What's more exciting: NFL Free Agency or the NFL Draft? I'd say Free Agency this year, because it's got some REAL big hooters on it.
With no draft picks on day one, free agency may be where the most change comes for the Raiders. There's a lot of free agents, so there's a good chance to upgrade that lackluster defense.
The Raiders D has been under performing like an impotent man who promises his wife love, only to slide off the bed, and knock himself out on the nightstand. That's what the Raiders defense has been known to do...hurt themselves.
A good way to correct that problem is discipline and addition by subtraction. CUT THE FAT! Kam Wimbley makes a lot, Tommy Kelly makes a lot...and for what?
When I see a 3-4 nose tackle in free agency like Aubrayo Franklin, who can't demand a salary like he did last off-season, I say, "BEEFCAKE!!!"
Man, wouldn't that eight million that's being paid to Tommy (don't-stop-the-run) Kelly be better paid to Aubrayo Franklin? I think...YES. Look, Kelly was a bad end in the 4-3, a decent pass-rusher inside at tackle, but couldn't stop the run, won't stop the run, and for the love of God, it's about time the middle of that Raider D-line boasted some stone-walling BEEF!
Whether Kelly stays or not, the Raiders will need a nose tackle to smell out what's cooking on offense and stick a spork in it. It's very unlikely the Raiders can afford either of the top two nose tackles (Sione Pouha from the Jets and Paul Soliai from the Fins), so signing Franklin would a good choice.
If there's ONE free agent who is the most likely to become a Raider, it's Tracy Porter. Why? Dennis Allen coached him up to start his career in NO, won a Superbowl with him, and the Raiders may need him in case Peyton Manning brings his necktie to Kansas City. Oh yeah, I said it.
Tracy Porter is twenty-five, smart, disciplined, and instinctive in coverage. Basically...he's everything the Raiders corners are not. So it would be a good move for Allen to bring one of his boys aboard as he installs his new defensive mentality.
What else? Even if the Raiders can afford to sign Porter and/or Franklin, they could use a veteran in their linebacker core.
Raiders will need to upgrade there, and there's one guy in free agency who would be a low-risk/high-reward for the Raiders and that's Panther's free agent linebacker Dan Connor. He's been hurt at times, but when healthy, he's a good backer to have, will only add competition, and could come cheap.
I expect Mckenzie's first pick to be a linebacker either way, but I'd be surprised if Dennis Allen doesn't nab at least one veteran flapjacker with some 3-4 experience. Allen will provide the syrup, but he needs those pancakes, baby.
Raiders should also consider adding an end for the rotation in their hybrid 3-4 defense. A guy like Bears free agent DE Israel Idonije would be a tremendous acquisition, and help the transition into a 3-4. A very underrated end and stout against the run, he would add great depth to say the least.
That's what I'm thinking on for this crazy Free Agency that's set to begin on March 13th.
Boy oh boy NFL fans are like a sweating dog right now...drooling over the possibilities.
Trust me, I'd know. I'm already on my third box of popcorn.
-- This article is from the twisted mind of Contributor AJ DeMello. For more comedic ramblings check him out on Twitter @Humorousfiend.
I just don't see Manning in KC. Miami's owner Stephen Ross is allegedly hot for him in a big way and I wouldn't rule out the Jets... but KC? They're a long way from contending and I don't see Manning playing for a team that doesn't have a viable shot at the SB in the next couple years - if ever. Hiring Romeo Crennel is like hiring Norv Turner or Wade Phillips for HC - basically waving the white flag on contenting. Peyton is not used to playing for money only.
Campbell would be a good fit in NY too, imho - but can they sell him to the fans? Manning is an easy sell - especially with his bro right there. Every Jets fan has seen this routine before - they're on year 4 of the "genius" coach who's supposed to take them to the big game and they're going in the wrong direction. Adding Peyton might help them believe for one more season. Adding Campbell is sure to increase the volume on the grumbling.
I can really see Manning in Arizona. Teamed up with Fitzgearld and Wayne as the number two receiver and maybe Garcon as the number three), Beanie Wells at RB, a semi-decent OL and a decent enough D and the Cardinals could be a real surprise team.
I will throw out a real curve ball here and say what about the Saints!?!? Brees isn't too happy about his Franchise Tag and could be traded away for a couple first round picks with Manning returning to New Orleans...
Awesome input from the Raider Nation!!! No arguments from me!....I'm guessing McK & Da are listening.....this is gonna be fun! So a couple of items that WON'T be changing under the new leadership....UNIFORMS & SECRECY (of what contracts have been renegotiated to date)...Let the REAL March Madness begin!
i hear jason cambell is talking to the jets to be a backup , thought he wanted to start, still think we need to try and keep him, . he might beat out carson
@ralphdog Come on Ralph! Being behind Mark Sanchez is almost as good as being a starter already. Sanchez sucks and everybody knows his scholarship is about to end, Campbell is just taking the job where he has the most chances to be a starter believe it or not.
If we only sign one Free Agent I hope it's Red Bryant. This guy is a beast! Athletic enough to play DE in the 4-3 with the size of a NT. What more could you want?!?
Other than Bryant, Porter would be a welcome addition of course!
@nilbymouth I'd also like to see Luis Castillo here. He's comming from an injury and he will be cheap, and he's talented enough to worth look.
@Black_Nightmare @nilbymouth Red Bryant is definately a very solid option - looked at him after you pointed him out Nilby, and i must say that i would love that signing! It would be decent priced with a very great deal of upside!
Castillo is a great prospect as well - injuries makes him a liability as an expected starter, but he will be cheap, has great talent when healthy, has scheme versatility and best of all - would be stolen from the Bolts!
Still think Soliai and Langford from Miami should be considered though, but getting in a bidding war for either would probably be too expensive for us!
Tracy Porter, Brandon Carr, Carlos Rogers, Richard Marshall and Finnegan - two of those would definately help our depleted secondary! My choice based on price and ability would be Porter and Carr, but having Rogers to play while also mentoring the younger DBs could be great as well!
Lardarius Webb from Baltimore played very well this year and is a great player from the future - he is a restricted FA, but wasn't the deadline for transition tags the same date as for franchisings (the 5th?)? If he wasn't tagged then he is a great player to look out for!
AJ Demello!!! If Peyton Manning actually goes to Kansas City and we have to play that damned monster twice a year for a couple of years, the children of the children of your children will be haunted by my angry ghost I swear!!!! Everyone here was afraid of it, but no one would even dare to invoke such a malignant prophecy.
All that said, this is starting to look like the tfds of old when Levi would bring serious and thoughtful articles and Bret would bring passionate editorials. Great job AJ, just pleas, please don't ever talk about manning and the Chiefs in the same sentence.