More or less waiting for 4pm to happen now, and was reading a bit this morning, and let my mind wander.
Tom Sorenson's recent article - more or less about Cam Newton and Johnny Unitas - was honestly all about Jerry Richardson. Magnificent insight to this owner, moreso than his QBs. It's not a secret, now, that JR wanted a QB with that first overall pick in 2011, and while I'm sure that required some adjustment when Andrew Luck stayed in, Newton earned his.
But more than that, it's this bit about Peyton Manning. How have I gone this long and didn't know Carolina attempted to trade for Peyton? The trade was Muhsin Muhammad (not yet a breakout guy, in his first two years he had started 10 games, and picked up 32 balls for 1 TD), Kerry Collins (following a 1997 where he threw 11 TD and 27 INT, I guess Carolina already knew he was damaged goods), a switch from 13 to 1 and likely including the 1999 #1 and
*I assume this was before Sean Gilbert, since Gilbert was barely before the draft. Carolina dropped 2 #1s on Gilbert - 1999 and 2000 - and traded their own 2nd rounder to Miami so they'd have a #1 draft pick at all in 2000. Don't have to wonder long to figure out if this team is better
*Manning would've been interesting for the future of this team, obviously; despite heavy spending, Carolina started 0-4 despite somewhat competent QB play; I don't know it would've been better with Manning, who struggled as a rookie. Seifert likely would've still been the buy - unless Mike Holmgren, famously wooed by the most money, would've changed course to be with Manning; either coach would've found Manning ideal, and it was better than either coach had in the remainder of their careers.
*I wonder how much friction the QB issue put between JR and John Fox. Clearly, the aftermath included a renewed influence on offense, and whether Rivera had been the head coach (giving us Rob Chudzinski) or they'd gone a different route, there would've been offense. Unfortunately, JR's determination on only hiring defensive guys shut Carolina out of Jim Harbaugh, clearly a young star. But, they had their own guys in the queue, and they were willing to force a young offensive coach on the new head guy. It happened to work out that the new guy had his own guy, and that guy's fantastic.
But Fox, that's a different matter - clearly controlling of his coordinators and staff, Fox wouldn't open up the offense unless required; he wouldn't spend at quarterback, excluding extending Jake Delhomme. Fox, by the time he had to deal with hiring a new OC or DC, had considerable power, and used it. I don't know they wanted that with the next guy.
Some insight on Fox - I find it interesting that he and Hurney were so at odds by 2010, and yet both got emotional at letting Delhomme go; both were beaming at the pick of Jimmy Clausen, who both seemed to want. It wasn't until halfway through the year that the press let on that the two were at odds, somewhat suggesting that Hurney had distanced himself, or they'd squabbled over things like "the budget". Either way, it was clear in the end that Hurney was JR's guy, and that Fox hadn't been for some time.
*To further a Fox/QB philosophy ideal, I wonder whether 2008 really could've meant Matt Ryan. That was a rumor, and I more or less dismissed it myself. But I wonder if JR was after Ryan personally. It would explain why that sort of rumor might get out, and yet have an immediately conflicting response in the league. Ryan would've cost, to go from 13 to 2 (he went 3), around 1150 points of value based on the chart - probably their 2nd and a future 1st. Makes it unlikely, but then again, it didn't happen.
*For what it's worth, I have a problem with trading future picks - different from the one the Carolina Org has had over time. I doubly have an issue with it when it includes a future dominant QB. You've put a pick into a QB - it'll cost a premium, I get that. But with Manning in 98, or Ryan in 08, you're hamstringing that QB. in 99, the Colts were able to pair Manning with Edgerrin James.
Atlanta, on the other hand, may have as well missed the 2009 draft picking up DT Peria Jerry - and with that, they got Roddy White to play well with Ryan, but nothing else worked. That caused the trades for Tony Gonzalez, and Julio Jones - both of which cost them the ability to have a real defense over time.