FA Notes: Weatherspoon, Thomas, Houston, Forsett

As we heard yesterday, Falcons head coach Dan Quinn is hoping the organization can keep linebacker Sean Weatherspoon, citing the player’s athleticism and attitude.

“With him, it’s that toughness and the speed that he can play with so, yes, definitely someone that we’re talking to,” Quinn said (via Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com). “I know he’s got that kind of attitude. And you know me, just from watching our style of defense, it’s fast and physical. And that’s what Sean is. So, we’re certainly hoping that he can be a big part of it moving forward.”

However, the coach acknowledged that he is worried about the veteran’s past injuries, including an Achilles tear last season.

“I think you always are,” he said. “But at the same time, what’s the rehab like? You can tell when a guy is going for it in that way, too. All that factors in. 

“By the same token, he hit a string of bad luck. Can he come back and play at a level that he’s capable of? That’s what we’re excited to find out.”

Let’s take a look at some more notes pertaining to this year’s free agent class…

  • As expected, the Broncos will likely slap receiver Demaryius Thomas with the franchise tag. Sources tell Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com that it’s a “safe bet” the team will place the tag as they try to work on a longterm deal. Meanwhile, Florio wonders if Peyton Manning‘s rumored restructuring could mean a return for tight end Julius Thomas.
  • Following news that the Chiefs and Justin Houston were working on a multi-year dealFlorio says such a deal is unlikely at this point. Instead, the All-Pro linebacker seems destined for the franchise tag, and Florio notes that the 26-year-old’s leverage will rise when similar free agents start receiving lucrative deals.
  • For the time being, Reuben Frank and Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com believe the Eagles shouldn’t invest money in a linebacker like Brandon Spikes. However, if the team decides to move on from DeMeco Ryans, the team would be in the market for a starting linebacker, in which case Spikes could be a viable option.
  • Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome made it clear that he’d like to keep running back Justin Forsett in Baltimore. “We would like to retain Justin,” Newsome said (via Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com). “I’ve learned something since the end of the season about Justin that I didn’t really know. He has mentored some very good, young backs, starting with Arian Foster,Marshawn LynchMaurice Jones-Drew when he was in Jacksonville. Having Justin here — and with the opportunity [of] also bringing in hopefully another young running back — to have Justin be around that guy would be an asset also. So, we will work to try to retain Justin.” If the team loses out on Forsett, Hensley suggests free agents Frank GoreC.J. Spiller, and Mark Ingram as potential replacements.
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