For some teams, the NFL free agency period is a time when draft misses or “busts” are covered up by signing immediate impact players. What is the true intention of the free agency period? Does it exist for teams to sign immediate impact players to cover up draft misses?
Or, does free agency exist for teams who are looking to load up for a Super Bowl run? Over the last few free agency periods, we’ve seen teams do just that. They’ll make insane, draft pick-depleting trades to acquire immediate impact players in hopes of finding that immediate success.
Everything feels rushed now in the NFL and results seem to be demanded quickly, rather than making it a full and complete process, like we see with rebuilding teams. Every year, tons of players hit the free agent markets.
Some positions have more talent in their pool than others. Teams who might need a wide receiver, for example, might find better luck with the NFL Draft, as the free agent pool of wide receivers in 2023 kind of stinks, to put it plainly.
So, are there any deep positions in the coming free agency period that teams could take advantage of?
Deep positions in the 2023 NFL free agency period?
The free agent running back class is insanely stacked, but given the shelf life of running backs in the NFL, teams might prefer to simply draft someone. However, there is a ton of talent currently available.
Names like Saquon Barkley, Kareem Hunt, Jamaal Williams, Josh Jacobs, Rashaad Penny, Miles Sanders, and Raheem Mostert are all RB1 talents who at this moment, are 2023 free agents. For teams that might not want to take a chance at drafting a running back and are looking for some immediate success, throwing some money at a free agent running back could be a solid idea.
There is bound to be quality offensive linemen in free agency because of the sheer number of them on rosters. Naturally, five offensive linemen plus backups makes this a good thing and perhaps something that teams struggle with.
There are an abundance of offensive linemen available, but not a ton of them are overly talented. The league does seem to have an offensive line problem, but there are some 2023 free agents who could help out.
Players like Orlando Brown Jr, Rodney Hudson, George Fant, Connor McGovern, Isaac Seumalo, Garrett Bradbury, Austin Blythe, Mike McGlinchey, and a handful of others would surely present appreciable upgrades over what many teams have at the moment.
This also gives way to teams overpaying for some of the top of the market offensive linemen. Finding a quality right tackle, for example, might be much harder than finding a quality cornerback.
Need a safety? Sure, it’s not a super valuable position, but there is some talent in this coming class. Teams splurging on a free agent safety might be doing so because of luxury. Having a quality edge rusher, interior defensive line and cornerback is much more important than having a stud safety.
However, teams who need a safety might be able to find some in free agency with names like Jessie Bates, Jordan Poyer, Jimmie Ward, Adrian Amos, Devin McCourty, Vonn Bell, Eric Rowe, Jabrill Peppers, Keanu Neal, and a few other solid players.
Safeties don’t cost a ton of money, so a team could easily find themselves a starter at this position for, let’s say, $5-$7 million per season.