I will admit that when I woke up this morning, I didn't expect to see much action for Free Agency. After all, it is Saturday. But making the rounds perusing the usual suspect sites for any news, I happened upon a few things to update.
In case you missed it in Horse Tracks this morning, the Broncos are interested in re-signing LB/DE Jason Hunter and are "aggressively" chasing QB Caleb Hanie. Well as Sayre reported, Hanie became the leading candidate to back up Peyton Manning this afternoon when he signed a 2-year contract. I know this brought mixed reactions out of Broncos Country, but I don't see this as a bad move.
I've stated it previously, but I am an optimist, so right from the get go, you know where I stand. It isn't "MHR spin" or intended to promote "group think," it's just my perspective in life. With that in mind, here's my take on the signing of Caleb Hanie.
A backup for the past 4 seasons in Chicago. Hanie is a 26 year old, 6-2,.236 lb. specimen. He played his college ball up the road in Fort Collins at Colorado State University and became the sixth Quarterback in school history to pass for more than 6,000 career yards in 2007.
Signed by the Bears as an Undrafted Free Agent in 2008, Caleb made the final 53 man roster, but didn't see much playing time until last season. He started 4 of 6 games in 2011, going 51/102, with a 50% Completion ratio, 613 yards, 3 TDs, 9 INTs and a 41.8 QB Rating, which is close to his career mark. Hanie was also Sacked 19 times in those 4 games. That should tell you part of the problem right there. Chicago's Offensive Line couldn't keep the mobile Jay Cutler injury free either. The Bears decided not to bring Caleb back after losing their last 4 games and a playoff shot with Caleb at the helm, including the 13-10 overtime loss to his new employer. Hanie had a conservative but decent game against the Broncos, going 12/19 for 115 yards in the contest.
The book on Caleb is that he has a very strong arm and can throw deep better than most of the Quarterbacks in the league. He also has the tools to be a starter in the NFL.
His drawbacks are like most young QB's - Forcing his passes, decision-making and throwing easy Interceptions.
Considering the amount of revenue spent on the Quarterback position by the signing of the best Free Agent in the 2012 market, is it reasonable to expect the Broncos to have signed another expensive player to merely hold a clipboard?
The Broncos will bring another Quarterback to Training Camp in July, whether it be another Free Agent like Billy Volek or through next months Draft. Adam Weber is a carry over from last season and there is still five months of competition to decide who will assume the second chair.
And you can be sure I will be at Training Camp keeping you apprised of each Quarterback's progress.
Meanwhile, Free Agency goes on and the Broncos could further add a Middle Linebacker to make me comfortable going into the Draft. It's been reported that the Washington Redskins Salary Cap infraction may prevent them from re-signing LB London Fletcher. If he could be persuaded to play the MIKE for us, I think many of us could relax a bit.
While I'm at it, can I have a Running Back too EFX?