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How Would You Grade Mickey Loomis' 2015 Performance?

Offseason moves are already happening, but hold on a minute. Does Mickey Loomis deserve a pass for his part in the 7-9 record that was the 2015 season?

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

After the second 7-9 season in a row, who do the Saints have to blame? The team's win-loss record generally falls under the heading of the head coach's responsibility, but GM Mickey Loomis is responsible for the money situation that has resulted in bargain basement shopping to fill the roster in recent years.

Be sure to check out the poll at the end so you can vote on your grade for Loomis' part in the Saints' underwhelming 2015 performance.

With Mickey Loomis, the 2015 season started off, as usual lately, with a scramble to get under the cap. Some of the first moves were to restructure Jahri Evans' contract and cut Pierre Thomas. Evans had a decent season in 2015 yet age did show a slight decline in performance, which has led to his release early this offseason (after allegedly refusing a pay cut for the second year in a row) to free up cap space. Thomas was unemployed for most of 2015, with the 49ers signing and releasing him. The Washington Redskins signed Pierre late in the season and he was fairly productive for them. He didn't play long enough for the injury bug to strike and has hopes of returning to Washington. To be fair, the Redskins certainly don't have much better on their roster if you look at RB production. Trust me, I had both of their RBs on my fantasy team and they were benched after I didn't have to use them during bye weeks.

Jairus Byrd's deal was restructured to free up more space. Can't say I was too impressed with Byrd's performance. Coming off a knee injury in 2014 he wasn't expected to be 100%. For most players it takes two full years to be there, so 2014 was a lost cause and 2015 was little better. For the money we spent on him, 2016 had better pay huge dividends because it looks like he is staying. His guarantees have already kicked in.

Marques Colston restructured to free up more space and had the worst season of his great career with the Saints. Unfortunately, father time has also caught up with the fan favorite and a cut is likely this offseason.

Did I mention that Junior Galette was cut? Yes, after awarding the situational pass rusher a ridiculous contract in 2014, the Saints wisely decided to move on due to his offseason "leisure" activities. You all know where this is headed. That's right, the huge dead money the team is saddled with for 2016. Mickey's not looking too good at this point, is he? I'll leave the dead money mostly out of the conversation after this, but it has to be mentioned again, since it is approaching the peak of Mt. Chomolungma with plenty of sherpas carrying extra oxygen tanks and still climbing.

Well he one-upped the Galette deal by signing Brandon Browner. I was all excited about this move like most of us here, but man, what a farce that turned out to be.  Already expected to be cut given Browner's own Tweets, it is admittedly another wasted signing. You probably wonder why this hasn't happened yet while Evans and the rest of the other cuts were announced so early in the offseason. Well, in Evans' case they had to move to avoid bonuses. In Browner's case they have to wait so his dead money isn't charged to the 2015 season cap. Have to wait for the official end of the 2015 season which is at 4 PM eastern, on March 9th.

The Jimmy Graham trade for Max Unger and a 1st-round pick was a smooth move by Mickey. He managed to unload another monster contract, while shoring up the O-line and protecting Drew Brees for most of the season. It started a little rough and Drew was forced to miss his first and only game as a Saint. Unger was a plus and the extra 1st round pick without giving up a later pick was unheard of in the Payloo history books. And then Ben Grubbs was traded for more cap space and a 5th-round pick.  He also traded a promising young wide receiver in Kenny Stills to the Miami Dolphins for a third-round pick and a linebacker Dannell Ellerbee, who started only six games this season due to injury but played pretty well when on the field and seemed to actually give the team a -gasp! - pass rush. The key here is when he was on the field. The Saints originally restructured his contract last season, and have done so again to free up more dollars. Ellerbe suffered a hip injury while with Miami, and a knee injury playing for the Saints. I don't think the knee injury was very bad because he stayed on the roster, but only time will tell on the value of this player. These moves alone save Loomis from earning a failing grade for the season.

Another FA signing that was a disappointment was the C.J. Spiller deal. Did they not know he had knee issues before the signing, or were they just so sure that it wasn't major that they didn't care? Did Spiller hide it, and was he in the doghouse for most of the season because of it?  All speculation, of course, but this one wasn't one of Mickey's better actions. Will Spiller perform next season or be a cap casualty at some point? Can they even admit a mistake this early (see Browner, Brandon above)?

Keenan Lewis restructured and had a disappointing 2015. Several low budget FA signings and re-signings happened including signing kicker Shayne Graham, who they then released, along with the other wrong kicker after training camp.

On the plus side for Mickey, he managed to get under the cap in the first place. Also, while the dead money is at or approaching a possible NFL record, the 2017 season will be much better. Another plus was that he manged to bring the draft pick total up to nine in 2015, most of which made the roster, either as starters or backups, and one designated clipboard holder. P.J. Williams, who had a redshirt season on injured reserve.

For the disaster that was the 2015 season, I give the GM a solid C. He got some help on defense and shored up the O-line, but some bad choices and a pile of dead money lower his grade significantly.

So what grade do you give our GM? Vote in the poll and explain your vote in the comment section...