Free Agency is far from over, but most of the money that was out there to be spent is already spent. Things will grind to a halt over the next few days, and then guys will start to sign league minimum deals. With that in mind, I think it’s time to look at the winners and losers of free agency:
Winner: Most teams who had cap room
The 2013 free agents got stuck in a buyers market. Teams had plenty of options and there wasn’t a lot of available salary cap space around the league compared to the amount of talent available. The result was a bunch of short contracts and smaller than expected salaries.
Loser: The Miami Dolphins
In a year where salaries were down, the Dolphins broke the bank on questionable players. The Mike Wallace contract was particularly bad. The Dolphins consistently overpaid the market on every contract. There were better players at the same positions signing for less money a day or 2 later as well.
Winner: The Seattle Seahawks
This isn’t just me being a homer either. The Seahawks got 2 of the 3 best pass rushers on the market, and both at tremendously under what the market value should have been for them.
They also got one of the 5 best WRs in the league when they traded for Percy Harvin. Their 2 biggest offseason needs were pass rusher and wide receiver. Tough to argue that they aren’t greatly improved.
Loser: Elvis Dumervil, his (now former) agent, and Fax Machines everywhere
If you haven’t heard the story yet, you need to do some reading. You’ll be rewarded with some laughs. Basically, Dumervil didn’t get his new contract faxed in until after his old salary would have been full guaranteed, so the Broncos had to cut him and take the cap hit. A Kinkos fax machine was involved. You can’t make this stuff up.
Winner: Mike Wallace
I’m not sure how he convinced the Dolphins that he was worth that much money, but he did. Maybe we should just include this in the Dolphins being losers entry, but this overpay was bad enough to get it’s own mention.
Loser: Baltimore Ravens
The defending Super Bowl champs have watched a lot of talent walk out the door and haven’t replaced hardly any of it. I trust that Ozzie Newsome has a plan, and that the team will be alright in the long run, but it’s tough to lose that much talent and not take a major step backwards. If they can get Elvis Dumervil that will greatly help things.
Winner: St. Louis Rams
This is a late addition to my list. Last night fairly late, the Rams added LT Jake Long to their roster. When healthy, Long is a great pass blocking LT, and instantly makes that team better. Long joins TE Jared Cook as key additions, and both on very team friendly deals.