NFL Free Agency: Top 20 Free Agents Available On Day Three
NFL Free Agency: Top 20 Free Agents Available On Day Three
The NFL Free Agency got underway on Tuesday afternoon, and several teams jumped right in and locked down their player of interest. Trying to keep up with every movement in real time became a challenge, and the amount of money that was thrown around was unbelievable.
The Chicago Bears started the action by addressing their tight end need with the signing of Martellus Bennett. The contract, worth $20 million over four years, turned out to be one of the cheapest contracts of the day.
The Miami Dolphins began spending money as though the salary cap was some imaginary thing, rather than the law of the land. They signed top-rated free agent Mike Wallace to a huge contract, which includes $30 million guaranteed. Their next move surprised everyone, especially when the price was announced. No one saw the Dolphins aiming their sights on Dannell Ellerbe, nor did anyone expect Ellerbe to pull a $7 million per year contract.
There are many who will say the Dolphins overpaid during the first day of Free Agency, but they are certainly not alone. The Cleveland Browns, for instance, with their $40 million signing of Paul Kruger. The Browns made several strong moves, and the defense in Cleveland is going to be a sight to see when teams square off in the fall.
Day two was just as exciting, with Reggie Bush and several others joining the Detroit Lions. It was the best signing day the Lions have had in a very long time, but the moves in the D were overshadowed by the earthshaking news that Wes Welker was heading out West to catch passes from Peyton Manning as a member of the Denver Broncos.
The news nearly broke twitter, but the New England Patriots and Welker were unable to get a deal together and the Broncos jumped all over it. In response, the Patriots hammered out a deal with Danny Amendola within hours of losing Welker.
It all made for a crazy day in the NFL, and Day Three is sure to have its moments too. The following is a list of the top 20 players left on the board. As always, if there is someone you think should be on the list, or have a different order you would use, feel free to use the comment section below, or reach out to us using the hashtag #RML, for Rant My Life.
20. James Harrison
James Harrison finished the season as the Pittsburgh Steelers' best pass rusher. He still has what it takes to make an impact in the NFL.
19. Antoine Winfield
Antoine Winfield fell victim to cap clearing by the Minnesota Vikings. He was a Pro Bowl-er just a season ago, and is still one of the steadiest defensive back there is.
18. Brandon Moore
Brandon Moore remains a strong option for teams looking to solidify their offensive line. The Chicago Bears could be a possibility, and there is still a chance he could return to the New York Jets.
17. Ed Reed
Ed Reed is scheduled to meet with the Houston Texans on Thursday, and the San Francisco 49ers could be next. The Baltimore Ravens have lost a large number of starters to free agency, and are certainly hoping Reed will return to lead what is left of their defense.
16. Steven Jackson
Steven Jackson has been rumored to be in talks with the Green Bay Packers for the last two days, yet nothing has been made official. It seems as though a deal should have been done by now, and this situation could go either way.
15. Nnamdi Asomugha
Just a couple of years ago, Nnamdi Asomugha would have been among the most coveted of free agents. After two years as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, it is now hard to argue he is a top-20 talent. Fact is, Asomugha was more than a good cornerback — he was absolutely dominant. You just don't lose that and with the right team, he could easily return to form. The 49ers are reportedly interested in bringing him in.
14. Fred Davis
At this point Fred Davis could turn out to be a steal for a team in need of a receiving tight end. Injury cut Davis' season short last year, but he possessed such speed, he would be worth taking a risk on if the numbers were right.
13. Karlos Dansby
It was just a couple of seasons ago that Karlos Dansby was a free agency stud. Now he is a victim of the stud free agent signing. Dansby is still an above average inside linebacker, and he put up career numbers last season. He should be signed before long, and will benefit whoever he plays for in 2013.
12. Kerri Rhodes
Released by the Arizona Cardinals on the evening of Day Two, Kerri Rhodes was cut to ease cap space issues. He turns 31 this year and after the highly productive effort he gave last season, expect Rhodes to be signed sooner, rather than later.
11. Keenan Lewis
Cornerbacks have not been moving as quickly as was expected at the start of free agency, and that may be the reason Keenan Lewis is still available. Lewis would be a quality addition to a team in need like the Miami Dolphins, or the Detroit Lions.
10. Michael Bennett
Before free agency began, Michael Bennett was said to have caught the interest of four or five teams. Somehow, he is still available at the start of Day Three, and could end up going back to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
9. Dustin Keller
The Dolphins brought Dustin Keller in to the facility on Wednesday, and Keller has drawn interest from several other teams as well. Don't expect the former Jet to be out of work for long.
8. Aqib Talib
The Washington Redskins were said to be sold on bringing Aqib Talib to their secondary, and returning to the Patriots is still in play. Talib will not be a free agent for much longer.
7. Ahmad Bradshaw
A surprise of the free agency period has certainly been the lack of interest we have seen in former New York Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw. At just 26-years old, Bradshaw has had injury issues over the years, but he is easily the most talented running back to have entered free agency this season. Despite that, his name has hardly been mentioned.
6. Brent Grimes
Brent Grimes was said to be re-signed by the Atlanta Falcons, but it turned out to be a false report. Maybe the confusion could be behind Grimes still being available going into the third day of free agency. He could have easily been listed as the best corner of them all, but an Achilles injury he suffered in the first week of the 2012 season may be causing concern.
5. Andre Smith
It may be getting to the point where Andre Smith starts considering going back to the Cincinnati Bengals. He may not get the money he hoped for, but he would be returning to a team that has made the playoffs the last two seasons in a row.
4. Sean Smith
Sean Smith is a big-bodied cornerback, and several teams have shown interest in securing his talents. Smith has made it clear he will go to the highest bidder, and this could be the reason he is still on the board. He may be trying to drive up his own price, or may not be getting the offers he had hoped for.
3. Sebastian Vollmer
Sebastian Vollmer was thought by many to be the best offensive lineman entering free agency, and he was expected to receive a large contract fairly quickly on Tuesday. Instead, it was Andy Levitre who was signed to the massive contract, and Vollmer is still waiting on a call. The recent moves in New England may force the Patriots to push a little harder to get Vollmer to come back.
2. Jake Long
Jake long went to visit the St Louis Rams on Tuesday, and was rumored to be a physical away from a new contract with them. No contract appeared after the physical was finished, and the Dolphins appear to be back in the mix for the four-time Pro Bowl-er.
1. Greg Jennings
The biggest surprise of the NFL Free Agency so far simply has to be Greg Jennings entering Day Three without a team to call his own. He had originally been offered a deal from the Packers worth $10 million a year, but now that the market has seemingly disappeared for Jennings, it is doubtful he will get a deal anywhere near $10 million. It makes no sense when you look at what Jennings did for the Packers during his time there. Many analysts had Jennings pegged as the most balanced wide receiver on the free agency market, and for him to have only drawn limited attention from the Vikings is hard to believe.