First, I took a look at the Atlanta Falcons' pending free agents while making the case who they should bring back. Then I examined the possible free agents they should look to add to the 2011 roster. Now, I'll break down a few players the Falcons should avoid at all costs during the free agency period.
Despite their early playoff exit, let's not forget this team was 13-4 so there's not a lot of holes to fill. I've targeted three positions that I think are the greatest needs: wide receiver, defensive line and cornerback. The offensive line could be an area of need but until we see what happens with Tyson Clabo, Harvey Dahl and Justin Blalock it's hard to make any assumptions. In the meantime, I offer some tempting free agents the Falcons should avoid.
Last season, there was a portion of Falcons nation who wanted to bring T. O. to Atlanta. He would have been the missing piece, they claimed. He did have a great bounceback season with 72 catches and nine touchdowns but that was with a terrible team. His personality runs perpendicular to the type of player the Falcons typically pursue. Even at 38, he still has the talent to produce but let him do so with another team.
WR Randy Moss, (Patriots, Vikings, Titans)
Three teams couldn't get anything out of him in 2010. Why would this year be any different? I know this seems like a no-brainer but if a new CBA is signed and Moss is available there'll be Falcons fans who want him brought in. We would be wise to stay away.
WR TJ Houshmandzadeh (Ravens)
Coming off a terrible year and heading towards 34 years of age. He's the type of player you could talk yourself into based on his past success in Cincinnati and Seattle but he's not that player anymore.
DL Richard Seymour (Raiders)
The Falcons need more of a presence in the middle but Seymour is not the answer. He's 32 years old and will likely command a large payday. The Falcons have shown they'd rather skew younger and build through the draft.
DL Shaun Ellis (Jets)
Same boat as Seymour. A solid pass rusher but his age makes him a short-term stopgap and with John Abraham not getting any younger, the Falcons need a long-term solution.
He's a popular choice but I can't see any scenario the Falcons pony up for an aging veteran especially after giving the keys to the vault to Dunta Robinson one year earlier. If the Falcons do go for broke, Nnamdi Asomugha is a better option.