NFL Free Agency Countdown: 21 Days, a Look at Quarterbacks
With Free Agency just around the corner, the Vikings may decide to do a lot, or a little this year when it comes to free agency. Last year, the Vikings came out in a big way by signing both Madieu Williams and Thomas Tapeah within 24 hours of the start of Free Agency; they also inked Bernard Berrian to big deal within a week.
Some positions the Vikings could address in 2009 include RT, QB, S, WR, DT, C, and CB. Over the next few weeks before free agency, we will bring you possible options at every position. Today we will take a look at possible free agent quarterbacks the Vikings may go after in the 2009 Free Agency.
Notable Quarterbacks available in 2009
Matt Cassel – New England Patriots
Jeff Garcia – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Kerry Collins – Tennessee Titans
David Carr – New York Giants
Kyle Boller – Baltimore Ravens
Byron Leftwich – Pittsburgh Steelers
Ryan Fitzpatrick – Cincinnati Bengals
J.P. Losman – Buffalo Bills
The sad news for Vikings fans is that it is unlikely that either Kurt Warner, or Matt Cassel will be available to the Vikings this year. Cassel will likely be franchised tagged by the New England Patriots, while Kurt Warner has made it very clear that he wants to be a Cardinal in 2009, if he does not retire.
The good news for the Vikings is that it seems increasingly likely that Jeff Garcia will likely not remain a Tampa Bay Buccaneer, and there is a decent chance that Brett Favre of the New York Jets may also become a free agent if he is cut by the Jets, who are dealing with salary cap problems.
Multiple sources also believe that Brett Favre would either like to retire, or possibly come play for the Vikings. If reinstated, there is also that old Falcons quarterback by the name of Michael Vick. Vick is a complete wild-card as of now, he is likely to be out of Atlanta, but who is willing to pay him, and how much will be enough for Vick?
As it stands right now Tarvaris Jackson, Gus Frerotte, and John David Booty are all under contract for the 2009 season, but many people do not believe that the Vikings will be able to make a serious run at a title with only these three quarterbacks.
It is also noteworthy that Gus Frerotte has stated he would come back only if he was the unquestioned starter for the 2009 season, so it appears he may be on his way out. Brad Childress has also hinted that there will likely be at least a few moves to try and improve the quarterback position in 2009.
As of now, the four candidates I think are most likely to be added to the Viking’s roster via free agency are: Jeff Garcia, David Carr, Byron Leftwich, and Kerry Collins. I do not expect the Vikings to make a play at the other three quarterbacks, simply because they have not shown much promise in recent times, and the Vikings want to win now.
1) Jeff Garcia
Jeff Garcia will likely be highly sought after by many teams. If Brett Favre is not available, and Cassel and Warner stay with their teams, Garcia will be the head of the 2009 free agent class.
Why do we want him?
Jeff Garcia was the ninth highest rated quarterback last season, even higher than Matt Cassel. Garcia also has compiled a nice streak of three straight seasons of a quarterback rating higher than 90; he is one of only three players that have been able do that, the other two are Peyton Manning and Tony Romo.
Garcia also threw 12 touchdowns to six interceptions in 2008, while Gus Frerotte totaled only 12 touchdowns to 15 interceptions. Jeff Garcia has also proven to be a mobile quarterback, who can avoid the blitz better than any quarterback currently on the Vikings roster.
Why should we hesitate?
Garcia is already 38 years old, and he has yet to play a full 16 game season since 2002. In the final game of the 2008 season, he was unable to lead the Buccaneers over the woeful Raiders at home, and the Bucs missed the playoffs.
2) David Carr
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