albert haynesworth, brad smith, buffalo bills, Carolina Panthers, chad ochocinco, chris chester, cullen jenkins, donte stallworth, greg olsen, houston texans, jonathan joseph, josh wilson, marshall yanda, matt lienart, miami dolphins, new england patriots, nnamdi asomugha, pete carroll, reggie bush, ron rivera, seattle seahawks, sidney rice, stephen bowen, tarvaris jackson, washington redskins
Well, apparently it took a couple of days for the GM’s around the NFL to digest the new CBA, but with the wheeling and dealing going on today, it looks like the NFL is finally back in full swing. Here’s an update on some of the transactions today, and as always I’ll point to someone else’s hard work if its better than mine (and 99% of the time that is a truth fact) so here’s PFT’s acquisition page with a complete list of each teams additions this off-season.
The Panthers make a big move to bring in more weapons for Cam Newton by signing Greg Olsen. Friends of the show know that I’m a big Greg Olsen fan (best hands in Madden), but even outside the virtual world Olsen has put up decent numbers and often times in an offense that didn’t feature his skill set. If Rivera can run an offense around stretching the field with Olsen he could put up some big numbers.
The Patriots continue to run rehabilitation projects on checkered characters. They went out to acquire Haynesworth and Chad Ochocinco for some scrap picks. Ochocinco is a big move for them. He’ll provide a nice number one opposite Branch and brings a deep threat ability they lost after Moss departed. Most think that he’s not a team player, but Ochocinco is remarkably loyal to his teams. He will cause some distractions, but in general he’ll be working towards the same ends. Haynesworth is another matter. He wants a scheme that allows him to simply do what he pleases and New England is a very strict system requiring players to do their exact job and nothing else. There is very little room for improvisation. Ty Warren has already greased the wheels by volunteering to play end or tackle, but I highly doubt Haynesworth will be shifting to nose tackle for the Patriots. I give this relationship a year before Haynesworth starts pouting… although winning could keep him quiet for longer.
Brad Smith to the Buffalo Bills is another nice pickup for them. They thrive on smaller, fast and quick receivers who can break big plays and Brad Smith fits that bill nicely. He’ll pair up nicely with Stevie Johnson and Lee Evans.
Reggie Bush is taking his talents to south beach (yes, it was easy, I don’t care. Shut up). I’m not sure how good a fit he is there. The Saints were able to utilize his speed and design plays to get him into space and get a decent amount of him. The Dolphins haven’t shown that same creativity on offense except in their use of the wildcat. Often their offense seems vanilla to protect Henne. Bush isn’t a ground and pound back, he’s going to be the motion man in their wildcat and see a fair amount of screens I would imagine, but it’ll be up to the Dolphins to find ways to get him the ball in space or this will be a wasted play.
The Seahawks apparently didn’t watch a lot of Vikings games over the last 4 years. If they did, they might know that the T-Jack to Sidney Rice connection wasn’t a big money-maker. Rice hit his prime under the gun of Brett Favre, Tarvaris Jackson’s favorite target was Bernard Berrian. I mis-reported recently that the Seahawks had signed Matt Lienart, but he’s the one backup quarterback they haven’t brought in to compete for a starting job. Not sure exactly what Pete Carroll’s plan here is, but I fully expect Kyle Boller, David Carr, and possibly Derek Anderson to give Carroll a call to see if they can fit into his little circus.
The Redskins are poaching their northern rivals for some backup talent. They signed Chris Chester and Josh Wilson to fairly large deals. Add them to Donte Stallworth and their initial interest in Marshall Yanda (who they failed to acquire) and it seems like they’ve had their eye on the Ravens talent. They also brought in Stephen Bowen from the Cowboys to continue to bolster their 3-4 line. Cullen Jenkins appears to be out, however, so they’ll still need to bring in a few more big bodies to hold down the front. Still, with Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo rushing the passer their defense could surprise this year.
The Houston Texans made a big play for a top flight cornerback, just not Nnamdi Asomugha. They signed Jonathan Joseph to a 5 year deal which is a smart move. They saved some money in doing so and can pursue a free agent safety or defensive front 7 piece. They’re reportedly looking to trade Amobi Okoye, who should find a lot of value, being only 24, despite his lackluster production. Most places say they’re out of the running for Nnamdi Asomugha, but I wouldn’t rule out the Texans attempting to acquire both. Their secondary was that bad this year.