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NFL free agency will be full of intriguing vets

In little more than a month, NFL free agency is going to get underway in furious fashion. Teams will be throwing hundreds of millions around, hoping to land a couple of impact players.

The marquee names are already being talked about with rumors flying all over creation. Le’Veon Bell would normally be the biggest name on the market, but even the 25-year-old All-Pro is being overshadowed by the circus surrounding Kirk Cousins.

Cousins, 29, is likely to end up as the highest-paid player in NFL history. The Washington Redskins spent the last two years slapping the franchise tag on him, but after trading for and subsequently extended Alex Smith, the Redskins have all but officially moved on from Cousins. Let the bidding begin.

But it isn’t just the guys who are certain to be unrestricted free agents we already know about. There will be a bevy of veterans who get released over the next five weeks, potentially including some future Hall of Famers. Maybe no name will be more impactful than Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, who turns 30 years old this offseason.

Sherman sustained a ruptured Achilles tendon in November against the Arizona Cardinals, landing him on Injured Reserve. While the former All-Pro is expected back on the field by training camp, it is no sure thing he’ll be on Seattle’s roster. All that said, the two-time Super Bowl participant believes he’ll be practicing in Renton, Wa. come August, per

“Not in my mind,” he said, via ESPN’s Brady Henderson. “We’re going to try to get everything back on track, get healthy and try to get back after it. Hopefully everybody heals up the way they’re supposed to. I hope Kam [Chancellor] can play and it works out however it needs to for him. But obviously [the roster is] going to look different either way.”

Seattle is in a tough financial position with less than $15 million in projected cap space. With Jimmy Graham and Sheldon Richardson set to test free agency, along with a sieve as an offensive line, general manager John Schneider has major decisions ahead. Cutting Sherman would save Seattle $11 million.
As for other veterans who could be available, the Oakland Raiders are likely moving on from wide receiver Michael Crabtree. Crabtree, 30, had only 618 receiving yards last year after an 1,000-yard campaign in 2016.
The Denver Broncos could also be releasing corner Aqib Talib. Talib, 31, has been to the Pro Bowl each of the past five years and remains a top talent. Still, if Denver has designs on chasing Cousins in free agency, Talib’s salary will be an issue.
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