The Jeremy Shockey / Jason Taylor Trades
Jul 22nd, 2008 by Ice Cream Jonsey

How nice of the Saints to deal for Jeremy Shockey during football week here at JC!

The deal was a 2nd and 5th round pick in the 2009 draft for Shockey. I had really hoped that the Saints weren’t going to give a second up, but, well. At the same time, the track record of draft picks for the Saints has been almost universally terrible, and if football were subject to the same kind of statistical analysis as baseball, I’d suggest a stat like Average Team Draft Pick Worth, where we see that a draft pick by, say, the Steelers is worth a lot more than one by the Saints, because the Saints are so bad at it.

I think the Saints had a good draft this year. They were terrible in 07. It was great in 06. Why not roll the dice on Shockey? He makes the team better immediately, and head coach Sean Payton doesn’t have a contract for 2009. For as good an offense the Saints had in 2006, the 2007 Saints were held to low points many times and just couldn’t get it going. So they now have another option.

The knocks on Shockey is that he is an enormous douchebag, that Eli Manning got better when he wasn’t around, and that he drops some catchable balls. I don’t care about the first. I really don’t – so he called Bill Parcells a homo. I’m pretty sure that Bill Parcells has said some mean things to his players over the years. Everyone’s a (rich) (well-compensated) (don’t feel sorry for them) adult here. I haven’t seen anyone deny that he leaves it all on the field.

Manning may have gotten better with Shockey not around, but that’s not going to be an issue with Drew Brees, who helped make an All-Pro out of TE Antonio Gates in San Diego. Brees is in his prime, and if the two of them put in the work they should play well together.

As for dropping balls, well, that puts Shockey right at home with the other receivers on the team except Colston. (It is amazing to see Marques Colston work – when he drops one, it’s because someone took his legs out from him. When Devery Henderson misses one, it’s because someone threw it to him in a nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere.) Everybody needs to work on their pass catching in the Saints offense, particularly Reggie Bush, so Shockey can benefits from the drills, too. (And we have no idea what kind of hands Robert Meachem has in the pro game.)

So, I guess I like the move. A second rounder is very, very valuable, and I don’t think the Giants had much leverage, so I am not in love with the trade or anything. Giant fans don’t seem to be thrilled with it, which means they don’t feel they ripped off the Saints. Likewise, Saints fans aren’t whooping it up like when we got two first-rounders from the Dolphins for Ricky Williams. I know that on ESPN’s “1st and Ten” the categorically announced this as a triumph of the Giants, but in the NFL you really, really don’t want those kinds of people on those kinds of shows in your corner.

The other big trade was Jason Taylor from Miami to the Redskins. The Skins sort of… well, sort of had to make this move, with defensive ends Phillip Daniels and Alex Buzbee both lost for the season. Taylor is a much, much better player than Shockey, but he’s also older. Taylor says he’ll finish out his contract, so that gives Washington at least two years of good production. Unlike most of the other defensive ends in the game, Taylor is not an anthropomorphic lard field that cavemen dump their waste into, so if he does regress some, it’s not going to be because of his weight.

Washington had made a bunch of horrible moves to get veterans since Daniel Snyder took over the team, but I don’t know if they have ever really brought in someone of Taylor’s quality before? So the shitty moves before colors the good acquisition now. As for Miami, they had to make this move, and good for them to get the second they were looking for. I am very hesitant to say that they will suck next years, because worst-to-first turnarounds in the NFL happen all the time. But they are posing themselves to get back into the playoffs in 2010 with moves like this.

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