A weak passing defense exploited our weak secondary this season. On top of that, we will most likely lose our best cornerback Leigh Bodden, along with the possible cutting of Shawn Springs (I hope) and the loss of either Terrence Wheatley or Jonathan Wilhite. So where do we go from here? We are probably better off in the draft this year secondary-wise, but let's take a look at what is out there.
Since I assume that next year will wind up being an uncapped year, any free agent who hasn't been in the league for 6 years will lose his free agency status, meaning they will become restricted free agents...and most restricted free agents don't leave. So I'll do my best to make sure who is and isn't restricted and unrestricted now, but please correct me if i am wrong.
Ellis Hobbs, CB, Philadelphia Eagles (would be restricted) - My boy! Yes, I still have his jersey in my closet. I can only wish for Mr. Hobbs' return, but deep down I know this would not happen. He'll be an Eagle next year, but I can still hope right? Does have 171 tackles and 9 interceptions in 5 seasons, while only play 8 games with Philly this year. Made 2.545 million with Philly.
Antoine Winfield, CB, Minnesota Vikings (unrestricted) - Only played 10 games this season, same amount as he played in 2007. 21 interceptions in his 11 seasons, but only 4 in the last 3 years. Has lost a step, but doesn't get beat downfield still. Made 6 million this year, but that number will drop.
Ashton Youboty, CB, Buffalo Bills (would be restricted) - Has yet to play even close to a full season, with a career-high 11 games this season. Injury prone, then buried on the Bills depth chart, I don't expect him to return to the Bills' sidelines next year. Still has a high ceiling if placed in the right environment. Made $500,000 this year and doesn't expect to make too much more.
Terence Newman, CB, Dallas Cowboys (unrestricted) - 23 interceptions in 7 seasons. Height has been an issue he has had to overcome (5'11"). Makes up for height with speed. Can cover downfield and the slot. Made $895,000 this year, could make a million-a-year deal somewhere.
Dre Bly, CB, San Francisco 49ers (unrestricted) - 43 interceptions in 11 seasons with 4 teams. 26 tackles and 3 interceptions with the 49ers and played in every game. Has only missed 9 games in 11 seasons, all coming in a 3 seasons stretch (03, 04, 05). Turns 33 in May. Made $845,000 with the 49ers, expect the same one year deal elsewhere.
I don't think safety is a big need personally, but here is a list of major available safeties. If interested, I'll include them up here. Atari Bigby, Melvin Bullitt, Daniel Bullocks, Antoine Harris, Brodney Pool, Dawan Landry, Pierson Prioleau, Gerald Sensabaugh, Darren Sharper.