NFL Free Agency: Day 1

Brandon Marshall is a New York Jet? LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo Bills? Julius Thomas headed to the Jacksonville Jaguars? Excuse me college basketball, the NFL is starting March Madness a bit early.

The first day of the NFL’s free agency period kicked off with a bang. At this point there’s a decent chance that one of your favorite players is in a different city. During the legal tampering period just days before March 10th, fans heard of potential deals and trades, but by the end of the night everyone’s jaw was on the floor.

The Eagles’ many transactions were the main subject of conversation and confusion. Some of the team’s most productive players were released or traded for players with much shorter resumes. No more McCoy, Jeremy Maclin, Nick Foles or Trent Cole. Maclin joins his former coach, Andy Reid, in Kansas City, Foles was traded for Sam Bradford to St. Louis and Cole signed with the Indianapolis Colts. Philadelphia did acquire Kiko Alonso from the Bills and Byron Maxwell from the Seahawks’ “Legion of Boom”. The Eagles ramped up their defense, but now the offense is questionable. Frank Gore was set to go to Philadelphia, but changed his mind at the last minute. Fans are trying to trust in Chip Kelly, but Riley Cooper and Jordan Matthews on the edge as first options does not leave them with much hope. Both Maclin and McCoy were coming off 1,000 yard seasons, despite issues at quarterback.

Jimmy Graham’s amazing career numbers are sure to be better as he will be a top target in Seattle.

Jimmy Graham’s amazing career numbers are sure to be better as he will be a top target in Seattle.

A team that did get better was the Seahawks. In a mind-blowing trade, they received tight end Jimmy Graham for center Max Unger. The defense is still great, but now the offense has some much needed firepower. Graham in the red zone is lethal, and should give Russell Wilson another option on the inside. Graham was surprised by the move, and just updated his Twitter bio to “Traded”. It was obvious he wasn’t very happy, but when he is competing for conference championships and Super Bowls he will be more appreciative.

Speaking of good defenses, the Jets just got a lot better. One of the best cornerbacks in the league came home. Darrelle Revis resigned with New York, making the Jets backfield more formidable. The team is also in talks with Antonio Cromartie, a great defender and playmaker. Though they still have quarterback issues, they are taking away a big piece of the Patriot’s defense. And with Brandon Browner also testing the market, the acquisition of Revis is that more important.

Oh, and three players announced their retirement too.

Steelers LB Jason Worilds, 49ers LB Patrick Willis and Titans QB Jake Locker all called it a career yesterday. They all could have continued playing somewhere else in the league, but mostly cited health and family for their decisions to walk away. Locker had an interesting addition to his retirement statement. He said in part, “I no longer have the burning desire necessary to play the game for a living.” I Agree. When the passion to play is gone, it is best to walk away.

The first day moves were shocking, which means the rest of the period should be fairly tame. At this point, it should be mostly contract adjustments and re-signings. But the players everyone are waiting for now are the aforementioned Browner and running back DeMarco Murray.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply