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2021 Offseason Personnel Moves Tournament – NFC South

Date:
July 11, 2021 2:28 PM
July 11, 2021 2:27 PM

2021 Offseason Personnel Moves Tournament – NFC South

 

(Same intro everyday) We’re going to have a daily series (11 days) taking a look at the offseason moves for all the NFL teams – looking at the key adds and losses in personnel this offseason 2021 (whether free agent, draft, or trade).

I like to list out the key adds next to the key losses and just look at the lists for each team and see what their thinking was and if all the maneuvering made them better…or worse…or A LOT better…or A LOT worse – to help me digest the offseason impact to Fantasy performance and to over/under win total handicapping. So, we’re doing that with this series and having some fun with our research…pitting the teams in a tournament style format and evaluating who had the better offseason moves…with the winner advancing on until we have just one winning team of ‘best offseason’.

This season, we're looking at free agency and trades PLUS key draft picks (according to CFM/us)…and it’s not just me (RC) making the call on ‘who wins’ – a three person committee will vote (and provide commentary to their vote) and the majority vote winner moves on. RC + FFM analyst Ross Jacobs + The Computer (an RC program designed to try to evaluate the moves by talent and positional importance, etc.) – I (RC) pick my winner before I see what The Computer thinks, for fairness. RC and Ross make their choices without knowing what the other picked as well.

We’ll look at a division a day and declare a divisional winner, then the AFC and NFC finals and then a Final 2/Super Bowl to declare an overall offseason 2021 winner.

Here we go…

 

Saints v. Falcons

 

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

Key Personnel Adds: DE Tanoh Kpassagnon (FA), DE Payton Turner (draft), CB Paulson Adebo (draft)

Key Personnel Losses: QB Drew Brees (retired), WR Emmanuel Sanders (FA), TE Jared Cook (FA), DE Trey Hendrickson (FA), TE Josh Hill (FA), DT Malcolm Brown (FA), DT Sheldon Rankins (FA), CB Janoris Jenkins (FA)

 

ATLANTA FALCONS

Key Personnel Adds: RB Mike Davis (FA), LB Barkevious Mingo (FA), S Erik Harris (FA), CB Fabian Moreau (FA), TE Kyle Pitts (draft), S Richie Grant (draft)

Key Personnel Losses: C Alex Mack (FA), S Damontae Kazee (FA), S Keanu Neal (FA), WR Julio Jones (traded)

 

RC: You lose Drew Brees, and it’s already a really bad offseason…and everything else is just re-shuffling the deck. Losing Trey Hendrickson stings too. The Saints are not better today than they were before all this…but not radically worse – just ‘worse’.

The Falcons got better for 2021 until they traded Julio Jones, then everyone had to stop and pause and reassess. Are the rookies Pitts + Grant better than having Julio in 2021? You’d probably rather have established Julio…but Pitts might be a rookie whirlwind to make people forget Julio quickly.

The Falcons are about even for the offseason, but the Saints are for sure going backwards…so WINNER = Atlanta.

 

ROSS: Yikes, I'm not sure there's a winner here. The Saints lost a lot of talent this year. Sanders, Cook, Jenkins, Brown, and Rankins were all contributors. The big two losses are Brees and Hendrickson, and for some reason the media is looking over those two as if they don't matter all that much because Sean Payton is a magical unicorn coach that can fix anything. They did add a couple of interesting pass rushers, but Hendrickson is some big shoes to fill, and the Saints didn't add anything beyond that. They look significantly downgraded.

The Falcons didn't do a whole lot better. They lost four longtime starters and really only replaced two of them. Pitts and Grant were fantastic additions from the draft, but the new regime in Atlanta was forced to spend frugally in free agency after Thomas Dimitroff mucked up the salary cap by spending half his money on Julio and Matt Ryan. It's not their fault that there was no money available. They couldn't even have signed their draft class unless they traded Julio, so I won't punish them for that. They actually made the best of the situation, and either way it was better than what New Orleans did. Atlanta moves on. WINNER = Atlanta

 

THE COMPUTER: Winner = Falcons 91%/9%

 

The Falcons advance (3-) to the NFC South finals.

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Bucs v. Panthers

 

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

Key Personnel Adds: DE Joe Tryon

Key Personnel Losses: OL Joe Haeg

 

CAROLINA PANTHERS

Key Personnel Adds: QB Sam Darnold (trade), TE Dan Arnold (FA), WR David Moore (FA), DE Morgan Fox (FA), OLB Haason Reddick (FA), LB Denzel Perryman (FA), CB A.J. Bouye (FA), TE Tommy Tremble (draft), WR Shi Smith (draft) WR Terrace Marshall (draft)

Key Personnel Losses: QB Teddy Bridgewater (traded), RB Mike Davis (FA), WR Curtis Samuel (FA), DE Stephen Weatherly (FA)

 

RC: Wow, the Bucs really didn’t do much of anything to help this defending, aging Super Bowl team. Everyone is back, pretty much. Tryon gives them pass rush depth.

Carolina added some talent but then lost serious talent with Curtis Samuel going and lost good RB depth with Mike Davis walking. The Darnold move will haunt them for two years, and possibly undo this coaching staff in 2-3 years.

Much more talent lost for 2021 than gained, so my WINNER = Tampa Bay, oddly.

 

ROSS: I have mixed feelings about what Carolina did this year. I love the Arnold and Fox signings. Bouye has a chance at a bounce back season. Reddick is interesting if he's finally turned a corner and the Panthers can take a look on a one-year deal. They also lost a very good Curtis Samuel to Washington. But Sam Darnold is a problem. Why, why, why did you go get Sam freaking Darnold? He's so bad, has always been bad, and always will be bad. There's nothing here to fix. There's no hidden upside. He sucks, end of story. The only saving grace is that while Teddy Bridgewater was serviceable he wasn't much better honestly. This is a downgrade at QB, but probably not as much as RC thinks.

The Bucs meanwhile, had a very quiet off-season. They didn't add any fancy big names like last year. They didn't lose anyone either. Joe Tryon was a good grab in the draft though. Mostly they just re-signed every important starter already on the team, and they are going to run it back hoping for another championship.

This one is tough. I originally thought I was going to give it to Tampa simply because of Darnold, but I have to admit that the Panthers probably did improve a little bit despite the Darnold trade. RC will give me hell for it I'm sure and I'll get voted down 2-1 by him and his computer, but I'm going with Carolina by a nose. WINNER = Panthers

THE COMPUTER: Winner = Carolina 50%/50%

 

Carolina advances (2-1) to the NFC South finals.

 

**************************

 

***The 2021 FFM Draft Guide Package is now available – see the FFM homepage for more information, including Combo deals with the In-Season Package and Dynasty Stash reporting.

2021 College Football Metrics subscriptions are still available – all the NFL Draft/rookie prospect scouting reports, Dynasty Rookie Draft (weekly top 350) coverage and analysis PLUS our annual Devy scouting report/rankings summer series begins in July.***

 

*************************

 

--NFC SOUTH FINALS—

 

CAROLINA PANTHERS

Key Personnel Adds: QB Sam Darnold (trade), TE Dan Arnold (FA), WR David Moore (FA), DE Morgan Fox (FA), OLB Haason Reddick (FA), LB Denzel Perryman (FA), CB A.J. Bouye (FA), TE Tommy Tremble (draft), WR Shi Smith (draft) WR Terrace Marshall (draft)

Key Personnel Losses: QB Teddy Bridgewater (traded), RB Mike Davis (FA), WR Curtis Samuel (FA), DE Stephen Weatherly (FA)

 

ATLANTA FALCONS

Key Personnel Adds: RB Mike Davis (FA), LB Barkevious Mingo (FA), S Erik Harris (FA), CB Fabian Moreau (FA), TE Kyle Pitts (draft), S Richie Grant (draft)

Key Personnel Losses: C Alex Mack (FA), S Damontae Kazee (FA), S Keanu Neal (FA), WR Julio Jones (traded)

 

RC: Are the Panthers better today than they were at the end of 2020. Stop for a moment, look at the +/- players above (NOT the draft picks) and tell me if you were proposed Darnold, Arnold, Fox, Reddick, Perryman, Bouye in a trade for Teddy, Mike Davis, Curtis Samuel…would you do it? If you’re on the fence, consider the money that Carolina burned trading Teddy, the picks they lost, and then the huge money they committed to Darnold – you would never do this deal…losing Curtis Samuel is not to be overlooked either. You trade your locker room leader (Teddy) and best/nails WR Samuel…to go overpay milquetoast, non-leader, limited talent Darnold – it’s utterly ridiculous.

When it comes to the Falcons, would you rather have Pitts-Grant or Julio in 2021…age/injury risk Julio that is? And consider Mike Davis is a big upgrade for them at RB, oddly and Fabian Moreau might be a steal at CB.

I just think the Panthers ripped their team’s heart and soul players out and it’s going to cost them two years of a hole to dig out of. The Falcons got better for 2021, and if Pitts hits the ground running…no one will miss aged-Julio all that much. I like the Falcons here, but more because I hate what the Panthers did. WINNER = Falcons.

 

ROSS: I know we all hate Sam Darnold, but to me he's not enough to lose this for Carolina. They added more good pieces to this team and clearly look improved. Atlanta can't say the same and no wonder. The previous front office left this team in terrible shape by spending all their money on 3-4 players and trying to patchwork the rest of the roster together around them. Carolina might have had the single best off-season if it weren't for the Darnold trade, but that one move is going to cost them in the end. Either way they still did better than Atlanta, so they win the NFC South and move on. WINNER = Falcons.

 

THE COMPUTER: Winner = Carolina 51%/49%

 

 

The Carolina Panthers advance (2-1) to the NFC Final Four.



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About R.C. Fischer

R.C. Fischer is a fantasy football player analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics and College Football Metrics. 

Email rc4metrics@gmail.com

Learn more about RC and the Fantasy Football Metrics system >>