ASFN Consultant and Senior Writer
- Jan 7, 2003
- Reaction score
- Orlando, FL
There seems to be many complaining the Cards aren’t making enough effort to be competitive next year. I thought going in to the off-season there might be a narrow path to significant improvement. Those hopes quickly evaporated when the price of free agents exploded. The Cards lost 2 decent performers. Allen because the price of expectations reached new heights. They also lost a CB with a concerning injury history who played best against slot receivers. Again, if healthy, he had some growth potential. Still keeping both might well have negatively impacted the future roster flexibility. So the Cards tried to move conservatively to maximize future options. They’ve tried to build depth on both lines with players who when draft appeared to have high potential and simply never fulfilled that potential. It’s old school but establishing effective, deep lines has historically been a path to reasonable competitiveness. This hasn’t meant grabbing expensive free agents, who historically have proved risky selections. There are, of course, few sure things from a draft, but there is safety in numbers. It also appears the Cards aren’t afraid to trade down and increase their potential. I know Anderson looks like the real deal, but even some of those have turned out to be illusionary players. Vernon Gholston comes to mind. It’s not clear which path will result in the best team. In the end, it was always a long shot for the Cards to be competitive in 2023, which I realize is especially painful for season ticket holders. I just think you have to give new administrations the time to at least put their vision in play for a couple of years before assessing the team’s trajectory. Let’s see if acquired players can be “coached up” to be competent contributors. Let’s see how msny of the team’s numerous holes can be plugged effectively through the draft. Let’s see how efficiently game management decisions are made. Instead of early wins, let focus on the foundations being established. It’s okay to call them out, but they should get a little grace time for us to develop a better understanding of their plan. I do believe they have one and it’s likely a shared vision amongst the administration.