A recent article on Bleacher Report graded the major offseason free agent signings and waiver wire pickups the Jaguars made. For the most part, these types of articles are generally useful and serve well to evaluate the impact a signing could have for the team. In the case of the Jaguars and their 2013 offseason, these articles don’t really mean too much.
David Caldwell is playing with the cards he was dealt – the Jaguars had a roster disturbingly bereft of talent at almost every position when Caldwell took over. There was an imbalance in the salary cap caused by several mediocre veterans on overpriced contracts. Caldwell immediately took care of the salary cap hits caused by Dawan Landry and Laurent Robinson. I wouldn’t be shocked if he eventually cuts ties with Paul Posluszny or Maurice Jones-Drew.
David Caldwell knows the Jaguars aren’t in a position where they can invest a lot of money in “impact” free agents. He wants to build through the draft, which means getting veterans on the cheap to transition to younger talent over the period of a few years. That’s exactly what Caldwell did this offseason – he signed several young veterans on cheap, low risk contracts.
Alan Ball, Justin Forsett, Geno Hayes, Sen’Derrick Marks, and Roy Miller all fit that bill. None of those players are expected to make a huge impact, they are only expected to compete to keep their job. If Caldwell wants to cut any of these players, he can without any ramifications. The same applies to the players they picked up on the waiver wire: Kyle Love, Mike Kafka, and Brandon Deaderick are all cheap players who could play their way onto the field but are at the very least viable options that help fill up the roster.
While someone may want to analyze these moves with an arbitrary letter grade, it really isn’t that complicated. All of these moves are ‘A’ moves because none of them have the potential to limit the Jaguars this year and beyond as far as the salary cap. The Jaguars aren’t expecting to find too many important pieces in free agency – that’s what the draft is for.
– Daniel Lago
Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89