NFL rumors continue to swirl and attract our attention, because free agency will impact pro football's draft even though it remains roughly one month away.
Then again, the new league year is still in its infancy and plenty of things can occur prior to late April.
Obviously whatever ends up happening is another story, but that doesn't mean we can't dissect the current stories. Plus there's only so much draft analysis, whereas the thick of free agency does allow teams to address needs.
And doing so simply increases expectations for the following season.
Titans Continuing to Bolster the Offense?
When free agency first began the Tennessee Titans were quick out of the gates. First, offensive lineman Andy Levitre was brought in, and then tight end Delanie Walker and running back Shonn Greene all according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.
Well, the Titans don't appear to be finished on this side of the rock.
The #Titans are hosting receivers Brandon Stokley and Kevin Walter on free agency today— Jim Wyatt (@jwyattsports) March 26, 2013
Time is certainly more of the essence with Brandon Stokley, but he did catch 45 passes for 544 yards and score five times last season. Kevin Walter was eerily similar with 518 yards on 41 catches and two scores.
But given the emphasis Tennessee can feature on the ground, either of these two targets would benefit nicely. Each are capable of defeating single coverage and making plays after the catch. They differ as Walter is more a deep threat, whereas Stokley will siphon underneath zones and move the chains.
New Orleans Must Keep Upgrading Defensively
The New Orleans Saints got a nice free agent acquisition in cornerback Keenan Lewis, per the Saints' official Twitter feed.
Last season Lewis defended 23 passes for the Pittsburgh Steelers, so New Orleans has its potential No. 1 lockdown corner. A great complement to Lewis would be to spruce up the pass rush.
NFL.com's Ian Rapoport believes New Orleans will try for Dwight Freeney:
Don't be surprised when #Saints emerge as a player for Dwight Freeney, especially if they miss on Nnamdi. Still trying to upgrade pass-rush— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 25, 2013
It's an interesting, but good fit as the Saints racked up a mere 30 sacks in 2012. A concern, though, is Freeney logging only five sacks in a 3-4 scheme.
New Orleans plans on making the 4-3 to 3-4 switch according to Mike Triplett of the Times-Picayune via the Sporting News. Freeney is clearly better as a 4-3 end, but New Orleans does have the depth to make him productive as part of a rotation.
Already fielding sound rushers in Cameron Jordan, Will Smith and Junior Galette, Freeney's knack for getting pressure will become efficient with a limited snap count. Also looking back at the Saints' 2012 defensive campaign and any help to control up front will suffice.
Redskins Looking to Enhance Pass Defense?
Ranking No. 30 in pass defense and giving up a 61.8 completion percentage last season, it's not surprising to see the Washington Redskins attempt to revamp its secondary. Just before the new league year commenced, cornerback DeAngelo Hall was released according to Mike Jones of the Washington Post.
Then last week the Redskins welcomed E.J. Biggers to the team (via Rich Campbell of the Washington Times). More improvement is still required, though, and another veteran is in play as reported by NFL.com's Ian Rapoport:
Despite Antoine Winfield's age, the guy has proven he can still get it done.
In 2012 he recorded 100 tackles, defended 12 passes and had eight run stuffs. Washington fielding a complete corner of his veteran talent and half the field is immediately gone. The end result is the pass rush having a little more time to apply pressure, which will generates more turnovers.