The NFL free agency period is always a fun time. For the current pending free agents, where would the best fits be for these players? There are some very high profile free agents in the coming class. Their teams can still re-sign them from now until mid-March when the period opens, but as of now, they will hit the market.
The best fit is obviously not an objective truth, but based on the team needs, the player needs, and other factors, there are some easy connections to make for some best fits for pending free agents in 2023.
NFL free agency: best fits for pending free agents in ’23
Tom Brady – New York Jets
Tom Brady is currently a free agent and may end up being the number one free agent in the 2023 class. To me, the best fit for Tom Brady is the New York Jets, a loaded roster who simply needs some solid direction at quarterback.
Their offense is filled with playmakers like Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson, and General Manager Joe Douglas has done a great job in the draft filling the roster with quality talent. It’s clear that all the Jets need to get to a competitive level is competency at quarterback, and Brady can provide that.
Lamar Jackson – Miami Dolphins
This would be a homecoming and a massive, massive move in the NFL. Right now, it appears as if the Ravens will at least put the franchise tag on Jackson, but there’s still a chance that he can request a trade.
Jackson is from Florida, so he may love the idea of returning to his home state, and a state with no income tax for a potential extension he’d sign. Also, playing in a Shanahan-style offense which is run heavy and does not ask the quarterback to do a to may best play to Jackson’s strengths.
Saquon Barkley – New York Giants
Saquon Barkley was back to his old self with the New York Giants, and there is no other team that would be a better fit for Barkley at this time. It’s likely that New York brings Barkley and Daniel Jones back in the free agency period.
As long as Barkley can stay on the field, he’ll thrive in this offense which is constructed by Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka.
Jimmy Garoppolo – Carolina Panthers
The NFC South is a terrible division and extremely winnable. The Panthers also have a very good roster and a clear path to win the division if they can just get themselves some production at quarterback. Jimmy G is not great, but I think he’d do well in this division.
This would also give the Panthers a couple of years to get a more long-term option in place, as it’s clear that Garoppolo is not a 10+ year starter for them. This would be a safe move for both parties, in my opinion.