I'm going to do something that I love. I'm going to be the pro free agency supporter today. I'm going to make a couple points for everyone to kick around, and hopefully, we think about things we haven't considered before. Besides, what fun is BAP discussion without the antithesis?
First things first, the Jaguars have to find a way to get Eric Weddle in teal next year. There's no doubt that he'll demand a lot of money, but the Jaguars need a solid safety, and he should be good for a very long time. The Jaguars aren't that far off from having a very good team. They need a safety or two, another corner for depth, linebackers, and another pass rusher.
Rome wasn't built in a day, but it didn't take it 10,000 years either. The Jaguars have one of the youngest core groups of players in the league. There's no reason that Gene Smith shouldn't look into signing some hardened veterans that want to win. Last September Gregg Rosenthal reported that the Jaguars only spent about 89.5 million dollars on player salary in 2010. That was good for 3rd lowest in the league behind only the Buccaneers and the Chiefs. I understand the idea that teams can't spend big and lose on players (Albert Haynesworth in Washington), but there's a point that it becomes okay to take a couple big swings.
The Jaguars have a history of big name signees that haven't panned out. Jerry Porter comes to mind immediately, but that's no reason to shy away from free agency. There will be a lot of hot names in free agency when indeed it does open up.
For those of you that are curious, here is a great list of all the free agents in the NFL. Too often, we describe BAP as build through and only through the draft. There are some serious difference makers ready to be signed by a team that's willing to pay out. This year could be a big year to sign a couple big time players. Who knows, it could be just enough to push the Jaguars past the Colts and into the playoffs.