FOOCH'S NOTE 9:47AM: The Browns have traded Kellen Winslow to the Buccaneers for undisclosed draft picks.
Now that free agency is underway, big happenings are certainly occuring. Unfortunately I will be away from my computer from 11am to 3pm pacific time at a law school function. So, I've decided to go with an open thread for now for free agency happenings. Later this afternoon/evening I'll roll out another update on today's happenings.
For now, some of the biggest news of the day, first in regards to the 49ers:
It looks like the 49ers are NOT interested in TJ Houshmandzadeh. John Clayton had reported otherwise last night, but the 49ers clarified and denied that.
Of interesting note in that Barrows link above, the 49ers are reportedly interested in defensive end Chris Canty and wide receiver Brandon Jones. I have to admit that I'm very intrigued by both players. From Canty's scouting report at ESPN:
Canty has great size and natural strength to hold the point versus the run or push the pocket rushing the passer...He has improved his hand use to separate to ball carriers and has become a more active defender in his third season
He is a good football player who plays with a great motor and should continue to get better as his career progresses. His outstanding size makes him a fit in both a 3-4 or 4-3 defensive schemes and his versatility gives him added value.
While I do like Ray McDonald, Chris Canty would be a nice upgrade opposite Justin Smith. Also, Ray McDonald could still provide value as strictly a passing down rusher.
As for Brandon Jones, well he's a guy I've always been intrigued by, even though he's never really put it all together. He seems to have a ton of talent, but has not figured out the way to have that breakout season. According to his scouting report:
He has ideal size to go along with above-average athleticism and average speed. He looks like he has lost a step since his knee injury in 2005 and teams do not appear very worried about his ability to go deep. He lacks a burst of speed coming out of his break and he struggles to separate from defenders.
He shows good body control and hand-eye coordination when he has to adjust to the ball and catch it outside his frame. He has soft, natural hands, but is not real aggressive when blocking or when going up for the ball in a crowd.
Not exactly a thrilling report. However, I remain enamored with him. Barrows indicated he has "similar dimensons" to Josh Morgan. I'd imagine the 49ers could get Jones at a relatively decent deal. Over at Instant 49ers, Maiocco indicated the 49ers wanted someone who could stretch the field a little and pointed to Jones's 4.42 Combine 40. Of course, the injury issues have seemed to slow Jones down for now.
Also, both Barrows and Maiocco have indicated the 49ers will hold a visit with Moran Norris and Redskins defensive end Demetric Evans. Evans was a bit of a backup last year and with the Redskins rolling out the cash for Albert Haynesworth, I'd imagine Evans is not going to get a payday from them. According to his scouting report:
He has good size for the position with adequate strength. He's a veteran player who is inconsistent with his hand use and recognition playing the run. He gets knocked around, while attempting to read blocking schemes.
He will get reached too easily at times or run behind blocks due to his late reactions...He can work down the line of scrimmage and help finish off plays on the outside...He has good strength to create movement on the inline power rush. He shows adequate hand use when attempting other moves, but lacks the top speed.
Not exactly exciting, but probably more of a depth move anyways.
Finally, for now, Maiocco has indicated that the Jets and Rams are bringing in Billy Bajema for a visit. I'd imagine he's not long for this world as a 49er. Speaking of the Jets, they also are hosting a visit for Bart Scott of the Ravens. Rex Ryan was his coach in Baltimore so that is probably a nice bonus.
I'll update this thread when I can, but I strongly encourage you to post any links and thoughts about free agency in here.
Some solid insider updates that probably carry a little bit of weight:
FOOCH'S NOTE 9:30: We've got the Rossum re-signing posted here.