With Shields out and a buttload of fat cash under the cap, a lot of people are getting all giddy about signing a free agent cornerback.
Corners are expensive and TT doesn’t throw cash around to free agents, he’s so cheap he eats cereal with a fork to save milk! He’s built a winner and I’m glad we have him, but it means we’re probably not signing a corner in free agency. Aside from the fact that Randall and Rollins are probably going to play better when healthy, and Hyde and Gunter are good nickel and dime options, and the back of the depth chart is loaded with raw talent, TT just doesn’t go after these guys for a number of reasons.
The options on the market each have at least one distinguishing characteristic to scare Ted away.
Trumaine Johnson from the Rams was really good last year, but he’s coming off a $14M contract (whereas Shields only made $9M last year) and will likely price himself out of the Packers market (and probably play for a loser).
Brandon Carr from Dallas has never been the same since he left KC and is 30 with an 8 figure contract.
A.J. Bouye from the Texans is young and just had a breakout year. He would be my pick over those other guys, but he doesn’t have a long track record and will probably break someone’s bank. You can debate whether he’s worth a shot or not, but Ted Thompson won’t.
The biggest reason TT will avoid them is because of comp picks. Younger players are cheaper and stay healthier and you don’t give up draft picks to get them. So it doesn’t matter that Prince Amukamara, Stephon Gilmore, and Captain Munnerlyn are out there, too. Even if they don’t get resigned before free agency opens up, TT prefers guys who were cut.
So let’s look at some guys who were, or may be, cut:
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie could be cut by the Giants, but he’s 30 and 30 year old corners age in dog years.
Leodis McKelvin was recently cut by the Eagles, but he’s 31 and, let’s face it, if the Eagles didn’t want him after signing his as a free agent just last year, why would anyone else? This is another example of a 30 year old corner who just didn’t work out.
Vontae Davis could see his $10M salary dropped from the Colts, but who wants a corner from the f#cking Colts!
Ladarius Webb from the Ravens has also been whispered to potentially be cut, but he’s a corner who was moved to safety. Anyone who thinks that river flows upstream is fooling themselves.
Another guy who was cut recently is Sam Shields. I think he’s the best of the bunch, but I don’t think they’ll sign him.
So look for Joe Whitt Jr to keep working his magic and develop in-house. The draft might bring help, but I wouldn’t count on it coming in the first round.
Hit the comments if you think there’s a corner they should sign.