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2011 NFL Free Agency Winner: New Orleans Saints

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A lot of talk has erupted over the last several  days regarding the Philadelphia Eagles and their free agent activity. After trading for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie they landed Nnamdi Asomugha, Ronnie Brown, Vince Young, Jason Babin, Cullen Jenkins, and Anthony Hargrove.

The Eagles have been dubbed “The Dream Team” because of their free agent acquisitions over the past week, and are considered a heavy favorite to represent the NFC in the next Superbowl.

But let’s not go and crown them just yet. There is another NFC team that has a little more quietly assembled a championship quality roster — the New Orleans Saints.

Sure the Saints didn’t land Asomugha, a very talented but probably a litter overrated cornerback, but they managed to re-sign nearly all of their own important free agents.

Returning to the team are LB Scott Shanle, SS Roman Harper, WR Lance Moore, LT Jermon Bushrod, LB Danny Clark, LB Jo-Lonn Dunbar, TE David Thomas, TE Tory Humphrey, S Pierson Prioleau, S Chris Reis, KR Courtney Roby, CB Leigh Torrence, OT Zach Strief, and G Carl Nicks.

Most all of these players are major contributors to the team, seven of which are primary starters and the rest top backups who can at any time see significant playing time.

There are still more loose ends to contend with and the Saints did lose out on  a few — Jonathan Goodwin (49ers), Anthony Hargrove (Eagles), Usama Young (Browns), Remi Ayodele (Vikings), Jimmy Wilkerson (Seahawks) — but their loss should have a nominal impact on the team at best.

New Orleans free agent frenzy started quietly enough with the signing of Shaun Rogers this spring, but after the lockout ended things really heated up.

The Saints have signed a plethora of free agents so far during this condensed signing period — OT Alex Barron, OT George Foster, DT Aubrayo Franklin, FB Korey Hall, LB Clint Ingram, LB Will Herring, S Paul Oliver, DE Turk McBride, CB Fabian Washington, RB Darren Sproles, and CB Trumaine McBride — not including close to twenty undrafted rookie free agents.