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Bill Polian on Free Agency: Nice article in Indy Star.


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What do you think?  He makes some good points.  This could have gone in Colts, but it is about free agency.  Enjoy:

 

NFL FREE AGENCY 

Teams should put priority on their own players: Polian
 

Ex-Colts boss says go with those you know rather than take risk on those you don’t
 

By Mike Chappell
 

mike.chappell@indystar.com 


The Indianapolis Colts are flush with salary cap space but face costly decisions on several of their own free agents.

While not speaking specifically about the franchise he guided for 14 seasons, ESPN analyst Bill Polian offered advice on how best to move forward: Reinvest in your own. That was the personnel blueprint he essentially followed while serving as the Colts president/ vice chairman from 1998 to 2011.

“Free agency in and of itself is an overpayment situation,” Polian said in a conference call. “If your own players are quality players and you believe they can help you win, it’s better off to pay them because they’re probably as good or better than you can find in the market.

“You know them better than you know a player from another team.”

The Colts are projected to have about $41 million under the NFL’s $133 million salary cap, which goes into effect Tuesday when the league’s free agent signing period opens.

But they also have more than a dozen players whose contracts expire, making them unrestricted free agents.


General Manager Ryan Grigson has made it known cornerback Vontae Davis is one of his top priorities. Place-kicker Adam Vinatieri and safety Antoine Bethea are also likely targets to be re-signed.

Last offseason, the Colts were among the league’s most active teams in the free agent market. They spent approximately $140 million on 11 free agents from other teams, with varying degrees of success.

During Polian’s stint with the Colts, he routinely re-signed his own, including quarterback Peyton Manning, wide receivers Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne, defensive ends Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis, tight end Dallas Clark, linebacker Gary Brackett, safety Bob Sanders, offensive tackles Tarik Glenn and Ryan Diem and center Jeff Saturday.

The Colts likely will have to give Davis a contract worth more than $6 million per season and Bethea a deal worth at least $5 million annually. A new deal for Vinatieri probably will exceed $3 million per year.

Failure to retain any of them means overpaying to replace them, and a team re-signing its own doesn’t have to worry about that player having to adjust to a new scheme, a different technique or new surroundings, Polian said.

“There’s no city adjustment. There’s no cultural adjustment,” Polian said.
 “Football is not a seamless sport. Baseball is. Basketball is. Hockey to some degree is.”

Often, the true value of a high-priced veteran free agent isn’t realized until his second season with his new team.

Grigson mentioned at the recent NFL Scouting Combine he expects better production in 2014 from some of those signed last offseason.

Polian agreed.

“It may take a year to get adjusted,” he said. “That’s a year you have lost, but you’ve paid pretty big money for it. That said, there are some holes on your team you just have to fill (through free agency).”

Polian said free agency was the most difficult aspect of team-building that he had to deal with as a general manager.

“Keep this in mind,’’ he said. “Free agency is not free. It costs you two things you never get back: time and money.’’

Moreover, Polian said the market seldom consists of truly elite players.

“The best players are not in free agency. They are tagged or signed,’’ he said. “These essentially are ‘B’ players whose agents are looking for ‘A’ money. That in itself is not the best of buys.

“But there are some situations you are forced to deal with, so you bite the bullet and do it.’’
 

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Very well said. Its why I've always been an advocate of team building through the draft and trades. People never release A+ level talent. What Polian was saying was build up and re-sign your own guys. But Grigaon gets a pass because we didn't have our own guys after the 2012 house cleaning.

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Coming from a guy who overpaid his own players. I like Polian, but anymore he makes me roll my eyes.

His commentary on our franchise really doesn't mean much to me now because Bill has failed to do his homework & study Pagano, Grigson, & this new regime in INDY. Show up to LOS in person & that will demonstrate to me that you care provided that you sit down with Jim, Chuck, & Ryan for a 1 on 1 interview chat. 

 

Plus, Bill hated any journalist who questioned his approach & he had this aura about him like his GM moves were never to be doubted. Bill never handled criticism well. Asking Polian for advice on INDY is like calling up Coach Jim Mora to evaluate our playoff prospects...Funny & irrelevant. 

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Coming from the guy that overpaid his stars and let his quality guys walk, then try to fill those holes with low round picks and udfa's..

Exactly Shive. You hit the nail right on the head there. I agree 100% Plus, it took him forever to admit that QB Curtis Painter couldn't carry the team when Peyton was out. 

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Polian had to keep resigning everybody, Chris and Bill couldnt find anyone in the draft anymore.

Chris Polian...I shiver at the mention of his name. The worst excuse for an NFL GM I have ever seen. No eye for judging talent & he gave LB Gary Brackett a ton of money when he was well past his prime. Crazy...

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 “Football is not a seamless sport. Baseball is. Basketball is. Hockey to some degree is.” --Bill Polian

 

Look man, I respect what you did in Buffalo, Carolina, & in bringing a championship to INDY I do, but you work for NFL LIVE & Sirius XM Radio, don't bring up sports outside your level of expertise. It's not relevant to the discussion. Even in passing, mentioning baseball, basketball, & hockey has no bearing on football free agency at all. 

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Chris Polian...what a guy! Don't shed tears for ole Chris though, he landed himself a nice job with one of the best organizations in the NFL...The Jacksonville Jaguars

LOL! I can hear Chris right now. "What do you mean I don't deserve a raise?! I am vital to the success of this organization & I ran that team"...into the ground of decay & despair.  haha  Sorry my bad, but the truth hurts.

 

Holy Mother Of God! They named that fool the Director of Pro Personnel...Are they insane! 

 

http://www.jaguars.com/team/scouts/chris-polian.html

 

http://espn.go.com/blog/afcsouth/post/_/id/49889/chris-polian-officially-joins-jacksonville-jaguars

 

Best section of the article highlighting nepotism over legitimate qualifications: 

 

"Undeniably, his critics think he rose up the ranks in Indianapolis more because of whom his boss/father was than because of his résumé. Same now as he’s resurfaced in a prominent position with one of his father's disciples, if you will."

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I really did like the article.  It makes a lot of sense.  

 

I vastly disliked Chris.  He was a punk who rode Daddie's coattails but could not wear his jock-strap.

 

I wanted to punch him the one time he did "The Polian Corner in place of Bill....a rude and pompous ***.

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The one thing I agreed with him on is that for the most part, these are B rate players looking for A rate money. The irony is Bill would give C rate players like Kelvin Hayden and Gary Brackett A rate money. Good football players and good coaches can adjust, but Bill was too stubborn to ever explore free agency because he wanted to re-sign his own. I don't know if it was just his own arrogance or if I'm way off base here, but sometimes I felt he would hand out top dollar contracts to his own guys just to self-congratulate his own scouting prowess.  

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LOL! I can hear Chris right now. "What do you mean I don't deserve a raise?! I am vital to the success of this organization & I ran that team"...into the ground of decay & despair.  haha  Sorry my bad, but the truth hurts.

 

Holy Mother Of God! They named that fool the Director of Pro Personnel...Are they insane! 

 

http://www.jaguars.com/team/scouts/chris-polian.html

 

http://espn.go.com/blog/afcsouth/post/_/id/49889/chris-polian-officially-joins-jacksonville-jaguars

 

Best section of the article highlighting nepotism over legitimate qualifications: 

 

"Undeniably, his critics think he rose up the ranks in Indianapolis more because of whom his boss/father was than because of his résumé. Same now as he’s resurfaced in a prominent position with one of his father's disciples, if you will."

 

Yeah that ESPN article was a thing of beauty.

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I really did like the article.  It makes a lot of sense.  

 

I vastly disliked Chris.  He was a punk who rode Daddie's coattails but could not wear his jock-strap.

 

I wanted to punch him the one time he did "The Polian Corner in place of Bill....a rude and pompous ***.

With you on that analysis ,lol you need to be the color man.Tell it like it is in color ! :funny:

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With you on that analysis ,lol you need to be the color man.Tell it like it is in color ! :funny:

I am afraid I would get the Jaws treatment...kicked off air...or should I say 'bleeped' off the air....You know I would love that job though!!!  :spit:

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He's right. We know what our own players can do in our system. We're making educated guesses about what outside free agents can do.

He made Kelvin Hayden the 4th highest paid corner in the league....guess he didn't know that much.

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Good article and thanks for posting BrentMC11.  Polian was not perfect by any means but that guy knows more about running a successful franchise then all us posters on this forum combined*1000.

I enjoyed the article.  I enjoyed the what 14 years of winning football?  I love the Colts.  I really did not like his son.

 

Bill is a Hall of Fame GM that took 3 different franchises to the Super Bowl.  His GM talent throughout  his career is undeniable.

 

I also love my Bears/Colts Super Bowl Football on the mantle :)  More good days to come if WE have our way Coffeedrinker!! :blueshoe:  :blueshoe:  :blueshoe:

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Good article and thanks for posting BrentMC11.  Polian was not perfect by any means but that guy knows more about running a successful franchise then all us posters on this forum combined*1000.

Agree I think he did a great job. Honestly he made some mistakes, but who doesn't? I think I personally would have done most of what he did other than I would have tried to sign, Jake Scott, Mike Peterson, & or David Thornton other than that there was the cute draft of 3 centers hmmm didn't like that one. I believe Chris Pollian does know talent & the only draft he was completely in charge of was a good one!

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I'm not singling anyone out but I'm just going to say this in general about a lot of posters who live behind a computer screen with pseudo screen names and make comments that they never have to answer for or be held to any accountability for. I find it pretty lame the level of attacks we make on our players, gms, and coaches. I fully support having free speech and making an opinion known...I've criticized many things but usually try to be open minded or at least be careful of my comments. These guys do their jobs in full sight of everyone...all the right decisions and wrong easy to see and some not easy to see but they do a job that we can all agree none of us could even come close to doing or being qualified for and yet we act like we know so much more than them. Yet how many times if we were honest have we said one guy would be great or one not and been wrong and never had to own up to it. None of us qualified to understand how to put a contract together and work an agent to get the deal done. Its very easy sitting on this side of the screen. Even the very very bad GMs would be better than any of us...and yet we've had some very good leaders in this organization and a super successful one for the last 15 yrs basically. We should be careful because we very well could have had people like the ones in Miami, OAK, DAL, Was, or Clev making decisions over that time instead of what we got.

 

As for this article he is perfectly right. The theory is perfectly sound....execution can sometimes fail. He knew the right thing to do but that doesn't mean he is going to make 100% the right choices. What is the goal as a GM? Win a championship? He did that....gave us a team that was possibly an onside kick away from 2. All the while he did the #2 thing a GM is suppose to do. Fill seats! He put an explosive, exciting brand of football on the field that entertained a city and state that had little to no interest in football (even when we had winning seasons before). Indiana loves basketball..the hurry'in hoosiers...motion offense. Sure he made mistakes but there is no one....not a single person on this board that could do his job. People on here think they understand football...player talent....they watch a game and think they know what they are seeing. Bill Polian knows more about football than any of us. Heck Grigson too....Pagano as well...we criticize these people because it is easy. We have no qualifications...yet we act so superior. Just as Bill probably couldn't come into your job and tell you how to do it better we really shouldn't do that to him. Everyone can point out a mistake...its obvious....your boss can point out all your mistakes...and I'm sure you still think you do a good job and he does too or he would fire you. Polian did a great job for a number of years. He made many difficult decisions and got most right. He gave us a small, lightening fast defense because that is what Tony Dungy wanted. He gave him players that fit his style of football...spent more money on the side that was Tony's weakness while maximizing Peyton's potential by giving him tools to do so. It wasn't perfect but we did have the best record in the 2000's. We had constant SB contending teams...failing because of a myriad of things but not because of lack of talent. Execution sometimes...inopportune injuries...bonehead plays...but Bill put together some great years. What he is saying is very true and followed by many teams...at least the successful ones. Of course it doesn't matter if you keep the wrong guys or overpay your own and not realize their market value but I find it amusing the couch potatoes that think they are smarter than people who are of the top of their field of expertise. I fully believe we can second guess something or state an opinion or go against something but to belittle people or their contributions to the team to me is just sad. I do think we would do well to retain the better talent we have confidence in on our team. Davis and Vinatari for example are good examples of this. The chance of replacing them with something better in the open market is slim. We have to be cap conscience but I agree in keeping your core together and adding youth and talent through the draft. Throw in one or two well placed FAs from the outside will hopefully allow a playoff team to make that next step....instead of a step back.

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I'm not singling anyone out but I'm just going to say this in general about a lot of posters who live behind a computer screen with pseudo screen names and make comments that they never have to answer for or be held to any accountability for. I find it pretty lame the level of attacks we make on our players, gms, and coaches. I fully support having free speech and making an opinion known...I've criticized many things and maybe a hypocrite but now im going to explain why i actually dont support free speech at all

i cant say hitler wasnt a good natured leader because ive never ran a country

 

i cant say ossama bin laden was a mal hearted individual because ive never been a terrorist

 

i cant say the waitress shouldnt get hair in my food because ive never been a waiter

 

i cant say that poop tastes bad because ive never ate it

 

weve heard what you said over and over dont come to A FOOTBALL DISCUSSION FORUM and tell us we cant give our opinions of nfl executives. this place would get awful boring with only woohoo posts

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Bill Polian is a 6-time winner of the NFL executive of the Year award.    6-times!

 

Not sure any other GM is even remotely close.     Someday, the award may even be named for him.

 

There isn't a GM in history that hasn't made mistakes.   Some big,  some small.   They ALL make mistakes.   It comes with the territory.    That's what happens when you're in the people business.   

 

The key is to make as few as possible.

 

Look.....   I understand lots of Colts fan are glad he moved on.   It was time.   Everyone has a shelf life and Polian's had expired.  He was done in Indy.    I get that.

 

But the man did a lot of great things here,  including winning a Super Bowl.    The amount of ripping the guy takes here is amazing sometimes...........

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Bill Polian is a 6-time winner of the NFL executive of the Year award.    6-times!

 

Not sure any other GM is even remotely close.     Someday, the award may even be named for him.

 

There isn't a GM in history that hasn't made mistakes.   Some big,  some small.   They ALL make mistakes.   It comes with the territory.    That's what happens when you're in the people business.   

 

The key is to make as few as possible.

 

Look.....   I understand lots of Colts fan are glad he moved on.   It was time.   Everyone has a shelf life and Polian's had expired.  He was done in Indy.    I get that.

 

But the man did a lot of great things here,  including winning a Super Bowl.    The amount of ripping the guy takes here is amazing sometimes...........

i'd consider intentionally building a small defense and focusing soley on offense was a career ending mistake not a small one

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Bill Polian is a 6-time winner of the NFL executive of the Year award.    6-times!

 

Not sure any other GM is even remotely close.     Someday, the award may even be named for him.

 

There isn't a GM in history that hasn't made mistakes.   Some big,  some small.   They ALL make mistakes.   It comes with the territory.    That's what happens when you're in the people business.   

 

The key is to make as few as possible.

 

Look.....   I understand lots of Colts fan are glad he moved on.   It was time.   Everyone has a shelf life and Polian's had expired.  He was done in Indy.    I get that.

 

But the man did a lot of great things here,  including winning a Super Bowl.    The amount of ripping the guy takes here is amazing sometimes...........

Very well said. It doesn't mean people can't question things or have a difference of opinion obviously but to act like Polian ran us into the ground or mismanaged the team during his tenure when he put together one of the greatest teams of the decade is just unbelievable. It tells me all I need to know about some posters and whether to even engage them in discussion when they don't appreciate or understand the achievements Bill has had and the decade of success we had here in Indy that he did so much in putting together. As for his personality etc...free game...but his knowledge and what he did for us...its hard to argue and those that do...well they often fall short when trying to point out who did a better job than us over that period.

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i'd consider intentionally building a small defense and focusing soley on offense was a career ending mistake not a small one

 

 

You think he's the only GM to ever build a small defense?

 

And I didn't call it a small one.

 

The point is to see the Big Picture.    And the man has been a great GM everywhere he's been.  

 

Everywhere.    Including Indianapolis.     Again,  that's a fact,  not an opinion.

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You think he's the only GM to ever build a small defense?

 

And I didn't call it a small one.

 

The point is to see the Big Picture.    And the man has been a great GM everywhere he's been.  

 

Everywhere.    Including Indianapolis.     Again,  that's a fact,  not an opinion.

obviously the only reason we had a winning record was because peyton and not because pollian, fact

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i'd consider intentionally building a small defense and focusing soley on offense was a career ending mistake not a small one

I consider your lack of knowledge about our team and what we were trying to achieve not a small mistake. Bill doesn't decide if we run a 4-3, 3-4, west coast, power offense. The coaches do....Bill finds players to fill the skills the coaches wanted. Tony Dungy was a tampa 2 guru...he VALUED smaller, faster players that would fit his defense...do you want larger/slower corners trying to play in space??? No that is dumb. They wouldn't have fit Tony's system...same for a big brute LB that couldn't drop back in zone. We also knew that the coach was a defensive minded and should be able to maximize the potential of his defense while our true superstars were on the offensive side (Manning and Harrison and James). We built an offense to maximize Peyton's potential. To get the most out of your super star you try to give them weapons. There is a balance and if you look closely at what we did we were pretty balanced with our drafting of offense and defense with varying degrees of success. Bill selected a number of great defensive guys...I'm not saying he was perfect...we can all point out the failures...and yes the last couple years when it became time for a change. We aren't saying it wasn't ok to go another direction..it was needed...but your viewpoint seems very shallow and short sighted. That said my opinions are no more valued than yours but the fact we retained Bill for so long and he was awarded many times for his leadership and widely praised within the football community for his ability are in stark contrast to your views of him.

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I consider your lack of knowledge about our team and what we were trying to achieve not a small mistake. Bill doesn't decide if we run a 4-3, 3-4, west coast, power offense. The coaches do....Bill finds players to fill the skills the coaches wanted. Tony Dungy was a tampa 2 guru...he VALUED smaller, faster players that would fit his defense...do you want larger/slower corners trying to play in space??? No that is dumb. They wouldn't have fit Tony's system...same for a big brute LB that couldn't drop back in zone. We also knew that the coach was a defensive minded and should be able to maximize the potential of his defense while our true superstars were on the offensive side (Manning and Harrison and James). We built an offense to maximize Peyton's potential. To get the most out of your super star you try to give them weapons. There is a balance and if you look closely at what we did we were pretty balanced with our drafting of offense and defense with varying degrees of success. Bill selected a number of great defensive guys...I'm not saying he was perfect...we can all point out the failures...and yes the last couple years when it became time for a change. We aren't saying it wasn't ok to go another direction..it was needed...but your viewpoint seems very shallow and short sighted. That said my opinions are no more valued than yours but the fact we retained Bill for so long and he was awarded many times for his leadership and widely praised within the football community for his ability are in stark contrast to your views of him.

look dude the defense sucked and that was largely pollians fault, yeah dungy insisted on tampa 2 but bill couldve said change it or get out its not working WHEN YEAR AFTER YEAR IT SUCKED AND SHOWED IN THE PLAYOFFS WHEN MANNING WASNT RUNNING UP THE SCORE BOARD. I think mr irsays interview prior to the broncos game was indicative of that, is his knowledge of the game a mistAKE? 

 

for the record early on bill was pretty good from 97-2005 but his successes from that period hid a lot of his flaws later on and hiring his son didnt help, i dont think he was horrible but i didnt agree with some of his philosophies and lack of importance to defense he was alright id give him 7/10 decent

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Polian may have won 4 executive of the year awards but he only got one Lombardi trophy.

I never had everybody over for an executive of the year party ..... Just sayin

Guy put together 6 SB teams...you been to any of those parties? Wether they won those games or not (they were favored in more than half) doesn't mean Bill didn't do his job very well. I'm not here to argue the guy is the greatest GM in sports...just he did a great job for us and there is few if ANY we could have replaced him with that would have done better.

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