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Freeney indicates collusion took place

Free agent signed with Chargers after the draft. Terry McCormick

Print This May 31, 2013, 07:51 AM EST

Count Dwight Freeney among those who believe that NFL owners engaged in collusion this off-season regarding free agency.

While many have hinted at that, Freeney, who recently signed with the Chargers, only after Melvin Ingram tore his ACL, went on the record with CBS Sports regarding the matter.

"I basically think the owners got together and decided not to spend the cash on free agents," Freeney explained. "I definitely think that's part of it. I think the owners made a pact. There's only 32 of them and none of them broke ranks. I think they all decided not to spend money."

It can certainly be argued that Freeney isn't the same player now at age 33 that he was in his prime with the Indianapolis Colts. His production also declined when the Colts switched to a 3-4 last year after he had spent his entire career as a 4-3 rush end. He will play the 3-4 primarily in San Diego as well.

But there does appear to be some validity in Freeney's statement. Cliff Avril, in the prime of his career, got only $15 million over two years from Seattle. Elvis Dumervil got $12 million guaranteed from the Ravens, and John Abraham remains unsigned, even though he had 10 sacks a year ago.

Follow me on Twitter @TerryMc13

Terry McCormick covers the Titans for TitanInsider.com

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