Tuesday, February 19, 2008

NFL Free Agents: Outside Linebackers

by Steve

Day 4 and 5 of 14 days till free agency has us breaking down the Weak and Strong side linebackers available in free agency. Of course, one of the best, Terrel Suggs was franchised, effectively taking him out of contention for anyone to sign. So here is a breakdown of one of the top need positions on the Buffalo Bills, outside linebackers:

Just an FYI, the Bills have the most cap space heading into free agency with $38 million to spend according to this source. Not that the Bills will spend it all any way, cause we're the dying decrepit small market Bills and are wayyy tooo cheapppp. Whatever, STFU.

Here is Walterfootball.com's OLB ranking: Lance Briggs, Michael Boley (RFA), Kawika Mitchel, Calvin Pace, Brandon Chillar, Victor Hobson, Pierre Woods, Reggie Torbor, Clark Haggans, Rocky Boiman, Landon Johnson, Darryl Blackstock, Heath Farwell, Demorrio Williams, Sam Williams, Boss Bailey, Kevin Bentley etc.

Some names that interest me are anyone from the Giants defense, Demorrio Williams, Brandon Chillar, and Darryl Blackstock. De Williams is what some are characterizing as a 'high motor guy' which obviously is a turnoff considering how many of them we have on the roster but who knows maybe he was just lost on an awful NFC team. Brandon Chillar formally of the St Louis Rams will probably be seeking a big contract, but at 25 is probably worth it. He is a strong side LB but could play any where. I would definitely take a flyer on this dude if Russ Brandon isn't looking LB early in the draft. Another guy worth looking at is Darryl Blackstock of the Cardinals. True he is a RFA and played 3-4 in college but at 25 and 6'3 244 the dude is a beast. If the Bills brass feel they can mold this kid into something in their defensive scheme I'd shoot him a contract.

Lets be real here. Linebacker is a major need on this team. Their reach of a second round pick from last year is already injury prone, Rich Gannon showed us how bad Angelo Crowell is and Ellison/DiGirgio are way too small and basically worthless. The Bills have money to spend and need to pick up a top tier OLB or draft two.

Who I'm not interested in: Anyone over the age of 29, Victor Hobson, and Lance Briggs. The team is young and need to stay that way, bringing in some washed up has been scrub from the steelers or where ever is counter productive. Any linebacker that played for the Jets is not a good player, they seemed to get torched any time I saw a team play them . True Lance Briggs is only 27, but really is he that good? The whole Bears defense is pretty stout, could he just be a product of a system? Furthermore he is going to get crazy jack. Did anyone really notice Adalius Thomas on the Patriots this year? I don't like signing the top free agent from a team that had good defensive players sprayed all over the field. Look for a bargain or a step down or concentrate on the draft.

Tomorrow middle linebacker.

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