Top Five NFL Offseason Acquisitions
The NFL offseason is filled with countless trades and free agent pickups with some that are good and some bad.
This year was no different as teams shelled out big bucks to free agents, both good and bad, and made a lot of trades.
From big ticked to free agents to under the radar signings, it was all there.
Today, I’ll take a look at the best moves of the offseason.
5. T.J. Houshmandzadeh, WR, Seattle Seahawks, Five yrs $40 million
The Seahawks were decimated by injuries last year, especially at the wide receiver position.
Every receiver they were putting in got hurt, and they were forced to sign receivers off the street in the middle of the season.
Their leading receiver was Bobby Engram, who caught only 47 passes for 489 yards.
Over the past five seasons, Houshmandzadeh has averaged 89 receptions and over 100 yards. Housh will give the Seahawks a true No. 1 receiver, which they have been lacking for years.
In his time in Cincinnati, Housh improved every year and eventually became a better receiver than his teammate Chad Johnson, who got much more media attention.
Seattle runs a west coast offense that features a lot of short quick passes, which should fit Housh well being a possession receiver.
With a healthy Matt Hasselbeck at quarterback and Housh at wide receiver, Seattle could make a return to the playoffs where they were only two years ago.
4. Bart Scott, MLB, New York Jets, Six yrs $48 million
The Jets have a new coach in Rex Ryan from Baltimore, and he brought over a few players with him.
Along with Jim Leohard and Marques Douglas, the biggest addition was linebacker Bart Scott.
In New York, Scott will no longer have Ray Lewis next to him, but will have up and coming stud David Harris playing alongside him.
In New York, Scott will be the leader of the defense as he knows Ryan’s defense, which has been described as “organized chaos.”
Scott will also see more responsibility as he will now play Ray Lewis’ old position. Scott’s nickname is the “Mad Backer” and will have the opportunity to really break out now.
So far, with the Jets, Scott has displayed a swagger that has rubbed off on his teammates, which is something that was missing under the dictatorship of Eric Mangini.
3. Tony Gonzalez, TE, Atlanta Falcons, Trade via Chiefs
The Falcons had a dynamic offense last year, but the one thing that was missing was a pass catching tight end.
Enter Tony Gonzalez, who is the best receiving tight end of all time. Although he may be near the end of his career, he can still produce and caught 96 passes last season.
Compare that to last year's starter Justin Peelle, who caught 15 balls.
Gonzalez will give Matt Ryan a great second option behind Roddy White. A quarterback's best friend is a tight end who he can throw to when in trouble, and Gonzalez will be just that for Matt Ryan.
Also, the addition of Gonzalez will help Ryan avoid the dreaded sophomore slump. Michael Turner was fantastic running the ball last year, and that should continue this year as opposing teams won’t be able to stack the box because they have to worry about Gonzalez.
This will also allow the Falcons to use the middle of the field more. This move has not garnered as much attention as some other moves, but will have an enormous impact on the Falcons' offense.
Jay Cutler, QB, Chicago Bears, Trade via Broncos
The Bears learned, a couple of years ago, that no matter how great their defense was they couldn’t win a Super Bowl without a good quarterback.
The Bears have been searching for one for years, and this offseason they finally found one in Jay Cutler.
Cutler is arguably the Bears' best quarterback since the 1940s.
The Bears gave up a lot to get him, but you can’t put a price on a proven quarterback that is about to enter his prime.
The Bears missed the playoffs by a game last year and had Kyle Orton at quarterback, who looks more like a lumberjack than quarterback.
In Chicago, Cutler will be teamed up with college teammate Earl Bennett, who, according to reports, has been looking great in OTAs.
With Cutler at quarterback, tight end Gerg Olson should take a big leap this year, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him in the Pro Bowl.
Cutler should propel the Bears to the playoffs this season and perhaps a Super Bowl contender in the future.
1. Jason Peters, OT, Philadelphia Eagles, Trade via Bills
For the past 10 years, Thomas has started on the blindside for the Eagles, missing only one start.
He left after this past season as a free agent, leaving a huge gap on the left side. Left tackles don’t grow on trees, so replacing Thomas was a huge priority.
With no free agents available, the Eagles pulled the trigger on a trade for disgruntled Bills' tackle, Jason Peters.
In the trade, the Eagles got away with robbery only having to give up a late first round pick and a fourth round pick.
Left tackle has become the second most important position in football behind quarterback. Every team is looking to get their hands on a tackle who can protect their quarterback's blindside.
To get one that is about to enter his prime for how little they did is why this was the best move of the offseason.
It wasn’t the flashiest or the most talked about, but it was the best football move. With the addition of Peters, along with some of the other additions they made in the offseason (Jeremy Maclin and Stacy Andrews), the Eagles are looking like a very dangerous team going into 2009.