Watching yesterday's games, it really made me realize how terrible of a job Ryan Grigson did this past year. Particularly, watching Denver play, I'm seeing late round picks and low valued free agents step up big-time even with all the injuries they've had (and you can make a case that with injuries to Clady, Von Miller, , Derek Wolfe, Chris Harris, Vickerson, Rahim Moore and a less than 100% Champ Bailey, they were more beat up than the Colts).
Compare Denver's signings to the free agent pickups we made. Louis Vasquez was a 1st-team all-pro at guard and signed to a 4 year $24 mil deal, we signed Gosder Cherilus and Donald Thomas to a combined $49 mil in contracts. Denver signed Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to a 1 year $5 mil "prove it" deal, very low risk but high reward while we signed Greg Toler to a 3 year $15 mil deal. Denver signed Terrance Knighton to a 2 year $4 mil deal (yesterday alone showed how undervalued Knighton is), while Grigson signed Ricky Jean-Francois to a 4 year $22 mil deal. And finally, on the first day of free agency, Grigson threw 4 years $16 mil at Erik Walden while Denver signed Shaun Phillips to a 1 year $1 mil deal in late April.
As for the draft, other than Luck (an Irsay pick), TY and Dwayne Allen look like the only good picks Grigson has made so far and he's recklessly traded away high draft picks for players who haven't proven to be worth nearly as much in Trent Richardson and Vontae Davis. Where as, in John Elway's short time in Denver, I not only see high draft picks like Von Miller, Derek Wolfe, and Montee Ball flourish but they have late round picks and undrafted players like Chris Harris, Julius Thomas, Malik Jackson and Danny Travathan playing at a high level.
I could have included examples from the Seahawks, 49ers and Patriots as well (Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, NaVarro Bowman, Anquan Boldin, LaGarrette Blount and Aqib Talib and others come to mind as low value pickups that have worked out well for those teams) but I figured that most Colts fans, myself included, would be much more familiar with the Broncos and their players. Understand that I'm not calling for Grigson to be fired, but I do wonder if he needs to take a serious look at re-evaluating the way he's done his job before it gets too late. The Colts have 2 years left of Andrew Luck at a below market deal and then he will reasonably expect the largest contract in NFL history in 2016. With no 1st round pick this year and a bunch of bad high priced signings that would carry a lot of dead weight on the cap, the Colts need to do everything in their power to accumulate as much talent as they can in the next couple of years otherwise they'll have a transcendent quarterback with a bad team around him and they won't be able to win a Super Bowl under their current model.
Personally, while I do get very annoyed at Coach Pagano's in-game decisions, I am a believer that many of these mistakes can be covered up with a talented roster (John Fox makes similar questionable decisions) so I believe its on the GM to build a better roster around Luck. Anyways, I'm just wondering how the rest of you feel about this, I know BBS has had similar complaints and gets criticized by fans often for airing these beliefs, but I'd like to hear honest opinions from other fans.