With Super Bowl XLVIII in the books, the 2013 season is officially in the rearview mirror. Thus, it’s time to look ahead to 2014.
But before teams gather for training camp in July, play preseason games in August and tee it up for real in September, they have some roster building to do. While the NFL Draft in May will get most of the attention, free agency, which starts on March 11, is an equally important part of the process.
So to get the juices flowing, to help the dreaming about what teams can turn into begin, it’s time to look at who will be available.
On that note, here are the top 10 NFL free agents on the 2014 market.
(NOTE: Teams could still slap a franchise tag on some of these players, taking them off the open market and keeping them in their current city for the 2014 season, or sign them to long-term contracts before free agency begins.)
10. Brent Grimes – Cornerback
At 30 years old, the Dolphins cornerback had one of his best seasons in 2013, picking off four passes and amassing 60 tackles. He also had 16 passes defended, showing that he has a nose for the football. Oh, and that 94-yard interception return for a touchdown was also a highlight, further proof that Grimes is a guy who has a knack for making big plays.
9. Jairus Byrd – Safety
If a team is willing to put up with Byrd’s baggage, which should go away once he gets the big-money, long-term contract that he believes he deserves, then the safety is a worthwhile gamble. Why? Because he’s a safety that makes a lot of plays. In only 11 games in 2013, Byrd had four picks, one forced fumble and one sack. Heading into his sixth season, he’s just reaching the prime of his career.