With free agency underway, let’s take a look at what players, coaches, and teams have won or lost so far.
Winner: Bill O’Brien
After a failed Patriots season on offense, Bill Belichick decided to take a more traditional route and hire a true offensive coordinator to lead New England’s offense in 2023. The familiar face Bill O ‘Brien is now the caller of the game in New England and to make sure this infraction doesn’t happen again last year, they are bringing in more talent for O’Brien to work with. Belichick and company decided to bring pass catchers Mike Gesicki and JuJu Smith-Schuster into the fold, joining a receiving core of DeVante Parker, Hunter Henry and second-round speedster Tyquan Thornton. The Patriots have been very aggressive in this free agency as they heavily target other receiving weapons like DeAndre Hopkins and Jerry Jeudy. Be on the lookout for the Patriots to also take a wide with their 14th pick.
Winner: Justin Fields
After a stellar season for Fields running the game, the Bears made it a priority to make Fields a legitimate receiving threat to develop his passing. We’ve seen young quarterbacks in the past jump into the passing game after acquiring star receivers. For example, Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs for the Bills, Jalen Hurts and AJ Brown for the Eagles, and Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins for the Cardinals have all shown this strategy to be beneficial for developing young QBs. The Bears have now assembled a real receiving core for Fields in Chicago around DJ Moore, Chase Claypool and Darnell Mooney.
Losers: running backs
Year after year, running backs are losing influence in free agency after another Super Bowl winner won with a running back on the cheap deal (Isiah Pacheco, Kansas City Chiefs). Starting running backs David Montgomery and Miles Sanders were able to strike deals with new teams, sending Sanders to Carolina and Montgomery to Detroit, but were only able to acquire contracts worth around $6 million a year. (although Sanders is the top five in rushing yards in 2022). Once again, teams would rather try to draft a running back in later rounds who would in turn be on cheaper deals, instead of shelling out bigger contracts for veteran full-backs.
Yes, the Eagles were able to retain many key players who got them to the Super Bowl this year like Jason Kelce, James Bradberry and Darius Slay, but they also lost key players on defense and their offensive line. The Eagles’ elite offensive line will take a hit with guard, Isaac Seumalo, likely joining a new team this free agency and on the other side of the ball Javon Hargrave, TJ Edwards and Kyzir White will all play for new teams this fall .
Denver Broncos Insider Clarifies Wild Trade Rumors Surrounding Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton – Sports Illustrated Mile High Huddle: Denver Broncos News, Analysis and More
The rumor mill continues to spit salacious morsels on the Denver Broncos.
2023 NFL free agency day one winners and losers: Broncos and veteran cornerbacks headline early market – Reuters
A glimpse of the league after a day of activity
Broncos sign FB Michael Burton
The Broncos have added a versatile player to their backfield.