Saban is putting together a team that will be competitive now. He is not accepting the fact that this team is project and rolling over. He is doing what it takes to make the team competitive and stockpile for the future. Besides he only has 5 picks this year. They have to get some players from somewhere. Saban is doing an excellent job and not just throwing some crappy team out on the field.
I think Saban has already stated he is building this team for future long-term success. That is his agenda. But at the same time he won't settle for being a bad team now in order to meet that agenda. He is a competitor and is doing what any competitor would do.
Saban is building the team that he intends to take to the playoffs this season. But, for the sake of avoiding high expectations, he is only stating that he is rebuilding for the future. Keeps pressure off the players and himself while he puts his fingerprints on the team.