NFL free agency: Who are the best free agents available?

Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports)
Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports) /

Each year, the NFL free agency period is always filled with high-paying contracts, trades, and everything in between. Who are the best free agents in ’23?  For many players, the free agency period is the time when they are able to cash in on their first big contract in the NFL, getting that generational money that so many covet.

For others, it’s a time of huge change– last year was a perfect example of this.  There were a plethora of players traded including Tyreek Hill, Khalil Mack, Davante Adams, Russell Wilson, and Matt Ryan, among many others.

As the 2022 season progresses to an end, teams across the NFL will gear up for free agency yet again, ready to hand out massive contracts to lure players to their team.  This year might be more interesting than last, as there are quite a few quarterbacks that may find themselves in new homes.

Who are the best free agents available in the 2023 class?

NFL free agency: Best free agents available?

Lamar Jackson, QB

Right now, Lamar Jackson is scheduled to be a free agent.  The 2019 NFL MVP is already the best dual-threat quarterback of all time and is only in his mid-20s.  Whether he re-signs with the Baltimore Ravens or requests a trade, he’ll be the top of the market.

The Ravens are clearly not as good of a team when Jackson is not playing, and their early playoff exit is further proof of that.

Tom Brady, QB

Tom Brady may retire.  He may not.  Whatever he choses to do, he is free to sign with any team he’d like.  There seem to be dots connecting him to the Raiders and 49ers, which each make sense for varying reasons.

Even though he’s literally approaching 50 years old, he’s still proven to be an effective quarterback and there should be a few teams who would entertain signing him for a one or two year deal.

Jessie Bates III, S

One of the best defensive free agents is Jessie Bates III, who looks to be hitting free agency for real this time.  The Bengals drafted Dax Hill as a potential replacement, so the writing seems to be on the wall for Bates.

Bates has only missed three games in his career and averages nearly three interceptions a season.  Any team with needs in the secondary should be looking his way.  He’s also plenty young enough to fill a draft need for certain teams.

Dre’Mont Jones, DL

A 3-4 defensive end, Dre’Mont Jones was drafted in the third round back in 2019 and is one of the best interior pass rushers in the NFL.  He’s got 22.0 sacks in four years and also excels as a run defender.

Jones is going to cash in during the free agency period, whether it’s with the Broncos or another team who needs a boost up front.

Other top free agency gets for teams include Orlando Brown, Mike McGlinchey, Jakobi Meyers, Javon Hargrave, Daron Payne, and Josh Jacobs.

Being that there is a ton of young free agency talent, many teams will opt for the market to fill their needs instead of trying to draft them.  Teams as of late also seem more willing to hand out large contracts and be very active during this period, as it seems like there’s a heightened urgency to get to and win the Super Bowl.