Fans seek safety
Page 4 of 19 -- Well, here's my take. Milloy could have "taken one for the team" as Paul J. writes. I can't argue that. But Milloy had agreed to a contract procedure the last three years. Why not do that same procedure this year? All the Patriots had to do was guarantee his $4.4 million this year, assign all but a $650,000 minimum salary to bonus spread it over the remaining three years of the deal. If they had done that, they would have reduced that $5.9 million cap number significantly.
On the other hand, I'm not willing to take the leap that losing Milloy hurts the team. I have to give Belichick some benefit of the doubt here. He is a great defensive coach. He obviously feels the loss of Milloy isn't that significant, or, he wouldn't have released him. There's always a way to fit a player you feel you can't live without, under the cap. The feeling was they felt they could get by without Milloy.
Take Ty Law, for instance. Do you think they wouldn't want to reduce that $8.8 million cap number? They didn't fool around with it because Law is still a player Belichick feels he needs. Law has leverage. Actually, as it turned out, Milloy had leverage because he had teams bidding for him.
Never believe that a player has to be cut to get under the cap. The player has to rework his contract, however, and there are many ways to do it other than taking a straight cut.
Until Belichick is proven wrong, he gets the benefit of the doubt with me.
In predicting Sunday's game, if the Bills are going to beat the Patriots this year, this is the week to do it. A lot of players were very down about the Milloy situation this week. The Bills are gaining much national support as the team to beat in the AFC East. Part of me feel the Bills need to prove they can beat the Patriots before I pick them, but I think the events of this week slant the game toward Buffalo.
I was wondering: what are the chances that NE could go after Ricky Watters? They probably will end up going with Antowain Smith to start the year, but they need some more backs on their roster that can put fear in a defense. Also, what the heck was NE thinking in cutting Lawyer Milloy five days before their season opener? Can Antwan Harris or a free agent off the waiver wire fill the void that is now there at safety? I think that the AFC East will be, by far, the most competitive division in the league this year. I see the Patriots finishing 10-6 or 11-5 (if running game does well), the Bills going 9-7, Miami going 8-8, and the Jets (b/c of no Pennington) won't be better than 6-10. What do you think?
-- Adam Nelson, Matthews, NC Continued...