CSR Debates: Draft strategy and "The Franchise"

h/t to criolle for the awesome meme!

With only a week remaining before the 2014 NFL Draft, lets check back in with valued CSR contributors TerribleMetaphorGuy and OverreactingCapsLockGuy for their thoughts on Dave Gettleman's strategy. Oh, and we also might talk a little about that Cam Newton guy...

Thanks to Jordan Gross' decision to retire, the NFL's sadistic decision to move the draft back two weeks and "The Cut", this has been a particularly long offseason for Carolina Panthers fans.  The good news?  There is only a week left before the draft finally takes place!  That means we have only 8 more days to suffer through before we can stop arguing over who the Panthers should draft, and start arguing over who they did draft!  Hip-hip-HOORAY!!!

With little in the way of "real news" happening during the NFL doldrums of April, I thought it might be a good time to check back in with two of CSR's most esteemed fellows, namely TerribleMetaphorGuy and OverreactingCapsLockGuy, to see how they feel about the Panthers' possible direction in the coming draft, as well as a few other tidbits...

TMG, OCG, it is wonderful to see you again!  I can tell by your faces that you are just as excited to see me, so lets just get right to it.  We've got a lot to get through today, and I want to make sure you both have ample time in which to bestow your infinite wisdom upon us!

The Panthers recently announced their intention to exercise Cam Newton's 5th year option.  Do you think this is a show of commitment from the team, or do you think the front office may still have doubts about Cam as the "franchise" QB, and this is why they have yet to work out a long term deal?

OCG: I DONT KNOW ABOUT ALL THIS FRANCHISE STUFF BUT I JUST WANT TO KNOW WHY GETTLEMAIN WANTS TO KEEP RUNNING THE READ OPTION WITH CAM ISNT THAT WHY THEY GOT RID OF CHUD IN THE FIRST PLACE BECAUSE THE READ OPTION IS STOOPID I MEAN IT NEVER EVEN WORKS BECAUSE THE DEFENSE KNOWS THAT CAM IS GONNA RUN THE BALL JUST LIKE WHEN THEY RUN THE WILDCAT WITH DWILL EVERYONE KNOWS ITS A RUN UP THE MIDDLE BECASUE DWILL CANT THROW THE BALL HAHA MY KID CAN THROW BETTER THAN DWILL AND HES ONLY NINE YEARS OLD GOD GETTLEAM IS STOOPID WHY DOESNT RON PUT HIM ON THAT RIVERBOAT AND SEND HIM AWAY SO THE TEAM CAN PLAY GOOD FOOTBALL AND WIN GAMES

TMG: As more than a slobbering idiot, I DO know something about "this franchise stuff". I think of the 5th year option as a kind of additional franchise tag. I think that when farmers are committed to raising their cattle they tag them to identify them as theirs and to keep the cows from grazing on other teams' lands. Of course, some scientists tag captured animals before re-releasing them into the wild so that they can track and study them at a later date. I guess it all depends on whether you think Gettleman is a farmer or a scientist. Personally, I think he is a bit of both and really just a kid at heart. Gettleman tagged Cam, and now it is Newton's turn to show us he is "it".

Now let's talk about positions of need for the Panthers.  Most of the national pundits believe the Panthers will invest their 1st round pick in the coming draft on an offensive lineman, a wide receiver, or a defensive back.  How do you feel about the Panthers offensive line as it currently stands?

TMG: Our offensive line is only currently standing because it is the offseason. I mean, seriously, how long do you expect Byron Bell to remain erect at left tackle? Maybe that little Dutch boy has a finger or two left to stick into the Jordan Gross sized hole in our dike, but you have to be delusional if you think Cam wouldn't need swimming lessons before this monsoon season ended.

OCG: OKAY FIRST OF ALL METTAFOUR GUY IM NOT A SLOBBERING IDIOT I DONT EVEN KNO WHY YU WOULD SAY THAT I HAVENT SLOBBERED ONE SINGLET TIME SINCE WE SAT DOWN MAYBE ITS ANOTHER ONE OF YOUR STUPID METAFOURS THAT NOBODY UNDERSTANDS BUT ANYWAY THE PANTHERS HAVE NEVER HAD AN OFFENSIVE LINE HAHA THEY ARE BUMS ITS SO BAD THAT IF THEY BROUGHT BERNADO BACK FROM DALLAS OR WHEREVER HE SET UP HIS TURNSTILE TO PLAY FOR CAROLINA HE WOULD BE THE BEST LINEMAN ON THE TEAM IF I WAS CAM I WOULD TAKE OUT AN INSURANCE POLICY TO KEEP THE OFFENSIVE LINE AWAY FROM ME BECAUSE THEY ARE A WALKING DISASTER JUST LIKE DAVE GETTLEMAIN IS

Umm, okay then. That sure is some fascinating stuff, OCG.  And how about our wide receivers?  Surely you feel better about our wide receiver situation than you do about our offensive line?

OCG: DONT GET ME STARTED ON THE WRS BECAUSE IM STILL MAD ABOUT STEVE SMITH GOING TO BALTIMOAR TO CATCH BALLS FROM JOE FALCON AND LAFFLE GOING TO PLAY WITH HOODIE IN NEW ENGLISH WHY DOES GETLMAN HATE PANTHERS FANS SO MUCH WHY WOULD HE GET RID OF THE BEST PLAYER WEVE EVER HAD WELL BEST OTHER THAN CASEY THE KICKER I MEAN COME ON HE WAS A LEGEND AMIRITE BUT ANYWAY WE DONT HAVE ANYONE WHO CAN CATCH OTHER THAN THAT CROTCH DUDE AND THE GUY FROM KID N PLAY IM STILL WAITING ON MY AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF 2HYPE I REALLY WANT THAT AUTOGRAPH SO I CAN SHOW ALL MY FRIENDS THAT I MET THE DUDE FROM KID N PLAY THAT WOULD BE COOL OF COURSE IT WOULD BE COOLER IF IT WAS 1989 BUT I HAVE TO WORK WITH WHAT I GOT YA KNOW HAHA KINDA LIKE CAM HAS TO DO THANKS TO GETTLEAMN

Umm...I really don't know what to say to that. What about you, TMG?

TMG: We've definitely had more than our fair share of car trouble during this spring's team bonding season. The A/C has conked out at the same time we got a flat tire on the team bus and our repair Gettleman can only fix one problem at a time. All things being equal, I'd rather buy a brand spanking new Hog Mollie quality tire and roll with our windows down than try to finish our road trip on a spare or patched tire with a frosty interior, even if that does mean that we have to rely on the generosity of "that guy from Kid N Play" to help us change the tire.

As always, I am awed by both of your wisdom.  I had literally never considered any of these things.  Ok, so lets move on to our secondary.  How do you preeminent experts feel about our defensive backs?  Antoine Cason and Melvin White for "Best cornerback duo in the league"?

TMG: I'm hesitant to draft top tier defensive backs, be they safeties or corners. With our front seven, I believe we can get by with good, not great, players. Sure, it would be all kinds of sunshine and rainbows to have future hall of famers at every position, but we can't do that. The more eggs we put in one basket, the more difficult it is to balance our team. Ideally, all the eggs we select at the top of the draft would stay in the basket we carry for years to come. The problem with eggs is that they will rot after several days sitting out in the open, let alone after several years to a decade. This problem is amplified by the NFL salary cap. The cap is structured in such a way that all of that rotten egg gas collects under the brim, right around your face, thereby forcing you to limit just how many smelly rotten eggs you can keep in a basket all at one time before dropping your basket, inevitably breaking some eggs and puking on the side of the road. That being said, I would be ecstatic of Kyle Fuller was our pick at number 28 on account of "GO HOKIES!"

OCG: I STILL CANT BELEVE THEY LET CAPTIN MUNNERMAN GO TO THE VIKINGS AND BROUGHT IN ROMAIN HARPOON TO REPLACE HIM MAN THAT MAKES ME MAD BECAUSE HARPOON IS A CHEAPSHOT DUDE AND HOW IS HE GOING TO GET ALONG WITH SMITTY IN THE LOCKERROOM OH WAIT THATS RIGHT DAVE GOT RID OF SMITTY BECAUSE HE THINKS HE SO MUCH SMARTER THAN EVERYONE ELSE WHY IS DAVE OUR GM AGAIN CAN SOMEBODY GET ME MARTY HURNEYS PHONE NUMBER I THINK HE CAN DO BETTER THAN GENTLEMAIN HAS DONE THIS YEAR I MEAN MY GOODNESS WE DONT HAVE ANY GOOD PLAYERS LEFT WERE GONNA GO 0-16 THIS YEAR THANKS DAVE

That's... an interesting take, OCG. And as always, astute observations TMG.  You guys should take this show on the road.  Lets run a hypothetical.  Say the draft falls in the worst possible way for the Panthers and there is a huge run on offensive linemen, wide receivers, and defensive backs in the 1st round.  Sticking to Gettleman's "best-player-available" philosophy, who do you take from another position group, and why?

OCG: HE WILL PROABLY TAKE JONNY MANZEL BECAUSE HE HATES CAM AND WANTS ANOTHER QB TO THROW BALLS TO KID N PLAY AND HE PROBABLY THINKS MANZEL IS THE BEST QB EVER BECAUSE HE BEAT DUKE IN THE BELK BOWL WELL HAHA DAVE THATS DUMB BECAUSE ANYONE CAN BEAT DUKE AT FOOTBALL MAYBE IF THEY HIRED COACH K TO COACH THE FOOTBALL TEAM THEY WOUD WIN THE TOURNAMENT LIKE THEY DO IN BASKETBALL BUT HAHA THEY WONT DO THAT BECAUSE THERE DUMB ANYWAY IF DAVE DOESNT DRAFT MANZEL HE WILL PROBABLY DRAFT BRIDGEWALKER BECAUSE AGAIN HE HATES CAM I GUESS IT WAS DAVES LAPTOP THAT CAM STOLE BACK AT AURBURN OR SOMETHING BECAUSE BOY DOES HE HATE HIM I THNK THE HOLE THING IS STOOPD BUT THATS JUST ME

TMG: It would appear that my obtuse little friend has accidentally stumbled upon a great idea. I think Teddy Bridgewater is poised for an inexplicable fall through the first round. I also think the Panthers would be foolish not to draft him. You see, every team wants to draft a perennial family-style country breakfast. The Panthers have been one of the lucky few teams to realize this dream when they selected the Dan'l Boone Inn of these breakfasts in Cam Newton just three years ago. The problem is that eating at the Dan'l Boone Inn day in and day out has certain health effects; specifically, it affects our wallets. Drafting Bridgewater, a true McDonald's breakfast relative to our current standards, would allow us to gain our daily sustenance in a more fiscally responsible manner while following a devious master plan. Eating Teddy's old McDonald's every day would allow us numerous chances to win McDonald's Monopoly. At the end of the season we trade in both Bridgewater and our winning ticket and we can afford to put Cam back on the menu for the rest of our congestive heart failure shortened lives.

OCG: OH YEAH WELL YOU CAN CALL ME OBTUSE ALL YOU WANT BUT I KNOW THATS NOT TRUE CAUSE I DONT HAVE 8 ARMS SO YEAH YOURE METTAFOUR DOESNT EVEN MAKE SENSE

Mind. Blown.  Well, that does it for this edition of CSR debates!  Join us next time right her at Cat Scratch Reader for more Pulitzer Prize-worthy insight into your favorite cardiac cats!

And of course, KEEP POUNDING!!!

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