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RoanokeFan
03-05-2012, 12:45 PM
PFW'S TOP 100 FREE AGENTS (http://www.profootballweekly.com/2012/03/05/pfws-top-100-free-agents)

"Updated March 5, 2012 @ 9:45 a.m. ET


We can say this much for the 2012 free-agent class: There have been worse
years to be looking for WR help.</p>


About one in six players in PFW's list of the top 100 free agents is a wide
receiver. Four of the top 10 free agents —Pittsburgh's Mike Wallace, San
Diego's Vincent Jackson, Philadelphia's DeSean Jackson and Kansas City's Dwayne
Bowe —are Pro Bowl receivers.</p>


Wallace, the highest-ranked of the wideouts at No. 4, is a restricted free
agent. At press time, the Steelers were expected to at least tender him at a
first-round level.</p>


The thinning of the free-agent ranks with the franchise tag is an annual
offseason rite. But even if the tag is widely used, the start of the 2012 league
year still figures to bring no shortage of big-money, multiyear deals.</p>


Several teams could have especially tough decisions in free agency. With
Saints QB Drew Brees receiving the franchse tag, what happens to OLG Carl Nicks
and WR Marques Colston —two of New Orleans' foremost offensive stars? WR Robert
Meachem and CB Tracy Porter are other Saints unrestricted free agents who could
draw interest if unsigned at the start of the new league year, March 13.</p>


The Texans are also in a challenging spot. Signing Pro Bowl RB Arian Foster
to a long-term deal doesn't help the odds of finding the money necessary to
bring back top pass rusher Mario Williams, even at the franchise number. The
Chiefs, Colts, Falcons and 49ers are other clubs with numerous desirable free
agents.</p>


PFW ranked these free agents on the basis of these criteria: talent, position
value, age and all other relevant factors. The PFW editorial staff provided
feedback throughout the process, and multiple league evaluators were polled for
their insight. All evaluators participated on condition of anonymity.</p>


QB Peyton Manning's fate has yet to be determined by the Colts. If available,
and if healthy, he would rank among the most in-demand players in an already
deep free-agent class.</p>


(Listed age is as of Sept. 1, 2012)</p>
<p align="left">1. Drew Brees
QB | New Orleans Saints
Age: 33 | FA
Type: Franchise player (exclusive)
</p>
<p align="left">One of the greatest free-agent additions of all time, Brees broke
the single-season passing yardage record in 2011. He has led New Orleans to four
playoff berths in six seasons with the team and captured Super Bowl XLIV MVP
honors after helping the Saints to the first NFL title in franchise history.
Players like Brees, a difference maker of the highest order, don't hit free
agency very often, and with good reason. The exclusive franchise tag precludes
other clubs from negotiating with him.</p>


2. Mario Williams
OLB-DE | Houston Texans
Age: 27 | FA Type:
Unrestricted</p>


</p>
<p align="left">Williams, one of the game's top pass rushers, who has shown he can
play in 4-3 and 3-4 fronts, is expected to draw major interest if he tests free
agency. He possesses a rare combination of size, speed, strength and athleticism
and can be downright dominant at times. His durability is something of a concern
—he missed most of last season with a pectoral injury and missed multiple games
with a sports hernia in 2010—but there is no doubting his
talent.</p>
<p align="left">3. Mike Wallace
WR | Pittsburgh Steelers
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Restricted</p>
<p align="left">We don't see many restricted free agents tendered at the
first-round level drawing offer sheets, but if the Steelers simply tender
Wallace instead of giving him the franchise tag —which would require interested
teams to surrender two No. 1 picks if Pittsburgh didn't match a contract
proposal —we could see that happening. The fleet Wallace can stretch any
secondary with his speed and has improved his all-around game, too.</p>
<p align="left">4. Ray Rice
RB | Baltimore Ravens
Age: 25 | FA Type:
Franchise player
</p>
<p align="left">Versatile and productive, Rice is a true dual-threat back, with an
NFL-best 2,068 total yards in 2011. That made him the second player in NFL
history (along with Marshall Faulk) to tally multiple seasons of 1,000 rushing
yards and 700 receiving yards. The Ravens haven't been able to work out a
long-term contract, so they game him the franchise tag on March 2.</p>
<p align="left">5. Carl Nicks
OG | New Orleans Saints
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Nicks was one of the best interior offensive linemen in football a
season ago. Considering the Saints gave ORG Jahri Evans a monster contract last
offseason, they could be challenged to keep the powerful Nicks, who is likely to
be the latest in a growing line of guards to strike it rich in free agency.</p>
<p align="left">6. Vincent Jackson
WR | San Diego Chargers
Age: 29 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Will this be the year that Jackson finally gets to test free
agency unfettered? The Chargers gave him the franchise tag a season ago, but
such a move would be even more costly this year. Jackson's size and speed can
present major problems for secondaries, and he fits Norv Turner's offense well.
Will the Chargers ink him to a long-term deal, or will he sign elsewhere? He's
clearly one of the top offensive players available in free agency.</p>
<p align="left">7. Matt Forté
RB | Chicago Bears
Age: 26 | FA Type:
Franchise player
</p>


Forté's 2011 season was cut short by an MCL sprain in early December, but
before the injury, he was one of the NFL's top all-around threats at his
position. Quick, tough and versatile, Forté is a major threat as a runner and as
a pass catcher. The Bears slapped the franchise tag on him on March 2, although
it is believed both sides will continue to negotiate a long-term deal to keep
him in Chicago.</p>
<p align="left">8. DeSean Jackson
WR | Philadelphia Eagles
Age: 25 |
FA Type: Franchise player
</p>


Jackson wasn't as productive in 2011 as he had been in previous seasons, and
his contract situation admittedly affected him. Considering that Jackson still
hauled in 56 passes for 961 yards and four TDs, the expectations for him are
quite clear. His speed is his greatest gift, and he can be an elite playmaker on
offense and on special teams. However, he is on the small side, and he could be
tough for a coaching staff to manage. Whether he remains in Philadelphia or goes
elsewhere, he's a wonderful talent who figures to be highly compensated.</p>
<p align="left">9. Dwayne Bowe
WR | Kansas City Chiefs
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Strength and physicality define Bowe's game. Concerns about his consistency
have subsided a bit after two strong seasons, though dropped passes still can be
an issue for him. The Chiefs could give the franchise tag to Bowe, who has
exceeded 1,000 yards receiving three times in the past four seasons and has a
total of 31 TD catches the past three campaigns. If he hits the market, he
figures to draw considerable interest.</p>
<p align="left">10. Cortland Finnegan
CB | Tennessee Titans
Age: 28
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Finnegan is one of the game's better players at a position that
has become exceedingly valuable with passing on the increase and the stellar
play of quarterbacks one of the defining traits of the 2011 season. He is
instinctive, competitive and tough, will not back down from opponents and is
capable of shutting down quality receivers when he's at his best. He will be
very much in demand if Tennessee allows him to test the market.</p>
<p align="left">11. Cliff Avril
DE | Detroit Lions
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Pass-rushing skill like Avril possesses is a valuable talent to
have in this pass-happy league. Avril, who notched a career-high 11 sacks in
2011, is quick off the edge and has a good motor. He fits the Lions'
hard-charging scheme well. Detroit could use the franchise tag to retain him if
it cannot strike a long-term deal with him.</p>
<p align="left">12. Wes Welker
WR | New England Patriots
Age: 31 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Welker is the Patriots' top priority in free agency. A quick,
tough, productive slot receiver, Welker caught 122 passes in 2011 —22 more than
any other player. No AFC pass catcher was targeted more (173), and he is adept
at working open for QB Tom Brady. Welker has made a strong comeback from a 2009
knee injury and continues to play at a high level.</p>
<p align="left">13. Calais Campbell
DE | Arizona Cardinals
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Franchise player
</p>
<p align="left">Campbell set career highs in tackles (72), passes defended (10)
and sacks (eight) in 2011. The 6-8, 300-pound defensive end works hard and has
produced at a high level since entering the starting lineup. The Cardinals are
unlikely to let him go.</p>
<p align="left">14. Robert Mathis
DE | Indianapolis Colts
Age: 31 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Mathis, who has notched at least 9½sacks in seven of the last eight NFL
seasons, will appeal to clubs looking for a disruptive, high-motor (if
undersized) pass rusher. (He also has improved vs. the run.) He has always
played in Dwight Freeney's shadow; the question is: How will he fare if he's the
rush threat that opponents focus on?</p>
<p align="left">15. Brandon Carr
CB | Kansas City
Chiefs
Age: 26 | FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


With the Chiefs signing ex-Raiders CB Stanford Routt to a three-year deal on
Feb. 21, Carr might price himself out of Kansas City. A productive starter who
has defended 65 passes and grabbed eight interceptions in four NFL seasons, Carr
is likely to be in demand when free agency begins.</p>
<p align="left">16. Ben Grubbs
OG | Baltimore Ravens
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Grubbs, who made the Pro Bowl in 2011, doesn't make many mistakes
and is solid both as a run blocker and as a pass protector. The Ravens would
like to keep him. "Ben is a player that we'd love to have back in Baltimore," GM
Ozzie Newsome said at the NFL Scouting Combine.</p>
<p align="left">17. Matt Flynn
QB | Green Bay Packers
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Flynn's résumé is short —two regular-season starts —but his potential is
considerable, and he plays the most valuable position on the field. There's
reason to believe he can be a successful full-time player. He is mobile and has
improved his arm strength. Moreover, he had a valuable apprenticeship behind
Aaron Rodgers. The question is: Can Flynn be elite? The team that acquires him
will place high expectations on him.</p>
<p align="left">18. Brent Grimes
CB | Atlanta Falcons
Age: 29 | FA
Type: Franchise player
</p>


Grimes, who has very good ball skills, has emerged as one of the NFC's better
cornerbacks the past three seasons. Despite the high cost, the Falcons decided
to use the franchise tag with the goal of working out a long-term deal for the
2010 Pro Bowler.</p>
<p align="left">19. John Abraham
DE | Atlanta Falcons
Age: 34 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


With 112 career sacks, including 9½in 2011, Abraham is one of the premier
pass rushers of his time. However, his age and the wear and tear sustained over
a long career are issues that have to be weighed. The Falcons would like to
re-sign him, but at their price, and Abraham likely will test the market.</p>
<p align="left">20. Marques Colston
WR | New Orleans Saints
Age: 29
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Colston is a tall, strong, sure-handed possession target who has a notable
injury history with microfracture surgeries on each knee the past three years.
He caught 80-of-107 passes thrown to him a season ago, an impressive statistic
when you consider that his average reception was 11.1 yards downfield. Look for
him to draw interest if he's unsigned at the beginning of the league year.</p>
<p align="left">21. Michael Griffin
S | Tennessee Titans
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Griffin has special physical traits for the safety position. He has very good
range and solid ball skills, too, as evidenced by his 17 career interceptions.
However, his play has left something to be desired at times. He seems to get
caught in-between on some plays. He draws this ranking on production, but he has
the potential to do even more.</p>
<p align="left">22. Michael Bush
RB | Oakland Raiders
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


A physical inside runner, Bush has been a capable fill-in for, and complement
to, Darren McFadden in Oakland. However, Bush lacks breakaway speed. With
McFadden's durability a concern, re-signing Bush would make sense for Oakland.
But will Bush be offered a starting job elsewhere? With the franchise tag
potentially thinning the UFA RB ranks, Bush could do quite well in free
agency.</p>
<p align="left">23. Lardarius Webb
CB | Baltimore Ravens
Age: 26 |
FA Type: restricted</p>


Webb is one of the better restricted free agents available. Tough, quick and
instinctive, Webb is capable of baiting quarterbacks into mistakes. He also
brings value as a return specialist. It won't be surprising if the Ravens sign
him to a multiyear deal.</p>
<p align="left">24. Fred Davis
TE | Washington Redskins
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Franchise player
</p>


Davis received the franchise tag on March 2. He set career highs in catches
(59) and yards (796), and his yards-per-catch average (13.5) highlights his
ability to challenge defenses down the field. However, he was suspended for the
final four games of the 2011 season after violating the NFL's substance-abuse
policy.</p>
<p align="left">25. Paul Soliai
NT | Miami Dolphins
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


The Dolphins are moving to a 4-3 scheme, which could open the door for
Soliai, who received the franchise tag from Miami in 2011, to go elsewhere. This
run-stuffing interior lineman fits best in a 3-4 scheme.</p>
<p align="left">26. Carlos Rogers
CB | San Francisco 49ers
Age: 31 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Rogers starred in his first season in San Francisco, intercepting a
career-best six passes for one of the NFL's top defenses. Considering his skill
and how well he fit in the secondary as sort of an extra coach on the field,
look for San Francisco to work to bring him back.</p>
<p align="left">27. Reggie Wayne
WR | Indianapolis Colts
Age: 33 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Wayne has lost a step, but he still can be an effective starter because of
his route running, excellent hands, durability and run-after-catch ability.
There's a good chance he could move on from the Colts, a club in transition.</p>
<p align="left">28. Sione Pouha
NT | New York Jets
Age: 33 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


The 6-3, 325-pound Pouha comes off his best season. Teams struggled to run up
the middle on the Jets in 2011, gaining 2.93 yards per carry on such rushes,
according to NFL statistics. While he is on the wrong side of 30, he has been a
starter for only three seasons.</p>
<p align="left">29. Dashon Goldson
S | San Francisco 49ers
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Franchise player
</p>


In addition to being a physical presence on the back end of the Niners'
secondary, Goldson intercepted a career-high six passes in a breakout season.
The 49ers are expected to try to re-sign him, and with good reason —he's one of
the top playmakers at his position.</p>
<p align="left">30. LaRon Landry
S | Washington Redskins
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Landry's durability is a major question mark. An Achilles injury suffered in
2010 also bothered him in 2011, and he has played in only 17-of-32 games the
past two seasons. When healthy, Landry can be a force in the back of the
secondary.</p>
<p align="left">31. Alex Smith
QB | San Francisco 49ers
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Smith took a big step forward in 2011, playing efficiently and taking care of
the ball (five interceptions). The 2005 No. 1 overall pick is still relatively
young, and his persistence really paid off a season ago. His stock definitely
has risen.</p>
<p align="left">32. Brandon Lloyd
WR | St. Louis Rams
Age: 31 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Lloyd's last two seasons have been his best. He has proven capable of being a
go-to target, but he might be best as a dynamic No. 2 receiver. The athletic
Lloyd is capable of the highlight-reel catch, but he can struggle to get
separation.</p>
<p align="left">33. Kyle Orton
QB | Kansas City Chiefs
Age: 29 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Orton is a starter-caliber player at a valuable position. He is not an elite
difference maker —he lacks mobility and isn't an especially accurate passer
—but he can be a winner in the right system with good talent surrounding
him.</p>
<p align="left">34. Pierre Garcon
WR | Indianapolis Colts
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


With good size and speed, Garcon has the tools to be a standout, but he must
be more consistent <span></span><span>—</span><span></span>with cutting down
on his drops and running better routes two areas of
note<span>—</span><span></span>to be ranked among the game's elite at his
position. However, he's coming off his best season (70 catches, 947 yards, six
TDs).</p>
<p align="left">35. Mario Manningham
WR | New York Giants
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


One of the stars of the Giants' Super Bowl XLVI victory, Manningham boasts
starting talent. However, the Giants already have two standout receivers in
Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks. The worry about Manningham isn't his ability but
his consistency, which has been lacking at times.</p>
<p align="left">36. London Fletcher
MLB | Washington Redskins
Age:
37 | FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Fletcher continues to play at a high level, and the Redskins are likely to
re-sign him. He has had a remarkably productive career. Want to know what
consistency looks like in numerical form? Pull up Fletcher's career statistics
and look at his games started and tackles recorded each season. Every week, he
shows up, and every season, he's a good bet for triple-digit tackles.</p>
<p align="left">37. Anthony Spencer
OLB | Dallas Cowboys
Age: 28 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Spencer is stout vs. the run and has shown moderate pass-rush ability —he
has notched better than 60 tackles and at least five sacks in all three of his
seasons as a starter. Will he be back in Dallas, or could he draw interest from
other 3-4 clubs?</p>
<p align="left">38. Tyvon Branch
S | Oakland Raiders
Age: 25 | FA
Type: Franchise player
</p>
<p align="left">Branch is the Raiders' top priority among their free agents, and
he was informed by the team he will be franchised. He has recorded more than 100
tackles in each of the past three seasons, and he is also solid vs. the
pass.</p>
<p align="left">39. Curtis Lofton
MLB | Atlanta Falcons
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


The Falcons are expected to work to retain Lofton, their starting middle
linebacker. The franchise tag is an option, but a multiyear deal is more likely.
He recorded a career-best 147 tackles in 2011.</p>
<p align="left">40. Laurent Robinson
WR | Dallas Cowboys
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Robinson's fifth NFL season (and first with Dallas) was far and away his
best. Robinson, signed just before the season after being released by San Diego,
set career highs in catches (54), yards (858) and TDs (11). Robinson's
playmaking ability and dependability —he caught two-thirds of the passes thrown
his way —are two of his selling points as he enters free agency.</p>
<p align="left">41. Chris Myers
C | Houston Texans
Age: 30 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Myers has become one of the game's better players at his position. Undersized
but athletic, he's one of the leaders of the Texans' line. He's a very good fit
for Houston's zone-blocking scheme.</p>
<p align="left">42. Jason Jones
DT | Tennessee Titans
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Jones played defensive end for Tennessee in 2011, but he might be best
inside, where his strength and quickness can make him a tough matchup for
interior linemen. He has shown significant potential at times and might have
upside to develop further.</p>
<p align="left">43. Robert Meachem
WR | New Orleans Saints
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


The Saints wouldn't mind re-signing Meachem, their 2007 first-round pick. The
question is: What sort of offers will the speedy former Tennessee star receive
in free agency? If another team wants to pay him like a go-to receiver, Meachem
could be on the move.</p>
<p align="left">44. Kendall Langford
DE | Miami Dolphins
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Solid against the run, the 6-6, 295-pound Langford wasn't as productive in
2011 as he had been in past seasons, but he certainly could hold appeal to clubs
employing 3-4 fronts. He might be on the underrated side.</p>
<p align="left">45. Scott Wells
C | Green Bay Packers
Age: 31 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


A key part of the Packers' offensive line, Wells has a good rapport with QB
Aaron Rodgers and ranks as one of the top interior linemen available. The
question is: Will Packers GM Ted Thompson give a multiyear deal to a lineman on
the wrong side of 30? Considering Wells' value to the line, there are some who
believe that would be a good move.</p>
<p align="left">46. Eric Wright
CB | Detroit Lions
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Consistency is the issue with Wright. He will be dependable for stretches but
can struggle mightily at times, such as he did in the regular-season loss at New
Orleans in December. Overall, though, he played well in his first season in
Detroit.</p>
<p align="left">47. Red Bryant
DE | Seattle Seahawks
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


A giant defensive end, Bryant is an excellent run stuffer. He is also a
difference maker on special teams; note his two blocked field goals at Cleveland
in a 6-3 Seattle loss last season. Though he is not much of a pass rusher, he
fits Seattle's scheme very well.</p>
<p align="left">48. Aaron Ross
CB | New York Giants
Age: 29 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Ross, who has contributed to two Super Bowl-winning Giants teams, could cash
in as an Unrestricted free agent. With the CB position so highly valued, do not
be surprised if he does very well for himself and signs elsewhere. However, he's
more of a complementary player than a shutdown corner.</p>
<p align="left">49. Stephen Tulloch
MLB | Detroit Lions
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


The quick, instinctive but undersized Tulloch notched 111 tackles in his
first season with Detroit in 2011. He's a strong fit it the Lions' 4-3 scheme,
and it won't be a surprise if they look to re-sign him.</p>
<p align="left">50. Antonio Garay
NT | San Diego Chargers
Age: 32 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Garay has come into his own the past two seasons, starting 28
games for San Diego. The run-stuffing nose tackle recorded a career-best 57
tackles last season. He plays a valuable position well.</p>
<p align="left">51. Demetrius Bell
OLT | Buffalo Bills
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


It is possible that Bell, who didn't play football until college and has only
31 NFL games to his credit, still could be developing. Though he played in only
seven games a season ago because of injuries, he showed marked improvement when
he was in the lineup.</p>
<p align="left">52. Jeremy Mincey
DE | Jacksonville Jaguars
Age: 28
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Mincey notched a career-best eight sacks and four forced fumbles in 2011. A
late developer, Mincey knows his effort is one of his defining attributes. He
does come with some durability concerns, however.</p>
<p align="left">53. Peyton Hillis
RB | Cleveland Browns
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Hillis struggled in 2011. A thigh injury cost him five games, and his
unhappiness with his contract was a distraction. However, at season's end, he
started to play well. Whether that was enough to convince the Browns to try to
re-sign him remains to be seen. At his best, he's a power back who is strong
enough to run between the tackles and athletic enough to help in the passing
game.</p>
<p align="left">54. Richard Marshall
CB | Arizona Cardinals
Age: 27
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Marshall's experience (55 career starts) and versatility (he can play
cornerback or safety) are assets. Moreover, he is still relatively young. The
Cardinals would like to re-sign him, but he figures to draw interest from other
clubs.</p>
<p align="left">55. Jared Gaither
OLT | San Diego Chargers
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Gaither impressed in a late-season stint with the Chargers, who want to
re-sign him. He has rare size for the position (6-9, 340 pounds) and has, at
times, shown great promise at tackle. However, he missed the entire 2010 season
with a back injury, and both Baltimore and Kansas City have given up on him. If
he becomes more consistent and can stay healthy, he could be a productive
starter for years to come.</p>
<p align="left">56. David Hawthorne
MLB | Seattle Seahawks
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Hawthorne has led the Seahawks in tackles in each of the past three seasons.
The question is: Will Seattle re-sign him or veteran LB Leroy Hill? There are
some questions about Hawthorne's durability.</p>
<p align="left">57. Tracy Porter
CB | New Orleans
Saints
Age: 26 | FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Porter, one of the stars of the Saints' Super Bowl XLIV win, has good ball
skills and 39 career starts to his credit —and young, talented cornerbacks like
him can do quite well in free agency. However, he has never played in all 16
regular-season games.</p>
<p align="left">58. John Carlson
TE | Seattle Seahawks
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Carlson missed the 2011 season with a shoulder injury, but he has been
productive when healthy. He could be a nice value signing if he is able to
return to his pre-injury form.</p>
<p align="left">59. Reggie Nelson
FS | Cincinnati Bengals
Age: 28 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Nelson has jump-started his career in Cincinnati. The former Jaguars No. 1
pick runs well, but he has occasionally struggled with consistency. Were he to
depart, the Bengals would have a clear need in the secondary.</p>
<p align="left">60. Cedric Benson
RB | Cincinnati Bengals
Age: 29 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Teams have a pretty good idea of what they are going to get from Benson. He's
a rugged power back who wants a heavy workload, and he can handle it. However,
he lacks long speed, turns 30 years old in December and had ball-security issues
late last season (five fumbles combined in Weeks 15-16). It will be interesting
to see where he lands and what sort of role he earns.</p>
<p align="left">61. BenJarvus Green-Ellis
RB | New England
Patriots
Age: 27 | FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Green-Ellis' calling card? His dependability. He has never fumbled, and he
has been a productive member of one of the NFL's top offenses the past two
seasons. He possesses good vision and balance and fits the Patriots' scheme
well.</p>
<p align="left">62. Nick Hardwick
C | San Diego Chargers
Age: 30 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Hardwick, who has started all 103 games in which he has played over eight
seasons in San Diego, reportedly wants to return to the team. According to STATS
LLC, Hardwick didn't allow a single sack in 2011 and was penalized only once.
Also, he has a good rapport with QB Philip Rivers.</p>
<p align="left">63. Evan Mathis
OG | Philadelphia Eagles
Age: 30 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Mathis played well in his first season in Philadelphia, and there's some
belief that he's an underrated player. He equaled his career high with 15 starts
in 2011 and didn't allow a sack.</p>
<p align="left">64. Terrell Thomas
CB | New York Giants
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Thomas missed the 2011 season with a torn ACL suffered in August. It will be
interesting to see how the injury affects his value. Stacking him and teammate
Aaron Ross on this list was challenging: There is some sentiment that Thomas
—he had 31 passes defensed and 10 interceptions in 2009-10 —is the better
player, but he is coming off a serious injury, which affected his standing in
these rankings.</p>
<p align="left">65. Mark Anderson
DE | New England Patriots
Age: 29
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


The pass-rush specialist had 10 sacks in the regular season and added 2½more
in the playoffs, with 1½coming in Super Bowl XLVI. While Anderson isn't an
every-down player, he has shown he can get after opposing QBs, which gives him
value in a pass-happy league.</p>
<p align="left">66. Aubrayo Franklin
NT | New Orleans Saints
Age: 32
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


The Saints, who have their work cut out for them in free agency, could bring
back Franklin, who was decent in his first season in New Orleans, at the right
price. He could appeal to clubs looking for a 3-4 nose tackle.</p>
<p align="left">67. Mike Brisiel
OG | Houston Texans
Age: 29 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Brisiel is a tough, hardworking interior lineman whose hard-nosed mentality
makes him a favorite of the Texans' coaches. The Texans ran well off the right
side last season, and he allowed only one sack. However, Brisiel was penalized
eight times in 13 games.</p>
<p align="left">68. Mike Tolbert
RB | San Diego Chargers
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


The 5-9, 243-pound Tolbert brings value as a tough red-zone back, as a
receiver out of the backfield and as a strong special-teams performer. He likely
fits best as part of a rotation. His versatility is an asset.</p>
<p align="left">69. Harry Douglas
WR | Atlanta Falcons
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Douglas, the Falcons' No. 3 receiver, has some big-play ability, with 10 of
his 39 catches in 2011 going for 20 yards or more. He would appeal to clubs
looking for a quick slot receiver.</p>
<p align="left">70. Aaron Maybin
DE-OLB | New York Jets
Age: 24 | FA
Type: Restricted</p>


As the Bills' 2010 first-round pick, Maybin lasted two dismal seasons in
Buffalo before landing with the Jets. Though he was just a part-time player,
Maybin flourished in Rex Ryan's system and notched six sacks and four forced
fumbles. Considering his youth and pass-rush ability, it will be interesting to
see how Maybin's career progresses.</p>
<p align="left">71. Israel Idonije
DE | Chicago Bears
Age: 31 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Idonije is a capable starter whose last two seasons —playing opposite Julius
Peppers —have been his best. The Bears are not likely to break the bank to
re-sign him, but it will not be a surprise if he returns. He notched a
career-high 52 tackles in 2011 and has 13 sacks the past two seasons, including
five last season.</p>
<p align="left">72. E.J. Henderson
MLB | Minnesota Vikings
Age: 32 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">After a very good nine-year career with the Vikings, Henderson
could move on from this rebuilding club in the offseason. Teams looking for a
tough, experienced 4-3 middle linebacker could be interested in him.</p>
<p align="left">73. Jason Campbell
QB | Oakland Raiders
Age: 30 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


With the Raiders making a major commitment to Carson Palmer, Campbell could
sign elsewhere. He was having a solid season before suffering a broken
collaRBone in October, leading then-head coach Hue Jackson to trade for Palmer.
Campbell has thrown more touchdown passes than interceptions in all six NFL
seasons in which he has played.</p>
<p align="left">74. Brodrick Bunkley
DT | Denver Broncos
Age: 28 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


With 65 career starts, the 6-2, 306-pound Bunkley, a 2006 first-round pick by
the Eagles, could appeal to clubs that are looking for help up the middle. A
serviceable starter, Bunkley notched 43 tackles for Denver a season ago.</p>
<p align="left">75. Jarret Johnson
OLB | Baltimore Ravens
Age: 31 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Johnson may be appealing to clubs that are looking for a tough, run-stuffing
outside linebacker. He does not provide much of a pass rush, and he would fit
best with a club where he could come off the field in obvious passing
situations.</p>
<p align="left">76. Thomas Decoud
S | Atlanta Falcons
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


The Falcons would like to bring back DeCoud, a three-year starter, at the
right price. He set career highs in tackles (86) and interceptions (four) in
2011.</p>
<p align="left">77. Vince Young
QB | Philadelphia Eagles
Age: 29 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Young had some good moments in his first season with the Eagles, most notably
in Philadelphia's Week 11 win over the Giants. However, he threw nine
interceptions in 114 attempts. His mobility is his greatest asset, but his
accuracy remains too scattershot.</p>
<p align="left">78. Andre Carter
DE | New England Patriots
Age: 33 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Carter proved he still can get after the quarterback by notching 10 sacks in
14 games in 2011 —his third double-digit sack season in the past five
campaigns. The primary questions with Carter are age and health; a leg injury
that led to quadriceps surgery ended his '11 campaign in December.</p>
<p align="left">79. Chad Henne
QB | Miami Dolphins
Age: 27 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


A shoulder injury ended Henne's 2011 season after four games. The knocks on
him are his accuracy and ability to come through in clutch situations. However,
he did play well in two of his three full games a season ago, and he could have
the upside to develop further. He likely will get a fresh start elsewhere.</p>


80. Visanthe Shiancoe
TE | Minnesota Vikings
Age: 32 | FA Type:
Unrestricted</p>


Shiancoe is getting up in age, and it would not be surprising if the Vikings
allowed him to depart. Minnesota drafted TE Kyle Rudolph in Round Two in the
2011 NFL draft, and he's poised to become the team's top target at the
position.</p>
<p align="left">81. Steve Weatherford
P | New York Giants
Age: 29 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>
<p align="left">Weatherford's 2011 season was his best, continuing a pattern of
recent improvement. And he was excellent when the Giants needed him most. Three
of his four punts in Super Bowl XLVI were downed inside the New England 10.
Also, he posted a 40.6-yard net average on 12 punts in difficult conditions in
the NFC title game at Candlestick Park.</p>
<p align="left">82. Michael Bennett
DE | Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Age:
26 | FA Type: Restricted</p>


The 6-4, 274-pound Bennett started 10 games a season ago, notching 39 tackles
and four sacks, and he was mentioned as a restricted free agent who merited
inclusion on this list —no small feat, considering the depth of this free-agent
class.</p>
<p align="left">83. Jeremy Zuttah
OG | Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Age: 26
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Zuttah has been a reliable starter in Tampa Bay, starting 44-of-58 games
since entering the NFL. He also can play center. The Buccaneers are said to want
to re-sign him.</p>
<p align="left">84. Eddie Royal
WR | Denver Broncos
Age: 26 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Royal caught 91 passes as a rookie in 2008, but he has made just 115 catches
in three seasons since. Quick but slight, Royal adds value as a returner, too.
He developed a good rapport with QB Tim Tebow in 2011.</p>
<p align="left">85. Ted Ginn Jr.
WR | San Francisco 49ers
Age: 27 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Ginn has elite speed and can be a difference maker as a returner, as he
showed when he returned a kickoff and a punt for scores vs. Seattle in the 2011
season opener. He also can be a vertical threat on offense.</p>
<p align="left">86. Matt Prater
PK | Denver Broncos
Age: 28 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Prater's leg strength is enhanced when playing in Denver's thin mountain air.
His range can extend to 60 yards on field goals, and more than two-thirds of his
kickoffs were touchbacks in 2011. What's more, he connected on all three of his
FG attempts in overtime as Denver won the AFC West.</p>
<p align="left">87. Mat McBriar
P | Dallas Cowboys
Age: 33 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


A two-time Pro Bowler, McBriar had left knee surgery in February to remove a
cyst, but he reportedly told ESPN Radio in Dallas that he expects to be ready
for the season. When healthy, he's one of the game's better punters.</p>
<p align="left">88. Jay Feely
PK | Arizona Cardinals
Age: 36 | FA
Type: Unrestricted</p>


Feely has connected on 82 percent of his field-goal attempts in his career,
and last season was the first time he had made less than 83 percent of his FG
attempts since 2004. Consistent and confident, he's a proven performer at a
pressure-packed position.</p>
<p align="left">89. Jeremy Shockey
TE | Carolina Panthers
Age: 32 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Though not the dynamic playmaker that he was earlier in his career, Shockey
is still a solid contributor who could help a club that's looking to improve its
TE corps.</p>
<p align="left">90. Josh Scobee
PK | Jacksonville Jaguars
Age: 30 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Scobee comes off his finest season, having connected on 23-of-25 field-goal
attempts, with no misses inside 40 yards. He also has a strong leg on kickoffs,
with 39 of his 62 kicks going for touchbacks in 2011.</p>
<p align="left">91. Phil Dawson
PK | Cleveland Browns
Age: 37 | FA
Type: Franchise player
</p>


Dawson's reliability is his greatest asset. He connected on 24-of-29
field-goal attempts a season ago (82.8 percent). Overall, he has hit 83.1
percent of his FG attempts throughout his 13-year career, all of which has been
spent in Cleveland. His ability to kick well in cold weather is an asset.</p>
<p align="left">92. Martellus Bennett
TE | Dallas Cowboys
Age: 25 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Dallas' No. 2 tight end has playmaking ability. Will he earn a bigger role
with another club? Finding consistency is a key for him.</p>
<p align="left">93. Brian Hoyer
QB | New England Patriots
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Restricted</p>


Hoyer has shown promise in three seasons in New England, with the bulk of his
opportunities coming in the preseason and in relief of QB Tom Brady in a handful
of regular-season games. New England is expected to give the backup quarterback
a high tender offer. There are some league evaluators who are not sold on him,
however.</p>
<p align="left">94. Michael Robinson
FB | Seattle Seahawks
Age: 29 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


The one-time collegiate quarterback earned Pro Bowl honors as a blocker in
2011. He also is an exceptional special-teams player.</p>
<p align="left">95. Dimitri Patterson
CB | Cleveland Browns
Age: 29
| FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Patterson rebounded in 2011, playing well as the Browns' third cornerback
after having struggled in a starting role for Philadelphia. It will be
interesting to see if he gets another shot at a first-team role.</p>
<p align="left">96. Early Doucet
WR | Arizona Cardinals
Age: 26 |
FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Doucet caught a career-best 54 passes for 689 yards and five TDs a season
ago. He could be a sleeper of sorts.</p>


97. Manny Lawson
OLB | Cincinnati Bengals
Age: 28 | FA Type:
Unrestricted</p>


Lawson, who has starting experience in 3-4 and 4-3 fronts, notched 51 tackles
and 1½ sacks for Cincinnati a season ago. He's shown some pass-rush ability in
the past, most notably in 2009 with San Francisco, when he recorded 6½
sacks.</p>


98. Jameel McClain
ILB | Baltimore Ravens
Age: 27 | FA Type:
Unrestricted</p>


He has started 31 of the last 32 regular-season games for the Ravens, who
would like to re-sign him but have quite a few big decisions to make in free
agency. He fared well when Ray Lewis was out of the lineup a season ago, which
does not hurt his value.

99. Ryan Grant
RB | Green Bay
Packers
Age: 29 | FA Type: Unrestricted</p>


Grant started 14 games in 2011, rushing for 559 yards on 134 carries. The
Packers could bring back Grant, who turns 30 in December, but James Starks' role
(133 carries) does not figure to wane next season and could
increase.

100. Jeff Saturday
C | Indianapolis Colts
Age: 37
| FA Type: Unrestricted"</p>

alau53
03-06-2012, 02:53 PM
no steve smith or plax in top 100..i think they're better than several other wr's that made the list

NYGRealityCheck
03-06-2012, 07:23 PM
Randy Moss working out for the Saints.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d8276a22f/article/moss-looked-like-the-old-randy-during-workout-with-saints?module=HP11_headline_stack

Still trying to get his first Superbowl ring. Can't wait for Brees to blow up on him sometime in the regular season.

alau53
03-06-2012, 08:26 PM
Randy Moss working out for the Saints.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d8276a22f/article/moss-looked-like-the-old-randy-during-workout-with-saints?module=HP11_headline_stack

Still trying to get his first Superbowl ring. Can't wait for Brees to blow up on him sometime in the regular season.

saints need to divert attention away from bountygate..no better diversion than randy moss

NYGRealityCheck
03-06-2012, 08:42 PM
Randy Moss working out for the Saints.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d8276a22f/article/moss-looked-like-the-old-randy-during-workout-with-saints?module=HP11_headline_stack

Still trying to get his first Superbowl ring. Can't wait for Brees to blow up on him sometime in the regular season.

saints need to divert attention away from bountygate..no better diversion than randy moss

Saints should not be worried about what the media and fanbases are thinking as much as worrying about what Roger Goodell plans to do to them. There's no diverting Roger Goodell... haha