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Thread: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

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    Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    By John Czarnecki

    Early Free Agent Winners


    1. Tampa Bay

    Quarterback Josh Freeman has to be rejoicing about the arrival of super deep threat Vincent Jackson from the Chargers. Jackson will create open spaces for young receivers Mike Williams and Arrelious Benn, who suffered sophomore slumps last season. The second coup was getting All-Pro guard Carl Nicks away from the Saints. These two moves make Tampa Bay relevant again in the NFC South. Former Lions cornerback Eric Wright is a solid addition in case Aqib Talib is jettisoned.

    2. Redskins

    The biggest coup remains the trade for Heisman quarterback Robert Griffin III, who is a special athlete with an arm better than Andrew Luckís, at the moment. To help him succeed right away, Washington signed Colts receiver Pierre Garcon after the Rams backed out and then also got Alex Smithís best big-play receiver, Josh Morgan. The ***** struggled last season when Morgan got hurt; heís someone who can definitely extend any play.

    3. Chicago

    OK, we know that Brandon Marshall will always have off-the-field issues, but he remains a top-10 receiver in the NFL, plus heís very familiar with quarterback Jay Cutler since their Denver days. The Bears needed a legit receiver, and now they have one. Signing backup quarterback Jason Campbell away from the Raiders also means that if Cutler gets hurt again like he did last season, the Bears have a quarterback who can win some games in his absence.

    4. St. Louis

    Garcon would have been nice for Sam Bradford, but the defense got a whole lot meaner and tougher with bad boy cornerback Cortland Finnegan, who is reunited with his former Tennessee coach, Jeff Fisher. Finneganís cover abilities will be celebrated by pass rushers Chris Long and Robert Quinn. If the Rams can somehow draft LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne, the defense would be fixed. Granted, the Rams love Alabama running back Trent Richardson, but what do they do with Steven Jackson?

    Early free-agency losers

    1. Houston

    Yes, the Texans have some really good young defensive linemen and pass rushers, but they would be a legit Super Bowl contender with Mario Williams on their roster. Also, if they donít re-sign right tackle Eric Winston, thatís a major loss for running back Arian Foster.

    2. New Orleans

    Saints coach Sean Payton figures to be suspended for a few games this season (and also fined) for his role in Bountygate, but right now he has an extremely unhappy franchised quarterback in Drew Brees. Yes, New Orleans was able to keep Marques Colston because they havenít paid Brees, but they lost deep threat Robert Meachem to the Chargers and lost Nicks to the Bucs.

    3. Miami

    The Dolphins traded away one of their best players for a couple measly draft choices, and they still have a quarterback hole unless they sign Packers backup Matt Flynn. How they went from being the so-called favorite to land Peyton Manning to being nowhere with him is probably making Fisher feel a lot better about choosing to coach the Rams over the Dolphins.


    4. Cleveland

    The Browns still donít have a quarterback and are still licking their wounds after offering the Rams three first-round draft picks for RGIII and losing out because the Redskins added a second-round pick. If they are going with Colt McCoy, shouldnít they have signed one of these available receivers?

    5. Kansas City

    Wasnít owner Clark Hunt telling everyone that the Chiefs were going hard after Peyton Manning? What happened? Arenít the Chiefs every bit as talented on offense, maybe more so with Jonathan Baldwin and Dwayne Bowe, as the Broncos?


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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    too early....

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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by richtree View Post
    too early....
    Yes it's early, but I must admit mild shock when I saw the Rams listed among the "winners." It seems in the past the pundits don't give us much love - deservedly so I suppose given our recent lack of success ..

    I too am glad the Rams didn't throw a boatload of money one of the FA receivers. This draft, unlike last year's appears to be deeper in wr talent. Why not get a young hungry kid and develop him as opposed to throwing millions at a "name" veteran. If we are going to spend millions on a veteran, I would hope it is on our O & D lines. It seems linemen can play very effectively well into their early thirties on the O-line, and D-linemen perhaps a bit less, but still can be effective beyond 30. Receivers, defensive backs, and running backs best years are when they are 21 - 28, after which most appear to lose a step and decline ..

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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    I think we're winners because we did'nt sign Garcon to $8mil a year.
    Last edited by Tampa_Ram; -03-15-2012 at 01:59 PM.
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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    While I think it's silly to grade either free agency or the draft so soon after its actually happened, I have to add that I like what the Chargers have done so far. They added Le'Ron McClain as a possible lead fullback or even a replacement for Mike Tolbert, they brought in Jarret Johnson from the Ravens to help at outside linebacker, they resigned Jared Gaither at left tackle and Nick Hardwick at center which was big for them, and they got Robert Meachem for a total contract price that was only a couple million more than what Washington paid Pierre Garcon just in guaranteed money.
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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Add the Bills to the top of that list... as a winner. Glad to see that it was the Rams that said no to an elite WR and not the other way around.

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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Tampa_Ram View Post
    I think we're winners because we did'nt sign Garcon to $8mil a year.
    True freaking that. I see Meachem and Garcon as the exact same situation! However, Garcon got signed first so does that set a precedent. No it doesn't because everyone knows Dan Snyder overpaid.

    4 years 6.5 mill per year for Meachem
    5 years 8.5 mill per year for Garcon

    Both deserve what Meachem got, but of course Washington doesn't know the meaning of the word "deserving contract"
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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    I really wouldn't have minded that 25.9mill/4years Meachem on the Rams. I think that would have helped us even more. Then again if we get Winston AND Jason Jones, then its probably a good idea we didn't jump the gun on Meachem


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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    how would simply adding Claiborne "fix" the defense? we still need OLBs and we need DTs......i dont think this dude knows what hes talking about

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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by RyanFoster View Post
    how would simply adding Claiborne "fix" the defense? we still need OLBs and we need DTs......i dont think this dude knows what hes talking about
    Hey now, this is the first time we've been "winners" in a long time. im going to enjoy it lol.


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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by RamOG View Post
    I really wouldn't have minded that 25.9mill/4years Meachem on the Rams. I think that would have helped us even more. Then again if we get Winston AND Jason Jones, then its probably a good idea we didn't jump the gun on Meachem
    Yeah, if you view Meachem as a #1 receiver (which is what he will be in SD and what he would have been here), then I don't think his contract is that bad. In fact, of the nine #1-type receivers signed before or during free agency, Meachem's deal averages out to be the second lowest...

    Calvin Johnson: $150.5M over 8 yrs ($18.8M avg)
    Vincent Jackson: $55M over 5 yrs ($11M avg)
    DeSean Jackson: $51M over 5 yrs ($10.2M avg)
    Pierre Garcon: $42.5M over 5 yrs ($8.5M avg)
    Marques Colston: $40M over 5 yrs ($8M avg)
    Stevie Johnson: $36.25M over 5 yrs ($7.25M avg)
    Laurent Robinson: $32.5M over 5 yrs ($6.5M avg)
    Robert Meachem: $25.9M over 4 yrs ($6.4M avg)
    Reggie Wayne: $17.5M over 3 yrs ($5.8M avg)

    Makes you wonder what the Rams were offering, or if they offered something similar and Meachem just preferred San Diego.
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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by RyanFoster View Post
    i dont think this dude knows what hes talking about

    "Yes, the Texans have some really good young defensive linemen and pass rushers, but they would be a legit Super Bowl contender with Mario Williams on their roster."

    Do you think he knows where Mario has been the last few years?


    edit: when the Skins cut Garcon and Royal after next season, will they still be labeled winners?

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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Yeah, if you view Meachem as a #1 receiver (which is what he will be in SD and what he would have been here), then I don't think his contract is that bad. In fact, of the nine #1-type receivers signed before or during free agency, Meachem's deal averages out to be the second lowest...

    Calvin Johnson: $150.5M over 8 yrs ($18.8M avg)
    Vincent Jackson: $55M over 5 yrs ($11M avg)
    DeSean Jackson: $51M over 5 yrs ($10.2M avg)
    Pierre Garcon: $42.5M over 5 yrs ($8.5M avg)
    Marques Colston: $40M over 5 yrs ($8M avg)
    Stevie Johnson: $36.25M over 5 yrs ($7.25M avg)
    Laurent Robinson: $32.5M over 5 yrs ($6.5M avg)
    Robert Meachem: $25.9M over 4 yrs ($6.4M avg)
    Reggie Wayne: $17.5M over 3 yrs ($5.8M avg)

    Makes you wonder what the Rams were offering, or if they offered something similar and Meachem just preferred San Diego.
    Did we offer Meachem? I thought we did to Garcon, for what I assume probably around Meachems contract.


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    Re: Early Free Agent Winners and losers ..

    Quote Originally Posted by RamOG View Post
    Did we offer Meachem? I thought we did to Garcon, for what I assume probably around Meachems contract.
    No idea. A recent Jim Thomas article simply said the Rams "were involved" with Meachem and were surprised he ended up in San Diego. While Meachem was in Buffalo, the Rams were in contact with him to try and get him to visit. I wouldn't be surprised if some loose numbers were brought up during that discussion, but as far as I know, nothing was ever reported.
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