NFL free agency had a wild first 48 hours — here are all of the biggest moves

  • NFL free agency has begun and several big signings have already been made.
  • The top NFL free agents this year are overwhelmingly defensive players, with only a few big-name offensive players.
  • Only six players were given the franchise tag by their teams, meaning several talented players will hit the open market.

NFL free agency is upon us!

On March 11, players and teams were allowed to begin negotiations, with signings allowed to become official on March 13.

The floodgates opened on Monday and Tuesday, with several big deals for top defensive players, top offensive linemen, and the best quarterback on the market.

This year’s class of free agents is heavy on defensive difference-makers and light on offensive weapons. In an era of exploding offenses, perhaps teams should spend big on the best defensive talent they can find. This year’s free agent class has plenty of it.

Take a look below at the top NFL free agents in 2019 and where players have landed so far:

* Denotes a player signed to the franchise tag


Trey Flowers — SIGNED with Detroit Lions

Position: DE

Previous team: New England Patriots

Reported deal: Five-years, $US90 million

One thing to know: The breakout Patriots defender now reunites with his former defensive coordinator in Matt Patricia on the Detroit Lions.


Nick Foles — SIGNED with Jacksonville Jaguars

Abbie Parr/Getty

Position: QB

Previous team: Philadelphia Eagles

Reported deal: Four years, $US88 million

One thing to know: Foles joined the Jaguars on a bigger deal than anybody expected after the Eagles unexpectedly let him walk. He’s expected to replace Blake Bortles.


C.J. Mosley — SIGNED with New York Jets

Position: LB

Previous team: Baltimore Ravens

Reported deal: Five years, $US85 million

One thing to know: The Jets went into free agency with money to spend and have landed several big free agents in hopes of making a quick turn-around.


Landon Collins — SIGNED with Washington Redskins

Position: S

Previous team: New York Giants

Reported new deal: Six years, $US84 million

One thing to know: Collins joined an NFC East rival on a monster deal after the Giants chose not to franchise tag him.


Trent Brown — SIGNED with Oakland Raiders

Position: LT

Previous team: New England Patriots

Reported deal: Four years, $US66 million

One thing to know: The massive Brown was one of the best blockers in the NFL last season, and now he’ll be paid like a star for a revamped Raiders team.


Za’Darius Smith — SIGNED with Green Bay Packers

Position: LB

Previous team: Baltimore Ravens

Reported deal: Four years, $US66 million

One thing to know: Smith had a monster year, totaling 8.5 sacks and 25 quarterback hits in 2018.


Kwon Alexander — SIGNED with San Francisco 49ers

Position: LB

Previous team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Reported deal: Four years, $US54 million

One thing to know: Alexander fills a need for the 49ers, but the deal is viewed as a risk, as he’s coming off a torn ACL that ended his 2018 season.


Preston Smith — SIGNED with Green Bay Packers

Position: LB

Previous team: Washington Redskins

Reported deal: Four years, $US52 million

One thing to know: The Packers have taken a rare dive into free agency this offseason and are appearing to focus on the defensive end, namely getting more pressure on opposing quarterbacks.


Tyrann Mathieu — SIGNED with Kansas City Chiefs

Position: S

Previous team: Houston Texans

Reported deal: Three years, $US42 million

One thing to know: Matthieu said he wants to win a championship ring. He adds needed punch to the Chiefs, who haven’t had All-Pro safety Eric Berry on the field for many games the last two years.


Justin Coleman — SIGNED with Detroit Lions

Position: CB

Previous team: Seattle Seahawks

Reported deal: Four years, $US36 million

One thing to know: According to ESPN, Coleman’s deal makes him the highest-paid nickel cornerback in NFL history.


Sheldon Richardson — SIGNED with Cleveland Browns

Position: DT

Previous team: Minnesota Vikings

Reported deal: Three years, $US39 million

One thing to know: Richardson has yet to find a landing spot, but somebody may still take a chance on the talented 28-year-old who produced eight sacks four years ago.


Adam Humphries — SIGNED with Tennessee Titans

Position: WR

Previous team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Reported deal: Four years, $US36 million

One thing to know: Humphries had a career season in 2018, posting 816 yards and 5 touchdowns.


Jamison Crowder — SIGNED with New York Jets

Position: WR

Previous team: Washington Redskins

Reported deal: Three years, $US28.5 million

One thing to know: If Crowder can stay healthy, he gives the Jets a speedy slot receiver and another weapon for Sam Darnold.


John Brown — SIGNED with Buffalo Bills

Position: WR

Previous team: Baltimore Ravens

Reported deal: Three years, $US27 million

One thing to know: Bills quarterback Josh Allen does one thing well – throw it deep. Brown can be a target for him.


Malik Jackson — SIGNED with Philadelphia Eagles

Position: DT

Previous team: Jacksonville Jaguars

Reported deal: Three years, $US30 million

One thing to know: Jackson was cut by the Jaguars and landed with the Eagles, giving Philadelphia another fearsome member to their front four.


Jesse James — SIGNED with Detroit Lions

Position: TE

Previous team: Pittsburgh Steelers

Reported deal: Four years, $US25 million

One thing to know: James had a career-high 423 yards with the Steelers last year and fills need for the spend-happy Lions.


Dante Fowler Jr. — SIGNED with Los Angeles Rams

Position: LB

Previous team: Los Angeles Rams

Reported deal: One year, $US14 million

One thing to know: Fowler hasn’t lived up to being a top-three pick in 2015, but he’s talented, and the Rams are hoping he can thrive in a full season after trading for him mid-way through 2018.


Devin Funchess — SIGNED with Indianapolis Colts

Position: WR

Previous team: Carolina Panthers

Reported deal: One year, $US13 million

One thing to know: Funchess showed flashes in Carolina, but didn’t look capable of being a No. 1 receiver. With the Colts, he’ll give Andrew Luck a big target next to the speedy T.Y. Hilton.


Eric Weddle — SIGNED with Los Angeles Rams

Position: S

Previous team: Baltimore Ravens

Reported deal: 2 years, $US12.5 million

One thing to know: The Ravens made the surprising decision to cut Weddle. He quickly joined the Rams, giving them another reinforcement and leader on the defensive end,


LaMarcus Joyner — SIGNED with Oakland Raiders

Position: S

Previous team: Los Angeles Rams

Reported deal: Four years, value unclear

One thing to know: Joyner gives the Raiders, the 32nd pass defence last year, some more speed and versatility in the backfield.


Danny Amendola — SIGNED with Detroit Lions

Position: WR

Previous team: Miami Dolphins

Reported deal: 1 year, $US5.75 million

One thing to know: Amendola is yet another former Patriot to join Patricia in Detroit. Amendola had 59 catches for 575 yards in 2018.


Frank Gore — SIGNED with Buffalo Bills

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Position: RB

Previous team: Miami Dolphins

Reported deal: One year, $US2 million

One thing to know: The 35-year-old Gore keeps chugging along. He had nearly 600 yards on 4.6 yards per carry last season.


Carlos Hyde — SIGNED with Kansas City Chiefs

Position: RB

Previous team: Jacksonville Jaguars

Reported deal: One year, $US2.8 million

One thing to know: Hyde posted 382 yards and 5 touchdowns in six games with the Browns last season before being traded to the Jaguars. He’ll look to revive his career in Kansas City’s explosive offence.


Jadeveon Clowney*

Position: DE/OLB

Previous team: Houston Texans

One thing to know: The Texans placed the $US15.9 million franchise tag on Clowney, who has posted nine sacks the last two seasons.


DeMarcus Lawrence*

Position: DE

Previous team: Dallas Cowboys

Rumoured landing spots: Cowboys

One thing to know: The Cowboys placed the franchise tag on Lawrence after failing to come to terms on a long-term contract. Lawrence previously said he did not want to play on the franchise tag.


Frank Clark*

Position: DE

Previous team: Seattle Seahawks

Rumoured landing spots: Seahawks

One thing to know: Clark has produced 33 sacks over the last three years, including 14 last season, en route to becoming a force for the Seahawks.


Dee Ford*

Position: LB

Previous team: Kansas City Chiefs

Rumoured landing spots: Chiefs

One thing to know: The Chiefs gave Ford the franchise tag, but are reportedly exploring trades for the star linebacker, as they don’t believe he fits their scheme.


Grady Jarrett*

Position: DT

Previous team: Atlanta Falcons

Rumoured landing spots: Falcons

One thing to know: Jarrett provides ever-valuable inside pressure, ranking fifth in 2018, according to Pro Football Focus.


Le’Veon Bell

Kevin C. Cox/Getty

Position: RB

Previous team: Pittsburgh Steelers

Rumoured landing spots: New York Jets, Oakland Raiders, Baltimore Ravens, Kansas City Chiefs, Miami Dolphins

One thing to know: Bell’s free agency is the story to watch after sitting out the year to preserve his body. Now 27 years old with a lot of miles, there’s some risk in giving him a huge deal, but he will almost certainly get one, as he’s the best offensive player available.


Earl Thomas

Position: S

Previous team: Seattle Seahawks

Rumoured landing spots: Dallas Cowboys, San Francisco 49ers, Indianapolis Colts, Green Bay Packers

One thing to know: Before tearing his ACL, there was a buzz about Thomas going to the Cowboys in a trade. Now on the open market, Thomas reportedly wants to become the highest-paid safety in the league.


Anthony Barr

Position: LB

Previous team: Minnesota Vikings

Rumoured landing spots: Vikings, New York Jets

One thing to know: The Vikings reportedly tried to trade Barr last year, but were unsuccessful. The would like to keep him in free agency at the right price.


Ndamukong Suh

Position: DT

Previous team: Los Angeles Rams

Rumoured landing spots: Rams, Cleveland Browns, Minnesota Vikings

One thing to know: Suh’s future with the Rams is uncertain, though they would like to have him back at a certain price. He could make sense as a veteran addition to an up-and-coming team, despite his best years being behind him.


Golden Tate

Position: WR

Previous team: Philadelphia Eagles

Rumoured landing spots: Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, Jacksonville Jaguars

One thing to know: Tate had a quiet stint with the Eagles after being traded midway through the 2018 season. He finished the year with 795 yards and 4 touchdowns.


Jared Cook

Position: TE

Previous team: Oakland Raiders

Rumoured landing spots: New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints

One thing to know: Cook had the most productive year of his career under Jon Gruden, and the Raiders would like to re-sign him. But as the best tight end in free agency, he should have plenty of suitors.


Tevin Coleman

Position: RB

Previous team: Atlanta Falcons

Rumoured landing spots: New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles

One thing to know: The Falcons are expected to let Coleman walk in free agency. Coleman could be a great Plan B for any team that misses on Le’Veon Bell.


Matt Paradis

Position: C

Previous team: Denver Broncos

Rumoured landing spots: Broncos, Arizona Cardinals, New York Jets

One thing to know: Offensive line play is more important than ever, and Paradis may be the top center available. He could be set for a big payday.


Teddy Bridgewater

Position: QB

Previous team: New Orleans Saints

Rumoured landing spots: Saints, Washington Redskins, Cincinnati Bengals

One thing to know: Bridgewater barely played after he was traded from the Jets to the Saints last year, and he didn’t look great when he did. Still, with few available quarterbacks this year, he could get a shot to be a full-time starter.


Tyrell Williams

Position: WR

Previous team: Los Angeles Chargers,

Rumoured landing spots: Oakland Raiders, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks

One thing to know:According to CBS’s Jason La Canfora, Williams is expected to command a big contract as a big target and a field-stretcher.


Ezekiel Ansah

Position: DE

Previous team: Detroit Lions

Rumoured landing spots: Lions, New York Jets, Green Bay Packers

One thing to know: Ansah is a great pass-rusher, posting double-digit sacks in two of the last four seasons, but health and consistency are two major questions.


Rodger Saffold

Position: G

Previous team: Los Angeles Rams

Rumoured landing spots: New York Jets, Green Bay Packers

One thing to know: Pro Football Focus had Saffold ranked as the eighth-best guard last year, and he should be one of the top offensive line free agents this year.


Ronald Darby

Position: CB

Previous team: Philadelphia Eagles

Rumoured landing spots: Eagles, Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, Houston Texans, Detroit Lions

One thing to know: Darby is coming off a torn ACL but is considered the best cornerback in a weak cornerback free agency class, so he should have several suitors.


Mark Ingram

Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Position: RB

Previous team: New Orleans Saints

Rumoured landing spots: Saints, Oakland Raiders,

One thing to know: Ingram has worked in a time-share with Alvin Kamara the last two years. The power runner could have value to teams looking to give him more carries.


Now, check out which athletes landed big contracts during their careers…

Ethan Miller/Getty

The 29 athletes in the exclusive $US200 million club for career earnings in North America >

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