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Stormin' Norman

How good is Martin Mayhew?

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I won't be. Jay Cutler is nothing to write home about. What has he really done? Please don't tell me he's a Pro Bowl QB. Peters was last year. So was Favre. None of them should have been.

Who is Peters and when was he a Pro Bowl QB?

We took him #1 overall. We're paying him like a top 5 QB in the NFL. Why shouldn't I expect him to perform like that? This contract is 6 years. I don't care what he does in year 7. If we (Lions organization) didn't think he could be that, they shouldn't have paid him as such.

Most would consider Cutler a top 5 QB.

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The only barometer on Mayhew is going to be who is better - Matt Stafford or Aaron Curry. That's what it will come down to.

My opinion on this staff will also hinge on the success of this draft. I understand that anything can come about in one draft, but because Mayhew has the stigma of being Millen's right hand man, he doesn't get a very long leash from me. If we didn't get any playmakers from this draft, I won't have much confidence in Mayhew or anyone else in the front office. Everyone knows how poorly the Lions have drafted in the past, and that simply cannot happen if they are to compete in this league.

Should the Lions have drafted Crabtree #1 if he turns out to be the best player in the draft? OF COURSE. The whole point of drafting is to take the player that you believe will be the best NFL player, not the player that is #1 on the draft guru's boards. There are a lot of different things that affect what player teams will target, but to say that they shouldn't have taken someone that turns out to be the best player in the draft, is crazy.

At this point, I don't have any complaints about the moves that Mayhew has made, but in the end, it does all depend on how well they scouted and drafted. Especially with the multiple high picks that they had in this draft.

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Who is Peters and when was he a Pro Bowl QB?

Most would consider Cutler a top 5 QB.

I never said Peters was a QB. He is a LT.

I don't think Cutler is top 5 at all. I'd take all of these guys to run my team in 2009 over him:

Manning

Brady

Warner

Rivers

Brees

Rogers

Pennington

McNabb

Like I've said before. I don't think Cutler will ever lead a team to a Super Bowl. He throws too many INT's to do well in the playoffs.

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McDaniels isn't the Broncos GM ;)

What has Pioli done to make you rank him with Mayhew? Is the signing of Zack Thomas that good?

The trade of a 2nd rd pick for a franchised player and a stop gap starter is up there with Roy Williams to Dallas

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I never said Peters was a QB. He is a LT.

I don't think Cutler is top 5 at all. I'd take all of these guys to run my team in 2009 over him:

Manning

Brady

Warner

Rivers

Brees

Rogers

Pennington

McNabb

Like I've said before. I don't think Cutler will ever lead a team to a Super Bowl. He throws too many INT's to do well in the playoffs.

I would take Cutler over Warner, Pennington and McNabb without a moment's second thought. I would probably take Cutler over Aaron Rodgers. Rivers and Brees are equal to Cutler, in my book.

The trade of a 2nd rd pick for a franchised player and a stop gap starter is up there with Roy Williams to Dallas

Just because Cassel has a "Franchise Tag" doesn't mean he is a "Franchise player". The Franchise Tag was why the Patriots traded him - they couldn't afford him.

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I don't need Stafford to be a top 5 qb to consider it a good pick. For one, I don't believe in 3 years $10-12 mil will be considered top 5 qb money (actually it is borderline now). Also, if he becomes a consistent top 7-8 qb, we will be doing fine at that position for a long time and not have to worry about drafting a qb high for a long time. That to me would make it a successful pick. Having a consistent top 10 qb is worth a lot compared to trying to fill the position every other year with a top 20 qb. It would allow the team to fill the other positions that our much easier to get with lower draft picks and in FA.

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I never said Peters was a QB. He is a LT.

I don't think Cutler is top 5 at all. I'd take all of these guys to run my team in 2009 over him:

Manning

Brady

Warner

Rivers

Brees

Rogers

Pennington

McNabb

Like I've said before. I don't think Cutler will ever lead a team to a Super Bowl. He throws too many INT's to do well in the playoffs.

Not Pennington/McNabb/Rogers, It's a toss up between him and Rivers though for the 5th spot.

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It's way too early to be judging the front office for anything. They are taking over for an organization that went 0-16. To be blunt, improvement should "be easy" right now. They had many early draft picks and just about any addition is a clear upgrade because of how devoid of talent (especially youthful talent) this organization was.

No team was in the depths of despair like the Lions were after last season ended. Even a moron could've improved this team. Not saying Mayhew and the group are morons. Just saying the decisions they made up to this point almost had to be good decisions and upgraded decisions based on what was here in the past. Even I could've accomplished that.

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Just saying the decisions they made up to this point almost had to be good decisions and upgraded decisions based on what was here in the past.

There is a big difference between good decisions and upgraded decisions. While I agree that almost all decisions had to be upgraded, they still could have been poor decisions. I do think, as a whole, Mayhew has made quite a few good decisions which obviously are upgraded decisions over the previous regime. Only time will tell, but he is off to a better start than I thought he would be.

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It's way too early to be judging the front office for anything. They are taking over for an organization that went 0-16. To be blunt, improvement should "be easy" right now. They had many early draft picks and just about any addition is a clear upgrade because of how devoid of talent (especially youthful talent) this organization was.

No team was in the depths of despair like the Lions were after last season ended. Even a moron could've improved this team. Not saying Mayhew and the group are morons. Just saying the decisions they made up to this point almost had to be good decisions and upgraded decisions based on what was here in the past. Even I could've accomplished that.

The talent level of the Chiefs and Rams was equivalent to that of the Lions last year. In fact, I would argue that the Lions, talent wise, may have been in better shape than the Chiefs and Rams. The Lions, at least, have one player on their roster who has the talent to be the best at his position.

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There is a big difference between good decisions and upgraded decisions. While I agree that almost all decisions had to be upgraded, they still could have been poor decisions. I do think, as a whole, Mayhew has made quite a few good decisions which obviously are upgraded decisions over the previous regime. Only time will tell, but he is off to a better start than I thought he would be.

I think he's made a few good decisions as well. But, again, I think much of what people think is skewed because of how low this organization has fallen. I am not thrilled with all the decisions made. Picking tight ends in the first round is generally considered a poor decision when a team is as void of talent as the Lions are. The team had one of the three worst defenses in NFL history a year ago and decided to use many of their high draft selections on offense. That can certainly be considered a poor decision. They got their franchise QB. Initially people seem to like that decision. But all of these decisions are hard to judge right now with any degree of accuracy in terms of how good they are. These are still just opinions (and the ones above mostly mine).

If the Lions go 6-10 and are competitive in six other games next year, people will go wacko as though the Lions have accomplished great things. But in reality, they would just be getting to a point that even the worst teams should be capable of being at at least once every two years. Getting to that level is the easy part. Becoming reasonably respectable is the next easiest step. I chose not to give the Lions credit for doing what should've been easily accomplished - and I darn well better see them get to those levels. That's nothing to do. It's like writing your name on a test at school. You shouldn't get credit for doing that (although I think you may on some of those college entrance exams). It's the basics of just being in the profession. So it'll be nearly impossible to examine this team after one full year and say "Yes, they are on the right path" unless they shock the world and put together a team with 10-6 talent somehow. Really, this season they can only fail - and failing would be making no progress whatsoever. Their real test will come during the second full season and the third full season when we see what they are able to do to improve this organization on top of what they did this year and so on.

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I think he's made a few good decisions as well. But, again, I think much of what people think is skewed because of how low this organization has fallen. I am not thrilled with all the decisions made. Picking tight ends in the first round is generally considered a poor decision when a team is as void of talent as the Lions are.

Picking Tight Ends in the first round are considered poor decisions when they are one dimensional. Brandon Pettigrew is the best all around TE to come out in the draft in a long time. Again, many draft evaluators had him as the best blocker in the draft at any position.

The team had one of the three worst defenses in NFL history a year ago and decided to use many of their high draft selections on offense. That can certainly be considered a poor decision.

I disagree. The offense was 30th in yards per game and 27th in scoring, so its not as if the Lions neglected a weakness to improve a strength. Plus the bulk of the free agency and trade work went towards the defense pre-draft. The acquisition of Peterson, Foote, Buchanan, Henry and Jackson are more significant signings than anyone acquired to help the offense. Plus two of the Lions first four picks were spent on defensive players, and three of the first six.

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The Lions' date=' at least, have one player on their roster who has the talent to be the best at his position.[/quote']

You are grossly overrating Jordan Dizon.

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+1 Norman.

IMO the upgrade Pettigrew as a multi-dimensional TE gives over our other options at TE/offensive line is much greater than the upgrade any offensive lineman or linebacker we could have picked at 20 would have been over Foote this season or Levy/another pick next season. Look at it this way, in the past, if one of our TE's was in, the defense pretty well knew it was a passing play. If the other was in, they knew it was likely to be a run. With Pettigrew, both options are open.

I disagree. The offense was 30th in yards per game and 27th in scoring, so its not as if the Lions neglected a weakness to improve a strength. Plus the bulk of the free agency and trade work went towards the defense pre-draft. The acquisition of Peterson, Foote, Buchanan, Henry and Jackson are more significant signings than anyone acquired to help the offense. Plus two of the Lions first four picks were spent on defensive players, and three of the first six.

Exactly. It isn't like the Lions don't have needs all over the field. They didn't need to focus on defense as much as they needed to focus on getting top end prospects at positions of need (pretty well everywhere on the field). With Pettigrew, & Delmas they got players with legitimate Pro Bowl potential as opposed to getting a potentially above average lineman/linebacker/Defensive lineman. And Pettigrew and Delmas both play positions that can greatly affect the offense and defense as playmakers.

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I disagree. The offense was 30th in yards per game and 27th in scoring' date=' so its not as if the Lions neglected a weakness to improve a strength. Plus the bulk of the free agency and trade work went towards the defense pre-draft. The acquisition of Peterson, Foote, Buchanan, Henry and Jackson are more significant signings than anyone acquired to help the offense. Plus two of the Lions first four picks were spent on defensive players, and three of the first six.[/quote']

What is the average age of those defensive acquisitions? Two of the first four to the defense? That LB selection may have not even been the best player available on his own team. But that said, I do think the Lions have improved their linebacking group during this offseason. What was a pathetic group of chopped liver players, suddenly becomes a pretty legit unit. But that said, you are relying on two players on the other side of 20-something. Those aren't players you can base your future on. So while the defense may be better, have they really improved that much upon the improvement of their defense for the long term? Foote is the youngest of those defensive additions, and he's only signed for a season.

Edit: Actually, Foote is only 28 right now. He'll still be 29 when the season begins. But for the most part check the ages of those players we selected. In a league that the average career is only a couple of years, these guys have a lot of worn tread on them.

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I have a question for those who think Mayhew is doing a terrific job right now. What could he have done to this point to make you think he's done - say - a mediocre job?

I'm not saying he's done a good job or a bad job right now. You can make pro and con arguments either way. I've done that. But to be at any extreme of the argument makes little sense right now - and there's little to base that claim.

As has been said, this draft's success will ultimately be hinged on what happens to Stafford. A bad Stafford and the grade five years from now really can't be better than a B without some extreme happenings around the rest of the class. If he becomes a top 5 guy in the NFL, it's hard to say the class will ever grade out at anything higher than a C unless 3 other guys become Pro Bowlers or something ridiculous like that.

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I have a question for those who think Mayhew is doing a terrific job right now. What could he have done to this point to make you think he's done - say - a mediocre job?

I'm not saying he's done a good job or a bad job right now. You can make pro and con arguments either way. I've done that. But to be at any extreme of the argument makes little sense right now - and there's little to base that claim.

As has been said, this draft's success will ultimately be hinged on what happens to Stafford. A bad Stafford and the grade five years from now really can't be better than a B without some extreme happenings around the rest of the class. If he becomes a top 5 guy in the NFL, it's hard to say the class will ever grade out at anything higher than a C unless 3 other guys become Pro Bowlers or something ridiculous like that.

He's done a nice job finding the best possible options in the area of trading. He's gotten players for guy's we were going to cut and #1 value for Roy Williams. He also seems to in step with the coaching staff in getting the players they want, which always seemed to be a problem in the Millen era.

That said, judging Mayhew now is still too early. It's only been one off-season. And it's not even over.

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I have a question for those who think Mayhew is doing a terrific job right now. What could he have done to this point to make you think he's done - say - a mediocre job?

I'm not saying he's done a good job or a bad job right now. You can make pro and con arguments either way. I've done that. But to be at any extreme of the argument makes little sense right now - and there's little to base that claim.

As has been said, this draft's success will ultimately be hinged on what happens to Stafford. A bad Stafford and the grade five years from now really can't be better than a B without some extreme happenings around the rest of the class. If he becomes a top 5 guy in the NFL, it's hard to say the class will ever grade out at anything higher than a C unless 3 other guys become Pro Bowlers or something ridiculous like that.

I don't know that I would say terrific, but I do say he has been doing very well. IMO he has upgraded the defense with the Linebackers and Secondary looking much improved on paper - some older stop gaps, but drafting younger guys to fill spots as well. I would also say the DL looks improved over last season - yes Grady is ancient, but for what he is being asked to do, is much better than what we had last season and with the improved linebackers he isn't necessarily being asked to make plays, just take up space and blockers.

I also like the trades Mayhew has made including his draft day trades picking up extra picks.

If Stafford fails, but Pettigrew and Delmas become Pro Bowlers, Levy becomes a capable middle linebacker, Hill becomes a solid DL I think this draft is still a great success. I don't think everything is 100% tied to Stafford. Obviously he will make a big difference, but he isn't the only thing Mayhew did.

Again, I wouldn't say Mayhew has done a terrific job, but I don't really know how he could have done much better. He hasn't sacrificed the future by bringing in overpriced aging FA's. He has filled positions with solid starters from solid teams at relatively low prices and with no significant long term salary ramifications.

I guess the only real thing I was fairly disappointed about was Stafford's contract in relation to Ryan's contract. What could he have done to say he did a mediocre job? Went out and got Haynesworth at the $ Haynesworth got. Gone and got other old overpriced vets for long term contracts. Traded pick up with KC to get the #1 & #3 but overpaying 2 players and giving up multiple picks. Drafted the 5th or 6th best OL in the 1st round, draft a DT who doesn't fit the teams profile in the first because we needed a DT and he was the best on the board. (Notice he waited until the 4th and got one who may or not make it, but he fits the profile. If he picked one at 20 or 33, whether they were good or not, they wouldn't have fit the scheme and would have been a waste for us).

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Not Pennington/McNabb/Rogers, It's a toss up between him and Rivers though for the 5th spot.

I value a higher TD:INT ratio when I view QB's. That is why I would go with those guys. Cutler will most likely never have a 2:1 TD:INT ratio and to me that is a formula for not succeeding in the playoffs. If you turn the ball over in the playoffs, the other team will most likely be able to capitalize and make it hurt.

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I have a question for those who think Mayhew is doing a terrific job right now. What could he have done to this point to make you think he's done - say - a mediocre job?

...

Instead of getting a 1st & 3rd for Roy... only getting a 3rd.

Instead of hiring Schwartz... hiring a college coach (nothing against college coaches... but I don't think there is one out there right now that can do as good a job as Schwartz), or a lesser qualified candidate.

Instead of trading down a 3rd for a 3rd, 4th, and 7th... trading down a 3rd for a 3rd and a 6th.

Instead of signing a cheap Grady Jackson and relying on developing a draft pick... overpaying that massive contract for Haynesworth.

Instead of sticking to their draft board - even if fans don't like their draft picks - trying to force a perceived "need" pick ahead of a more talented player. IE: Selecting Eben Britton at #33 to fix our "LT" weakness would have pissed me off much more greatly (mediocre solution at best for a new LT, IMO...) than having Delmas rated higher than Maualuga... If they like Delmas more, fine, even if I really liked Maualuga. I would question Britton at #33 SIGNIFICANTLY MORE than Delmas at #33.

Instead of trading Kitna for a decent CB/ Safety, getting ZIP for him... or just a 7th rounder.

Things along those lines... But... none of the above essentially changes what you are saying, in that it is the LONG-term health of the organization that matters, and not so much these early moves... So I don't think anyone is disagreeing with you... That if Mayhew/ Schwartz get us to 6 wins, great... but meaningless. It's if they can develop this team into a perennial 9-12 game winner that will be the TRUE measuring stick for them...

It's just that, instead of making B-/ C+ moves these first few months... I think Mayhew is making A/ A+ moves. That's why I think he is making "terrific" moves so far...

Even if the TRUE grade on his job won't be determined for several years, when we see if he can actually make this team into a real playoff/ Super Bowl contender...

Just my 2 cents.

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Mayhew could only do things to improve the mess that is the Detroit Lions, so practically anything he does now will look good. It will be best to judge him in a couple seasons when his players constitute the majority of the roster, but since he's a Millen understudy I don't expect him to do a good job.

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What is the average age of those defensive acquisitions? Two of the first four to the defense?

Right around 30 - meaning most have two-four years left in this league. But with the talent of Calvin Johnson and Matthew Stafford, building an offensive identity makes more sense than trying to build both sides of the ball. A focused attack is always more effective than a trying to address every issue at once.

That LB selection may have not even been the best player available on his own team.

According to who? Obviously our scouting team thought otherwise.

But that said, I do think the Lions have improved their linebacking group during this offseason. What was a pathetic group of chopped liver players, suddenly becomes a pretty legit unit.

That's an understatement.

But that said, you are relying on two players on the other side of 20-something. Those aren't players you can base your future on. So while the defense may be better, have they really improved that much upon the improvement of their defense for the long term? Foote is the youngest of those defensive additions, and he's only signed for a season.

But you don't build a team in one off season. You build TOWARDS your strengths not towards your weakness. When Calvin Johnson is on your team, it doesn't make sense to spend your entire draft improving your defense. You get him players that allow him to do what he does - and we did. So if we can spend this draft and next draft establishing a young, offensive identity, we should do it. Build the defense in the Free Agency until we have an offense in place that allows us to address other places in the draft.

Edit: Actually, Foote is only 28 right now. He'll still be 29 when the season begins. But for the most part check the ages of those players we selected. In a league that the average career is only a couple of years, these guys have a lot of worn tread on them.

None of these players have the "average career", however, and that really applies most with running backs. Zack Thomas is still in this league. Deon Sanders and Darrel Green played in this league until they had gray hair. Grady Jackson at 35 was good enough to start for a playoff Atlanta team.

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I have a question for those who think Mayhew is doing a terrific job right now. What could he have done to this point to make you think he's done - say - a mediocre job?

I'm not saying he's done a good job or a bad job right now. You can make pro and con arguments either way. I've done that. But to be at any extreme of the argument makes little sense right now - and there's little to base that claim.

As has been said, this draft's success will ultimately be hinged on what happens to Stafford. A bad Stafford and the grade five years from now really can't be better than a B without some extreme happenings around the rest of the class. If he becomes a top 5 guy in the NFL, it's hard to say the class will ever grade out at anything higher than a C unless 3 other guys become Pro Bowlers or something ridiculous like that.

He could have hired anyone but Jim Schwartz.

He could have been tempted to target Aaron Curry. He could have been tempted to ignore signing veterans believing his team should be founded purely on young talent. He could have been tempted to target defense, defense, defense after the historically bad performance last year.

All of those would have been mistakes for this team.

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You guys do know that this is the same scouting system that Millen had, right? It's the same guys recommending the players.

I think Mayhew's done a decent job so far. I have no complaints. I didn't want Stafford but it's certainly a defenseable pick. Pettigrew was the #1 TE and will help the line. Delmas was the #1 safety. I like Hill as a project. I liked some of the 7th rounders as projects.

Let's see how the draft turns out before we kill the man. Also, lets see how it turns out before we nominate the guy for sainthood.

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