San Mateo, CA
By adding former top-rated players such as Weeden, Okoye, Ryan Williams and now Rolando McClain, do you think there's been an offseason philosophical change or it just more of a coincidence that they were available?
Nick: I think it's probably a little bit of both. Personnel guys and coaches always say their trying to get better and upgrade at all times. So if a player comes along that can help them – at the right price – then you'll always be intrigued. I do think it's somewhat of a coincidence that these guys came along at positions of need, especially in terms of depth. Weeden has turned into a mini-blessing with Orton's deal. McClain wouldn't be here without Lee's injury and Okoye and Williams are a couple of guys who were once drafted high and if they can get past injury issues, they'd be a big help. I'd also throw in the newly-signed guard Uche Nwaneri in this category. He's someone who might be able to push for a starting job too.
Bryan Broaddus: The change has been Jerry and Stephen Jones' willingness to allow a guy like Will McClay and these scouts to do their jobs. You also have to have coaches that are willing to bring in players regardless of the time of year or the situation and coach them up. There has to be trust and these scouts have gained that trust when players that are brought in off the street are successful in games. When all parties are on the same page in this regard, your roster has a real chance to develop depth of players that have talent but for some reason or not, have not developed like they should have.
When I look at the wide receivers, I really don't see a guy who you'd call a true "speedster?" Do you agree with that and if so, can a team get by without having that one guy who can stretch the field [embedded_ad] consistently?
Nick: I've been pushing for that track-guy receiver for a long time and it still hasn't happened. Obviously Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams can both run well and get deep. But they don't have a lot of burners, and that's why there's always a chance for one of these rookie receivers to stand out. Someone like L'Damian Washington, who was once clocked in the 4.3 range, can elevate his status just by showing he can get deep and become a playmaker. It's not a necessity but having someone to take the top off the defense is always an added bonus. I do think we all underestimate Williams' speed because he has a knack for getting behind the defenders.
Bryan Broaddus: I agree that this group of receivers doesn't have the true speedster but what they do have is guys that can separate in their routes and once the ball is in their hands. I would much rather have this type of player that can consistently catch the ball and physically finish the run than a guy that can just run fast but is 50-50 when it comes to catching the ball. I believe that this group is more than capable of having a great deal of success.