Joseph, Cromartie not going on market would make Taylor No. 2 corner
NFL teams and agents around the league anxiously await for word from the 8th circuit on whether the NFL will be granted a full stay of the injunction to lift the lockout.
If the NFL is denied the stay, agents believe the NFL could be open for business as early as Friday with free agency and player transactions soon to follow.
Free agency could end up being “The Wild West” with no rules but the expectation is that if this were to happen, 2010 free agency rules would be in place.
That’s beneficial to the Steelers from the standpoint that offensive tackle Willie Colon would not be eligible for unrestricted free agency. Tight end Matt Spaeth and cornerback William Gay would also be restricted free agents.
Prior to the lockout, Colon was given a first round tender and Spaeth, Gay were given existing round tenders.
The most important player of the group is Colon who the Steelers would get to bring back without any financial commitment beyond 2011 and see if he can earn his starting job back and get back to his old form coming off an achilles injury.
So while the 2010 rules would benefit the Steelers, it could also lead the Steelers to being outbid for Ike Taylor.
There’s a real mystery on what Taylor’s value is going to be around the league.
His agent Joel Segal believes there’s going to be a very strong market, while some Steelers folks don’t think it will be as strong as Taylor’s camp feels, especially if the 2010 rules are not in place.
Taylor right now is regarded by most as the No. 4 rated cornerback set to hit the market, behind Oakland’s Nnamdi Asomugha, Cincinnati’s Jonathan Joseph and New York’s Antonio Cromartie.
The 2010 free agency rules would make Joseph and Cromartie restricted free agents which moves Taylor up as the consensus No. 2 free agent cornerback.
Here’s a list of the cornerbacks scheduled to be free agents under the 2010 rules.
1. Nnamdi Asomugha, Oakland
2. Ike Taylor, Pittsburgh
3. Carlos Rogers, Washington.
4. Chris Carr, Baltimore
5. Phillip Buchanon, Washington
6. Drayton Florence, Buffalo.
7. Lito Sheppard, Minnesota
8. Ellis Hobbs, Philadelphia
9. William James, San Francisco
10. Roderick Hood, Tennessee
11. Travis Daniels, Kansas City
12. Frank Walker, Minnesota
13. Karl Paymah, Houston
14. Keiwan Ratliff, Cincinnati