Ahmad Bradshaw, Michael Huff, and 7 NFL Free Agents Set for Breakout Years
Due to the current National Football League's failure to come to terms on a Collective Bargaining Agreement, free agency has yet to begin. However, there are several players patiently waiting for the madness to end and start playing football again.
This slideshow takes a look at several players set to become free agents, pending the agreement of a new CBA, that would make an instant impact on whichever team chooses to sign them.
RB Laurence Maroney
Laurence Maroney was traded to the Denver Broncos after several injury-plagued seasons with the New England Patriots.
He has yet to record a 1,000 yard season in his six years in the National Football League, as he has played in two-back systems for the entirety of his career.
Maroney is a strong and powerful downhill runner, and his 5-foot-11, 220 pound frame is sure to intrigue some teams looking for that power back needed on third downs or goal line situations.
ILB Kirk Morrison
Kirk Morrison of the Jacksonville Jaguars is one of the most underrated mike linebackers in the National Football League. He has been a captain for the Oakland Raiders and Jacksonville Jaguars, and his leadership on and off the field is unmatched.
Morrison is solid against the run, but has the speed and agility to drop back into coverage. Teams utilizing a 4-3 defense would love the chance to work with Morrison, but he has the versatility to play inside in a 3-4 as well due to his instincts.
With over 700 tackles in his career, Morrison could be brought into any team with youth at the linebacker position and instantly become a leader, a teacher, and a role model for a young squad.
S Michael Huff
With the Oakland Raiders most likely losing not only their best player, but one of the best players in the National Football league in cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, Al Davis may not want to let the next best defensive back on the roster walk.
However, if Huff were to hit the open market, he could be a solid addition to any team seeking secondary help. While never missing a game in his six-year career, he has racked up 344 tackles, deflected 38 passes, recorded 5.5 sacks, forced five fumbles, and intercepted seven passes since being drafted in the first round out of Texas.
RB Ahmad Bradshaw
Ahmad Bradshaw will be one of the most sought after free agent running backs after the most productive year of his career with the New York Giants.
Bradshaw rushed for 1,235 yards, scoring eight touchdowns, while adding another 324 yards receiving while sharing time with fellow running back Brandon Jacobs.
He is a complete back that can protect the passer, hit the holes, make the cuts, and receive out of the backfield. Despite his recent fumble issues, expect quite a few teams to try to get him to sign on the dotted line.
RB Jason Snelling
Atlanta Falcons running back Jason Snelling has patiently waited for his chance to produce while sitting behind Pro Bowler, Michael Turner. He has played five seasons with the Falcons, registering just 257 carries for 1,042 yards and seven touchdowns.
He runs with extreme power and strength, and still has the ability to receive out of the backfield. Snelling finally has the chance to be a No. 1 back in the league, but the question still remains which team will give him that opportunity.
DT Brandon Mebane
Seattle Seahawks' defensive tackle Brandon Mebane will be a hot commodity once free agency commences, as the 26-year-old defensive lineman has the most upside of any down linemen in the free agency class.
He is solid against the run, and continues to improve in shedding blocks and pressuring the quarterback. He has been an every-down player, and has racked up 10.5 sacks in his career. If he were to play in the right system, those numbers could increase dramatically.
QB Matt Moore
When Jake Delhomme left the Carolina Panthers, Matt Moore was envisioned as their quarterback of the future. However, when the Panthers drafted Jimmy Clausen in the 2010 NFL Draft, there became a bit of a quarterback controversy.
The 26-year-old out of Oregon State had a shaky 2010 campaign, completing 79 of 143 passes for 875 yards, while throwing five touchdowns to 10 interceptions.
With No. 1 overall pick Cam Newton now seemingly holding the reigns to the Panthers' offense, Moore could be had for a low price and could be a solid option for any team looking for a No. 2 quarterback or potential starter.