As we sit on the advent of free agency once again, as well as just a couple of months from the annual college draft, everybody has the excitement of being 0-0.
Every team has to live with what it most recently did, and for the Broncos that means the sour taste of a disappointing 7-9 season. For the Giants, it means being on national late night TV shows and basking in the glow of a world championship, as well they should.
But the one hunk of knowledge that every NFL coach and personnel man knows is that yesterday’s accomplishments, or failures, should be studied, evaluated, learned from, put proudly on a shelf if it is a trophy — but then you have to move on to the new season.
For the Broncos, we will look forward to injured players returning. Injuries cannot be used as an excuse, but the team nevertheless had 161 games missed by players last year due to injury, including 82 combined games missed by starters.
During Mike Shanahan’s 13 years in Denver, the overall average number of games missed by starters is 41.1, so last year’s total was double. Not as excuse, but a fact, and you have to get better when you are healthy.
In addition, the team obviously has received a very impressive infusion of young talent from the draft classes of 2006 and 2007, and there are high hopes that a similar crew will be added this year.
Meanwhile, every other team feels the same way.
With spring training under way right now, we are all reading stories every day about optimism in every single camp. And that is more than fair. We just don’t know that a great team will stay great, or that a poor performer from last year will not improve.
It all starts over.
And when it all kicks off for us in September, every team will have the same record that it has right now, 0-0, and every one of those teams will be looking to the glow of a new year.