Capsules of AFC teams for NFL free agency

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 11, 2014 at 3:10 pm •  Published: March 11, 2014
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Capsules of the 16 AFC teams entering NFL free agency, which begins Tuesday:

AFC EAST

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (12-4)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: RB LeGarrette Blount; DE Andre Carter; WRs Austin Collie and Julian Edelman; LBs Brandon Spikes and Dane Fletcher; TEs Michael Hoomanawanui and Matthew Mulligan; OL Will Svitek; CB Aqib Talib; C Ryan Wendell.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: LS Danny Aiken.

NEEDS: Patriots needed help at wide receiver even before Edelman entered free agency after catching career-high 105 passes. They also may need veteran cornerback since best player at that spot, Talib, could walk. Potential loss of Spikes and Fletcher would create need at linebacker, while Hoomanawanui and Mulligan were top two tight ends after Rob Gronkowski's season-ending knee injury in 13th game.

NEW YORK JETS (8-8)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: S Ed Reed; CB Aaron Berry; G Willie Colon; KR-WRs Josh Cribbs and KR-WR Darius Reynaud; TE Kellen Winslow; DL Leger Douzable; OL Vladimir Ducasse; QB David Garrard; FB Lex Hilliard; T Austin Howard; LBs Josh Mauga and Calvin Pace.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: LBs Nick Bellore and LB Garrett McIntyre; CB Isaiah Trufant.

NEEDS: Finding wide receivers top priority this offseason, in free agency and/or draft. Santonio Holmes is likely salary cap casualty, leaving Jeremy Kerley and David Nelson as only experienced WRs. TE also spot Jets will look to upgrade with Winslow not likely back, although they re-signed Jeff Cumberland before he could become free agent. Also could be in market for veteran QB to back up Geno Smith and possibly challenge him for starting job. Mark Sanchez, once considered team's franchise QB, also likely to be cut with hefty $13.1 million salary cap number for this season. CB Antonio Cromartie ($14.98 million cap number) released Sunday, so Jets likely targeting another starter opposite Dee Milliner in secondary.

MIAMI DOLPHINS (8-8)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: Gs Richie Incognito, John Jerry and David Arkin; OTs Tyson Clabo and Bryant McKinnie; NTs Paul Soliai and Randy Starks; S Chris Clemons; CBs Chris Owens and Nolan Carroll; TE Dustin Keller; WR Marlon Moore; LB Austin Spitler.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: CB R.J. Stanford; T Will Yeatman; OL Danny Watkins;

NEEDS: Tackles, guards, tight end. Incognito and Jerry, both implicated in bullying scandal, are among those on way out as Dolphins hit reset button on offensive line, which endured awful 2013 on and off field. Miami could have five new starters up front. Dolphins hope to keep either Starks or Soliai. They're in market for upgrade at tight end after newcomer Keller missed 2013 season with right knee injury. Signed S Louis Delmas, released by Lions, to one-year contract and cut CB Dimitri Patterson.

BUFFALO BILLS (6-10)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: S Jairus Byrd and Jim Leonhard; TE Scott Chandler; DL Alex Carrington; PK Dan Carpenter; LB Arthur Moats; OL Thomas Welch.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: None.

NEEDS: Bills' inability to negotiate long-term contract with Byrd opens significant hole on defense that showed marked improvement last year. Converted cornerback Aaron Williams capably made switch to safety. Re-signing Leonhard would provide insurance. Landing experienced backup QB is need after veteran Kevin Kolb missed all season because of concussion. Bills had to scramble to add quarterbacks after rookie starter EJ Manuel missed six games with knee injuries. Pass-rushing DE Jerry Hughes emerged as solid complement to Mario Williams, making him candidate for contract extension entering final year of current deal.

AFC SOUTH

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (11-5)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: LBs Pat Angerer and Lawrence Sidbury; S Antoine Bethea and Sergio Brown; RBs Ahmad Bradshaw and Donald Brown; CBs Vontae Davis and Cassius Vaughn; NT Aubrayo Franklin; WR Darrius Heyward-Bey; OT Jeff Linkenbach; DT Ricardo Matthews; OL Mike McGlynn; C Samson Satele.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: LBs Kavell Conner and Scott Lutrus; CB Josh Gordy; DT Jeris Pendleton; G Joe Reitz.

NEEDS: Colts' game plan hasn't changed since last March. They're still trying to solidify Andrew Luck's protection, still looking for another receiver, still trying to find another pass rusher and still trying to improve defense. With roughly $42 million to spend in free agency, Indianapolis could again be major player in market, though GM Ryan Grigson will try to keep enough cap space to start re-signing all those key contributors from Colts' 2012 rookie class when he is allowed to do so. They signed LB D'Qwell Jackson, cut by Cleveland, and re-signed DE Fili Moala.

TENNESSEE TITANS (7-9)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: CB Alterraun Verner; WRs Kenny Britt, Marc Mariani and Damian Williams; DT Antonio Johnson; KR Leon Washington.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: OL Kevin Matthews.

NEEDS: Verner poised to be biggest loss after he reached first Pro Bowl and had team-high five interceptions. Britt will be allowed to leave after being healthy scratch at times last season. Defense is key area of need with Titans moving to hybrid 3-4 under new coach Ken Whisenhunt and defensive coordinator Ray Horton. Titans already signed S Bernard Pollard to new deal, bringing back their top tackler. Linebacker is top target, and they already have visited with D'Qwell Jackson after he was released by Cleveland. RB could be another target with Chris Johnson due $8 million in 2014 and coming off second-worst season of six-year career.

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (4-12)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: RB Maurice Jones-Drew; CB Will Blackmon; DT Brandon Deaderick; WR Taylor Price.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: DT Kyle Love; TE Allen Reisner.

NEEDS: Team has to revamp interior offensive line after releasing veteran G Uche Nwaneri and having C Brad Meester retire after 14 seasons. Jaguars also looking for pass-rushing help as well as potential replacements for Jones-Drew, an unrestricted free agent who will test market, and suspended WR Justin Blackmon. They re-signed QB Chad Henne.

HOUSTON TEXANS (2-14)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: RBs Ben Tate, Jonathan Grimes and Deji Karim; DE Antonio Smith; LBs Joe Mays and Darryl Sharpton; FB Greg Jones; G Wade Smith; TE Garrett Graham; OTs Andrew Gardner and T Ryan Harris; CB Elbert Mack.

RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: DTs Terrell McClain and Earl Mitchell; WR Lestar Jean; LB Bryan Braman.

NEEDS: Texans are likely to cut ties with QB Matt Schaub after he was benched last season, so Houston could be in market for veteran. Probably won't re-sign Tate so Texans will need RB with Arian Foster's status uncertain after back surgery. Houston could also use upgrade at offensive tackle and will need DE to play opposite J.J. Watt with team unlikely to shell out money to keep 32-year-old Smith.

AFC NORTH

CINCINNATI BENGALS (11-5)

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: DE Michael Johnson; OTs Dennis Roland and Anthony Collins; S Chris Crocker and Taylor Mays; CB Brandon Ghee; OL Mike Pollak; TE Alex Smith; LB Michael Boley; P Zoltan Mesko.