2012 NFL Free Agency: Top Free Agents Will Affect the Draft

As soon as Tom Brady's desperation hail mary hit the turf at Lucas Oil Stadium, it was draft season. The following week was filled with mock drafts, scouting reports and non-stop draft news. But maybe it's time to pump the breaks for a minute. The NFL Scouting Combine and free agency are still on the horizon, and each will have an enormous effect on the mock drafts around the country.

SB Nation recently took a look at some of the top free agents available and some possible destinations for those players. Among the most intriguing free agents are Matt Flynn, Mario Williams and Vincent Jackson. With a handful of quarterback needy teams at the top of the draft trying to trade up and grab Robert Griffin III, Matt Flynn's new choice of team will undoubtedly cross one team off that list.

Meanwhile, in a draft that is short on premiere pass rushers at the top, Mario Williams is one of the best free agents to come along at the position since Julius Peppers. Teams running the 4-3 defense that don't like what they see in Quinton Coples, or are out of the range to draft him, will be throwing a lot of money at the former No. 1 overall pick.

Vincent Jackson's decision may not be quite as pressing, but you can be certain that Justin Blackmon has his eye on the talented group of free agent wide receivers. Blackmon would certainly benefit from some of the wide receiver needy teams at the top of the draft staying clear of the position in free agency. Something tells me he won't be so lucky.

Not all needs can be filled in free agency, but the frenzy that ensues in March will have enough of an impact on the NFL Draft to make most mock drafts coming out now look silly by draft time.

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