Friday, January 9, 2009

Motown Phil Brown?

Michael Lombardi - whose opinions can vary, but whose "I Knows" are typically "He Knows" writes that the Lions have opened dialogue quietly with Phil Savage -- the Browns former GM -- for the position of VP of player personnel (as I've said before, the Bill Polian/Scott Pioli position of team-building)

Lets take a look at how Savage did over his time with the Browns in drafting. Keep in mind, there are some people who work better when they are answering to others. It helps keep their Ego in check, and makes them take a second look at their own ideas, as well as the ideas of others. Any time you get one person controlling everything surrounding themselves with people they refuse to listen to all you get is a great big pile of Millen.

On his Wiki Page (always questionable, but there nonetheless) it indicates he was the top personnel assistant to Ozzie newsome in Baltimore when they had their great drafts from 1995 - 2005 of defensive talent. Also, he was brought into the league originally by Bill Belichick with the original Cleveland Browns. He was GM of the Browns for the 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 drafts. It's hard to judge some of those drafts because they were so recent. Also, it seems to be coaching issues more than just personnel that have taken down Cleveland recently as they were 10-6 in 2007.

Of course I'm going to try anyways. Sure, he's not with Detroit yet, but thsi gives us an idea as to what type of person Mayhew is looking at to handle personnel. This is his Draft History with Celveland (2005 - 2008).

While I seem to be fine with his choices overall I REALLY don't like the not having picks in rounds 1-3 in 2008, and it really came back to haunt them as they didn't have a way to fill the ever appearing roster holes in 08 and it hurt the team down the stretch --- that being said, there was no way to know what kind of season Derek Anderson was going to have in 2007, and his moves to get Quinn and Joe Thomas in the same draft were commendable. As he would be working with Mayhew, I think the check-and-balance would help make sure that deals that get done are in the best long-term interest of the franchise.

Anyone have knowledge of the players he drafted? (outside of risks on B. Edwards and K. Winslow -- moves I think were riskier than what Mayhew is going to be looking to do. He knows all about those 1st Rnd WR stats...) I'd like to know your thoughts/views on some of his other players he drafted --- good, bad, neutral??

Obviously, almost anyone could pick better than Millen, but how does he stack up league-wide??

your thoughts???

(thanks for the compliments, and keep the ideas/comments coming!)


jreffy said...

Count me in with the crowd who likes that Safety out of USC (provided he declares elligible). May main reason for taking a Safety is that this position provides all three levels of defense in one package (provided you get a talented player). You can obviously get good pass coverage, drop him in the box for run defense, and send him on a blitz for pass pressure.

I could also be talked into drafting DL first as pass-pressure has become a premium for any defense. With the rules for the offense getting more and more pass-friendly, you need to be able to hurry a QB constantly.

Anyway, I think drafting defense is the only way to go, maybe slip in a falling talent or an OL somewhere.

Dan Orlovsky is just fine as a starting QB. He's got a great WR to throw to, a promise RB, and hopefully will get a little support from his OL this year. The guy doesn't turn the ball over much, what more do you want?

Isphet said...

Those picks by Phil Savage for the last few years for Cleveland aren't Millen bad, but I don't see them as very good, either. I'll look at the top 3 rounds in each year, and look for the "diamond in the rough" in the later rounds to roughly judge each year.

2005: Braylon Edwards has been a mixed bag in Cleveland; but he's not bad. Brodney Pool seems to be solid but not spectacular. Charlie Frye. Ugh. none of the guys from the later rounds are on the team anymore; so no diamonds in the rough.

2005 final grade: C+, B-

2006: Kamerian Wimbley, production declined after good rookie season. D'Quell Jackson, good production for a number 2 pick. Travis Wilson, who? and again, no one that really stuck in the later drafting rounds.

2006 final grade: C. Not awful, but it would have been without D'quell Jackson.

2007 and 2008 Detfan pretty much said everything that needs to be said there.

I would have to say I'm not really impressed with his picks the last 4 years, at least upon my initial "3AM and I can't quite sleep" review, which admittedly may be a little skewed.

Anonymous said...

Although, I think his pedigree is great, I do not like his choices while GM at Cleveland. His picks looked like he was taking shots in the dark with his later picks. I would prefer an unknown assistant from one of the extablised teams who have experience gauging the college players rather tham Savage.

Todd said...

I have to agree with the rest. Although he had one or two hits in the first round, if you really look at it he has picked NO ONE credible. I don't know why we aren't more scared haha literally that draft record I personally think is pretty atrocious. Not that hes hired or anything close yet but I really, really don't like his track record. Hopefully with what DetFan said with shared control and Mayhew watching over him maybe it would be different. We will see. Since we haven't seen much on Lions actually contacting Rex Ryan I think I have to root for Ravens to win, so we have a sooner shot with Schwartz, but then again if the Ravens lose maybe we would have our first interview shot with Ryan.

Go Lions! Go Chargers!

ClusterFox said...

There are alot of variables being over looked.
1-Completely different scouting dept.
2-Different needs that had influence on decisions.
3-Different War room personnel.

IMO Mayhew is going to hire a guy with matching focus that will organize the scouting efforts, compile information, and help Mayhew make decisions. Does the track record that follows him, really have any material significance? I think Mayhew will stand up and be accountable for the final picks that are made, and all failures and success will be his to accept. So I honestly would be just as happy to see some up and coming scout that has a good eye for talent and wicked work ethic, as an established GM taking a step back.


RIP said...

It is interesting when Salvage was in charge and when he was an assistant, the previous when he was in charge.
I do not know what the experience in his progression, his idea of rebuilding, or the presures he was put in. From what I read, his drafts since he went to Cleveland was owner driven. How much say as he as an assistant or head guy I do not know. To get his input is worth while to listen to. He may, or may not, be the guy to hire. Do have to interview to see if he was in a position to draft so-and-so or not. Same experience Meyhiew went through with personnel.

JJLions20 said...

I'm not so keen on Savage as a GM, because his Drafts are not stellar. But I do think in a lesser role, as a member of a team making the picks he was far more successful. I'll do some cut and pasting below of the picks he made as a GM in Cleveland (they are not impressive), but when he was part of the Ravens team building, there was more success. Those are also pasted below.

If Mayhew sticks to the roadmap that works in the NFL (draft big, fast, build a defense, and run the ball) like they did in Baltimore, than in a Player Personell role Salvage can be successfull. As a GM, that position overwelmed him and the politics got the best of him.

Please look at both lists.

2008 (Round Player College)
4 Beau Bell UNLV
4 Martin Rucker Missouri
6 Ahtyba Rubin Iowa State
6 Paul Hubbard Wisconsin
7 Alex Hall St. Augustine’s

1 Joe Thomas Wisconsin
1 Brady Quinn Notre Dame
2 Eric Wright Nevada-Las Vegas
5 Brandon McDonald Memphis
6 Melila Purcell Hawaii
7 Chase Pittman Louisiana State
7 Syndric Steptoe Arizona

1 Kamerion Wimbley Florida State
2 D’Qwell Jackson Maryland
3 Travis Wilson Oklahoma
4 Leon Williams Miami (FL)
4 Isaac Sowells Indiana
5 Jerome Harrison Washington State
5 DeMario Minter Georgia
6 Lawrence Vickers Colorado
6 Babatunde Oshinowo Stanford
7 Justin Hamilton Virginia Tech

1 Braylon Edwards Michigan
2 Brodney Pool Oklahoma
3 Charlie Frye Akron
4 Antonio Perkins Oklahoma
5 David McMillan Kansas
6 Nick Speegle New Mexico
6 Andrew Hoffman Virginia
7 Jon Dunn Virginia Tech

Savage worked his way up the ladder in the front office as a scout and personnel evaluator, eventually following Cleveland's former owner Art Modell and the rest of the front office to Baltimore in 1995.

Savage then played an important role in the drafting of 10 Pro Bowl players: tackle Jonathan Ogden, linebacker Ray Lewis, receiver Jermaine Lewis, linebacker Peter Boulware, defensive back Chris McAlister, running back Jamal Lewis, linebacker Adalius Thomas, tight end Todd Heap, safety Ed Reed and linebacker Terrell Suggs.