By John Turner
We must be getting close to the start of NFL free agency as we’ve seen some teams making moves these last couple days. Typically when a team puts options on contracts for players and or teams to exercise, its because they feel that that may be a good to reassess the career of said player and decide whether or not to retain their services. Players also have options and have so chosen to opt out in the past and take a chance on a more lucrative deal for themselves. We’ve seen a few options exorcized in the last 24 hours, so lets see who’s sticking around and who’s packing bags…
The 2 time Pro Bowler has spent the last three seasons in Jacksonville and is joining the club of mass exudus on the defensive side of the ball. Dareus is now in the same club of Dante Fowler, Jalen Ramsey, Malik Jackson, Tashaun Gipson, Telvin Smith, and oh by the way Yannick Ngakoue is a pending free agent looking for slightly over $20M a year. That’s quite the turn around from being one of the league’s top defenses that went to the AFC championship game not long ago at all. At 29, there’s no reason he shouldn’t get a decent deal from a team looking for some beef up front. I’ll predict a one year “show me” contract
An off and on solid starter for five years in Dallas that was then, arguably the best offensive line in the league. Undrafted out of college due to degenerative knee damage, He’d scrap his way into the starting lineup where he’d remain when healthy. In 2015 the Cowboys drafted La’el Collins, and it was back to scrapping for Leary. He’d lose his starting job in 2016 but an injury to Collins saw Ronald finish out the season as starter. He signed a four year deal with Denver, who moved him to right guard. The following year they moved him back to the left where he played in Dallas. Both seasons he’d end the year on injured reserve. He spent the year back at right guard this past season for the Broncos and today was let go. It’s a tough nomadic ride for many big men like Ron but linemen are a premium and no doubt a team like Washington may kick the tires if they can’t get both or either of their guards to return.
Wright spent six years in Minnesota playing the slot receiver, and most recently two years in Carolina. He had pretty decent year in 2018 catching 43 catches for 447 yards but but his numbers dipped a bit this past season. He’d haul in 28 passes for 296 yards but there’s a new sheriff in town and it ain’t Reggie Hammond. At 31 he’ll be looking for work in a new city. He’s been able to stay healthy for most of his career so I imagine he’ll find a roster spot somewhere.
Once upon a time Michael Vick‘s backup went out and earned $95M through the course of his career. Yeah, that’s right, ninety five million dollars is what he’s managed take home over the last 16 years. Some great statistical years in Houston followed by a couple forgettable years in Oakland and Baltimore, brought him back to where it all started for him. He’s proven to be a reliable back up to Matt Ryan these last four years and the team has given it a go for a fifth. The Pittsburgh native will be 39 in June and be a part of an offense looking to find its footing early on the upcoming season. The Falcons can now turn their attention to the running back position which will be without Devonte Freeman moving forward. A little birdie told me there’s a pretty decent ball carrier that’s coming out for the draft from Georgia. Could Atlanta land D’Andre Swift?