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Playing for $omething extra

Senior Fantasy Writer
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The two reasons why men play football professionally are to win a ring and to get rich, and not necessarily in that order.

At the very minimum, a player who plays a full season makes half a million dollars. But that's just the beginning -- the more valuable a team feels someone is, the more someone will get paid when he signs a contract.

Thus, when a player knows that a chance to cash in is just a year away, he will do whatever he can to look good -- and that's exactly what Fantasy owners should want. So we're listing the relevant Fantasy players who, following the 2011 season, will be free agents and in a position to land some guaranteed bucks.

This summer, any player with four or more accrued seasons is a free agent, not like last year when a player needed six seasons to be set free. Any free agent with three years or fewer under his belt is either restricted or an exclusive rights player.

Some additional free-agent notes:

UFA: Unrestricted Free Agent -- A player who can sign anywhere.*
RFA: Restricted Free Agent -- A player who can sign anywhere but original team can match offer or receive compensation from new team. (Compensation will be added upon announcement of team designations.)
EXFA: Exclusive Rights Free Agent -- A player who can only negotiate with current team.
FRAN: Franchised Player -- A player who is guaranteed a one-year deal from his original team relative to highest-paid players at his position. The new team must give two first-round picks as compensation to original team if signed away.
*- released players also have this designation

Here's our list of players entering free agency this offseason, and here's our list of overpaid players headed into the 2011 season.

NFL Free Agents To Be (sortable)
Pos.Player'11 teamStatus as of '12 offseason
QBBrees, DrewNOUFA
QBCampbell, JasonOAKUFA
QBDaniel, ChaseNORFA
QBFlynn, MattGBUFA
QBHenne, ChadMIAUFA
QBJohnson, JoshTBUFA
QBOrton, KyleKCUFA
QBQuinn, BradyDENUFA
QBWhitehurst, CharlieSEAUFA
RBBall, LanceDENEXFA
RBBlount, LeGarretteTBEXFA
RBBush, MichaelOAKUFA
RBChoice, TashardBUFUFA
RBForsett, JustinSEAUFA
RBForte, MattCHIUFA
RBFoster, ArianHOURFA
RBGrant, RyanGBUFA
RBGreen-Ellis, BenJarvusNEUFA
RBHillis, PeytonCLEUFA
RBJones, ThomasKCUFA
RBLynch, MarshawnSEAUFA
RBMorris, MauriceDETUFA
RBRedman, IsaacPITRFA
RBRice, RayBALUFA
RBSlaton, SteveMIAUFA
RBSnelling, JasonATLUFA
RBStephens-Howling, LaRodARIRFA
RBTolbert, MikeSDUFA
RBTomlinson, LaDainianNYJUFA
RBWard, DerrickHOUUFA
WRBowe, DwayneKCUFA
WRBranch, DeionNEUFA
WRCaldwell, AndreCINUFA
WRCamarillo, GregMINUFA
WRColston, MarquesNOUFA
WRCrayton, PatrickSDUFA
WRDouglas, HarryATLUFA
WRGarcon, PierreINDUFA
WRGonzalez, AnthonyINDUFA
WRJackson, DeSeanPHIUFA
WRJohnson, SteveBUFUFA
WRLloyd, BrandonSTLUFA
WRManningham, MarioNYGUFA
WRMeachem, RobertNOUFA
WRMorgan, JoshSFUFA
WRNelson, JordyGBUFA
WRParrish, RoscoeBUFUFA
WRRoyal, EddieDENUFA
WRSimpson, JeromeCINUFA
WRWallace, MikePITRFA
WRWayne, ReggieINDUFA
WRWelker, WesNEUFA
TECarlson, JohnSEAUFA
TEDreessen, JoelHOUUFA
TEFinley, JermichaelGBUFA
TEShiancoe, VisantheMINUFA
TEShockey, JeremyCARUFA
TETamme, JacobINDUFA
KFeely, JayARIUFA
KGano, GrahamWASRFA
KLindell, RianBUFUFA
KNugent, MikeCINUFA
KRackers, NeilHOUUFA
KScobee, JoshJACUFA
KSuccop, RyanKCRFA
DLAbraham, JohnATLUFA
DLBiermann, KroyATLUFA
DLBryant, RedSEAUFA
DLCampbell, CalaisARIUFA
DLIdonije, IsraelCHIUFA
DLMathis, RobertINDUFA
DLNgata, HalotiBALUFA
DLRubin, AhtybaCLEUFA
LBBeason, JonCARUFA
LBFletcher, LondonWASUFA
LBHaggans, ClarkARIUFA
LBHawthorne, DavidSEAUFA
LBHenderson, E.J.MINUFA
LBJames, BradieDALUFA
LBJohnson, JarretBALUFA
LBLevy, DeAndreDETRFA
LBLofton, CurtisATLUFA
LBNinkovich, RobNEUFA
LBSpencer, AnthonyDALUFA
LBTimmons, LawrencePITUFA
LBThomas, BryanNYJUFA
DBBarber, RondeTBUFA
DBBranch, TyvonOAKUFA
DBDeCoud, ThomasATLUFA
DBFinnegan, CortlandTENUFA
DBFlowers, BrandonKCUFA
DBGodfrey, CharlesCARUFA
DBGriffin, MichaelTENUFA
DBHall, LeonCINUFA
DBHarris, ChrisDETUFA
DBHope, ChrisTENUFA
DBLeonhard, JimNYJUFA
DBPolamalu, TroyPITUFA
DBThomas, TerrellNYGUFA
DBToler, GregARIRFA
DBWilson, AdrianARIUFA

Got a free agency question, or a Fantasy question? Stop thinking and start typing -- send it to dmfantasyfootball@cbs.com. Be sure to put Attn: 2011 Player Movement in the subject field. Please include your full name, hometown and state and we'll respond to as many as e-mails we can.

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"I think because of how he rehabbed in the offseason, we were confident with him going into the offseason program. He was out there every day in the offseason program and it's just a matter of him getting his timing back.

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"The biggest thing that we want for him is to continue to maintain that weight and he maintains an effective play," Rivera said. "We don’t want him to lose that nose for the goal line that he has. A lot of times he’s our fourth-down, go-to guy. He’s our crunch-time guy. That’s why it’s important for him to be in shape and be ready to go."

Tolbert has run for 12 touchdowns in two seasons with Carolina and figures to get a slew of goal-line carries again this year.


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Pitta appears fully recovered from last year's hip injury. "I’m out here not thinking about it," Pitta said. "It’s not giving me an issue at all; I feel 100 percent. I’m encouraged with where I’m at."

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