It's probably unfair to call Andy "a second rate GC contender"- if someone who can finish 2nd in the Tour for 3 years in a row is 2nd rate, then everyone apart from Contador is. Many DSes would kill for a rider who can do that. And while there are few guys better than Frank, he's still a better GC contender than many teams' first guy. Plus they can actually win smaller races with at least two other riders, it's not bad to have someone who can win Pais Vasco (or Tour of California if your sponsor is American). Don't get me wrong, I think this merger is a marriage between the devil and Voldemort but on paper their perspectives look far from bad.
Pretty sad though that Bruyneel says Andy most likely won't even bother with Liege since it would interrupt his Tour preparation. Seriously? And they ruled out the Giro with Andy saying "Giro is a nice race but it's not the Tour and never will be". If that's all he can think about, I hope he retires without a GT win (unless he gets it from CAS...). By the way, during team presentation Chris Horner said "Nothing is quite like the Tour but Tour of California is just below it". I almost puked.