Sunday, April 29, 2012

My speech to my staff if I bought the team in March

I’m excited about being the new owner of the Cards.  First of all, I think Graves is doing an amazing job as GM, however we’ve shown little progress in getting through to coach Whiz as to how dire the situation is on offense, so I’ve encouraged Rod to join me in an offensive philosophical overhaul.  He’s on board.   Whiz is also doing a fine job at head coach, but seems to be distracted from doing his job by getting too close to the offense.  I’ve made it clear to Whiz that he needs to remain focused on being a phenomenal head coach.  He’s on board.

Since we are severely limited to what offensive players we currently have we are going to modify our game plan.  A great passing offense needs a great QB.  Kevin Kolb is a good QB.  So we need to adjust the offense accordingly.  Instead of passing the ball 65% of the time, like we have Manning or Brees at QB,  we are going to bring that down to a more respectable 55%.  This will give him a good friend in the running game, and as a bonus he’s less likely to take hits and will reduce chances of a further concussion.  This will also slow the game down for him a bit and allow him to take in the offense at a more sensible pace. 

This also coincides with the strengths of Levi Brown who is the key to our Oline. He is dominant run blocker, but a poor pass protector.  Again, running the ball fits to his strengths.  The rest of the line will be built to compliment him and the run game.  We will draft his eventually replacement at LT this year and move him to his natural position at RT. 

Beanie Wells is a power runner and so we need to give him a steady diet of carries.  Probably close to 20 carries per game. He’s injury prone so the backup RB, Ryan Williams, will take some of the load off at about 10 carries.  Ryan will be a good change of pace back.  Again, a more dedicated running game compliments the talent we have. 

Fitz will still see his Hall of Fame share of targets.  And while play action will be in full effect, he will be a major focus of our offense.  Also, Doucet, Roberts, and Housler will see a good dose of targets complimentary to their skill level.  We know that due to the lack of time that Kolb was getting in the pocket that our 2nd and 3rd options were getting ignored.  We are going to give more time to Kolb by addressing the line and cutting down the # of pass plays.  The other WRs will be more involved with the game and opposing safeties won’t be allowed to double Fitz as much.  This is a quality vs. quantity argument.  It shouldn’t be “more passes make us a better passing team” as much as “efficient passes that play to our entire offense strengths will make us an efficient passing team.”

Since our line was ranked 31st in sacks given up and 27th in QB hits given up, I’ve strongly reinforced with Whiz that the line must be addressed this off season.  Since we don’t want to overspend in free agency and don’t feel that there is much out there that will give us the upgrade we need, we’ll be addressing the line through the draft.  This, of course, is what all the other great teams do (N.O., Pittsburgh, N.E., G.B.), but until this year the Cards have peculiarly not committed to it.  That changes now.

Our draft philosophy will blend a good balance of BPA and Need.  Unfortunately, we have only drafted BPAs in the past and missed out on some very good players that would have filled some holes we’ve had. (Akeem Ayers at SILB2 over Ryan Williams at RB4 or Justin Houston at LE2 over Housler at TE3 for example)  That also ends now.

All indications are that David DeCastro will be there at #13.  But since so many sought after players will be there, we’ve traded the pick to Tennessee for their #20 pick.  They want Michael Floyd and he wouldn’t fix the problems that we have now.  If DeCastro is not there than we will have plenty of good players available to take that would still fill need (Dont’a Hightower, Kendell Wright, Riley Reiff)  A little birdy told me we’ll get DeCastro anyway.  We’ve also had the fortune of seeing all the other teams draft boards and they don’t have Bobby Massie, the OT out of Ole Miss, pegged until the 4th.  That’s great for us, we can steal him in the 3rd and he’ll start for us at the RT spot.  He’s so good that he’ll replace Levi Brown at LT in 2013.  He’s a better pass protector than run blocker so we hope to have a major upgrade at QB by then so that we can get back to passing.  If not than he’ll be a great RT for us into the future.  This should bolster our line enough that we can proceed on with other needs.  All other players will fall under the BPA/Need philosophy as stated before.

This change in offensive philosophy compliments the players that we have and is modeled after the other great teams in the league.  Now that our defense and special teams are in the upper echelon, it’s time for our offense to catch up so we can go win a Super Bowl.  Enjoy the season.

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