lineman like Carl Nicks, and I would do anything you can to get Mario Williams.

True Dat

February 25th, 2012
12:06 pm

Bottom line IS: TD and Smitty have brought us some stability over the past 4 years and the best run in a VERY poor franchise history BUT, we are not going any farther with a #7 or #8 in the league QB like Ryan and that weak O Line. He needs some beasts blocking for him due to how slow he is, poor accuracy down field and inability to throw on the run a-la Aaron Rodgers. Ryan needs LOTS of time back there and he does not and will not have the O Line to get that time. Say hello to another 9-7, 10-6 season and a first round exit. Better than what I watched during most of the 80’s and 90’s but that’s where we are folks.

Ron Mexico

February 25th, 2012
12:10 pm

True Dat – I think you nailed it as much as I hate to admit it. I just hope Ryan does some strengthening this off season – maybe that will help. I saw him at the airport and the boy looks frail for a QB. Tall but small.

Freddie

February 25th, 2012
12:28 pm

If we sign Mario Williams and Carl Nicks, Super Bowl is ours. We are a ferocious pass rush away from being in the Super Bowl IMO. Also a great O-line. The only thing holding us back is on the line of scrimmage. We have the QB, RB, WRs, TE, LBs, we just need to establish ourselves in the trenches and we’ll be alright.

Tdawg

February 25th, 2012
12:58 pm

The Falconnator, I have to agree with you. Pretty sure that there will be several players out there after 55 that will turn heads, but finding one of them is a shot in the dark at best. Personally I think that the Falcons best chance at getting a playmaker is if that cb that was booted out of Flordia were to fall that far down the draft board, then they should take a chance and grab the kid. Don’t remember the kids name and I don’t feel like looking it up, but if he is good as advertised, then the Falcon’s should grab him up. Sometimes you just need to take a shot in the dark. Maybe he has learned his lesson.

WS

February 25th, 2012
2:48 pm

I see that Abe wants twelve million a year. That would be end of talks. I would release him today.He has his sacks against poor teams. Does not show up for big games. Time for falcons to get younger and start cutting some of these old player. Give Silbury a chance. he had four sacks in sixty snaps. I would think than is better than ABE. What would he do if he played most of game.
I have always love Abe and he has been avery good player when not hurt. Tell me how many seasons has he played all of games? None!!!
good bye ABE

Frank Kleha

February 25th, 2012
3:20 pm

D. Orlando, would trading for the Lions’ Alphonso Smith be a good move?

From my non-expert perspective, we could use an upgrade on ball skills in the secondary and the career ACC INT leader definitely brings those.

Me thinks this would be a value play, too, since the Lions have made it known they’re looking to move the former Wake Forest standout.

tyger

February 25th, 2012
3:25 pm

Mario Williams or John Abraham?

At $12M, Abraham is pricing himself out of the market…
Stats belie, the fact that sacks don’t come at crucial times…
3.5 sacks vs. Jacksonville didnt help us one bit…
One or two vs. Saints, Giants would create leverage, but not…

Mario, like Abe, injury history may create indirect ceiling…
But if you are going to invest $10M, it wont be on 34 yr. old…

Falcons yet to see what Sidbury can do, all he does is make plays…
Biermann is yet to breakthrough, but is a rotation player…
Edwards looking a lot like Jamaal Anderson, God forbid…
Peria Jerry one more injury away from being cut…

Chub Rock

February 25th, 2012
3:33 pm

No way I would offer 34 year old John Abraham anything close to 12 million a year. Abraham keeps mentioning the top 5 DE’s in the league as comparison but those guys are not 34 years old. I understand you want to make as much as possible as the window closes on your career but you need to be realistic. Mr. 100 no way you get 12 mill a year from the Falcons or any other team in the NFL. That boat sailed for you about 5 years ago. 2 yr 14 mill 10 mill guaranteed and 7 of 14 in signing bonus…take it or leave it. Basically a 1 year deal. Cap hit 7 mill.
The only reason I even offer this deal if I’m TD is because I have obviously painted myself into a corner with the lack of attention being paid to the DE position in not drafting a blue chip guy. I love what JuJo is gonna bring to the team but when the Falcons moved up last year in the draft I just knew it was for one of the DE’s. Ray Edwards is not nor will he ever be a replacement for Abraham, he is a complimentary type to an elite pass rusher. Sidbury is clearly your 3rd man in the rotation and a pass rush specialist. Biermann can pack his bags as far as I’m concerned. A new contract for Biermann is effectively a raise and nothing about what he does says raise to me. If we can sign him for the same amount he’s making a year now(roughly 600,000) then OK.

atlnative

February 25th, 2012
3:34 pm

John Abraham is not worth a twelve million dollars a year football player.He spends more time on the DL than the gridiron.Abraham will be 34 in May.I love the guy ,but the tank running on empty!

PanamaSlimJim

February 25th, 2012
4:23 pm

Hawks: I was really hoping they were going to get sold lock, stock, and barrel and Atlanta could move ahead without all this NBA non-sense. Who the hell likes basketball? I mean really! Basketball karma in Atlanta is zero or less.

What we need is a world class NFL football stadium and then tear down the Georgia Dome. I assume after Obama is out of office (when ever that is) Atlanta might have hope again of seeing some economic growth and regaining a sensible pro sports ensemble.

Oh! This is a thread about the Falcons draft. Well then never mind.

SlimJim'sEnemas

February 25th, 2012
8:07 pm

1st, this is not a political blog about the POTUS. But since you had to go there, everybody knows that the RepukeliKKKans and their cronies are the ones holding the economy hostage because they don’t want to see a Democrat succeed in cleaning up the mess that Bush left behind (let alone a black man.) They would rather turn America into a Third World country than have Obama succeed. Even since his inauguration speech, before he even took control of the Office of POTUS, the RepukeliKKKans have said their number one objective was to turn his candidacy into a one term presidency by any means necessary. But enough of that already.

2nd, back to sports, Abe— let him go.
CB– Grimes— resign.
LB– Lofton— resign.
LT– Baker— let go.
DE– Biermann– let go.
DE– Mario Williams or Cliff Avril— sign.
OG– Carl Nicks— sign.
Backup QB– David Garrard or Charlie Whitehurst— sign
Backup QB– Redman & JP Wilson– let go
RB– Marshawn Lynch, Peyton Hillis, or Michael Bush— sign
RB– Turner– let go
WR– Weems– let go
WR– Laurent Robinson, Early Doucet or Mario Manningham– sign
LT– Jared Gaither or Demetrius Bell— sign

All those FA’s should help cover the gaping holes on both sides of the ball. Any position I didn’t mention to be covered by FA’s need to be addressed by the draft.