Look at free agency under proposed CBA

June, 21, 2011
6/21/11
11:01
PM ET
ESPN's reports from Chicago indicate the latest labor proposal would allow players to become unrestricted free agents after four seasons.

That would clarify the market whenever it opens. Rules for the uncapped 2010 campaign didn't allow for unfettered free agency unless a player had been in the league six seasons. Any player with an expired contract and fewer than six years of experience was a restricted free agent, allowing teams to place qualifying tenders on them and receive compensation if another club tried to sign them.

Now it looks like players will be up for grabs -- with former teams receiving no compensation -- after four seasons.

Here are the AFC East players who would've been restricted with the six-year threshold but unrestricted at four years:

Buffalo Bills
Miami Dolphins
New England Patriots
New York Jets

Mankins' situation remains uncertain because we don't know if franchise-tag rules will remain in place under the next CBA. They probably will, meaning Mankins should be back with the Patriots in 2011.

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