NFL free agency doesn’t technically kick off until 4 p.m. ET on Wednesday. But that hasn’t stopped most of this year’s highest-profile impending unrestricted free agents from already making handshake deals.
Kirk Cousins has a new home with the Minnesota Vikings. Case Keenum is the Denver Broncos’ new quarterback. Drew Brees remains with the New Orleans Saints. Mitchell Trubisky has several new weapons with the Chicago Bears, including receiver Allen Robinson. And Richard Sherman is determined to be an adversary for the Seahawks team that released him by signing with their division rival, the San Francisco 49ers.
Assuming all of those signings go through, here’s a look at the top 10 UFAs still “on the market” as we near the launch of the 2018 league year.
1. OT Nate Solder: The Patriots have made the Super Bowl in each of the 29-year-old’s last three full seasons. He might not have a lot of gas left in the tank, but he’s one of the most steady and experienced left tackles in football.
2. QB AJ McCarron: The former Alabama standout was one of the best backups in football the last four years in Cincinnati. He has the ability to start somewhere, or at least compete for a starting gig.
3. DT Sheldon Richardson: He’s coming off a strong, under-the-radar season in Seattle and has the ability to transform another front seven in the right setting.
4. OL Justin Pugh: The versatile, high-upside tackle/guard can be dominant if he’s able to stay healthy and is kept in one spot (ideally right tackle).
5. CB Patrick Robinson: Robinson was one of Pro Football Focus’ highest-graded cornerbacks in a four-interception breakout season at the age of 30.
6. CB Rashaan Melvin: The 28-year-old broke out with three interceptions in just 10 games in 2017. Per PFF, opposing quarterbacks had a passer rating of just 60.3 when throwing his way.
7. DT Dontari Poe: The steady 27-year-old former first-round pick hasn’t missed a start in two years and is coming off another solid season as an interior rusher.
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) August 18, 2017
8. CB E.J. Gaines: Opposing quarterbacks posted a passer rating of just 75.2 when throwing the 26-year-old’s way in 2017, according to PFF.
9. S Morgan Burnett: The 29-year-old probably has a few strong seasons left.
10. DE Adrian Clayborn: The 29-year-old makes the list because he’s coming off a 9.5-sack season, but six of those came in one game.