When it comes to NFL 2012 free agent quarterbacks, the pool is indeed very shallow. Some will argue that NCAA college football quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III are better options than a touchable QB on the current NFL free agent landscape. Here is a short list of some of the "talent" available on the 2012 FA market.
Drew Brees , QB, New Orleans Saints
Cap trouble is brewing in the Bayou as the Saints have a plethora of players that need to be re-signed. In addition to their franchise QB Drew Brees, New Orleans will also have to pony up some cash if they want to retain OG Carl Nicks, WR Marques Colston, and DE Will Smith (who are all key free agents). Make no mistake, Brees is the face of the Saints as well as the reigning 2011 NFL Offensive Player of the Year. He will get signed to a contract that allows him to remain in New Orleans for the remainder of his career. Cool Brees will also blow off the board as the second QB taken in most 2012 fantasy football drafts.
Matt Flynn, QB, Green Bay Packers
Once the Saints lock up Drew Brees, the 2012 QB free agent crop gets very thin. The next most talked about QB has been Matt Flynn from the Packers. As a four-year backup in Green Bay, the Flying Flynn has attempted 132 passes, with 82 completions, nine TD passes, and five interceptions, in 34 career appearances. Flynn made the most of his only start in 2011 as he passed for 518 yards and six touchdowns versus the Detroit Lions during Week 17 action (when the entire league was watching). While there's been talk of Peyton Manning heading to the Dolphins, we see the addition of former Packers OC Joe Philbin in Miami making South Beach the most likely landing spot for Flynn. With the likes of Brandon Marshall, Anthony Fasano, and Reggie Bush in place, Flynn could see a substantial boost in his ADP should he land in Miami.
Alex Smith, QB, San Francisco 49ers
After leading the 49ers to their first playoff berth in nine seasons (and because of his close relationship with head coach Jim Harbaugh), it is a virtual lock that Alex Smith will be back in San Francisco with a fat new contract in 2012. Smith has never been a top fantasy option as his 3,144 yards, with 17 TD and just five INT, in 2011 were career bests. He is however a good fit in the power run offense run by the Niners, and a suitable bye-week option for fantasy owners.
Jason Campbell, QB, San Francisco 49ers
One can tell just how shallow the NFL 2012 QB free agent pool is by the fact that Jason Campbell makes this list. A mediocre passer at best, Campbell is coming off a 2011 season that was shortened by a broken collarbone sustained in Week 6. Prior to the injury, Campbell passed for 1,170 yards, with six TD and four INT in six games. For his career, Campbell has tossed 74 TD passes to go along with 50 INT. He has also added another six rushing touchdowns and an alarming 34 fumbles. Unless he lands in the perfect system, Campbell is safe to avoid in all fantasy leagues.
Journeymen Pivots Make Up The Best Of The Rest
A group of journeymen quarterbacks make up the remainder of the NFL 2012 free agent crop. Guys like Rex Grossman (Redskins), Kyle Orton (Chiefs), Chad Henne (Dolphins), and Dennis Dixon (Steelers) will all be looking for new homes this season. We have our doubts that any of these players will be viable starters in the NFL, or on Fantasy Football rosters, in 2012.
Grossman wants to stay with the Redskins, while the Washington rumor mill has Orton leaving KC and heading to DC. The Redskins will also be looking for a franchise QB in the 2012 NFL Draft in April. Rumblings in Denver are suggesting that Henne could head to the Broncos to back up the Mile High Messiah.
Dixon has been a serviceable backup in Pittsburgh. He could possibly land in Detroit, as Lions QB Shaun Hill is also a UFA. At 32 years old, and his hopes of grabbing a starters gig diminishing, Hill would be wise to stay in the Motor City. Just as Fantasy Owners would be wise to grab Matthew Stafford as a top five QB and back him up with Hill later in the Draft.