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2013 Team Needs - Updates

Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by Beeker:
Guess ya gotta update it again now after Dawson and Moore LOL

I got 'em on there! :) Thanks Beeker...

Excellent. I think several of our second year players get a good shot this year to make the team and/or start (Robinson, Fleming, Johnson, Looney, Kilgore).
[ Edited by Beeker on Mar 20, 2013 at 9:19 AM ]
Originally posted by Constantine:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Not sure if creating a separate thread is ideal but given all that is going on with FA (and eventually), the draft, let's take a look at our team needs and I'll update accordingly:

Lost:
QB Alex
NT Sopoaga
TE Walker
FS Goldson
K Akers
WR Moss
NT RJF

Expected/Potential Losses:
PR Ginn
Others on the fringe: Grant, Gooden, Wilhoite, L.Davis, Haggans, etc.

Gained:
LB/ST Dan Skuta
NT/DE Glenn Dorsey
WR Anquan Boldin
NT Ian Williams - 2 year contract filling in for RJF
2nd this year and a conditional 2014 & 15 total picks
Brock/Hasting
Mario Manningham restructured his deal, lowering down his $3.6 million base salary down to $1.8 million (they also eliminated his roster and workout bonuses)

Salary Cap Ramifications/"Potential Cuts:"
Name - Cap Savings
Alex - $7,500,000
Rogers - $1,110,937
Goodwin - $4,350,000
Whitner - $4,100,000
Manningham - $3,950,000
Haralson - $2,670,000
Akers - $566,668 (dead money)
Total: $7.584 million under the cap

Interests/Needs (no specific order) - Rationale:
Top tier CB - Team is looking at Nnamdi. Cutting Rogers would only save $1,110,937 this year BUT we need a better cover CB badly. If a FA is acquired, we could move Rogers to the slot or challenge better play from him at CB. Culliver can compete with Rogers this year as well. Brock was resigned
Top tier S (may need both FS & SS) - we lost Goldson but genuinely needed a cover FS anyway with speed/range here. Is Trenton Robinson ready? Would moving Culliver here make even more sense (better at keeping everything in front of him and he's physical). Also, cutting a TD-giving machine like Whitner would save the team $4,100,000. The team is looking at Delmas/Landry/Woodson/Reed. It's still expected that this will be a top pick in the draft
Top tier DE - team signed Dorsey but it's expected this will still be a top pick in the draft for Justin Smith. Don't forget, we get Dobbs back as well
Top tier NT - Williams takes RJF's role easily (both small for the NT spot). And it's expected we'll get a prototypical NT high in the draft this year. Finally!
Second TE - the team is happy with Celek but we can now get that 6'6" TE who is both a great blocker AND an ideal threat in the passing game opposite of Davis, esp. in the RZ. Boldin will take up many of those second TE passes
Second T - we could use a great backup to Staley/Davis badly (lucked out last year). Draft would be ideal or a second-level FA.
C - we could save $4,350,000 by cutting Goodwin and with both Looney/Kilgore training all last year plus Baalke wanting to justify his picks from last year, this could be a surprise cut. Also, with more snaps from the Q (e.g. shotgun) and two backs next to the QB to block, a mauler C isn't required as much.
Second OLB - cutting Haralson would save $2,670,000 for a one-dimensional player. We have both Johnson/Fleming coming back but expect a second tier FA and/or draft pick
WR/KR - Williams will be back and I expect Manningham and his $3,950,000 contract gone given he is in the last year of his contract and don't expect him fully healthy for another year. Jenkins will take his role but I expect a higher pick in the draft for a field-stretcher and great returner to compete with James/Williams
Second QB - we need another CK training in the background
PK - I expect we draft the best K in college. Team is also looking at ST coverage help with Dan Skuta.

Notables: Keep in mind, that we are THE team FA's want to come play for again; don't underestimate this point! Look how many visits and interests we've had esp. from seasoned vets such as Woodson, Reed, Nnamdi, etc.

Great Post... Keep it up
+1 Great stuff NC!

Seems like Baalke is using FA to upgrade ST. That was an area of major disappointment last season, and its nice to see him try to cure its problems in FA. New kicker, new gunner, new ILB to bust up the opponent's middle blocking (what used to be the wedge). Four of five FA signings have ST experience and abilities. Wonder what's next?

I would not be surprised to see Kilgore take over the long snapper role, and see them bid a fond farewell to Brian Jennings. Jennings is highly dependable, but takes a roster spot and really doesn't contribute a lot else. I doubt he's gonna be the replacement for Delanie Walker. Kilgore did some long snapping in training camp last season. An Harbaugh likes versatile guys who can fill more than a single role.

Thanks for your post. It really helps to try to figure out what Baalkes up to, and what he might do next.

[ Edited by oldninerdude on Mar 20, 2013 at 9:43 AM ]
This FA reminds me a little of 2011 when we got Akers, Goodwin, Carlos, Whitner - all VERY good additions at the time and 1 failure- Braylon Edwards.

Some similoar and some different needs.

I know they are also making moves w/an eye on the cap since we will have many of our starters contracts coming up.

The Dorsey pick intriges me the most. If our coaches can revive his career to his potential - we'll be in very good shape.
A really good draft is 3 starters. If we happen to get a 4th, it is cause for joy. We will have to get farther up the line to get the FS, CB, DE/DL. I guess trent can do it, but the signings recently after anquan and our PK are long shots, all probably on the very cheap. No harm done there, and we can always hit on one of those. Trying to figure out how trent moves NORTH with 14 picks, honing in on CB, FS, DL will be fascinating. Gotta get a bit lucky with first pick unless it is moved up. The KC 2nd pick is looking awful big at present. Just guessing, trent moves up in first, and in 2nd. Whether we get starters at CB and FS, who knows. I think we can land a starting DE/DL, but the CB and FS will be the back breaker to pull off. But yes, I think our guys can do it. The 4th starter....just a wild guess...WR late in 4th or so. I think DL is first on BPA and for starting FS or Cb, would require 2 very large moves north. FA is not over either, so maybe a CB or FS starter there....only question there is
$$/value...ie, no Revis..
Originally posted by oldninerdude:
+1 Great stuff NC!

Seems like Baalke is using FA to upgrade ST. That was an area of major disappointment last season, and its nice to see him try to cure its problems in FA. New kicker, new gunner, new ILB to bust up the opponent's middle blocking (what used to be the wedge). Four of five FA signings have ST experience and abilities. Wonder what's next?

I would not be surprised to see Kilgore take over the long snapper role, and see them bid a fond farewell to Brian Jennings. Jennings is highly dependable, but takes a roster spot and really doesn't contribute a lot else. I doubt he's gonna be the replacement for Delanie Walker. Kilgore did some long snapping in training camp last season. An Harbaugh likes versatile guys who can fill more than a single role.

Thanks for your post. It really helps to try to figure out what Baalkes up to, and what he might do next.


Thank you...gotta little help from my friends (AB and others). I agree...having it all spelled out really does help show Baalke's moves/plan. He's very calculated.

And GREAT point about Jennings! I didn't even think about that one as being a potential money-saving cut.
[ Edited by NCommand on Mar 20, 2013 at 5:47 PM ]
I don't expect many here to agree with me but, besides the DL, I think right now we're weak/most vulnerable at both FS and SS - especially against other top teams that pass well.

I am not a big fan of Goldson and didn't want the Niners to pay what the Bucs did (he's not worth that - I thought he missed too many tackles going for the big hit and took bad angles many times tackling and in coverage). That said, he did bring an intimidation factor and he brought experience.

As for Whitner, he's truly an "in-the-box", run-stopping SS...but as we've seen, he's a big liability in coverage. This is not good in a league that's becoming more and more passing-focused. Today, you have to have two decent cover Safeties, I think. Otherwise, the good teams will find the weak Safety in coverage and expose him (like Baltimore and many other teams did last year to Whitner). Teams realize how difficult it is to run against us and thus go to the three-WR or more sets...we need two Safeties that can cover somewhat. That said, the team may have to stay with Whitner for another year due to salary cap reasons (not the worst thing...he did make the Pro Bowl and he's considered a leader in the secondary). At least one (or both) of the safeties must have NFL experience for a team of our caliber, in my view - Whitner does bring a lot in this area.

For those of you who think we can just draft one or two Safeties and have the inexperienced rookie step right in this year and produce like a quality veteran - I don't necessarily agree and think that's placing too big of a risk at a crucial area of the secondary. I agree we need to draft a Safety or two this year for the future...how great would it be to not have to throw a rookie S into the mix this year but to have him groomed by a decent veteran that can tackle and cover?

We have a team that is othewise ready-made to be Super Bowl champions. I think the answer at Safety is most likely finding another decent veteran to come in and compete, whether that be Woodson, Rhodes, etc. (Rhodes had a good year last year...two less tackles than Goldson & 1 more interception than him...and I think he's 6'3" so could help in coverage vs. taller WRs and TEs). I realize the money has to be right to bring in another Safety...I just don't see us, with the quality team we have, going into the season with Whitner, Dahl, and a top rookie S or FS and that's it - I'm hoping there's someone else Baalke is eyeing to bring in (and honestly, I don't consider the other Safeties on the team, Spillman, Robinson, etc., as viable options right now in terms of pure playmaking ability/talent - just my opinion).
I think its pretty on the money that we have addressed the Nose and Special teams in free agency. We will still see picks at D-line and rookies always play special teams, but in terms of needing to find guys that are ready to start this year interior/tackle and special teams move way down the list. I expect FS,TE,DE to be the early round picks. If you get an athletic true coverage playing, ball hawking, free saftey, Whitner will be able to play more to his strengths as true SS. His contract is short and you can then go get his replacement next year or middle rounds this year. We clearly need a TE to step in for Walker, and A DE that can rotate with our starters now and eventually take over for Cowboy in the next 2-3 years.

We will need a CB to groom for Rogers eventual exit, so that would be one of my priorities in the mid rounds along with another WR, OT, SS, and NT. These middle rounds are where we find future starters and rotational players to groom. Aside from Rogers replacement, We need a swing OT in the house so that if a guy gets hurt we dont have to plug in our starting gaurd as a fill in, plus we may lose a guy in the line to free agency in two years...it would be nice to have a back up plan. WR is not a glaring need with the addition of Bolden so it slides down a bit, but I still think we need to shore up that spot with a speedy fire plug. There is too much uncertainty after Crabs and Bolden with injuries and unprovens. I like Swope in the middle rounds as a true slot..YMMV. I hit on SS already so moving on to NT. I think Dorsey holds this spot down, he is a little small, but majorly athletic and our DE's are pretty elite. Still I would like a real run stuffer to be able to plug in on short yardage. A true 300+ lb monster for trench warfare.

Later rounds can now really be used to move around the draft. You grab a guy that falls and a developmental QB...but since we took care of special teams there isnt any needs here any longer. Maybe an RB or another CB, OLB with pass rush ability? It really is deceptive how many holes they filled...It may have been a quiet free agency but it was also very deceptive. We really improved a whole aspect of the game, closed a few holes to give us more options in the draft, and are set to be able to really improve. With all the picks available we can move around and target the best the draft has to offer.
.
Originally posted by LottDMontanaO:
I don't expect many here to agree with me but, besides the DL, I think right now we're weak/most vulnerable at both FS and SS - especially against other top teams that pass well.

I am not a big fan of Goldson and didn't want the Niners to pay what the Bucs did (he's not worth that - I thought he missed too many tackles going for the big hit and took bad angles many times tackling and in coverage). That said, he did bring an intimidation factor and he brought experience.

As for Whitner, he's truly an "in-the-box", run-stopping SS...but as we've seen, he's a big liability in coverage. This is not good in a league that's becoming more and more passing-focused. Today, you have to have two decent cover Safeties, I think. Otherwise, the good teams will find the weak Safety in coverage and expose him (like Baltimore and many other teams did last year to Whitner). Teams realize how difficult it is to run against us and thus go to the three-WR or more sets...we need two Safeties that can cover somewhat. That said, the team may have to stay with Whitner for another year due to salary cap reasons (not the worst thing...he did make the Pro Bowl and he's considered a leader in the secondary). At least one (or both) of the safeties must have NFL experience for a team of our caliber, in my view - Whitner does bring a lot in this area.

For those of you who think we can just draft one or two Safeties and have the inexperienced rookie step right in this year and produce like a quality veteran - I don't necessarily agree and think that's placing too big of a risk at a crucial area of the secondary. I agree we need to draft a Safety or two this year for the future...how great would it be to not have to throw a rookie S into the mix this year but to have him groomed by a decent veteran that can tackle and cover?

We have a team that is othewise ready-made to be Super Bowl champions. I think the answer at Safety is most likely finding another decent veteran to come in and compete, whether that be Woodson, Rhodes, etc. (Rhodes had a good year last year...two less tackles than Goldson & 1 more interception than him...and I think he's 6'3" so could help in coverage vs. taller WRs and TEs). I realize the money has to be right to bring in another Safety...I just don't see us, with the quality team we have, going into the season with Whitner, Dahl, and a top rookie S or FS and that's it - I'm hoping there's someone else Baalke is eyeing to bring in (and honestly, I don't consider the other Safeties on the team, Spillman, Robinson, etc., as viable options right now in terms of pure playmaking ability/talent - just my opinion).

Absolutely agree 100%. We are NOT done at either FS or SS. Giving up 14 TD's is a HUGE (Whitner) amount for a SS esp. when that SS is matched up against taller TE's and bigger/taller WR's. He's an absolute mismatch in the RZ/EZ. Teams will and SHOULD continue to exploit him...it makes us extra soft in coverage right down the middle of the field which is the easiest pass for a QB (even if we bring pressure). It also forces Willis/Bowman and sometimes Brooks to provide additional under-neath coverage...and we STILL gave a up a ton. Goldson was typically nowhere to be found himself, late, etc. Both the FS and SS need to be upgraded in COVERAGE if we are to take that next step. Having better coverage will allow VF to blitz the middle LB's more and take a few more chances. It also will free these two to play more downhill vs. focusing on underneath coverage so much.

I would not be surprised if we cut Whitner and save 4+ million a yaer, sign a Woodson/Rhodes and draft a SS and FS high in the draft to compete with Woodson, Spillman, Robinson, maybe even Culliver, etc. Another area tha needs to be addressed is VF himself... his schemes and staying with the mismatches. The technique the CB coaches were using last year with Brown/Rogers was horrendous as well. We have a LOT of issues in the secondary and now that we've been exposed back there, expect teams to not even bother running it (save for outlet passes to RB's) and just attack us via the passing game.
Originally posted by PhillyNiner:
I think its pretty on the money that we have addressed the Nose and Special teams in free agency. We will still see picks at D-line and rookies always play special teams, but in terms of needing to find guys that are ready to start this year interior/tackle and special teams move way down the list. I expect FS,TE,DE to be the early round picks. If you get an athletic true coverage playing, ball hawking, free saftey, Whitner will be able to play more to his strengths as true SS. His contract is short and you can then go get his replacement next year or middle rounds this year. We clearly need a TE to step in for Walker, and A DE that can rotate with our starters now and eventually take over for Cowboy in the next 2-3 years.

We will need a CB to groom for Rogers eventual exit, so that would be one of my priorities in the mid rounds along with another WR, OT, SS, and NT. These middle rounds are where we find future starters and rotational players to groom. Aside from Rogers replacement, We need a swing OT in the house so that if a guy gets hurt we dont have to plug in our starting gaurd as a fill in, plus we may lose a guy in the line to free agency in two years...it would be nice to have a back up plan. WR is not a glaring need with the addition of Bolden so it slides down a bit, but I still think we need to shore up that spot with a speedy fire plug. There is too much uncertainty after Crabs and Bolden with injuries and unprovens. I like Swope in the middle rounds as a true slot..YMMV. I hit on SS already so moving on to NT. I think Dorsey holds this spot down, he is a little small, but majorly athletic and our DE's are pretty elite. Still I would like a real run stuffer to be able to plug in on short yardage. A true 300+ lb monster for trench warfare.

Later rounds can now really be used to move around the draft. You grab a guy that falls and a developmental QB...but since we took care of special teams there isnt any needs here any longer. Maybe an RB or another CB, OLB with pass rush ability? It really is deceptive how many holes they filled...It may have been a quiet free agency but it was also very deceptive. We really improved a whole aspect of the game, closed a few holes to give us more options in the draft, and are set to be able to really improve. With all the picks available we can move around and target the best the draft has to offer.

Excellent post!
I don't see why we haven't looked at Huff or Rhodes. ,, We sign a slow, crash dummy like Dahl instead?? Either one of these guys would cure the FS problem for now, and we could draft a SS to learn behind Whitner. Dahl could just be a backup and ST guy (which is really what he is)..
It just amazes me that (most) people don't bother too look at the majority of players already on the roster. There is a lot of depth - and, no, not all starter level quality. It's like outside of the starting 22, we have no one else. I'm fine with Celek being the #2 TE. I think Fleming and Johnson will compete very well for depth/rotation at OLB. AJ and Ricardo are doing what they need to do to compete for WR spots. ST have been addressed. I've said many times I think Robinson will be the starting FS (if we don't sign Rhodes, who, IMVHO, is the target now) coming out of camp. There are more cuts to come still - Gooden, maybe Grant, possibly others (Goodwin?). I'm not going to be a chicken little in the least bit. I'm a firm believer that the FO will draft well this year (again) and keep driving forward to multiple championships.

Just my 2 cents worth.
I feel we're waiting for an Assogumtha[sp] decision before we look at any more costly FA like Rhodes - who I think would be a fine pick-up.

I hope we don't wait too long.
Originally posted by Beeker:
It just amazes me that (most) people don't bother too look at the majority of players already on the roster. There is a lot of depth - and, no, not all starter level quality. It's like outside of the starting 22, we have no one else. I'm fine with Celek being the #2 TE. I think Fleming and Johnson will compete very well for depth/rotation at OLB. AJ and Ricardo are doing what they need to do to compete for WR spots. ST have been addressed. I've said many times I think Robinson will be the starting FS (if we don't sign Rhodes, who, IMVHO, is the target now) coming out of camp. There are more cuts to come still - Gooden, maybe Grant, possibly others (Goodwin?). I'm not going to be a chicken little in the least bit. I'm a firm believer that the FO will draft well this year (again) and keep driving forward to multiple championships.

Just my 2 cents worth.
I dont know that people are ignoring who is already here, so much as that we are of the opinion, unproven depth is not really depth at all. Could Celek pan out? Or Flemming or AJ...sure, and we hope they do. Are they a lock too? Absoloutley not. We are a contender with options, there is no reason to put all our eggs in one basket. Just because you have a body there doesnt mean it represents quality depth at the position. If we bolster through the draft we can have multiple options at an economically sound price tag.
Nice post Philly especially re: our safeties. Goldson was a great tackler, but we got killed on sideline jump balls, and not just in RZ or on 3rd downs. His $9mil will not be missed and neither will the fact that he tackled well, but allowed completions as well. Maybe we fix it , maybe not. But what we had last yr was good enough to get us to playoffs, but not enough to win the SB. Having Anquan is a huge plus, because if someone tries to beat us on sideline jumpballs, we got a WR who can do the same thing to them. It isn't THE answer, but it is an answer, and having to pay goldson that 8 or 9 mil, would have just cost us another SB or playoff game, or worse.

It reminds me when noln brot in Nate the great, a shutdown corner. Well, not by himself he wasn't . Surround him with all pros, and he was a shut down corner. Here he , like goldson, didn't shut down anybody, but did make tackles. That is good that they both tackled, but that doesn't make it to the SB, let alone win it. And bet your bottom dollar, a game plan against the 9ers this yr is going to be the jumpball pass on 3rd down and RZ. We may have guys on roster that can fill the bill, but i doubt it. Looking at draft, I don't see any 6'7" storks at CB or S who could shut down the jumpball pass either. As written earlier in yr, if flacco had been on his back on 3rd down more, the jumpballs wouldn't have hurt us. Sadly, Fangio didn't agree with that as I guess, it was too risky. Maybe, but currently the only way to stop the jump ball passes on sideline is to hire the WR(anquan) making the catches....well,, we hired one....but there are more out there(Gonzalez, and two from Ravens.).
Originally posted by PhillyNiner:
Originally posted by Beeker:
It just amazes me that (most) people don't bother too look at the majority of players already on the roster. There is a lot of depth - and, no, not all starter level quality. It's like outside of the starting 22, we have no one else. I'm fine with Celek being the #2 TE. I think Fleming and Johnson will compete very well for depth/rotation at OLB. AJ and Ricardo are doing what they need to do to compete for WR spots. ST have been addressed. I've said many times I think Robinson will be the starting FS (if we don't sign Rhodes, who, IMVHO, is the target now) coming out of camp. There are more cuts to come still - Gooden, maybe Grant, possibly others (Goodwin?). I'm not going to be a chicken little in the least bit. I'm a firm believer that the FO will draft well this year (again) and keep driving forward to multiple championships.

Just my 2 cents worth.
I dont know that people are ignoring who is already here, so much as that we are of the opinion, unproven depth is not really depth at all. Could Celek pan out? Or Flemming or AJ...sure, and we hope they do. Are they a lock too? Absoloutley not. We are a contender with options, there is no reason to put all our eggs in one basket. Just because you have a body there doesnt mean it represents quality depth at the position. If we bolster through the draft we can have multiple options at an economically sound price tag.

And this is essentially the point I was trying to make. We DON'T KNOW that there isn't any depth. Yes, at this point, they are just bodies. I'm fully on board with seeing what they can do - plus who the 49ers draft and anyone else they decide to sign in FA. I'm just looking forward to getting through all of this FA and Draft time and getting in to camp.Call me silly, but I'm betting the 49ers are much better at evaluating football players than I am.

Next man up!
[ Edited by Beeker on Mar 21, 2013 at 1:09 PM ]