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Tim Mazetti

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  1. Like
    Tim Mazetti got a reaction from ya_boi_j in Quarterback At Four   
    Examining the Falcons 1st round options: Quarterback
    By David J Walker@FalcoholicDW
     
     
    Having a draft pick in the top 5 is actually somewhat rare for the Falcons. The last time it happened was in 2008 in the aftermath of the Michael Vick scandal and the Bobby Petrino disaster of 2007. Having a pick this high gives you a host of options, with the hope being that you won’t be here again for a long while.
    In this series, we’ll take a look at all the different ways the Falcons can use this pick to rebuild under a new regime. Today, we start with using it to draft a quarterback, one of the most controversial options and one that’s frequently discussed both here and in the wider fanbase.
    Why it makes sense
    Matt Ryan will be 36 this year and his performance the last two years has been below his normally high standards, albeit not drastically and under the watchful eye of Dirk Koetter. In the eyes of many fans, Ryan may only have 2 or 3 more good years left in him, and this QB class is good enough to find a future starter outside of the top pick. A player like Justin Fields, Zach Wilson, or Trey Lance may be there at 4, and those players have the potential to be great QBs. Plus, as noted above, the Falcons have not had many top-5 picks over the years so this opportunity may not present itself again for some time.
    There’s also the fact that Atlanta has a brand new front office and coaching staff coming in. Ryan will have to be replaced at some point, and it’s hard to fault a new front office for trying to find “their guy” at the beginning of their tenure. After all, it’s exactly what Thomas Dimitroff and Mike Smith did 13 years ago with Ryan, though Atlanta had no obvious long-term quarterback at that time.
    Why it might be the wrong move
    Barring a stunning move by the Jaguars, the Falcons won’t be able to get the top QB of this class in Trevor Lawrence. After him, the next three prospects look promising but all have their own sets of issues. Zach Wilson is a bit of a one-year wonder with some potential character concerns. Justin Fields is incredibly talented but his field vision needs to improve. Trey Lance may be incredibly gifted, but he has so few starting games under his belt. That’s not to say these guys can’t succeed, but all of them have notable question marks, and if you pick a player this high you can’t really afford to miss.
    On top of that, we’ve seen recently that many quarterbacks can play into their late 30s at a high level. Ryan has been incredibly healthy in his career and his physical talents don’t appear to be a problem. He could very well play for 4 to 5 more years if he stays healthy, and with a great team around him could at least keep this team contending over that span.
    Finally, when looking at this team, there are a host of spots on the defense in need of fixing. The safety situation is dire as is the need for multiple pass rushers. The team could also stand to continue investing in the offensive line and the running back position is a big question mark. Quarterback - right now - is just not a big need.
  2. Like
    Tim Mazetti got a reaction from Rings in Quarterback At Four   
    Point.
  3. Like
    Tim Mazetti got a reaction from Herr Doktor in Quarterback At Four   
    Point.
  4. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to GATXBOI in TF interview with Steve Wyche, Jim Trotter   
    Yes indeed brotha we got us a good one
  5. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to PokerSteve in TF interview with Steve Wyche, Jim Trotter   
    Never felt anything but conviction Blank and McKay got the right guy with Terry Fontenot. Go get'er done, TF!!
  6. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to falcndave in Falcons free agency: How Terry Fontenot will attack Atlanta’s salary cap crunch - The Athletic   
    Twitter take: I have to believe free agency is important. I also have to believe that Fontenot is the type of guy who could be a great asset in assessing free agents. He doesn't get my endorsement yet, but I love his background.
    Full reply:
    I understand your take, but I think it undersells the importance of free agency to some degree. You basically have 4 sources of players: your roster, the draft, other team's rosters (trades), and free agency. If you have an edge in any of those areas, you can use it to gain an advantage over teams doing an average job. 
    I am not one to "buy in" on first year HCs or GMs, but I do think there is a chance that the new GM will give us an advantage in accessing players available from all 4 channels and identifying good scheme and roster fits.
    While it is an intangible, I am a big believer in executives who start on the ground floor as generalist of sorts. They tend to developer more of a "big picture" understanding of an organization than those who enter an organization or an industry with a specialty that they continue to foster their whole careers (an engineer or a marketing specialist). The guy who grabs the GMs coffee also delivers memos to the owner and gives tours to sponsors. You have those informal discussions in team facilities with whoever is standing next to you in the break room. You tend to be someone that everyone knows, its like your part of the infrastructure. You were there when people are hired, and you may be the last to say goodbye as they move on to their next opportunity. This puts you in a great spot to look at a player and says "is he right for our organization" as opposed to asking "is he right for our OL coach." By nature you consider scheme fit, salary cap implications, character, and stats. If you have been an player evaluator your whole life, your going to believe that players have a bigger impact than coaches. If you come form a coaching background, your going to believe that "he can be coached up." I think Fontenot is unique in that he's not an offensive guy. He's not a defensive guy. He's not a son of an owner who has been sheltered into an organization. If you look at his career in New Orleans, his background is a solid mix of interaction with scouts, GMs, and coaches. I think he sees the big picture. You can't teach that. You have to experience it. 
  7. Thanks
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Goober Pyle in Falcons free agency: How Terry Fontenot will attack Atlanta’s salary cap crunch - The Athletic   
    by Tori McElhaney for The Athletic
     
    The Falcons are at a crossroads right now as Terry Fontenot takes over as general manager. He inherits one of the toughest challenges in the league. The salary cap is in the red. The organization has to find some way to fill out its roster with a big chunk of its cap consumed by Matt Ryan and Julio Jones. Trying to manage free agency and the draft will involve a lot of finesse on Fontenot’s part (and his staff, too) to make the money work.
    This is something he’s used to doing from his time in New Orleans.
    For years the Saints have had a collaborative management style. Under GM Mickey Loomis and coach Sean Payton, Fontenot had a role in several big decisions over the years. Most notably, though, is the impact Fontenot made in free agency.
    When writing about Fontenot’s role in New Orleans, The Athletic’s Jeff Duncan noted how Payton always praised Fontenot for “providing detailed, in-depth scouting reports on the Saints’ opponents.” But it was in free agency that Fontenot’s “keen eye for talent” truly shined. He understood how players fit. He saw how they connected to the overall vision of what Payton and his staff wanted to pull off. In some ways, Fontenot did that as well as anyone in the organization.
    “Terry and his staff left no stone uncovered in their prep work,” Duncan wrote, “and that attention to detail was critical to the Saints’ success over the years … But even more impressive has been Terry’s ability to beat the bushes and find mid- and veteran-minimum-level players to bolster the team’s depth and fill out the roster.”
    Now, Fontenot’s ability to find those mid-level free agents could play an even bigger role. The Falcons do not have the means to sign a big name in free agency right now, unless they are willing to trade a lot of collateral to clear cap space. And even then, trading some of their big names will create a lot of dead money and little cap relief, so trading Ryan and Jones just doesn’t make sense right now. So, 2021 is about just making things work. It’s about plugging and filling holes where they can to field a complete roster, but even that poses its own challenges.
    Before the Super Bowl, owner Arthur Blank said he thinks everyone in the organization understands the Falcons’ salary cap situation. President and CEO Rich McKay said several times during the GM and coaching search that he didn’t see the salary cap issue being, just that, an issue. But Blank didn’t sugarcoat the situation.
    “Rich has done it, been there, gotten a T-shirt,” Blank said, “so, I respect what he says, but I do think we’ll probably have some difficult decisions to make this year.”
    There aren’t a lot of great options for the Falcons to handle their current bind. They can’t be too big of players in the free-agent market unless they’re willing to start blowing things up, which neither Fontenot nor head coach Arthur Smith seem keen on doing. So, that leaves those mid-level free agents that the Falcons will have to hit. The good news is Fontenot is good at finding specific talent. Fontenot had a hand in securing the Saints’ depth, and he found players who could play “key roles and allow the team to withstand attrition and injuries, which is so critical in today’s game,” Duncan wrote.
    With that in mind, let’s take a look at Fontenot’s past in New Orleans and evaluate some of his free-agent signings that became big hits, and some that, perhaps, did not.
    LB Demario Davis
    Stats before joining the Saints (six years): 82 starts, 13.5 sacks, one interception, one forced fumble, 386 solo tackles (38 for a loss)
    Stats after joining the Saints (three years): 48 starts, 13 sacks, one interception, two forced fumbles, 234 solo tackles (32 for a loss)
    The Saints’ decision to bring in Davis ended up being Fontenot’s best free-agent signing “by far,” Duncan noted.
    “Few people had ever heard of him when the Saints brought him in, and he’s become a team captain, a leader and an All-Pro,” Duncan said.
    Davis was taken by the Jets in the third round of the 2012 draft and signed with the Saints as an unrestricted free agent in 2018. He was well established in the league by that point in time, but the Saints saw that he still was on the rise. His last season with the Jets in 2017 was the best of his career, but the past three years with the Saints haven’t been too far off for the linebacker. And since 2018, Davis turned into a consistent piece of the New Orleans defense, one the Saints couldn’t part with as he signed a three-year, $27 million extension in September.
    DT Malcom Brown
    Stats before joining the Saints (four years): 51 starts, one force fumble, three fumble recoveries, 8.5 sacks, 186 combined tackles (14 for a loss)
    Stats after joining the Saints (two years): 29 starts, three sacks, 61 combined tackles (nine for a loss)
    It’s hard to top Brown’s years with New England, the organization that drafted him in the first round in 2015. He was expected to come in and make an immediate difference, and he did. Though he hasn’t made quite the same impact, he was exactly what the Saints needed from him in his first year in New Orleans. However, 2020 was arguably the worst individual performance of his career, as Brown only accounted for one sack and 27 combined tackles (just three for a loss).
    The 2021 season will be the last of his contract, so if the Saints keep him around, this may be a big year for the defensive tackle to prove the Saints got what they paid for.
    RB Latavius Murray
    Stats before joining the Saints (five years): 48 starts, 34 touchdowns, 3,600+ yards rushing, 4.1 yards per carry, 128 receptions for 883 yards
    Stats after joining the Saints (two years): 15 starts, nine touchdowns, 1,200+ yards rushing, 4.4 yards per carry, 57 receptions for yards
    When Alvin Kamara is in the running backs room it’s sometimes difficult to talk about anyone else. But even at 31 years old, Murray has been exactly what the Saints needed. He’s not going to have the stat line of Kamara, or even of his younger self, but Murray has been reliable for the Saints, even if he might get overlooked a little.
    He’s not super flashy, and he’s not going to stuff a stat sheet. But what Murray is good for is picking up a few yards here and there, or pulling in two or three catches out of the backfield in a game. That’s all the Saints are asking of him, and it seems he’s been able to be just that for the last two seasons.
    OG Nick Easton
    Key note of Easton’s 2020 season with the Saints: He earned the highest PFF grade of his career (59.8) in 2020. He ranked 51st out of 80 league guards. For reference, Andrus Peat ranked 46th overall, while Cesar Ruiz ranked 64th.
    With the salary cap situation being what it is in New Orleans (not completely unlike that of the Falcons), those mid-level, veteran guys are always the first on the chopping block as cap casualties. With the Saints releasing Easton last week, he’s a prime example of the powers that be having to make those decisions. Without Easton on the roster, the Saints save about $6 million in cap space. However, his release doesn’t take away from what Easton was to the Saints.
    Every team needs these filler pieces, and Easton was a pretty good one, acting as a backup to Andrus Peat and Cesar Ruiz. It didn’t help Easton’s case that he had two concussions in 2020, but in the 12 games in which he played (nine of which he started), the Saints never seemed off-kilter with Easton in for Peat or Ruiz.
     
     
  8. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to HASHBROWN3 in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    Trubisky would be unnecessary waste of capital that I see no common sense connection to whatsoever.  The only way we'd consider him is if we were interested in him leading our team in the future & that is not the case. 
    Just sayin bro.
  9. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to atljbo in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    I think ppl are reading what they want into these comments.. Ofcourse we have to bring in a QB..... Matt and Benkert are our only QBs,,,,,, We have to add a QB but ppl assume its at the 4th pick.... 
    We can draft a prospect coach like that is a true developmental guy in the 2nd-4th round that can truly sit and  not drain your cap for 2-3 years ...
    Or sign a developmental FA like the titans did with their QB
  10. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to HASHBROWN3 in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    Now you go wash your mouth out with soap... hurry!
  11. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to HASHBROWN3 in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    It may be common sense to most, but I love me some TF & it's nice to see him articulate some basic common sense.
    It also sends a signal to other franchises that the Atlanta Falcons could do just about anything & are open to any scenario moving forward.
    This alone keeps all the doors & options active & open for deals/moves that can benefit us come draft day or even before & after...
  12. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to falconsd56 in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    And that is going to change drastically when Brees finally announces his retirement and some of the other dominos fall in the QB market.
  13. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to FalconFanSince1969 in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    The qb carousal this year is insane tho. Nothing like last year. Multiple teams don't even have a qb under contract.
  14. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Macknsweetjones in Falcons GM Terry Fontenot: 'You always bring in quarterbacks' whether in draft or free agency   
    Matt Ryan is expected to be the Atlanta Falcons' quarterback for at least 2021, but his presence shouldn't stop the club from considering adding a potential replacement for down the line.
    Sitting with the No. 4 overall pick, the Falcons are in a position to snag a future signal-caller in the 2021 NFL Draft, allowing that player to learn for a year under Ryan, then take over in 2022, a.k.a. the Patrick Mahomes method.
    Ryan's exorbitant salary -- $40-plus-million cap figure this year -- makes him a certainty to remain on the club at least until next year when his dead-money figure would shrink to a more manageable range.
    New Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot recently joined the Huddle & Flow podcast with NFL Network's Jim Trotter and Steve Wyche. While Fontenot didn't explicitly suggest how the Falcons would buffer the QB room, his comments suggest he's open to using that top draft pick on a signal-caller if it's the right fit.
    "Whether we're talking about free agency or whether we're talking about the draft, we are going to add to every position," Fontenot said. "We'll build strength. We're not afraid to build strength. We're going to add to every position. It's about adding. We want a culture of competition, and (coach) Arthur Smith has said it: We want to bring in smart, tough, highly competitive football players that are going to fit this culture. And we're going to do that at every position, whether it's QB or whether it's WR.
    "You look at (former Packers GM) Ron Wolf. You always bring in quarterbacks. You need to bring in quarterbacks, whether it's in the draft, whether it's in free agency, or signing guys off the street. It's so important, bring in quarterbacks a lot, build strengths. (Former Ravens GM) Ozzie Newsome, bring in the best players available. These are men that have had all that success, and it's about having the right 53, but we have to add competition at every position. So we're not going to be afraid to add to strengths. But both (Ryan and Julio Jones) are really good and I'm excited to be here with those players."
    With Ryan and Jones on the roster, the Falcons could be a contender for a one-year turnaround. If the defense flips the script and the stars stay healthy, Atlanta owns the talent to compete right away. The possibility of the Falcons being one of the teams that go from cellar to contender motivates the club to give it one more go with their two stars.
      It's Fontenot's job, however, to think beyond one year. In an ideal world, the club would never again be in a position high enough in the draft to grab a franchise QB. It makes the No. 4 overall pick an interesting choice for the first-time GM. Does he add a potential playmaker who could immediately boost the product or a QB who might not see the field in 2021?
    Echoing Falcons owner Arthur Blank, Fontenot noted that no player is untouchable, including Ryan or Jones, and underscored that adding competition to every position will be essential for a quick Falcons turnaround.
    "I don't think you'd ever be in a situation where you'd say anybody is untouchable," the 40-year-old said. "That's not the right culture. If you're building a culture, like I said, of competition, then that doesn't make sense to say this person can't be touched."
       
  15. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to HASHBROWN3 in Quarterback At Four   
    Thanks bud, but that doesn't mean you do it all by yourself either.  Clearly you consult with folks who are smarter than yourself as well.  But ultimately the decision is yours. 
  16. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to g-dawg in Quarterback At Four   
    ...and for those "anti-QB",  the longer Fontenot waits, the more likely he would feel compelled to make a QB move.   Just want Fontenot to make the right QB move - whether it is made in 2021, 2022 or 2023 is irrelevant if you get the right guy.
  17. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Williamb in Quarterback At Four   
    And then in year 3, that same qb (who never took a starting snap) will be negotiating a long term deal. ( more logic I think).
  18. Like
    Tim Mazetti got a reaction from HASHBROWN3 in Quarterback At Four   
    There you go again HB3. I love your aggressive approach to living in a competitive world my friend.
  19. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Rings in Quarterback At Four   
    Or trade back and say three of the five need to shine and you are still ahead of where you were.
  20. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to HASHBROWN3 in Quarterback At Four   
    That’s the thing about being a leader.  You assess all of your options while taking into account what might be the best outcome for your team’s future. You pray for wisdom & make the move without regard to what others might think.  Never making decisions based upon fear.  It doesn’t matter what others might say.  At the end of the day you must live with yourself knowing you did your best & arrived at your decision with good intentions & a pure heart.
    Having said that, a decision might involve having to choose between two options at a particular position that you have studied.  For example, Fields & Wilson staring at you at 4.  Maybe it boils down to interviewing them personally. Let’s say your heart spoke to you during the interview & you felt that ZW seemed arrogant & less willing to take instruction & JF humbled himself with a desire to be coached through his flaws... That could be the determining factor in your spirit that propelled your final decision.  
  21. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Herr Doktor in Quarterback At Four   
    Agreed.  Knowing is half the battle.  I would HATE to have to make this choice.  You have got to nail #4, whatever you choose.
  22. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to g-dawg in Quarterback At Four   
    well said.
    As to the QB decision.  It's a huge decision.   While drafting a QB at #4 isn't an immediate payoff - basically no payoff for 2021 on the field - the position is so important and if you truly believe you are drafting a franchise player - at the most important position in all of team professional sports - you strongly consider it.
    I believe someone quoted Fontenot to the affect that he balances the short w/ the long term and the long term and would never make a short term decision w/ a long-term ramification.   I don't want to go down the rabbit hole but something to that affect.
    Quarterback - it's a position above all others by a country mile.   As a GM, you don't take one just to take one.   You don't take one "just cause" - you better be a TRUE BELIEVER in the guy you take with a Top 4 pick.
    Frankly I like that the Falcons truly have a quarterback now that is good although aging and maybe a slight decline.
    Terry Fontenot doesn't have to take a QB in this draft - at some point he probably should at least take a later round one but he doesn't have to take a QB at all and he certainly doesn't have to take one at #4.
    However, if Fontenot is a true believer - whether it be Zach Wilson, Justin Fields or Trey Lance - if he LOVES the long-term and projects any of those three as ELITE potential to be a Top 5 QB in the league for 10+ years - then, if that is the case, then that particular QB is the only choice.    I like the fact that if Fontenot goes QB there - it was done w/ the flexibility that he didn't have to do it.
  23. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Boise Falcon Fan in Quarterback At Four   
    It will still be a touch decision. A LOT of work will go into preparation for this pick, and even with that, it will be a difficult decision. These guys' jobs depend on making the right choices, and if they make the wrong choice, it will affect their, and the team's future. It's not going to be easy.
  24. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Jerz #GurleySZN in Quarterback At Four   
    A top 5 pick warrants taking a "can't miss" quarterback or defensive end since these  two positions have the most influence on the outcome of games. Unfortunately, there isn't a DE that warrants this high a draft pick so that leaves QB as the logical choice. 
    A generational talent in any other position could warrant a top 5 pick also but there don't seem to be many any of these either; especially in positions we need.
    The hit rate for QBs in the first is higher than any other round, and higher than all other rounds combined. 
     
    Last 20 years
     
    Top 15 is 50%
    1st round is 35%
    2nd round is less than 10%
    3rd and below 1.5%
    That’s based on finding a player who can actually run your franchise for a 10 year window. 
    If ever you want a higher chance of taking a QB you want to be where we are now. We can move around inside the 15 and get some extra assets but you might get beaten to the punch if you want a QB still. After that your odds drop 1/3, still respectable, but less than 10% refutes this notion that it’s easy to get a QB outside the first. Those guys are outliers for the most part. 
  25. Like
    Tim Mazetti reacted to Herr Doktor in Quarterback At Four   
    This will be a tough call for the Falcons.  
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