Posted: Fri March 8, 2013 10:19AM; Updated: Mon March 18, 2013 7:30AM
Peter King

Top 50 free agents of 2013

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

Top 50 Free Agents (cont.)

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The deadline has passed for teams to assign franchise tags to the impending free agents they want to keep. Those who weren't tagged and don't re-sign with their teams before 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 12 will officially enter the free agent market.

There isn't a Peyton Manning to be found in this year's crop of free agents (and really, how often is there a Peyton Manning available in free agency?), and the biggest name was taken off the market when the Ravens re-signed Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco to a six-year, 120.6 million contract. Still, though, it's a deep class with plenty of talent -- some household names, some lesser-knowns -- for teams to sort through.

Despite reports that the salary cap would stay relatively flat compared to last year's $120.6 million threshold, the cap this year has risen slightly to $123.9 million. As we've seen so often, though, it's not necessarily about spending, but spending wisely.

So, who's most worthy of teams devoting that precious cap space to? Click through to read Peter King's list of the top 50 free agents available this year.

BURKE: Potential bargains and busts | Players who hurt their value in 2012


King: Potential winners and losers in FA market
Source: SI's Peter King reveals who will get big deals in the offseason, and who may be left without a satisfying contract.

50. Louis Vasquez, G, San Diego

Richard A. Brightly/Icon SMI

2012: 2 sacks, 1 hit, 19 hurries allowed

Signed with: Denver

49. Greg Toler, CB, Arizona

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

2012: 8 pass breakups, 2 interceptions

Signed with: Indianapolis

48. Phil Loadholt, T, Minnesota

Tom Dahlin/Getty Images

2012: 4 sacks, 4 hits, 23 hurries allowed

Signed wtih: Minnesota

47. Desmond Bryant, DT, Oakland

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

2012: 36 tackles, 4 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Signed with: Cleveland

46. Brandon Gibson, WR, St. Louis


2012: 51 receptions, 691 yards, 5 touchdowns

Signed with: Miami

45. Anthony Fasano, TE, Miami

Ben Margot/AP

2012: 41 receptions, 332 yards, 5 touchdowns

Signed with: Kansas City

44. Tony Gonzalez, TE, Atlanta

Simon Bruty/SI

2012: 93 receptions, 930 yards, 8 touchdowns

Signed with: Atlanta

43. Ed Reed, S, Baltimore

John Biever/SI

2012: 15 pass breakups, 4 interceptions

Best fit: New England

He's declining rapidly, but he can give a Super Bowl contender one strong season in 2013.

42. James Casey, TE/FB, Houston

David Bergman/SI

2012: 34 receptions, 330 yards, 3 touchdowns

Signed with: Philadelphia

41. Israel Idonije, DE, Chicago

Nam Y. Huh/AP

2012: 48 tackles, 7.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Best fit: Dallas

The Cowboys need big people to keep litter away from DeMarcus Ware and Anthony Spencer. Idonije is the perfect fit.

40. Victor Butler, OLB, Dallas

Ray Carlin/Icon SMI

2012: 25 tackles, 3 sacks, 2 forced fumbles

Best fit: Cleveland

Taking a flyer on a little-used edge guy? Cleveland can afford it. Could pay off big.

39. Jared Cook, TE, Tennessee

Karl Anderson/Icon SMI

2012: 44 receptions, 523 yards, 4 touchdowns

Signed with: St. Louis

38. Daryl Smith, OLB, Jacksonville

Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

2012: 6 tackles (only 2 games played)

Best fit: Jacksonville

Gus Bradley loves guys like Smith. Question is, does he think Smith can play 16 games?

37. Terrance Knighton, DT, Jacksonville

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

2012: 32 tackles, 2 sacks, 2 forced fumbles

Signed with: Denver

36. Sam Baker, T, Atlanta

Ric Tapia/Icon SMI

2012: 6 sacks, 9 hits, 37 hurries allowed

Signed with: Atlanta

35. Robert Geathers, DE, Cincinnati

Joe Robbins/Getty Images

2012: 30 tackles, 3 sacks

Signed with: Cincinnati

34. Danny Amendola, WR, St. Louis

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

2012: 63 receptions, 666 yards, 3 touchdowns

Signed with: New England

33. Martellus Bennett, TE, Giants

David Bergman/SI

2012: 55 receptions, 626 yards, 5 touchdowns

Signed with: Chicago

32. Chris Clemons, S, Miami

Richard C. Lewis/Icon SMI

2012: 98 tackles, 2 interceptions

Signed with: Miami

31. Kenny Phillips, S, Giants

David Bergman/SI

2012: 24 tackles, 3 pass breakups (only 7 games played)

Signed with: Philadelphia

30. Connor Barwin, OLB, Houston

Dave Tinsel/AP

2012: 44 tackles, 3 sacks

Signed with: Philadelphia

29. John Abraham, DE, Atlanta

Ric Tapia/Icon SMI

2012: 35 tackles, 10 sacks, 6 forced fumbles

Best fit: Giants

A 35-year-old pass rusher doesn't fit Giants' profile, but just turn on the tape.

28. Sean Smith, CB, Miami

Alex Trautwig/Getty Images

2012: 12 pass breakups, 2 interceptions, 3 forced fumbles

Signed with: Kansas City

27. Phil Dawson, K, Cleveland

Mark Duncan/AP

2012: 29 of 31 (93.5 percent) field goals, long of 53 yards

Best fit: San Francisco

Replacing one 38-year-old kicker (David Akers) with another? Phil's still good from 50-plus.

26. Gosder Cherilus, T, Detroit

Greg McWilliams/Icon SMI

2012: 4 sacks, 7 hits, 27 hurries allowed

Signed with: Indianapolis

25. Reggie Bush, RB, Miami

Heinz Kluetmeier/SI

2012: 1,278 total yards (986 rushing, 4.3 average), 8 touchdowns

Signed with: Detroit

24. Glover Quin, S, Houston

Manny Flores/Icon SMI

2012: 14 pass breakups, 2 interceptions, 2 forced fumbles

Signed with: Detroit

23. Brent Grimes, CB, Atlanta

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

2012: 6 tackles (only 1 game played)

Best fit: Minnesota

The Vikings need a replacement for Antoine Winfield. Grimes gets hurt too much, but he's a good risk.

22. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Philadelphia

Mark Duncan/AP

2012: 17 pass breakups, 3 interceptions

Signed with: Denver

21. Shane Lechler, P, Oakland

Richard C. Lewis/Icon SMI

2012: 47.2 yard average, 9 touchbacks, 21 downed inside the 20

Best fit: Detroit

I keep hearing he had a bad season last year. I'll take a 47.2-yard-average bad year anytime.

20. Osi Umenyiora, DE, Giants

David Bergman/SI

2012: 43 tackles, 6 sacks, 2 forced fumbles

Best fit: New England

I think the Pats will be in on a rusher, and if they fail to get Freeney (see below), Osi could be the guy.

19. Jermon Bushrod, T, New Orleans

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

2012: 4 sacks, 8 hits, 46 hurries allowed

Signed with: Chicago

18. Dashon Goldson, S, San Francisco

Ric Tapia/Icon SMI

2012: 11 pass breakups, 3 interceptions, 1 forced fumble

Signed with: Tampa Bay

17. William Moore, S, Atlanta

Richard C. Lewis/Icon SMI

2012: 8 pass breakups, 4 interceptions, 2 forced fumbles

Re-signed with: Atlanta

16. Chris Gamble, CB, Panthers

Chris Gamble

2012: 2 pass breakups (only played 4 games)

Signed with: Retired

15. Steven Jackson, RB, St. Louis

Richard C. Lewis/Icon SMI

2012: 1,363 total yards (1,042 rushing, 4.1 average), 4 touchdowns

Signed with: Atlanta

14. Sebastian Vollmer, T, New England

Kellen Micah/Icon SMI

2012: 7 sacks, 7 hits, 26 hurries allowed

Best fit: Chicago

The Bears have money, and they've got to overpay to buck up a horrible line.

13. Michael Bennett, DE, Tampa Bay

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

2012: 41 tackles, 9 sacks, 3 forced fumbles

Signed with: Seattle

12. Dannell Ellerbe, ILB, Baltimore

David Bergman/SI

2012: 92 tackles, 4.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Signed with: Miami

11. Dwight Freeney, DE, Indianapolis

Rich Kane/Icon SMI

2012: 12 tackles, 5 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Best fit: Atlanta

I have a feeling the Patriots will be in on him too. He still has a 12-sack season in him.

10. Wes Welker, WR, New England

Robert Beck/SI

2012: 118 receptions, 1,354 yards, 6 touchdowns

Signed with: Denver

9. Greg Jennings, WR, Green Bay

John Biever/SI

2012: 36 receptions, 366 yards, 4 touchdowns (only 8 games played)

Signed with: Minnesota

8. Keenan Lewis, CB, Pittsburgh

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

2012: 23 pass breakups, 1 forced fumble

Signed with: New Orleans

7. Jake Long, T, Miami

Kellen Micah/Icon SMI

2012: 4 sacks, 7 hits, 10 hurries allowed

Signed with: St. Louis

6. Andre Smith, T, Cincinnati

Greg Nelson/SI

2012: 7 sacks, 2 hits, 25 hurries allowed

Best fit: Cincinnati

But I'd be worried about a guy with a former major weight problem.

5. Mike Wallace, WR, Pittsburgh

David Bergman/SI

2012: 64 receptions, 836 yards, 8 touchdowns

Signed with: Miami

4. Andy Levitre, G, Buffalo

Juan DeLeon/Icon SMI

2012: 1 sack, 3 hits, 7 hurries allowed

Signed with: Tennessee

3. Aqib Talib, CB, New England

Tom Croke/Icon SMI

2012: 2 pass breakups, 1 interception (only 6 games played)

Signed with: New England

2. Paul Kruger, DE/OLB, Baltimore

Patrick Smith/Getty Images

2012: 42 tackles, 9 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Signed with: Cleveland

1. Cliff Avril, DE, Detroit

Greg McWilliams/Icon SMI

2012: 35 tackles, 9.5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles

Signed with: Seahawks

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