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Monday, March 18, 2013
Youth served by NFC West additions so far

By Mike Sando

NFC West teams have signed, re-signed or acquired 18 players since the NFL's free-agent signing period opened not quite one week ago.

The division has favored adding relatively young players.

The 18 players average not quite 28 years old, a figure inflated by the additions of 35-year-old safety Yeremiah Bell (Arizona Cardinals) and 32-year-old receiver Anquan Boldin (San Francisco 49ers).

Sixteen of the 18 are not yet 30 years old. Fourteen of the 18 are not yet 28. The median age for the full group is 27.5.

The chart ranks these 18 players by age and team. I've listed the ages to the tenth of a year to differentiate players recently having birthdays from those about to have them.

Five of the 18 players are reportedly earning more than $5 million per season. Of those, Boldin is the only older player. Jake Long (28 in May), Cliff Avril (27 in April), Jared Cook (26 in April) and Percy Harvin (25 in May) were the other higher-paid additions to this point in the signing period.

By definition, unrestricted free agents have played at least four NFL seasons. Most will be close to 26 or 27 years old when hitting the market for the first time.