Shaffer could see quite a bit of money thrown his way this off-season. I wouldn't bet on it, but I wouldn't bet against it either.
There are no top flight LTs on this market. Last year, Jonas Jennings was helped tremendously by the presence of Walter Jones and Orlando Pace. Both of them were tagged, which made Jennings stock soar landing him a fat contract with the 49ers because he was the only quality free agent with experience that could play LT.
The premier LTs this off-season are SHaffer, Mike Pearson, and Jeff Backus. Backus is having his worst year as a Lion. He's a good player but for whatever reason his play his slipped over the past few years. Pearson has done a decent job in Jacksonville, but injuries have held him back the past two years, and he's been supplanted and outplayed by rookie Khalif Barnes this year. Both Backus and Pearson are considered pass blockers that don't have a lot of pedigree as run blockers. When you look at the tape, you can clearly tell run blocking is not Shaffer's strength, but I think a few GMs are going to disregard that when you look at the Falcons being the #1 rushing team the past two years thinking "He must be doing something right."
With that in mind, Shaffer might be considered the best overall LT prospect on the FA market.
If you look at Shaffer, Pearson, and Backus stats provided by PFW, Shaffer has been credited with 11.25 sacks and 15 penalties over his career (44 games, 36 starts). Backus has 13 sacks, 21 penalties in 45 starts (just the past 3 years). Pearson has 9 sacks and 13 penalties in his 22 starts (past 3 years). When you count a sack allowed and penalty as an equal mistake, SHaffer emerges with having the lower "mistakes per game" average. It slightly edges out Backus (0.73 for Shaffer compared to 0.76). But if you consider Shaffer's 8 non-starts most likely involve him only playing ST, and just average the figures based on # of starts, Shaffer's improves to 0.6 vs. Backus 0.76.
Not to mention Shaffer has been tutored under Gibbs, who is widely considered the top OL coach in the league. So that means a number of teams that don't think they can get a quality LT in the early part of the draft (which is looking more and more like a possibility), you could see Shaffer's stock and price tag rise significantly.
It will also help a lot too how well he plays in these next 3 games.
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.