The top targets in free agency are offensive tackle and wide receiver. It is difficult to assess the tackle market until the franchise tag and re-signing dust settles. Orlando Pace and Walter Jones already are off the market, so the top choices remaining would include Jonas Jennings, Kareem McKenzie and perhaps Ryan Diem. Luke Petitgout has proven himself at left tackle in the past, but he is coming off a tough year and might be forced back to the right if the team lands a big name who can play the left side. A player such as McKenzie might be appealing because he can play both tackle positions. At least that is the theory. He played the right side for the Jets. . . .
At receiver, Amani Toomer is coming off a frustrating, injury-marred year and could use a young, fast, big wideout to complement both him and Shockey. It is not known how much the team is willing to spend for a player like that, but the early list of candidates worth looking at includes Plaxico Burress, Jerry Porter and T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Porter would be a great fit, but there will be plenty of competition for his services. . . .
With DT Corey Simon franchised, it is not clear whether the team will look to tackle or linebacker as its top priority on defense. If the team pays big for offensive help it might be content to add lower priced veterans on defense and bolster that unit in the draft. One certainty in this offseason is there will be fewer veteran signings overall. Last year the team signed waves of reasonably priced free agents to add depth to a rebuilt roster, but with a core in place and key players under contract, the focus this year likely will be more on quality than quantity.
Sunday, February 27, 2005
Posted by SloMo at 12:05 PM