Atlanta RB Michael Turner, the league's leading rusher, said Wednesday morning on a conference call he was surprised the Falcons were the ones to pony up for him this offseason. He said the Falcons came "out of the blue," with their six-year, $34.5 million offer.
Many thought the Panthers were going to be one of the teams making a play for the former San Diego backup, and he admitted "I probably heard some whispers about Carolina."
That poses an interesting debate: Knowing they were going to find a running back to complement DeAngelo Williams, you wonder whether they were better served drafting Jonathan Stewart, making a run at an expensive free agent such as Turner or just drafting RT Jeff Otah first, and then nabbing their runner in the second round, such as current Chicago's Matt Forte.
Stewart seems a perfect fit, and Turner was way more money than they wanted to spend. Forte might not have the upside of the other two, but he's just fine and was cheaper. Plus, if they'd have gone that direction, they'd still have next year's first round pick, under the assumption they'd have used the 13th choice on Otah.
Discuss amongst yourselves.