Free Agency Reactions: Day 6
From Peppers’ morning move to Green Bay to LaFell’s late night landing in New England, the PFF team kept step with Day 5 of free agency and will be here to do the same again today.
To see some ofour other Free Agent tool features and keep on top of the action, we’d recomend with our Free Agent Tracker, our updating list of Top 75 free agents and the massively popular Deal Grader that offers an easy-to-follow comparison of free agent signings… and, of course, follow us on Twitter at: @PFF. For the early reactions from the first few days of free agency, you’ve just got to click: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5
Check back in every hour or two for updates and, if you can’t wait but want more info, well then you should grab yourself a PFF Premium membership for $26.99 to get all the grades, stats and snap counts out there.
23.25: EVEN MORE VISITS! According to Ian Rapoport, the Cowboys will be even busier as they host DE Jared Allen on Tuesday. The former Viking has a few teams interested in his services as he searches for a “fair contract” and a “place to win.” Allen played the third-most snaps of any defensive lineman last year with 1083, finishing at -4.0 overall with a -4.1 pass rush grade.
23.15: VISITS! The Cowboys will be busy tomorrow as they host DT Henry Melton and recently released quarterback Brandon Weeden. Melton has been making the rounds as he looks for the right fit for his penetrating style while Weeden looks to find a new home after a difficult two-year stint in Cleveland. Dallas is looking for any kind of defensive line help after struggling up front a year ago and losing their best player, Jason Hatcher, to the Redskins. Melton would fill a similar role as Hatcher, with the Cowboys hopeful that he can recapture the pass rushing ability that saw him grade at +15.8 in 2012.
20.30 It’s definitely been the quietest day so far, and that’s continued into tonight with only one piece of news to report. That’s on the backup quarterback front, where the St. Louis Rams are bringing in Shaun Hill for a visit according to Jim Thomas. Hill has barely played since the 2010 season when he started 10 games for the injured Matt Stafford, finishing the season with a +9.3 grade. He would be a logical choice as a backup for Sam Bradford, who’s struggled with injuries throughout his career so far too.
18.30 No signings to report this time, but there is some news on the visit front. The Kansas City Chiefs have brought in offensive tackle J’Marcus Webb to check him out, with an eye to the former Bears and Vikings tackle adding depth behind Eric Fisher and Donald Stephenson. Meanwhile Kenny Britt’s visit to New England tomorrow is still a go, despite the Patriots re-signing Julian Edelman and adding Brandon LaFell. Finally, Adam Schefter reports that Mario Manningham may be returning to the New York Giants, with a visit lined up for Monday.
16.00: RE-SIGNING! Courtesy of ProFootballTalk Calvin Pace has re-signed with the Jets for two years worth a total of five million. At this stage in his career Pace is a somewhat limited player, no longer capable of generating the pressure he once did but good enough in coverage and against the run that he serves a purpose. In that Rex Ryan defense the ability to do numerous things is extremely important out of an outside linebacker, and while he may find his sub package role limited more so going forward, we’d still expect ample playing time for him.
15.30: SIGNING! The Buccaneers added a second face today by adding linebacker and occasional full bakc Dane Fletcher per Adam Caplan. The former Patriot managed 211 defensive snaps last year where he posted negatives in run defense and in coverage, but did prove an able blitzer turning his 33 pass rushes into two sacks, a hit and four hurries. He may get the chance to compete for a starting spot but the likelihood is his biggest impact will be felt on special teams where he was second on the team with eight tackles.
13:30: SIGNING! Looks like the rumored Emmanuel Sanders to the Broncos deal is in fact happening as the team has now announced it on twitter. Whatever the agent-vs.-multiple-teams scuffle was that led to it happening, the Broncos have added a receiver capable of forcing missed tackles (15 in 2013, tied for fourth-best) and putting in work on the short end of the route tree (we tweeted his route chart last night). Sanders brought in 67 of 72 catchable balls last year as part of an 80.8 passer rating on throws his way.
12.30: SIGNING! Turns out Spencer was visiting the Giants, not the Rams. Now that makes a lot more sense but a team lacking pass rushing options. In other news the Bucs have signed Oniel Cousins per Roy Cummings. Well that’s one way to make fans miss Davin Joseph. Cousins is not fondly remembered by Cleveland fans after turning in a couple of the worst performances of the year by any guard. You don’t find many guards who struggle quite so much in pass protection as the one time third round pick, with his pass blocking efficiency score the fourth worst in the league of any guard as he surrendered 23 combined sacks, hits and hurries on just 220 snaps. Ugly.
11.30: Only real bit of news out there today is that Anthony Spencer is scheduled to visit with the Rams today courtesy of ProFootballTalk. On the surface it seems like something of an odd move with the Rams not exactly lacking for pass rushers in the shape of Chris Long and Robert Quinn, and neither those two or Spencer having any sustained experienced rushing from defensive in nickel. It may be an example of the market that is meeting Spencer, with his microfracture surgery turning him into such a health risk that teams are looking at him purely as a rotational guy to spell the stars. It’s a shame because Spencer was exceptional in 2012, proving a productive pass rusher and excellent when it came to setting the edge. But such is life under the franchise tag when a serious injury can really derail your earning potential.
10:30: Bit quiet on the news front now. On what is becoming “Giant Sunday” will they pull off an even bigger move and bring in Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie?
09.00: SIGNING! There’s been a lot of talk about where Walter Thurmond might end up, with the former Seahawk visiting a multitude of teams. Well now Adam Schefter reports that he’s signed a one-year deal with the New York Giants. Thurmond, a 2010 fourth round pick, has struggled to cement a prominent role in the Seattle secondary with injuries and off field issues limiting his playing time while others flourished. He still managed 585 snaps last year (including the playoffs) and was largely impressive except for a couple of sub standard postseason outings (including a tough Super Bowl against Wes Welker). He brings with him a lot of experience in the slot where his 0.85 yards per slot snap in coverage allowed was the seventh fewest of all cornerbacks. New York will likely offer him a chance at a starting gig, but at worst case full time slot duties.
08.45: SIGNING! The Giants have bolstered their safety depth and added a potent kick returner to their ranks. They’ve snapped up, according Art Stapleton, Quintin Demps who spent last year with the Chiefs. Demps ended up playing 669 snaps on defense as part of the KC dime package, but his biggest impact was felt returning kicks where his +7.1 grade was the second highest of all returners. Not bad at all.
07.00: Good morning! We expected a quieter Saturday but were still taken a back by a number of noteworthy deals as the teams tried to get a march on the competition. Will today prove as eventful? There are few blue chip guys out there but this is the period where bargains can be found. Les see what the day had in store.
03.00: As noted way back on Day 3 (15.50 mark), the Cardinals are getting a look at cornerback Antonio Cromartie as a possible add. Per some tweets between himself and Patrick Peterson last night, despite the lull there might still be something in the works with Arizona. In somewhat related news, cousin Dominique is also making stops, including one to chat with the Jets to see if he might fit as Antonio’s replacement — a pair of our top remaining free agents continue to do the dance.
02.00: It’s the early hours of Day 6 and as the remaining free agents, their agents, and GMs around the league have drifted off to sleep, we’re here to offer a cure for your late-night clicking. How about this quick trip through the teams as a place to start? Check out what each team has landed and lost through the first few days of free agency (snipped from our Free Agency Tracker page that holds even more to keep you clicking through the night):
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