NFL Free Agency Day 1: Winners and Losers

NFL Free Agency Day 1: Winners and Losers
NFL Free Agency Day 1: Although NFL free agency has not officially started, the flurry of activity on its first day suggests it’s well underway.

Day one of the legal tampering period saw a frenzy of moves in the NFL, ranging from significant re-signings like Grover Stewart and A.J. Epenesa, to major player movements such as Kirk Cousins heading to the Atlanta Falcons and Christian Wilkins joining the Las Vegas Raiders.

But who emerged as winners and losers on this chaotic day? Let’s dissect the outcomes.


  1. Kirk Cousins and the Atlanta Falcons:
    Despite being 36 years old and coming off a season marred by a torn Achilles that limited him to eight games, Cousins secured yet another massive contract. Signing a four-year, $180 million deal with the Falcons, including $100 million guaranteed, he continues his streak of lucrative deals. While his on-field performance may not match the hype, his ability to secure top-dollar contracts is unmatched.
  2. Eagles GM Howie Roseman:
    Roseman demonstrated his prowess once again by making strategic moves to bolster the Philadelphia Eagles’ roster. Signing Bryce Huff to a three-year, $51 million deal after a strong season with the New York Jets, and acquiring Saquon Barkley on a three-year, $37 million pact from the New York Giants, Roseman addressed key positions and provided much-needed support for quarterback Jalen Hurts. These moves signal a reset for the Eagles after a disappointing season.
  3. Green Bay Packers:
    Despite the departure of Aaron Jones, the Packers managed to strengthen their roster. General manager Brian Gutekunst secured Josh Jacobs on a four-year, $48 million deal, with only $12.5 million guaranteed, providing flexibility for the team. Additionally, the signing of safety Xavier McKinney to a four-year, $76 million contract fills a significant need in the secondary, enhancing the team’s defensive capabilities.
  4. Vikings Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores:
    While the departure of Kirk Cousins left a void, the Minnesota Vikings made significant defensive acquisitions. Signing edge rushers Jonathan Greenard and Andrew Van Ginkel, along with linebacker Blake Cashman, strengthens their defense. These additions, coupled with a potential quarterback acquisition in the draft, position the Vikings for competitiveness in the upcoming season.


  1. Miami Dolphins:
    Once contenders for the AFC’s top seed, the Dolphins experienced a downturn, losing key players like Jerome Baker, Xavien Howard, Christian Wilkins, and others. With uncertainties surrounding the return of injured players and significant losses in free agency, the Dolphins face challenges in rebuilding their roster and cap management.
  2. Jaguars GM Trent Baalke:
    Despite being active in free agency, the Jaguars’ moves raise questions about their strategy. While signings like center Mitch Morse were positive, agreements with players like Gabe Davis, whose performance is inconsistent, seem questionable. Additionally, the team’s need for secondary help remains unaddressed, with signings like Darnell Savage and Ronald Darby raising concerns about their effectiveness.
  3. Cowboys QB Dak Prescott:
    Prescott finds himself in a challenging position as the Dallas Cowboys failed to extend his contract, leading to departures of key players like Tyler Biadasz, Tony Pollard, and Dorance Armstrong. With the NFC East in flux, the Cowboys missed an opportunity to strengthen their roster and ease Prescott’s cap burden, potentially impacting their competitiveness in the upcoming season.
  4. Carolina Panthers:
    With a dismal 2–15 record and no first-round pick, the Panthers faced further setbacks on the first day of free agency. Signing guard Robert Hunt to a hefty five-year, $100 million deal and allowing linebacker Frankie Luvu to depart for a lesser contract with the Washington Commanders reflect poor decision-making. Additionally, the trade involving Brian Burns, fetching only second- and fifth-round picks, highlights missed opportunities for the Panthers to maximize returns on valuable assets.

The first day of NFL free agency saw winners making strategic moves to enhance their rosters, while losers faced challenges and setbacks, potentially impacting their competitiveness in the upcoming season.

Also Read: Tee Higgins Requests Trade from Bengals Amid Contract Impasse

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