So where, oh where will Nnamdi Asomugha land. That seems to be the question on everyone’s mind. Arguably one of the best cornerbacks in professional football is a lucrative free agent for anyone who wants to become a more legitimate defense. NFL insiders currently have three teams in the mix for Asomugha’s services: the Houston Texans, the San Francisco 49ers, and the New York Jets.
Sources say that the New York front office has already told players that they will be restructuring contracts in an attempt to give Asomugha an offer. Mark Sanchez was quoted after practice yesterday as saying that he is willing to restructure his contract in order to help land Asomugha. This is a scary notion for any NFL team as a Revis-Asomugha tandem will be a force to be reckoned with and will probably give the Jets that push needed in order to finally win an AFC Championship game and possibly even the Superbowl. With Santonio Holmes just signing a 5-year contract and the Jets supposedly taking in interest in signing Randy Moss, I would be surprised if they will actually be able to get Asomugha on the roster.
The Houston Texans should be the team pushing the hardest for Asomugha. Asomugha would give the Texans and new Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips a massive improvement to a secondary which finished last in the league last season allowing 267.5 passing yards per game. Asomugha could also be the final piece into putting the Texans into the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. After resigning Jacoby Jones and Rashad Butler, the Texans will have to do some massive contract restructuring in order to have the cap room to be in contention for picking up Asomugha.
Fullback Vonta Leach is one of the last people the Texans want to finalize a deal with, but don’t be surprised if they sacrifice Leach in order to bring in Asomugha. There are also a couple of players who will most likely be cut in order to bring in Asomugha such as Steve Slaton and Amobi Okoye. If the Texans are not able to get Asomugha, it should be expected that they will aggressively pursue Antonio Cromartie. Unfortunately for Texans fans, I don’t see them having the cap room to bring in Asomugha unless they can restructure almost every player’s contract.
Finally there are the 49ers. The 49ers are not making a lot of noise which is to be expected with a new Head Coach but it is expected that Cornerback Nate Clements will be cut which will clear up nearly 15 million dollars of cap room for the 49ers which in my opinion makes San Francisco a pretty good contender to land Asomugha. Playing in San Francisco will mean that Asomugha will be able to stay in his home of Southern California and more importantly he will play for a team which is just across The Bay from his old team the Oakland Raiders. It would be interesting to see Asomugha in San Francisco and he would make a great impact on a team which has potential on defense, especially with Linebacker Patrick Willis. However, with the breaking news that Frank Gore is holding out, the 49ers may have to shift focus on their star running back who had a breakout year last season.
No matter where Asomugha lands, he is going to demand a huge paycheck so it will be interesting to see which team is going to be able to make the cap room in order to get Asomugha on their roster for the 2011 season.