With free agency on the horizon, we are looking at general manager Chris Ballard’s time to shine. In a few years, we will look back on moves that were made this offseason as either the keys to the Colts taking the next step toward being perennial contenders or contributing to holding the team back.
Given its importance, I asked the Stampede Blue staff to put on their general manager hats and do their best to step into Chris Ballard’s shoes. They were tasked with deciding on their one key free agent signing, deciding on their player selection with the Colts first round pick, naming a player they would re-sign and/or a possible surprise cut, and a surprising trade they might make.
First up, is free agency.
A little over a week ago, we kicked off our official BTB draft board project where we, as a community, are attempting to put together a mini-board ranking the top 50 players in the upcoming draft. The goal is to try to identify the three players the Cowboys will select during the first two days of the the draft. So, it has become our quest to attempt to map out how the Cowboys stack their top players.
Here is an updated version of the top 50 BTB draft board:
The blue column contains the 14 players who are projected to have first-round grades. It is our hope that one of these players fall to the Cowboys at pick 19. There are a few changes to this group from last time. Based on the remarks in the comment section of the last article, a couple players have moved into this first-round group.
If you could possibly believe it, the Bengals offensive line as a whole has gotten worse without even ridding it of the poor performers already on the roster.
The Bengals signed former New York Giants offensive tackle Bobby Hart to a one-year deal. If you didn’t know who Hart was, you’ve been watching football correctly by avoiding him. I’ve sure as heck have tried.
So, who is Bobby Hart?
You can find most of his background here, but let’s dig a little deeper.
Hart played on a Florida State team that saw all of its 22 starters go on to make the NFL, the 2014 National Championship squad led by Jameis Winston. He was one of the 18 players from that team to be drafted in the following two drafts, but was the latest pick out of all of them. He was selected in the middle of the seventh round by the Giants.
When Brian Gutekunst was hired as the Green Bay Packers’ new general manager, he made a promise to the team and to its fans about his player acquisition philosophy: he would “leave no stone unturned.”
One of those stones that seemed to stay rooted firmly in the ground during Ted Thompson’s tenure was true unrestricted free agency, particularly when it came to top-level players. In more than a decade, Thompson signed just three notable unrestricted free agents: Charles Woodson, Ryan Pickett, and Martellus Bennett.
Let’s just say he went two for three on those.
Meanwhile, there is anticipation and excitement about the potential for the Packers to dip into the free agent waters more significantly in 2018.