Free Agency Grades: NFC East. Eagles Score Big, But What about the Giants, Redskins, and Cowboys?

Nnadmi Asmougha stole all of the headlines, but the best Eagles off-season transaction could prove to be the big man, Cullen Jenkins (picture source packersplayers.blogspot.com)

Free Agency isn’t over yet, but everyone’s opened up their camps and the majority of the big signings have occurred. How have teams fared let’s start with the A.F.C and N.F.C. East teams. And how they have done through the free agent frenzy opening weekend frenzy.

Washington Redskins

The Redskins were super busy during the off-season making a fury of moves. They have signed 11 players since free agency opened with four of them their own players: LB HB Blades, T Jamaal Brown and Cornerbacks Philip Buchanon and  Bryon Westbrook.

The Additions:

Josh Wilson, CB, Baltimore

The Redskins best signing. The team was desperate for cornerback help and an infusion of young cornerback talent. Wilson is solid and was had for a reasonable price. He’s started 21 games the past two seasons. Good pickup.

Dante Stallworth, WR, Baltimore

Stallworth has always been a one trick pony, but he’s past his prime. The Redskins don’t have much at Wide receiver, so this is a fine move, but I don’t expect it to make a huge impact.

Shayne Graham, K, Patriots (Bengals)

Graham has been a pretty good kicker his entire career so this isn’t a bad move.

Barry Coefield, DT, Giants

Coefield was a player the Giants wanted to keep, but his price range was too rich for the Giants asking because of how up against the cap the Giants were prior to free agency.  Coefield has played his entire career in the 43, and might have been more valuable to the Giants, than the Redskins. The Redskins also arguably overpaid for him, but Coefield is a very solid player and could be a player that fits well in the 34 because he’s not much of a glory hound and will do the dirty work.

Kellen Clemens, QB, Jets

Not a great signing, just another backup QB talent that’ll be vying for the title of worst starting quarterback in the league. But this is probably his best chance to start, ever. Good signing for Kellen Clemens, but a mediocre one for the Redskins.

Stephen Bowen, DL, Dallas

Redskins again reach into the N.F.C. East to improve their line depth and rotation.

I’m going to give the Redskins a B for the free agency period.  The Redskins get a good grade because they didn’t go “All Redskins” in free agency, trying to sign all of the high priced free agent regardless of character, or fit to the team. The Redskins just continued to add solid players and depth to let their young draft picks develop. They also added draft picks through trades. All in all this was just the kind of off-season the Redskins needed.

Philadelphia Eagles

Splash City, Baby! Dick Vitale might say something like that if he was analyzing the Eagles off-season. The Eagles had money to spend heading into the off-season and boy have they used it. The Eagles are committed to winning, and winning now. They have a very talented quarterback and one of the most explosive offenses in the league. They struggled a lot on defense last year, but made a commitment to fixing that in free agency.

The additions:

Vince Young, QB, Titans

Evan Mathis, G, Cinncinati

Donald Lee, TE, Green Bay

Cullen Jenkins, DL, Green Bay

Akeem Jordan (resigned)

Johnnie Lee Higgins, WR/Return Man, Oakland

Eldra Buckley, RB (resigned)

Jason Babin, DE, Tennessee

Nnadmi Asmougha, CB, Oakland

 

The Eagles made a huge splash and really centered on fixing their defensive line and secondary in free agency. They also traded Kevin Kolb and received Dominque Rodgers Cromartie. I didn’t love the Jason Babin signing. He was with the Eagles two years ago and wasn’t that effective. I’m not sure why he had such a huge season last year, but a player at that age that has a breakout year, scares me. Maybe Babin’s season was just a fluke. He’s always been a solid situational pass rusher, but can he be more? Is he worth the contract they gave him? We’ll find out.

I didn’t even know they had signed Johnnie Lee Higgins until I read that today. That’s an under the radar nice signing. Higgins can return kick or punts effectively and it keeps Jackson and Maclin out of harms way. He’s not the return man Jackson is, but he’s also not as valuable a receiver. Like that signing.

Cullen Jenkins mustered up 7 sacks last year playing along in a 34 front, which is impressive. Jenkins is a big bodied player who can replace the traded Broderick Bunkley. Nice move.

Nnadmi Asmougha. What could I possibly say about that move. Brilliant. Swooped in and pried him away from the Jets and Cowboys.They instantly upgraded their pass defense and now have the most talented cornerback group in the league. To boot he also is a system fit and won’t cause any problems. The issue: He’s older and now they have a ton of money invested into their cornerbacks.

Grade overall: A.

The Eagles had the “Dream off’season” and the fans couldn’t be happier. Right now the Eagles are the lead dog (figure of speech, not slam on Vick), and have to stay ahead of the pack. The Eagles, like the Cubs of MLB are almost like the loveable losers in a way. Will the city and it’s team be able to handle the pressure of Superbowl or bust? I don’t think that’ll be the huge problem. To me, it will be the health of Michael Vick. Vince Young is a quality backup, but I don’t think this team can win the Superbowl if Vick Can’t stay healthy, and with how much he got hit last year (that’s a problem that hasn’t been addressed fully yet), he could be an injury waiting to happen this year.

New York Giants.

The Giants have been major players in free agency the past few years, but have taken a different approach this year. The Giants were hard up against the new cap and had to make a lot of cuts: Madison Hedgeock, Shaun O’hara, Rich Suebert, Shawn Andrews,and Rocky Bernard are the main ones. And they also have a lot of important offesnive free agents. Steve Smith, Kevin Boss, Bradshaw. Only Bradshaw has yet to be resigned.

Additions:

Bradshaw, RB (resigned)

Ben Patrick, TE (Cardinals)

Steve Weatherford, P (Jets)

Mathias Kiwanuka (resigned)

David Carr, QB (San Fran)

David Baas, C (San Fran)

 

The Giants main priority was resigning Ahmad Bradshaw and they were finally able to get that done at a price that was reasonable to them. Only 9 million dollars guaranteed (reportedly). The Giants could use an upgrade for Kevin Boss, but there are none available not named Zach miller, and the Giants don’t feature a tight end enough pay big money for one. Instead they grabbed a pretty good blocking tight end in Ben Patrick from the Cardinals and hope that if theyd on’t get Boss back he can make a good combination tight end with Pass catching Tight End, Travis Beckum.

The Giants biggest signing was David Baas (pronounced Boss). The versatile offensive linemen from the San Fran 49ers. Fans of the 49ers didn’t seem too pleased to lose him, but though the Giants might have overpaid for his services. The Giants have the best offensive line coaching in the league and hope they can get even more out of Baas.

Mathias Kiwanuka resigning was a blessing for the Giants. Unfortunately for Kiwi he had to get a raw deal because he missed most of last season with a neck injury. If he returns to his early 2010 season form, the Giants will feel comfortable enough to trade Osi Umeinyora, who is demanding a new contract. Kiwanuka’s return, if healthy, gives the Giants great depth at the defensive end position with or without Kiwanuka.

Overall Grade: C+

They overpaid for a versatile Offensive linemen, but they got Bradshaw and Kiwanuka on their own terms, which is a big win. If they can bring back Kevin Boss cheap the Giants will feel good enough about their roster heading into the season. Though fans wish they would bring in a big time linebacker, that doesn’t seem likely to happen this off-season.

Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys have done almost literally nothing in free agency except for resign their own players. Like the Giants, they didn’t have the cap space to handle all of their contracts and had to make some big name cuts including Marion Barber, Roy Williams, and Leonard Davis. They were in for awhile on Nnadmi Asmough, but he was stolen away by the Eagles.

Resigned: Marcus Spears, Bryan Mcann, Kyler Kosier, Jesse Holley, Doug Free, Alan Ball

Signed from Cleveland: Kenyon Coleman

Overall Grade: C-

The Cowboys haven’t done anything in free agency. But they did get out of some nasty contracts and got rid of some baggage. Leonard Davis, Marion Barber, and Roy Williams were all cut. The Cowboys are starting fresh with good drafting and a better cap future. The Cowboys problem has not been talent. They are still a talented team with or without the additions in free agency. They still have some holes to plug, but are in decent shape.

 

What do you guys think?

Let me know.

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Topics: Dallas Cowboys, Free Agency Grades, New York Giants, Philadelhipa Eagles, Washington Redskins

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