Tuesday, July 26, 2011

NFL "Signings" Reactions - Tuesday 7/26/11

I love the NFL.  Third blog post (of hopefully four) today made possible by the NFL lockout ending.  This is going to be shorter today than my earlier fantasy article about the Buccaneers and today's reactions to NFL cuts, but it's going to become much longer by the end of the week.  This is all about teams that have "signed" players.  I say "signed" in quotes because they can't officially put any deals through until Friday, but all of these players have reportedly agreed to new contracts already.....

Matt Leinart and Tarvaris Jackson - Quarterbacks - Signed with Seattle Seahawks - This means the Matt Hasselbeck era is officially over in Seattle, and that the Charlie Whitehurst era is probably never going to actually start.  I don't like Tarvaris Jackson as a quarterback.  Brad Childress let him start in Minnesota for longer than he ever should have, and Jackson never did anything in my eyes to show he deserved those chances.  Matt Leinart is actually the more interesting signing here to me because of his history with Pete Carroll.  Leinart never got a fair shake in Arizona with the veteran Kurt Warner around and should get his fair shot at the job with Carroll in charge.  If he takes over the job in Seattle, he might even be fantasy relevant in deeper leagues at quarterback. 7/27 UPDATE - Apparently, ESPN was incorrectly reporting Leinart to Seattle and he's actually going to be resigning in Houston.  Seattle still needs a quarterback in my book.

Charles Johnson - Defensive End - Resigned with Carolina Panthers - This move just made sense for Carolina.  They have to spend a bunch of money to be compliant with the new CBA rules that require every team to spend 99% worth of their cap space in actual dollars paid every year, and Johnson was easily their best defensive player last year.  He's still young and getting better and could make multiple Pro Bowls in the future.  Johnson gets a nice long contract and 46 million over the first three years.  Carolina also gets a bit of a hometown discount here, rather than spend that money on other teams free agents in bidding wars. It's a win for both sides.

Santana Moss - Wide Receiver - Resigned with Washington Redskins - Moss coming back is big for the Skins, as he's the only really proven wide receiver on the roster.  It's a three year deal for a decent price for a starting receiver and it takes care of both sides.  The Skins get a good player at a good price, and Moss gets to stay in Washington, which he claimed was his desire this off-season.  He'll continue to produce as he has for the last few years and will help whoever is quarterbacking the Skins next year.

Marshall Yanda - Right Tackle - Resigned with Baltimore Ravens - Yanda moved from guard to tackle last year for the Ravens and did a great job. The Ravens had both him and the man he replaced, Jared Gaither, as free agents this year, and went after Yanda over the bigger physical tools guy in Gaither.  Gaither might catch a bigger contract from some other team due to his mammoth size, but the Ravens probably got the better value by resigning Yanda here.

Quintin Mikell - Safety - Signed with St. Louis Rams - The Rams needed to replace former Pro Bowl safety O.J Atogwe, who moved to the Redskins after the Rams cut him before the lockout began.  They did a good job of that by signing Quintin Mikell.  A former Eagle, Mikell should already be familiar with many of Steve Spagnuolo's blitz concepts from Spag's time under former great defensive coordinator Jim Johnson.  Mikell is a good in the box safety just like Atogwe was, and Spags will likely blitz him from every angle.  Solid signing for a team that's looking to win the NFC West this year.

That's it for now.  Will update with more later if anything comes out.

Doug Free - Left Tackle - Resigned with Dallas Cowboys - Free back to the Cowboys was pretty expected, so Adam Schefter reporting it wasn't huge news but four years for 32 million is a very good for the Cowboys here.  Free is just entering his prime and probably could have got more money and a longer deal if he waited to test free agency.  Good job by the Cowboys to lock him up.

Takeo Spikes - Linebacker - Signed with San Diego Chargers - Spikes isn't a great linebacker anymore, but he's just what San Diego needed to get in free agency.  I can't find the terms of the contract, but I'm sure San Diego managed to pick up the veteran at a great price.  They were losing most of their linebacker core from last year to free agency with no interest in bringing them back.  They needed a veteran like Spikes to bring in and play multiple linebacker spots.

Paul Posluszny - Linebacker - Signed with Jacksonville Jaguars - Posluszny is a fine linebacker but he is in no way worth the five year, 35 million dollar contract he will reportedly get from the Jags.  He's not a 7 million dollar a year linebacker.  He's a good player with a strong motor, but his high tackle stats don't correlate with him being a great linebacker.  He gets tackles on a lot of plays that have already gained successful yardage.  The Jaguars would have been much better off giving that money to Kirk Morrison.

-Fred "Big Derf" Tobin

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