NFL Photos | NFL Photography Gallery | NFL.com

Top free-agent linebackers

It's tough to put all the different types of linebackers under the same umbrella. Scheme dictates so much and there are no universal players who fit every scheme or position.

There are 3-4 outside 'backers hired to rush the passer, 3-4 inside 'backers big enough to take on a guard, 4-3 middle 'backers capable of dropping deep into Tampa-2 coverages, strongside 'backers able to cover tight ends and weakside 'backers who can be small as long as they can run and hit.

Here's my top-five list, which doesn't include any 3-4 outside linebackers.

Advertising