After scouring the Net, here’s what I’ve come up with. It’s not as star heavy as last year, as we now know what to expect from the new regime during free agency (I think).
The 2010 FA Blueprint
1A. Tully Banta-Cain, OLB, New England Patriots
Given Julius Peppers’ up-and-down nature, Banta-Cain might be a better fit at OLB. Given Scott Pioli’s history with Banta-Cain and our need at linebacker, it seems like an obvious fit. Peppers might have posted 10.5 sacks last season, but Tully the Bully had 10 (despite only 10 starts). That extra sack would cost us, oh, about $30-40 million. Banta-Cain likely wants to be a fulltime starter after a second tour of duty with the Pats, and he would definitely be one for our Chiefs.
1B. Anquan Boldin, WR, Arizona Cardinals
Maybe the toughest Pro Bowl WR ever to step onto a field, and the Cards just want a third-round pick for him? Given that we have an extra early round pick, that’s almost unfair for them. Make the deal, Pioli Trinity. He can come in and show Dwayne Bowe what it takes to be the man. He’s 30, but he’s never been a speed receiver, so he should age well as long as he can stay on the field.
2. Bobbie Williams, G, Cincinnati Bengals
He played at Arkansas, he has family in Missouri (according to sources) — this would be like a homecoming for Williams. He’s 33, but has started all but three games (all in 2006) for the Bengals over the past six seasons. We know the Bengals can be cheap, so here’s the perfect chance for us to bring in Brian Waters lite.
3. Bryan Robinson, DT, Arizona Cardinals
He may not be Ryan Pickett, but he could be a key factor in a NT rotation and also has that Arizona connection I am sure we will exploit somewhere.
4. Kevin Faulk, RB, New England Patriots
As much as I like both L.T. and Thomas Jones, this makes more sense. I’m sure Pioli could lure him away — especially if the Pats make a run at someone like Chestor Taylor — and he’d be the perfect compliment to Jamaal Charles. He’d also serve as a great mentor to the young Longhorn product.
5. Kassim Osgood, WR, San Diego Chargers
He’s not much of a receiver. Who cares? Osgood is as good as any special teams gunner in NFL history. Special teams made a big difference for the Chargers while he was there, and it seems they finally might have to let him go. Would love to see him screaming down the field on kickoffs donning the red and gold.