2010 NFL Free Agency: Top 10 Quarterbacks

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2010 NFL Free Agency: Top 10 Quarterbacks
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This article was originally published here.

The NFL has 32 teams, and of those teams, there are 23 of them that have a bona fide elite starter or a young passer who is deemed the "franchise passer," at least for now.

That means roughly nine teams could or should be looking at the quarterback position in the 2010 NFL Draft, and it also means they could be thinking about upgrading through free agency.

The teams that are questionable at quarterback and could look to free agency, as well as the draft are:

Washington Redskins, Carolina Panthers, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars, Denver Broncos, and Oakland Raiders.

On top of the teams in need to an upgrade at starter, there are other teams that could use some competition or depth behind their current starters:

New York Giants, Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears, New Orleans Saints, Arizona Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts

Read on for the Top 10 Quarterbacks in the 2010 Free Agent class, and where they fit in with the 32 NFL team's needs:

Note: This list only takes a look at Unrestricted free agents, meaning they are free to sign anywhere.

 

1. Chad Pennington (Miami Dolphins)

The fact that Pennington is the top free agent quarterback means two things:

First, this is by far one of the weakest free agent quarterback classes we have ever seen, and second, he has a great chance at finding a starting gig.

He's in his mid 30s, never had a great arm, and has some questions about his shoulder after missing most of 2009, but few are as smart and accurate.

Pennington is still a great leader who can move a team down the field, and he displayed this ability in 2008, as he led the Dolphins from a 1-15 record to an 11-5 standing, a division title, and a playoff berth.

He's not a top-15 quarterback, but he can still be a starter in this league.

Potential Suitors: Bills, Panthers, Broncos

 

2. J.P. Losman (Oakland Raiders)

Losman is a lot like San Francisco's Alex Smith, as he showed tremendous talent early in his career, but was simply beaten down by a horrible offensive line, mediocre talent around him, and multiple injuries.

Smith is rising with the 49ers, though, while Losman is coming down off the high of being "the man" in the UFL for a couple of months.

He's a free agent again, after the Raiders brought him in to see what he was all about at the end of 2009, and there's a decent chance he'll latch on with another team as a back-up.

As far as skills and potential are concerned, Losman still has the tools to be a starter in this league. He just needs another chance, and the right situation.

Potential Suitors: Raiders, Rams, Seahawks

 

3. David Carr (New York Giants)

David Carr has a bad reputation, when in all reality, he was a highly touted prospect with a ton of talent and potential, and got the living daylights beat out of him behind one of the worst offensive lines in history for several years.

True, there were things wrong with Carr's game outside of not having adequate pass protection, but there's also the argument that he had only one true weapon, and even when he did, Andre Johnson was a fairly inconsistent receiver.

Does any of this mean Carr can or will be a good starter (or a starter, period) for an NFL team in the near future? Of course not. But in a weak FA quarterback class, he has to rank fairly high, and his experience should get him another gig on a decent team.

If he ever does get significant action under center with a decent offense, I have a feeling he could surprise some people.

Potential Suitors: Giants, Falcons, Packers, Bills

 

4. Chris Redman (Atlanta Falcons)

Redman came out of nowhere (literally) to assist the Atlanta Falcons at the end of the 2007 season, starting six games and leading a bad Falcons team to a respectable 2-4 record.

He had some forgettable performances, but in his final game of the year (251 yards, four touchdowns, no picks), a win over the Seattle Seahawks, he capped a solid comeback attempt, and earned himself a roster spot the following season.

However, Atlanta drafted Matt Ryan and handed him the keys to the offense in 2008, keeping Redman firmly planted on the bench for all of 2008.

Due to injuries to Ryan in 2009, however, Redman stepped up in limited duty once again, showing he can have success in the NFL with good weapons.

In three games as the starter, Redman passed for 230-plus yards each time, as well as four touchdowns and three interceptions, while leading the Falcons to a 1-2 record.

His record and stats weren't mind-blowing, but considering one of his losses was a hard-fought 26-23 loss to the then undefeated New Orleans Saints, his numbers and record aren't so bad.

Redman is the type of quarterback who is probably best suited for spot-duty, but he has shown the ability to win games and put up solid numbers when called upon.

Potential Suitors: Falcons, Saints, Packers

 

5. Jeff Garcia (Oakland Raiders)

Garcia is 40 and was out of the league in 2009 after the preseason, so the odds of him playing again are fairly slim.

However, if a team comes calling about a starting job, the still fairly nimble and accurate Garcia could still be an effective starter.

Gone are the days of him racking up numbers, but he's a fantastic game-manager when given good protection, making him a tempting purchase for a team fighting for the playoffs if their starter goes down.

It's unlikely he signs before the season starts, but if a major injury happens, don't be shocked to see his name in the headlines again.

Potential Suitors: N/A

 

6. Daunte Culpepper (Detroit Lions)

Culpepper, for all intents and purposes, is washed-up. He's done, as a starter at least, and despite Calvin Johnson being the only elite talent to work with in Detroit, it's still been pretty evident.

However, Culpepper still has a lively arm and wishes to keep playing. Who knows, perhaps he could be another Randall Cunningham story, where an assumed "done" quarterback emerges with the right team and has a sensational season.

It's unlikely, but if it's going to happen for him, it almost definitely won't be in Detroit, and he'll have to once again accept a job as a backup.

Potential Suitors: Rams, Browns, Bills, Chiefs

 

7. Rex Grossman (Houston Texans)

Grossman has a career filled with injuries, erratic play, and disappointment, but he's still one of those guys who has never reached his potential that you always think in the back of your head could come alive in the right setting.

He had to get out of Chicago, even after helping the Bears get to the Super Bowl, as he simply wasn't fully supported.

However, with a weak showing as a backup in Houston, he won't find many takers this time around. He may have to wait for an injury during the regular season to find a job.

Potential Suitors: Texans, Rams, Redskins, Packers

 

8. A.J. Feeley (Carolina Panthers)

Feeley has been over-hyped throughout his career, as "that backup who could start." He has shown a decent arm and a fire for the game in starting stints with Miami and Philadelphia, but he simply doesn't have the consistency to win games in the NFL on a regular basis.

His last two games as a starter produced mixed results, as he tossed three touchdowns and three picks in a close loss to the then-undefeated New England Patriots in 2007. He followed that solid effort up with one touchdown and four picks in his final NFL start.

He has solid ability and a good head on his shoulders. He just doesn't have, and never has had, the consistency to be a full-time starter.

Potential Suitors: Eagles, Panthers, Redskins, Rams

 

9. Charlie Batch (Pittsburgh Steelers)

Batch is a solid game-manager with an excellent understanding of what it takes to move the football and win games.

He hasn't been an elite option for quite some time and is done as an impact player in this league, but he most certainly can provide assistance and guidance to a young signal caller, and can still help pick up the pieces in case of an injury.

Potential Suitors: Steelers, Lions, Rams

 

10. Kyle Boller (St. Louis Rams)

There's no getting around it. Despite his inconsistency throughout his career, Kyle Boller has never had the environment or weapons at his disposal for success.

During his time in Baltimore, he was always under pressure to lead the Ravens to the Super Bowl, and he was expected to do so with very little game-breaking weapons, and behind an inconsistent offensive line.

It didn't work out with him in Baltimore, and it was no different in St. Louis, where the situation on offense was similar, only much, much worse.

Boller flashed the potential that scouts saw in him in a few games in 2009, enough to show that he's capable of coming in and finishing a game due to an injury to a starter, and can even take over for a few games.

But unless he gets the proper tutelage from an offensive/quarterback guru, he'll never be more than a backup.

Potential Suitors: Rams, Seahawks, Redskins

 

Overall, this is clearly a very weak free agency class for the quarterback position, but with drafting a passer being the only other option, several teams may find a few of these guys worth taking a chance on.

 

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