A few days into free agency, and I'm already feeling a little dirty inside.
I admit it. I was lusting for Brandon Mebane. Had myself a small man crush. Got a wee typsy on the YouTube highlights.
In fact, I got a little out of control, like the time I took off my top at the senior center and let the ladies from the bridge club do body shots off me--without their dentures. I stalked Mebane on Twitter for about 48 hours, along with some other deranged Seahawks, Rams, and (yes) Broncos fans. In the end, neither the power of the internet, nor Mebane's relatively cheap price ($25 million) was enough to bring him to Denver.
Was I Desperate? Absolutely. All I wanted for free agent X-Mas was my two front linemen to be names other than Vickerson or McBean. It could have easily happened at the price Mebane finally took from the Seahawks.
Cullen Jenkins is still out there on the market. Maybe I'll stalk him until he signs.
Nah, it's not worth it. If EFX is going to take a Wreckx-n-Effect approach to free agency, why bother getting too worked up?
Instead, I'll try and content myself with this lesson: the biggest free agent the Broncos brought in this year is Dennis Allen and his scheme.
Here are five other lessons I've learned in the last 48 hours.
The Broncos Are Still Missing a Defensive Tackle
Justin Bannan? Sorry. Marcus Thomas? We hope. Ryan McBean? You don't say? Fine, just give me a tall glass of Kool-Aid; drown me with the sweet but sour narrative that the Broncos had to go for linebackers this year so they can address the defensive tackle position next year. Or just give me the blue pill. I wanna plug into the orange-and-predominantly-blue matrix so I can forget this line ranked worse than Keanu Reeves in Hamlet, dude. To stop the run or not to stop the run, that is the question.
Okay, that was a bit dramatic, but I had to keep venting for another paragraph or two. I actually thought the Broncos did well by bringing in swing lineman Jeremy Jarmon, who can play defensive tackle in this scheme. Still, a pure defensive tackle would have been nice.
This Broncos Front Office is Shopping For Bargains
The Willis McGahee signing seemed big, but was rather small. After bowing out of the DeAngelo Williams derby, the Broncos did the right thing and got the right production for the right price. Jeremy Jarmon is only a pup and won't cost much either. I expect the front office will not overpay for anyone, especially for defensive tackles, which they avoid like cholera.
In the coming days, I would be shocked to see the Broncos spend big money on anyone, including Cullen Jenkins, who is four years older than Brandon Mebane. If, for some reason, Ghost Rider, who would really round out the special teams unit, becomes available, the Chargers or Chiefs would probably still likely sign him for a dollar more than the Broncos.
Nobody Does a QB Controversy Like This Town, Baby!
Since Elway left, we've managed to see the bouts Brister v. Griese and Plummer v. Cutler. They say whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Not in these two instances. In the first case, Shanny split the players. In the second, Shanny split the fan base. Each time it's meant fan-on-fan action and and a worse record than the previous year. What's going to happen with Orton v. Tebow? Does it matter? Tebow moves the dial. Just keep him in the news, Joe Ellis!
There's Always a Gem in there Somewhere
The Broncos got one of the steals of the undrafted free agent pool when they signed Mario Fannin, who I briefly profiled here. I know that Knowshon Moreno, McGahee, and LenDale White are going to get a lot of the attention in training camp, but keep your eye on Fannin. Fanning treats third downs like Randy "Macho Man" Savage (RIP) treats a Slim Jim.
If Fannin does well, remember: you heard it here first.
If he bombs, tell them my old friend John Bena was wrong.
We're All Suckers
Spend a little time on message boards, and it seems like the fan bases of all 32 teams (outside of the Bengals) have been completely satisfied with their front office's moves. Every free agent seems to have been the right move or the critical guy. In the case of the Broncos it's, "These guys are different than Shanny; they're making smart moves."
I'll buy that with the Philadelphia Eagles, but come on, has every team really improved much? Hope springs eternal, but if one team in the NFL has improved, that means another team is heading for Nick Nolte territory. Does Nolte wear an orange and blue jumpsuit?
We'll find out in about a month.
TJ Johnson can be reached through telegraph, ESP, Spanish interpretor, or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter if you want to see him mock "the man." He assumes you are following It’s All Over Fat Man on Facebook and Twitter, but if you are not, that’s nihilistic, man.