It looks like many of the top offensive tackles will fly off the shelves early when free agency gets underway at 3:00pm central time this afternoon. Branden Albert appears to be headed to Miami, while Anthony Collins will likely sign with the Bucs, and Eugene Monroe and the Ravens should work out a new deal. That leaves the Cardinals as the logical landing spot for Jared Veldheer, and Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com says (via Twitter) GMs and agents are essentially viewing that as a done deal, turning their attention to Rodger Saffold and other players. As we wait to see if Arizona can officially lock up the Raiders’ free-agent-to-be, let’s check out a few more updates from around the NFC….
- The Packers were “very interested” in defensive end Lamarr Houston, but appear likely to bow out of the bidding as his price tag increases, says Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
- It doesn’t sound as if things are heating up between Jairus Byrd and the Redskins at the moment, according to Mike Jones of the Washington Post, who hears from a source that the two sides are just having “casual conversations” (Twitter link).
- The Lions have been in recent contact with defensive end Willie Young’s agent about a new deal, but Young looks set to hit the open market and should have a handful of suitors, writes Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press.
- The Falcons are trying to lock up center Joe Hawley to keep him from reaching the open market, but there are other teams interested in him, according to Adam Caplan of ESPN.com, who says (via Twitter) talks might go right up to 3:00pm today.
- Tight end Garrett Graham could be a target for the Buccaneers, tweets Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com.
- As they did a year ago, the Eagles could strike quickly in free agency today, writes Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer.