Feb 15, 2008
Sorry I haven’t been able to post for a few days. We’ve got a serious bug/virus/plague going through my house the last week and I finally succumbed to it. All six of us, including our twins who turned 2 today, have been on death’s door, and it’s been brutal. Whenever I get sick like this, and granted it’s rare, I’m always grateful it doesn’t happen during the season because I’d be absolutely screwed if it did. I think my body knows that by now, and it holds off on taking ill until after the season. Seriously.
On to some NFL items that are jumping off the page to me right now. It’s only mid-February, but things are starting to heat up.
The Carolina Panthers appear to be ready to rid themselves of DeShaun Foster and his $5.8 million cap number for 2008. No matter how you slice it, dumping Foster at this point is a wise business move for the organization, so he’s as good as gone. But before you DeAngelo Williams keeper owners throw a party, please note that many close to the team think the Panthers will look to add a back in free agency (Michael Turner comes to mind) or the draft. So don’t assume Williams’ value will soar. Maybe another organization or coaching staff would feel differently about Williams, but it matters little right now because John Fox and Marty Hurney are still running the show and they clearly have issues with Williams. From my perspective, they spent a #1 pick on the kid, and he has been pretty damn electric, so why not see what he can do as the true featured back? It’s probably risky now to do that, so that’s something that should have been done at some point last year. Williams could still have a good amount of value, especially if the team brings in a lower-end guy. I think acquiring the Giants’ Derrick Ward would be a good move. Ward wouldn’t likely command the lion’s share of the touches, so Williams could be a big factor, yet he brings some power to the table, and he’d be affordable.
In other news, the Raiders have locked up RB Justin Fargas for three more years. As I have speculated for a little while now, it looks like they will roll with Fargas and second year back Michael Bush in 2008, with veterans LaMont Jordan and Dominic Rhodes likely gone (Jordan is definitely gone). This looks like a very good move. Granted, they really can’t count on either, but between the two of them they should have at least one good back. I would expect Fargas will open the season as the starter with Bush worked into the mix. But if Bush is healthy, he’ll be only a Fargas injury away from being a very nice sleeper. And keep in mind Fargas has been all kinds of injury-prone. Talent-wise, Bush is better suited to be a lead back in the NFL. The signing of Fargas also means they won’t likely use their #1 pick on a back. Perhaps they can now add a top wideout in the 1st, because they need one.
And finally, in case you haven’t heard, Titan QB Vince Young has decided to return to Texas to pursue his degree. 99% of the time I will applaud anyone who wants to go back to school, but not this time. Young can go back any time, so I’m really surprised he’s picking now. The team will be running a new offense under Mike Heimerdinger, and Young should be studying the playbook, not textbooks, until around mid-May. Maybe it’s me, but this looks like another sign that Young just doesn’t get it. The guy had a 9-to-17 TD-INT ratio last year for God’s sake. He’s not even close to arriving as an NFL quarterback, yet he apparently thinks he already has.