The unknown of free agency

Posted by Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 – 9:25 am

Given the current labor situation, free agency has been one big question mark. And it’s not just the “when” but the “how.” That was crystallized yesterday (sorry, I was out covering the charity golf tournament and couldn’t get to writing about it then) when the NFL put out a statement saying the league is looking into “a wide range” of rules for everything once the league year does start, including what players would hit the open market.

“Our goal has at all times been the same — to operate under a negotiated set of procedures that are agreed to by the clubs and the NFLPA,” was the released statement from league spokesman Greg Aiello. “The current litigation has created a significant amount of uncertainty, and we are therefore considering a wide range of alternatives depending on developments.”

That’s why it’s impossible, other than in general terms, to talk much about who the Cards will target. I know people want to know some names — or at least, guesstimate on them — but you can’t. Because you don’t know — and can’t know — who will be available.

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23 Responses to “The unknown of free agency”

  1. By Scott McDonald on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    How much would changing the rules affect the Cardinals resigning Steve Breaston? Since the NFL pays for potential and not past performance, do you think there is enough potential to keep Breaston if he ends up being an unrestricted free agent?

  2. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Scott —

    RE: Breaston

    I think it’ll all depend on what Breaston thinks of himself and, more importantly, what the rest of the league thinks of him in comparison to the Cards.

  3. By SteveDCO on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Hope you enjoyed the time out of the office even if it is working, being on the golf course is always better than a cubical in Tempe.

    In your discussions with Whiz and Graves over the last few weeks, do they seem concerned by the state of free agency?

    This team has to make a splash at QB, OLB and OL or we may be in for another long painful season. I just wonder if they are starting to get concerned that their ability to finish building the 2011 team may be hampered by all the lockout mess.

  4. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    SteveDCO —

    RE: Whiz and Graves with FA

    Their attitude has been the same since March: They are prepared to start free agency if it was tomorrow, and they have a plan ready to use. They are just waiting to be told they can start.

    As for “finish building the 2011 team,” well, it’s out of their hands so I think they are doing their best not to worry about that part of it.

  5. By Ernie on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    I keep hearing that on the 15th of may the 8th circuit court of appeals will rule on weather to stay the ruling on the lockout . Now does this mean that if they decide, they can lift the lock out and resume business as usual until the new CBA is reached. If the temp lock out is lifted are teams at that point allowed to make free agent moves and signings?

  6. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Ernie —

    RE: Rulings

    I won’t pretend to know exactly what will happen. I am sitting back and waiting for news just like everyone else is doing.

  7. By Mario on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    The cards had a solid draft. I liked what they did in the 2nd & 3rd rounds. Williams is going to be solid…he’s a beast. Housler wouldn’t have lasted thru the 3rd, and there were limited options in the 3rd regardless. Justin Houston couldn’t pass a standing drug test at the combine, I doubt he can pass randoms in the nfl. Who fails a combine drug test?? Can’t fix stupid. Martez Wilson would’ve been nice, but his neck problems were a concern. With Rudolph and Kendricks off the board, it was a good grab. Nice to see the scheme add a threat to the middle. Mallet and Rackley were the only players that stood out past the AZ pick slot, but they weren’t bpa. Can’t wait to see what they do in FA.

  8. By Phoenixraven1 on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    …not just who we will target but who of our players will be affected by FA rules!

  9. By D on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Did you hit any houses yesterday?
    Didn’t Greg used to work for the Cards?

  10. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    D —

    RE: Questions

    I didn’t play. Just did interviews and took pictures.
    Not sure who Greg is.

  11. By D on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Greg Aiello

  12. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    D —

    RE: Aiello

    No. He has worked for the NFL for a long long time.

  13. By D on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Perfect timing talking about free agency, Good Luck Mr. Faneca in life after football, too bad we couldn’t get your services 5 yrs earlier…

  14. By RIan on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Looks like Faneca just retired. Soooo….. With Lutui probably moving on as well do we move Levi to left guard, re-sign Sendeline, have Hadnot take over at RG move bridges to LT and pick up Colon in FA to play RT? Thats just a modest idea because I really want us to pick up Mankins to play LG, who is a beast, and Jeremy Trueblood for LT and then move Levi back to RT. Thoughts?

  15. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Rian —

    RE: FA OLine

    Sounds like a plan … assuming those guys end up being free agents.

  16. By daniel corrales on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Hey darren , let’s say free angency was not allowed. , does that mean the cards would have to go with a guy on the roster , John Skelton or richard Bartel , && see how far they can lead the team ?

  17. By Darren Urban on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Daniel —

    RE: No FA

    I think that’s a pretty large leap to think it won’t exist in some form. It’s only May 10.

  18. By D on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    That’s a good plan if they are Free agents, Mankins is still at top of his game…but that’s also alot moving parts…Not sure they would want to spend for a new G and tackle…may opt for a new G, keep the existing tackles and add a blocking TE

  19. By Eazy E on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    It needs to be 4 years to be a free agent not 6. That is way too many years.

  20. By DoblerFan on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    As for the OL:
    I believe the 1st thing (when possible) is to get Sendelein signed back at center. Next were gonna have to spend big at LT to get either Doug Free(Dal), Jammal Brown(Skins), or maybe Bushrod (NO). There just isn’t to many decent F/A LT’s out there. Now we can move L. Brown back to his more suited RT. Hadnot and Lutui (if resigned) fill the guard’s positions. We will still need to spend do to lack of depth. Atlanta can’t keep all their F/A lineman. Either Guards Dahl or Blaylock should become available. If the coaches leave L. Brown at LT, which it sounds like they want to, there are quite a few RT’s out there.

  21. By jocards on May 11, 2011 | Reply

    I’d tend to agree that assuming that F/A won’t exist at all is a large leap at this point….However I don’t think it is out of the question either. Clearly every day that passes makes that scenario more plausible. If there is one thing we can learn from the past as it relates to the NFL is that the powers that be don’t always act in a manner that would seem to be logical to most of us. In other words it has already been proven that regular season games can be sacrificed even when it seems like it would be lunacy to allow that to happen. There will probably be a F/A period in some form. Regular season games will probably not be lost….but the later it gets the more worried I am.

  22. By STEVE on May 11, 2011 | Reply


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