• Free Agent Defensive Linemen

    When the free agency period comes (and it will), here are a dozen veteran defensive linemen listed as unrestricted free agents (UFA) who could draw interest. Five of the 12 were originally drafted in the first round; 2 were free agents. Their ages range from 25 to 38.
    Who is worth the probable price? What teams would they fit?

    DT Anthony Adams (31) (Rd 2 #57 2003)
    DE Jason Babin (31) (Rd 1 #27 2004)
    DE Dave Ball (30) (Rd 5 #133 2004)
    DE Raheem Brock (33) (Rd 7 #238 2002)
    DT Ron Edwards (32) (Rd 3 #76 2001)
    DE Shaun Ellis (34) (Rd 1 #12 2001)
    DT Aubrayo Franklin (31) (Rd 5 #146 2003)
    DE Vernon Gholston (25) (Rd 1 #6 2008)
    DT Cullen Jenkins (30) (Free agent 2003)
    DT Mike Patterson (28) (Rd 1 #31 2005)
    DT Marcus Spears (28) (Rd 1 #20 2005)
    DT Pat Williams (38) (Free agent 1997)

    Comments 12 Comments
    1. Ragar's Avatar
      DT or 3-4 DE Cullen Jenkins UFA, undrafted in 2003. Whomever get's him get's a great player, with some past injuries, who is the best of this bunch
    1. ScottDCP's Avatar
      Jenkins, Patterson, Franklin, Williams The Ancient.
    1. KabaModernFan's Avatar
      Jenkins, Patterson, and Franklin are the best of that bunch and can command big money. Williams could get couple years at an overpriced contract. Jason Babin is the best pass-rusher here by far and deserves to be locked up to a long-term deal. Raheem Brock could be a nice bargain contract with sizable production.
    1. Trumpetbdw's Avatar
      If I were a team running a 3-4, I'd take my chances on a 25 year old 1st round talent like Gholston, and simplify things simply by telling him to rush the QB. Sometimes pass rushers take time to develop (prime example on this list is Jason Babin), and if you've got a good system, and can let the kid pin his ears back, why not take a chance? Plus, he'll come dirt cheap, and there's really nothing else exciting out there.

      As for actual production, I'd take Cullen Jenkins, but I have a feeling his price tag will be inflated. Is it me, or will this year feature a top-to-bottom weak crop of free agents?
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Aubrayo Franklin has been a stud NT for the last 2 years but there's a catch; both years have been contract years. Before that Franklin was merely average.

      Unfairly or not the 49ers front office seems to think Franklin will catch a bit of Hayensworth-itis once he gets paid.
    1. codysmart's Avatar
      My Broncos could use a number of these guys but I hope they pursue Jenkins. We didn't address the need during the draft which doesn't bother me because we went with "the best player available" approach and didn't reach.
      NBA is over and I'm not sure how long I can last without some real progress made in the NFL labor talks so that free agency can resume.
    1. Dave Lapham's Avatar
      Cullen Jenkins is definitely the best value because of his versatility, performance and the intangible of having a Super Bowl winner in the locker room. Plus he has some gas in the tank. Franklin has played at a decent level at times, but his lack of consistency of performance begs the question...does he put it in neutral if he signs a multi-year deal? Gholston is a look like Tarzan play like Jane type of player. He disappeared for big stretches when he was at Ohio State. BUST, stay away.
    1. mikesteelnation1's Avatar
      Franklin is someone you pursue if u run a 3-4. He's played lights out the last 2 years. Clogged the hole and penetrated. He tied guys up to let Willis be even better. Did the prototypical nt function. Second choice is Jenkins. All the rest? Don't bother. Invest in your own guys and the scouting department and grow your own.
    1. mikesteelnation1's Avatar
      With all that said both guys are old by football standards .. don't pay a ransom for either. How long will they be effective? Can either even give 3 effective years? Draft them and groom them and ignore free agency. Seemed to work well for the 2 sb teams last year. Free agents equal huge waste of money!! Develop your own guys and resign them!!
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Dave Lapham View Post
      Gholston is a look like Tarzan play like Jane type of player.
      I now have my next Alex Smith line when the season begins.
    1. BuckeyeRidley's Avatar
      I feel bad that Vernon Gholston didn't turn out to be the player that had bigger impact. I say that he could be Good in a spot like DEN or maybe even with a "Redemption Coach", a guy looking to turn around his team with a few good men or face being fired in 2012. In this case, I'm thinking of ARI or STL. STL due to other options like Gruden, Cowher and Fisher.
    1. DCFanatic's Avatar
      I have been barking that the Cowboys need to get rid of Spears because he doesn't have enough plays where he gets penetration on first and second downs.

      Then I look at this list, and besides Jenkins, I don't see anything better than Spears.

      And Jenkins could be a great signing or he could be a waste of money due to the injuries.