So what if Zeke is a rookie? And they didn't draft him #4 overall, given that he's a prototype 3-down back, to have him in a timeshare with Morris or McFadden. Behind that line, coupled with his skills as a runner, receiver, and pass blocker, there's no way he should fall past the first round.
@Walter I don't see how you think Fitz is "fine" there, given the fact you pointed out Palmer's diminishing arm strength and generally not liking older players. I get he's produced with awful QBs and they're not running him deep anymore, but even so, the point you made about AP apply even more to Fitz. Bad pick
2011 NFL Free Agency: Star rating is out of five. Age listing as of Sept. 1, 2011.
Haloti Ngata, DT, Ravens. Age: 27. Franchised by Ravens
Haloti Ngata is one of the top interior defensive linemen in the NFL. If the Ravens don't want to pay him top dollar, pretty much every other team in the NFL will be lining up for his services.
Paul Soliai, NT, Dolphins. Age: 27. Franchised by Dolphins
At 6-4, 355 pounds, Paul Soliai is a monstrous, run-stuffing nose tackle. Unless the Dolphins franchise him, Soliai will get a huge contract this offseason.
Barry Cofield, DT, Giants. Age: 27. Signed with Redskins (6 years)
Barry Cofield is a great interior lineman who excels against the run and provides a decent enough pass rush. He's due for a big contract this offseason.
Brandon Mebane, DT, Seahawks. Age: 26. Re-signed with Seahawks (5 years, $25 million)
Brandon Mebane has always been great against the run; this year, he added some pass-rushing skills to his repertoire, allowing him to serve as an every-down player in Seattle's defense.
Richard Seymour, DT, Raiders. Age: 31. Re-signed with Raiders (2 years, $30 million)
And to think, the Raiders could have the No. 17 overall pick right now... Richard Seymour is obviously a very skilled defensive lineman, but age and post-contract lethargy have to be concerns.
Aubrayo Franklin, NT, 49ers. Age: 31. Signed with Saints (1 year)
Aubrayo Franklin is coming off great back-to-back years - but he's never played this well when not in a contract season. As I wrote last year, caveat emptor.
Ty Warren, DE/DT, Patriots. Age: 30. Signed with Broncos (2 years, $10 million)
Ty Warren would be ranked much higher than this if he weren't coming off a hip injury. I guess the Patriots weren't optimistic about his recovery.
Cullen Jenkins, DE/DT, Packers. Age: 30. Signed with Eagles (5 years, $25 million)
Cullen Jenkins dominates the line of scrimmage when he's on the field. Unfortunately, Jenkins is often injured; he has missed 17 games in the past three years.
Stephen Bowen, DE/DT, Cowboys. Age: 27. Signed with Redskins (5 years, $27.5 million; $12.5 million guaranteed)
Stephen Bowen took over for an injured Marcus Spears in the middle of the season and played very well down the stretch.
Shaun Smith, DE/DT, Chiefs. Age: 30. Signed with Titans
Shaun Smith turns 30 in August, but he's still a strong two-down, run-stuffing defensive end in the 3-4.
Pat Williams, NT, Vikings. Age: 38.
A two-down run-stuffer, Pat Williams still got it done this season despite playing at 38 years old. He'll try to help a contender.
Marcus Spears, DE/DT, Cowboys. Age: 28. Re-signed with Cowboys (5 years, $19.2 million)
When motivated, Marcus Spears is a force against the run. He offers no pass rush, however.
Kelly Gregg, NT, Ravens. Age: 34. Signed with Chiefs (1 year)
Though Kelly Gregg turns 35 in November, he's still an effective two-down run-stuffer. He's expected to re-sign with the Ravens at a lower price.
Justin Bannan, DE/DT, Broncos. Age: 32. Signed with Rams (3 years)
Justin Bannan had a solid year for the Broncos, which makes you wonder why they released him. Bannan can play in both the 4-3 and 3-4.
Anthony Adams, DT, Bears. Age: 31. Re-signed with Bears
Anthony Adams had a slightly down year by his standards, but the Bears are still working to extend the run-stuffer.
John Henderson, DT, Raiders. Age: 32. Re-signed with Raiders (2 years, $8 million)
John Henderson missed a ton of action this season with a foot injury, but was a very forceful run-stuffer when he was in the lineup.
Amobi Okoye, DT, Texans. Age: 24. Signed with Bears (1 year)
The No. 10 pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, Amobi Okoye has never developed into a consistent pass-rusher. He's only 24 though, so perhaps he can be a late bloomer with a better defensive line coach.
Ron Edwards, NT, Chiefs. Age: 32. Signed with Panthers (3 years, $8.25 million)
Ron Edwards did a decent job of stuffing the run early in the season, but seemed to wear down as the season progressed.
Kenyon Coleman, DE/DT, Browns. Age: 32. Signed with Cowboys
Kenyon Coleman doesn't offer much of a pass rush (3 sacks in 2010), but he's a very good run defender as a 3-4 defensive end.
Shaun Rogers, DT, Browns. Age: 32. Signed with Saints (1 year, $4 million)
Shaun Rogers was dumped by the Browns because of his $6 million salary, but he should still be OK as a two-down run-stuffer.
Tommie Harris, DT, Bears. Age: 28. Signed with Colts (1 year)
Tommie Harris is a shell of what he used to be. He's battled through way too many injuries. There's a chance he'll be able to bounce back and become a solid player once again, but I wouldn't bet on it.
Rocky Bernard, DT, Giants. Age: 32. Re-signed with Giants
Rocky Bernard is a rapidly declining player, but he can still be a solid rotational defensive lineman.
Kris Jenkins, NT, Jets. Age: 32.
Coming off a pair of torn ACLs, Kris Jenkins has played in just seven games the past two years.
Alan Branch, DT, Cardinals. Age: 26. Signed with Seahawks
Alan Branch offers nothing in terms of a pass rush, but can stuff the run effectively when he's motivated.
Tony McDaniel, DE/DT, Dolphins. Age: 26. Re-signed with Dolphins (2 years, $6 million)
Tony McDaniel was a solid rotational defensive lineman for the Dolphins in 2010, thriving against the run and recording 2.5 sacks.
Desmond Bryant (ERFA), DT, Raiders. Age: 25.
A pass-rushing specialist, Desmond Bryant terrorized Matt Cassel in the season finale in what was his only extensive action of the season. I'd like to see him play more next year. That will happen if Richard Seymour leaves.
Remi Ayodele, DT, Saints. Age: 28. Signed with Vikings
Remi Ayodele plays the run somewhat well, but offers absolutely no pass rush.
Antonio Johnson, DT, Colts. Age: 26. Re-signed with Colts
Antonio Johnson has some upside as a 310-pound defensive tackle with pass-rushing ability. He played well at times this past season after a horrible 2009 campaign.
Marcus Stroud, DT, Patriots. Age: 33.
Marcus Stroud struggled in Buffalo's 3-4. He'll be better in a 4-3, but at 33, his skills have eroded.
Jamal Williams, NT, Broncos. Age: 35.
Jamal Williams had a decent year as a two-down run-stuffer in 2010. He turns 35 in April, however.
Robaire Smith, DE/DT, Browns. Age: 33.
Robaire Smith played well last year until landing on IR with a back injury. Signing a 33-year-old with back problems will be a risky proposition for any team.
Gerard Warren, DT, Patriots. Age: 33. Re-signed with Patriots
Gerard Warren tried his best to fill in for Ty Warren, but he's nothing more than a rotational player at this point in his career.
Daniel Muir, DT, Colts. Age: 27. -- Signed with Rams (1 year, $1.85 million)
Tony Brown, DT, Titans. Age: 30.
Derek Landri, DT, Panthers. Age: 27. -- Signed with Eagles
Anthony Hargrove, DT, Saints. Age: 28. -- Signed with Eagles
Jacques Cesaire, DE/DT, Chargers. Age: 31. -- Re-signed with Chargers (2 years)
Jason Hatcher, DE/DT, Cowboys. Age: 29. -- Re-signed with Cowboys (3 years)
Shaun Cody, NT, Texans. Age: 28. -- Re-signed with Texans
Gary Gibson, DT, Rams. Age: 29. -- Re-signed with Rams
Ronald Fields, NT, Broncos. Age: 29. -- Signed with Dolphins
Marcus Thomas, DE/DT, Broncos. Age: 25. -- Re-signed with Broncos (1 year)
Tank Johnson, DT, Bengals. Age: 29.
Ma'ake Kemoeatu, NT, Redskins. Age: 32.
Jimmy Kennedy, DT, Vikings. Age: 31.
Ian Williams, NT, Notre Dame. Age: 21. -- Signed with 49ers
Cedric Thornton, DE/DT, Southern Arkansas. Age: N/A. -- Signed with Eagles
Martin Parker, DT, Richmond. Age: 23.
Nick Eason, DE/DT, Steelers. Age: 31. -- Signed with Cardinals (2 years)
Chris Hoke, NT, Steelers. Age: 35. -- Re-signed with Steelers