Originally Posted by steelreserve
OK, I have to admit I'm reluctant to give the Patriots credit mostly because I don't like the Patriots. Also, part of the reason they won three Super Bowls is because the competition was artifically weakened. Sure, they figured out the system better than most teams, kept together the best squad they could, and had talented coaches. But the Patriots are nothing like, say, Joe Montana's 49ers or the '85 Bears. Teams like that are outlawed these days, and there aren't too many really memorable clubs that get compared with the "best of all-time" anymore. That's what the salary cap takes away, and personally, I found it more fun when you have those kinds of teams around, whether you're rooting for them or whether you're the underdog that knocks them off.
Fine, I'll begrudgingly give you some credit, and I also have to admit that the Steelers benefited from the same things you did.
Also, I still do think the amount of players most teams lose won't change dramatically with or without a cap... but the big thing to me is, I think it's a lot more frustrating to lose players to the cap than it would be to lose them without one. Really, as a fan, it sucks to have a rule that gives you no chance of keeping a good and well-liked player around. Without the cap, some guys might leave, but at least you'd have a chance at keeping them if both sides wanted it to work.
If I was a player, I'd be more than a little insulted at being treated like a commodity to that extent.
Its an interesting debate - whether it is better to have marquee teams that win a majority of the titles or a kind of parity where 70% of the teams have a realistic shot at the beginning of the year.
There is an attraction to the possibility of having more All-Time Great teams in our generation, which the CBA tries to prohibit.
As a Pats fan I feel we haven't suffered too many high profile losses in terms of personnel that I have been seriously unhappy with - perhaps Milloy and Law were the biggest worries.
I think good teams can become complacent if they are allowed to to keep the same squad of players intact - and there is no hard and fast rule that the players you pick up in FA or the draft have to necessarily be a downgrade on the players you lose.
Drafting is still key - but proper cap management combined with good business ethics (the ethics the Steelers pretty much pioneered many moons ago) lead to a squad of talented, motivated individuals that will be capable of challenging for major honors year on year.
I dont think the Steelers and Patriots are going to share the next 10 SB's - but I see no reason why they both cant be very, very competitive over this period.