Bare with me there is good news at the end!!!
There is little dispute that the Bills need to get and start developing a franchise QB. They have handed over the reigns to Fitz, but most think Fitz is just a stop gap. Someone to fill the position until the right guy comes along. Since Nix has taken over there have been an abundance of calls for a QB in one form or another. I have been patient and for the most part have been willing to trust Nix's judgment in this quest, but we are now entering the third year of this regime, and we need to cross this bridge so to speak.
Some have wanted to get a big name FA; Kolb, McNabb and Young come to mind as FA's that Nix could have gone after and many would have cheered him for the move. In fact many think he did go after McNabb and just lost out. In hind sight I am glad he was patient.
Some have insisted that Nix must draft the shiny new toy that comes along about this time every year. How much discussion has there been on this site about Luck, RGIII, Bradford, Newton, Tanehill, Locker, Gabbert, Ponder, and Tebow? Those are just the first round prospects, there are a bunch of others (Claussen and C. McCoy and others) that have been discused from the lower rounds that could be developed into a starting QB. The fact is that Nix has had a shot at all of these except for Bradford, Newton, and this years draft. Nix has been very patient to date and in hindsight his moves or in this case lack of moves have looked smart.
With most of the holes plugged this offseason and talent added over the last two years it is doubtful that we sniff the top ten in the draft again in the near future. That has been the goal and plan according to Nix, to build a team that is not a one and done but one that will compete for years to come. So my question to you Rumblers is if Nix has not liked what he has had available to him at QB in the last two years while drafting in the top of the draft, how will he get a franchise QB that is better than those while drafting in the last half of the draft?
May I propose that there are only a few ways that I can see and some of those are very unlikely.
He could draft Tanehill this year, and hope that he can become what all the others he has passed on could not. I doubt it but it could happen as he must think this is his last shot in the top ten. (Odds 10%)
He could hope and pray that a very deep class of QB's come out next year and with all the teams finding their guy this year except Miami, one would fall to us late in the round next year. Next years QB crop seems to be deep, but it always seems that way when you are one year away. This is even less odds than the first option. (Odds 0%)
He could draft one this year late in the draft, or aquire one through FA that still needs to be developed. This almost never works, and this team does not have time to develope one for two years just to find out that they need to start all over. This is only a better option than doing nothing. (Odds 5%)
He could wait another year looking for a big name FA QB to hit the market and then pounce on him. Oh wait unlike the last two years we now have almost no salary cap wiggle room, and it said QB comes cheap enough to not need to have some cap space then he is probably not going to be your franchise QB. (Odds 5%)
That about covers it, you add those up and it looks like we have about an 80% chance of keeping Fitz for the long term. I do not like those odds.
Oh wait, in thinking of these things and not liking where it left us I had an idea that might make the rest of this post worth your read.
A lot of Rumblers are coming around to the idea that our #10 pick has somewhat marginal value to us this year. I have been at this point for over a month, thinking that a trade down is out best option at #10. The players that will likely be available to us are going to all be reaches to some degree or another. Sure there are a handfull of prospects that can be had and will start in year one, but they will only marginally improve the team over the current starters, and some of them are not at positions of need or impact. Just read todays Morning Joe for proof. This is also why Nix has said that he would consider a trade down this year (which is out of character for him). He also likes the talent later in the draft as value compared to what will be available at #10.
Problem solved right? No, the problem is that the few players that I thought a month ago that could be there at #10 that another team might would trade for are looking like they either wont be there or their value has decreased so much that teams will not trade up for them. Quoples and Richardson are good examples, as one is likely to be there but his stock is sliding down, and one was ounce thought to be a great value pick in the middle of the first round, but now will likely get picked in the top five. The trade down option is a good one but it only works if there is a trade partner. It is looking more and more like this is not going to happen. (Odds 10%)
So why reach at #10 to fill a need or to only marginaly increase the talent on the roster, when those same needs can be filled in rounds 2-4 at only a slight drop off of talent? Is there another way to use this pick that we are not talking about? Yes there is, I have a better idea!!
Most of the trade down talk on this site has centered around the idea of trading down to the last half of the first round in exchange for an extra second round pick. The thing I have not heard discussed here yet, is the idea of trading out of the first round completly. There is almost always a team generally in the last half of the first round that for whatever reason thinks they need to make a big push this year. They are in there mind so close to winning it all that they just need one more guy to do it. My thought is what if we traded our #10 to any team that is willing to trade for this years second, and next years first (maybee we get an extra third next year if it is a team that is likely to make the playoffs). My thinking is that this should open up a new group of teams that would be interested in a trade that helps them get over the hump this year.
I have not had the time to look into what teams might be interested in this but the Bengals come to mind. They would end up with three first round picks this year, while only losing thier second round pick, plus then they lose thier first next year. With three first round picks this year the Bengals would be a major team to beat, and with Pittsburg in full reload mode now is the time to strike. They are only losing a late second for the oppertunity to go big this year. I will be glad to here your oppinions of what teams you think might would go for a trade like this.
There are two major reasons for the Bills to do this kind of a trade. First with two first round picks in next years draft The Bills are now in position to jump up and get a franchise QB. (80% Odds compared to the odds discussed earlier) If we get our franchise QB in next years draft then he can sit behind Fitz for one year and start in 2014 before Fitz' pay gets to out of hand. This in and of itself makes the trade a no brainer for me considering what I stated in the first half of this post. Secondly, we gain a couple Million cap space this year bc we no longer have to sign a first round pick this year but instead we add another second round. This wont be as big of a problem next year when the cap is expected to strart rising.
The bottom line here is that the Bills can do wihtout the #10 pick this year and still fill the holes at OT, WR, CB and OLB, while still adding depth at other positons. They can do without the pick and still be a major contender this year, and oh, what it would do to set us up for next year!!!
What say you Rumblers is this years first worth the drastically increased chance of getting a franchise QB next year? Do you see a better way of getting our franchise QB?
Get it done, and GO BILLS!!!!!!