NFL Roster Cuts: 7 Veterans Teams Can No Longer Afford

Brian LendinoCorrespondent IISeptember 5, 2011

NFL Roster Cuts: 7 Veterans Teams Can No Longer Afford

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    After each team submitted its 53-man roster to the league last night, we can now adequately analyze everyone's final moves.

    It's easy to sit and dissect who was let go and why it was necessary, but to give myself an old-fashioned good time I decided to take a look at some players who weren't cut but probably could have been.

    These old-timers have been mainstays on teams for a while and most have produced nicely during their careers, but as the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end.

    Here are seven vets whose careers, both on and off the field, are questionable when it comes to talking about a roster spot.

Darrius Heyward-Bey

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    Darrius Heyward-Bey was the seventh overall selection in the 2009 NFL Draft. He's entering his third year in the league.

    DHB is clearly the youngest player on this list by a handful of years, but he still hasn't shown me enough in the last two seasons for me to leave him off this list.

    He has 35 receptions for 490 yards in his career!

    That's awful!

    He's an atrocious route-runner and has questionable hands and a sub-par attitude. Why would any team want him?

    He fits Oakland mold, just not the NFL mold.

Ryan Grant

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    Ryan Grant is teetering with the dangerous age for running backs. He's 28 years old now and coming off a bad season-ending ankle injury. 

    When he plays the full season he's shown signs of being an elite back, but it's so tough for players to bounce back after injuries like his.

    Not to mention, backup James Starks had a breakout postseason last year, and reports out of Packers camp have shown that Starks has been the more impressive back in practice.

Cedric Benson

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    Cedric Benson has been arrested on three separate occasions.

    He lacks mention as being a good teammate, and had never amassed 750 yards in a season before the last two years.

    He has a major fumbling problem, so most believe that at times he's more of a liability than an asset.

    With his accumulating legal problems, I think that it might be time for the Bengals, and any team, to cut their ties with Cedric Benson.

Terence Newman

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    Cornerback Terence Newman was once one of the premier corners in the NFL, with blazing speed and a great knack for finding the ball in the air.

    However, he's 33 years old now and it doesn't take a genius to realize that he's lost a step or two, as it's evident when he is getting burned every few plays by average-speed receivers.

    Newman's compiled a nice career for the Cowboys, but 33 is just too old an age for a cornerback who used speed instead of technique for most of his success.

Devery Henderson

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    Devery Henderson has been a solid big-play wide receiver over the course of his career.

    Unfortunately, he plays on a team that employs three quality receivers along with him. Henderson, Robert Meachem, Lance Moore and Marques Colston, along with tight end Jimmy Graham all fight for looks from Drew Brees.

    Colston is the clear top receiver, Moore is the red zone favorite and Meachem has surpassed Henderson in stats each of the last two years.

    So where does that leave Devery?

    Well, maybe it's time for Henderson to move on to a new team before his career is over. I mean, he is 29 now.

Adam 'Pac-Man' Jones

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    Pac-Man Jones is another Bengals player who struggles to stay out of the media spotlight.

    I don't think I need to explain or remind you what Jones has been through in his career and how it's affected him both on and off the field.

    The Bengals just re-signed Leon Hall and picked up Nate Clements in the offseason, and both players will start in the Bengals Base 4-3 defense.

    Jones is only 27, and main event in one of the most tragic falls from grace in football history.

Pierre Thomas

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    I'm not going to lie; I would not have been surprised if the Saints cut Pierre Thomas instead of Reggie Bush. Actually, it wouldn't have surprised me if both of them left.

    The Saints have so many running backs on their depth chart that Thomas and his injury issues can be expendable.

    The Saints don't really need him.

    Since drafting Mark Ingram they also signed Darren Sproles, and Chris Ivory had a very nice season when Thomas went down with injury.

    Pierre Thomas is a very good running back. I'm just not sure if New Orleans is the right place for him.