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The 2013 free agent group has quite a few big names. It will come down to salary CAP magic by NFL team front offices, and how much they're willing to spend. This year, teams with money to spare are in a position to improve overnight with the right choices.
This free agency "season" is going to be interesting. With loads of talent at almost every position, teams who've maxed out their salary caps are going to be feeding some of their best players into the open market. The New York Jets are in deep cap trouble ($-19.4 million). Rumors are flying around they'll shop Darnelle Revis to find room in their budget as they try to fix their battered franchise. The number of top notch wide receivers available this year may be the best we've seen in a long time too. Names like Greg Jennings, Mike Wallace and Dwayne Bowe headline an impressive list of receivers who could be looking for a new home in 2013.
Two teams, who could be interesting to watch are the Washington and Dallas. They both still have cap penalties carried over from last season. Dallas will be hit for $5 million, and Washington will absorb $18 million (19 free agents) this season. How they'll keep their teams' best FAs is anyone's guess. Some other teams are in big time cap trouble too. The Carolina Panther are projected to have a minus(-) $11.8 million in CAP space, after the bewildering big contract signings of DeAngelo Williams, James Stewart and other.
The Rams are on a youth movement, so I doubt they'll even think about some of the older free agents hitting the market. Have a look at the FA lists for offense and defense over at CBS Sports. If the Rams' current cap space holds steady at around $1.8 million, they may not choose to to take a stab at any free agents. True, they'll have to find a way to re-negotiate with Steven Jackson if he's going to stay in St. Louis, and Danny Amendola has to be the biggest FA question mark for the Rams. The key player for the Rams to re-sign may be on defense. Last season, defensive tackle went from a team weakness to strength overnight. The Rams currently have three DTs who'll be shopping their services in 2013. William Hayes played both DT and DE for the Rams in 2012, and had a great season. He'll attract the most attention in FA, and don't be shocked if Dallas comes knocking on his door.
Brandon Bate wrote a great article on Jarius Byrd, but he may be outside the Rams' price range. Those dreaming of Mike Wallace in a Rams uniform need to simmer down. I'm reading Wallace hasn't budged from his "Fitz-like money" demands. I can see the Miami Dolphins ($46.8 million) making a run at Wallace, but Cincinnati could come calling with their whopping $55.1 million in cap space. Can you imagine a receiving corp that includes A.J. Green and Mike Wallace...?
So put your GM hats on, and give me realistic FA choices for the Rams in 2013. Use the links above to CBS Sports to find FA listings. If you have the patience to slog through another of Bleacher Reports' interminable slide shows, they have a pretty good breakdown of cap room for every NFL team.
***On a side note - and me being a comments numbers whore and all - don't forget that Brandon Birkhead hates Sam Bradford, 3k wants to draft a running back in the first round of the 2013 draft, and
DC, Brandon Bates thinks Titus Young is better than Calvin Johnson... Discuss...***