2014 NFL free agency: D'Qwell Jackson gets 4 years, $22M; Veldheer offered a lot of money

Matt Sullivan

The recent moves and rumored moves might give fans a picture of the cost of doing business.

With the increase of the salary cap, it looks like there will be more money thrown around in free agency. Last offseason was a buyers market. This year might be different, especially with the deals and rumored deals being made.

The Arizona Cardinals are in the market for a left tackle and also for retaining Karlos Dansby. One deal announced and one that has been rumored make it that the team won't likely be make any bargain basement deals.

30-year old linebacker D'Qwell Jackson agreed to terms with the Indianapolis Colts on a four-year $22 million deal with $11 million guaranteed. Jackson is two years younger than Dansby and certainly is not a slouch, but he did not have the year that Dansby did.

How much is Dansby worth then? Probably more than $5 million average salary per year.

As for the big deal that wasn't really a big deal, it was reported last night that the Oakland Raiders had made a five-year $55 million contract offer with $23 million guaranteed to left tackle Jacob Veldheer. It was then reported that the deal was not ever offered.

Either way, it points to the free agent tackle market being expensive.

The Cardinals are expected to go after tackle Branden Albert. Will it take $10 million per year? Probably. And don't think that Eugene Monroe or Anthony Collins will come in for much less.

The bottom line is that this offseason the market has shifted a bit. With more money available, it won't so much mean that there will be more players signed to responsible deals. It means that players will be looking to use that cap space up and get paid now.

We get to see Steve Keim in a new set of rules -- one where the players have more options. He might not be able to offer bargain deals with a take it or leave it mentality. Is he up for the challenge?

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