Just as things seemed to be quieting down on Tuesday night, there were two major developments in free agency, both involving defensive backs. First, cornerback Alterraun Verner, who was viewed as one of the top free agents at his position, agreed to a deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Then, just minutes later, the New Orleans Saints announced that they agreed to a six-year deal with the top free-agent safety, Jairus Byrd.
The terms have not yet been released on Byrd's deal, but it's pretty shocking that he ended up in New Orleans considering how little cap space the Saints have. This just furthers the point that if a team really wants a player, they can find a way to make it work from a cap standpoint.
As for Verner, the surprising part about him landing in Tampa Bay is that his four-year deal is worth only $26.5 million. Granted, $14 million of that is guaranteed, but he was expected to get a much bigger contract. Considering the Detroit Lions reportedly had interest in him, this news is a bit disappointing. He was expected to be out of their price range, but that didn't turn out to be the case by any means.
The Lions were never connected to Byrd, but with him signing with the Saints, another safety is off the market. Options at that position are starting to thin out, which makes it seem all the more likely that Chris Clemons will ultimately end up in Detroit.
UPDATE: I have no idea how the Saints are able to afford this contract:
Saints are giving former Bills S Jairus Byrd a six-year, $54 million contract, including $28 million guaranteed, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 12, 2014