Branden Albert, Michael Bennett, Jairus Byrd, Eric Decker and Michael Johnson are among the players expected to earn big-money contracts as free agents this offseason (for a look at every available free agent, with grades for each, check out Insider's free-agent tracker).
But Super Bowl contenders aren't always built on a foundation of big-ticket free agents; smart teams are able to fill key holes with lower-level players. So who are some of the players who could be had for less money and provide big-time value to their teams next season? Here are my picks for the best value free agents in 2014.
Gerhart has been buried on the Minnesota Vikings' depth chart behind the best running back of this generation, but that doesn't mean that he hasn't been impressive in his own right when given playing time. He will be turning 27 years old at the end of the month, but has carried the ball only 267 times at the NFL level after showing workhorse traits at the college level.