After a busy opening few days in the free agency period heading into the 2013 NFL Season, the weekend, as always, was a more quiet, less busy time, with the New York Giants adding Brandon Myers and Dan Connor to their roster, while the New England Patriots were also slightly busy, mostly with releasing (Brandon Lloyd) and re-signing (Aqib Talib).
It’s also worth noting that the San Francisco 49ers have reacted to losing Dashon Goldson by signing Craig Dahl, although that may not be the last of their moves to improve their secondary.
Brandon Myers & Dan Connor
Brandon Myers had a breakout season in 2012 with the Oakland Raiders, for the first time being used as a meaningful offensive weapon. Myers caught 79 passes for 806 yards and four touchdowns, although some would refer to him as a garbage time hero. He replaced Martellus Bennett, who left New York to Chicago in the beginning of the week.
Myers wasn’t the only signing the Giants made, adding linebacker Dan Connor, a five year veteran who played for the Dallas Cowboys last season and is likely to be someone to fill in during certain downs and not become a full time starter. Connor can play both in the middle or as an outside linebacker, but prefers to stick in the middle, which might mean Chase Blackburn will be released.
Another signing was Louis Murphy, a fourth round pick by the Oakland Raiders in 2009, who spent last season with the Carolina Panthers. Murphy doesn’t have impressive numbers in his career but simply adds depth to the Giants at the position, also playing a bit as a tight end last season for the Panthers.
Patriots: Re-Sign & Release
Brandon Lloyd had a good first year for the New England Patriots in 2012; Lloyd played in 84.8 percent of the offensive snaps and finished with 74 receptions for 911 yards and four touchdowns. Still, not wanting to cut back on his salary sent him off the roster, turning him into quite a coveted player late in free agency, despite being 31. Lloyd was set to make $4.9 million in 2013 including the roster bonus, but the Patriots preferred to let him go, believing more in Danny Amendola and possibly someone they’ll find in the draft.
Aqib Talib was one of their priorities before free agency, and at least one player hasn’t gotten away from them, as the cornerback, widely regarded as the best in the free agents market and the Pats’ top CB last season despite being there less than half of 2012, signed a new contract, keeping him with the Patriots for one more year.
The arming race between the Seattle Seahawks and the San Francisco 49ers is about Seattle finding a way to stop the read option by stocking up on defensive ends, while the 49ers are now trying to get as many secondary improvements as possible, not just because of Percy Harvin, but because Dashon Goldson left them. They added Craig Dahl from the St. Louis Rams. The 27 year old played in all 16 games last season for the Rams and can play as both free and strong safety. Dahl may not be their final signing in the coming days.