2013 NFL Free Agents: Players Who Won't Find the Money They're Looking for

Tyler BrookeSenior Analyst IIMarch 8, 2013

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - DECEMBER 30: Greg Jennings #85 of the Green Bay Packers reacts to missing a reception at the goal line during the second quarter of the game against the Minnesota Vikings on December 30, 2012 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

There are a lot of big names in free agency this offseason, and that means that some players may be disappointed to find that teams simply won’t be willing to dish out big contracts.

Teams are going to be looking for younger free agents to make instant impacts while staying with the team for a number of years.  Some of the better veterans will be finding themselves with smaller offers than expected.  Teams will be hesitant to give out big money to older players with some history of injuries. 


Greg Jennings

The Green Bay Packers aren’t planning on giving a big contract to Jennings, nor should they.  With players like Jordy Nelson, James Jones and Randall Cobb, the Packers don’t really need Jennings.

According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com, the Packers veteran is looking for $12 million per year

That number isn’t likely for the receiver who will turn 30 during next season.  With Mike Wallace also available in free agency, it’s hard to see Jennings making that kind of money.

The issue with Jennings is the fact that he missed 11 games in the past two seasons.  With an image of being an injury risk for a team, a big contract isn’t happening.


Dwight Freeney

Freeney is regarded as one of the better pass rushers in NFL history.  Sadly, that isn’t the case anymore, as age is finally catching up to the former defensive end for the Colts.

The 33-year-old slowed down considerably last season, recording five sacks and only 12 tackles in 14 games played.  With three straight years of declining sacks, it’s hard to see Freeney being a highly sought after pass rusher.

After being the top paid player in the NFL last season, Freeney won’t find another contract like that this offseason.  Once again, age is a problem with him, as well as his inability to play all three downs. 

There are other more appealing pass rushers in free agency this offseason that will garner more attention.  Guys like Paul Kruger and Cliff Avril will be more highly sought after and get bigger contracts than Freeney.  It’s a tough league to compete in, especially at an older age.


Jake Long

The former No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NFL draft will be expecting a big contract from some team this year.  However, an offseason in 2013 will keep the contracts a little smaller than Long would like.

There is no denying that Long has proved before that he is one of the best offensive tackles in the NFL, but it didn’t look like that last season.  Teams will be interested in the 28-year-old, but the risk of him struggling for a second straight year makes it hard to give him a big deal.

That being said, there are a lot of teams that have plenty of cap space.  The Indianapolis Colts are one of those teams, and they desperately need an offensive lineman to protect Andrew Luck.  They have the money to spend, but general manager Ryan Grigson is smart enough to know not to give out such a big deal to Long. 

It’s a harsh reality for Long, but the money isn’t going to be there.  There are plenty of linemen in free agency and the draft that will make it hard to get paid the big bucks.  He will still be signed for a pretty good contract, just not the one he was hoping for.