Thursday, July 28, 2011

NFL Player Movement Reactions - 7/28/11

Not going to waste your time or mine on a long introduction today, as the NFL player moves have been coming in all day even faster than they have been. I'm going through the list of important player moves the way they are listed chronologically over at, so that is the order I'll be listing the players in.

Be sure to check out yesterday's player movement reactions here.

Just going to get right into it...

Albert Haynesworth - Defensive Line - Traded from Washington Redskins to New England Patriots for a Fifth Round Pick - This is just plain robbery.  I'm going to assume this is going to work out just as well as the Randy Moss trade did for New England in the first year.  Unhappy/malcontent veterans that go to Foxboro tend to fall in line.  Moss wasn't a big problem until he had been in New England for a while and started to be marginalized. Haynesworth is going to fall in line now that he is out of Washington and just make his money.  Mike Shanahan has just been making bad moves since going to Washington.  Shipping Haynesworth off for a fifth rounder is just bad value.  I'm starting to think he is going to lead the Redskins further down the tubes than even Dan Snyder had done on his own the last few years.

Reggie Bush - Running Back - Traded from New Orleans Saints to Miami Dolphins - I won't really be able to discuss how good this trade is until I see what Miami is giving up for Bush, but it does seem like a trade that makes sense.  The Saints get something for Reggie Bush besides just cutting him.  The Dolphins get Bush to renegotiate his contract and come to them for basically nothing most likely without letting him hit free agency.  Bush hasn't been great out of college, but he does still do some things very well.  He's still very fast and can catch the ball very well.

This move helps the other Saints backs some, but none of them are really top options at this point.  Pierre Thomas should be the biggest beneficiary, as he's the best receiving back of the bunch.  In Miami, Bush is probably going to get a decent number of touches, but the move doesn't really raise his fantasy value that much.  Bush is who he is at this stage of his career.

Jason Babin - Defensive End - Signed with Philadelphia Eagles - Babin is a classic example of a guy who is getting paid based on his one contract year.  Five years for 28 million isn't too much for an end in today's market, but it is definitely too much for Babin.  He had 12.5 sacks last year and the Eagles needed a pass rusher, but the red flags are all over the place.  His 12.5 sack total from last year was more than double any other year of his career and more than he picked up total in the last five years.  He's also 31 years old, so he'll be 36 years old when this deal is scheduled to run out.  He'll never see all five years of it.

Antwaan Randle El - Wide Receiver - Released by Pittsburgh Steelers - Randle El isn't really a good player, he's just a name because of his Super Bowl XL performance a few years ago.  You don't want your team to go out and get him, because he's not going to do anything to help your team. 

Mike Peterson - Linebacker - Resigned with Atlanta Falcons - Peterson is a very quality starter out in Atlanta who has been important to their defensive resurgence over the last few years.  Important resigning here in Atlanta.

Nate Clements - Cornerback - Released by San Francisco 49ers - Clements has fallen off over the last few years and isn't the same player he used to be.  Any team that looks into picking him up needs to be careful not to overpay.  He's an average #2 CB at this point.  Not even close to a number one cornerback any more.

Mathias Kiwanuka - Defensive End/Linebacker - Resigned with New York Giants - Justin Tuck broke the news with a tweet today and it has since been confirmed by the "sources".  The contract hasn't been released yet, but unless they had to overpay him, this is a good move here for the Giants.  This is also a good move for Kiwanuka, as coming off a neck injury he was probably going to find his offers a little lower on the open market than whatever the Giants offered him.  Kiwanuka is very important for the Giants defense, which looked worse after losing him three games into last season.  He can play anywhere on the line and linebacker and that helps Perry Fewell create mismatches all over the place.

Kevin Kolb - Quarterback - Traded to Arizona Cardinals for
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (and a second round pick) - Cornerback - Traded to Philadelphia Eagles
I can't believe that the Eagles got Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round pick for Kevin Kolb.  Kolb has only had a few decent games in this league on his record that he played in a high powered Eagles offense.  He hasn't proven himself to be anything in this league, and was just a second round pick of the Eagles themselves a few years ago.  The Cardinals got trade-jacked.  They gave up a former first round pick who was starting at cornerback for them, and a second round pick for a backup quarterback.  

The Eagles made out great in this trade here in terms of value even though I wouldn't have traded Kolb if I was running the team.  Michael Vick cannot be counted on to stay healthy through a sixteen game season.  Trading Kolb is going to come back to bite them at some point this season, and I don't know that the value of Rodgers-Cromartie will make up for that.

From a fantasy perspective, this move makes Kolb a member of the 16-20 area in the quarterback rankings, if not just because he gets to throw the ball to Larry Fitzgerald.  This move also obviously helps Larry's value recover some from last season, as Kolb is far better than anyone Arizona had at QB last year.

Clint Session - Lineback - Signed with Jacksonville Jaguars - I like Session as a solid tackler with good speed, but I think Jacksonville might have overpaid here.  Five years for 30 million breaks down to a six million a year, and that is just too much for Session.  Between Session today and Posluszny yesterday, the Jaguars have now spent far more money on their linebacking core than they should have without getting a great player.

Brad Smith - Wide Receiver - Signed with Buffalo Bills - Smith is a solid third receiver and has shown his strong ability in the wildcat package in the past. Four years for 15 million seems like a lot, but looking at the receiver market this year (and Holmes' 5 year 50 million deal), it's clearly not.  Smith will be a valuable and productive offensive player for the Bills for the full life of that contract.  He's not going to be fantasy relevant still, though in deep leagues he'll probably deliver good value.

Greg Olsen - Tight End - Traded to Carolina Panthers - It's not known what the Panthers gave up for him yet, but this is a solid move here for both sides.  Olsen was an asset that Chicago wasn't utilizing with Mike Martz calling the offense out in Chicago.  Cashing in his value while he still has value was a good idea.  The Panthers meanwhile pick up a strong pass catching tight end to help them facilitate the growth of Cam Newton.  I still don't think Newton will be any good, but getting him a solid tight end to be a safety valve is a good start.

Chad Ochocinco - Wide Receiver - Traded to New England Patriots for two late round picks - This is another example of trade robbery here by New England.  They get another malcontent here who is only a malcontent because he's not winning, and they get him at a great price from the Bengals.  I understand why the Bengals traded Chad, with Paul Brown's ownership style Chad is never going to be happy in Cinci.  But they could have gotten something else for him.  Or hell, simply not allowed the rich to get richer in trading with Bill Belichick.

For fantasy purposes, this is a pretty hard move to really value.  The Patriots offense has the potential to turn him back into the 1300 yard 8-10 touchdown receiver of old, but  it could also lead to him becoming a fourth wheel and catching a pass a game.  It's a bit of a tossup. Where he settles in terms of drafts will determine whether or not the risk will be worth it.

Johnathan Joseph - Cornerback - Signed with Houston Texans - Obviously, it doesn't really matter how much they are paying Joseph, this was a great move by Houston.  Their pass defense last year was just atrocious, and much of that was the fault of their awful secondary.  They are bringing in a very good young player in here in Joseph, and he should immediately step in as the number one corner and make the whole defense better.  A good maneuver for Joseph as well, as he'll get extra recognition as a good cornerback as the Texans defense turns around the next few years.

Naturally, will be back here to update this later tonight when more news rolls in.


Brandon Jackson - Running Back - Signed with Cleveland Browns - Jackson was a former second round pick in Green Bay, but never seemed to produce consistently there.  I've always liked him, but he didn't seem to  fit in with the Packers offense.  He should see a few looks to spell Peyton Hillis and have a shot at carries if he Hillis goes down.

Darren Sproles - Running Back - Signed with New Orleans Saints- Out goes Reggie Bush and in comes Sproles.  Similar player in terms of skillset and production at a significantly better price for the Saints than they had Reggie for.  Four years for 16 million is even less than Reggie took in his pay cut in Miami and far less than he was being paid in New Orleans.  The Saints offense shouldn't miss a beat with Sproles in Bush's place.  It might even improve.

Sproles will be good for the Saints in real life, but he throws the Saints backfield back into chaos in terms of fantasy values.  None of the three backs in New Orleans will be able to be counted on in any given week.  They are likely going to end up all being risky flex plays.

Vince Young - Quarterback - Signed with Philadelphia Eagles -This move makes sense.  A one year deal lets Young get back into the market next year and look for a starting job.  The Eagles tend to do wonders for a quarterback's value.  Young also makes a great pickup for the Eagles as the fail-safe for when Michael Vick gets hurt this season.  Young is going to be pressed into action at some point this year.  By have the backup be an athletic quarterback like Young, they don't need to have two separate offensive game plans for a scrambling quarterback vs a pocket quarterback.

Young's fantasy value is only going to exist whenever Vick gets hurt this year, so he's much better off left in free agency to be picked up when that happens.  Not going to be worth rostering otherwise unless you own Vick.     UPDATE - Adam Schefter is reporting on Twitter that Young is still on waivers and isn't allowed to contact other teams until he clears.  This deal might not work out even if the report was correct.

-Fred "Big Derf" Tobin

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