On March 10, NFL free agency will begin. Agents and front office personnel will be racking up massive phone bills, hoping to land huge money and the big fish on the market.
Some teams are going to be quieter than others, either because of an already-solid roster or a lack in cap space. Other franchises will be throwing money around like none other, hoping to attract talent and get the fan base excited.
5. Tennessee Titans ($42.6 million)
The Titans have plenty of needs but have the money to go out and address them. Tennessee should get a quarterback at the top of the draft and then can find safeties, linebackers and offensive linemen between free agency and the other picks. The Titans are also lucky to be without any massive contracts weighing the team down outside of guard Andy Levitre, who is on a six-year/$46.8 million deal. However, Tennessee can cut Levitre with a post-June 1 designation and save $6.5 million in 2015.
4. New York Jets ($49.0 million)
New York is also in need of a quarterback and like Tennessee, might find its man in the first few minutes of the draft come April. The Jets were left with a bad roster by former general manager John Idzik but oodles of cap space. New York will be targeting former Gang Green member Antonio Cromartie, along with more secondary help, outside linebackers and receivers. New GM Mike Maccagnan can open up $10.5 million more in space by releasing Percy Harvin, a no-brainer of a move.
3. Cleveland Browns ($50.4 million)
The Browns have some real talent on the roster. If Cleveland can find the right signal-caller and spend wisely, it could be a contender for a playoff spot in 2015. The Browns desperately need a wide receiver with the latest suspension of Josh Gordon. Look for Cleveland to target a top-tier receiver, with Jeremy Maclin and Randall Cobb coming to mind. The Browns can also use a tight end and a running back to help move the ball. The defense is excellent, stocked with young talent. This is a great situation sans the quarterback.
2. Oakland Raiders ($51.9 million)
The Raiders finally created cap space last year, but were not able to reel in any quality players. General manager Reggie McKenzie needs to make a better showing this time around, perhaps setting his sights on Ndamukong Suh. Suh will command approximately $100 million, but he would be a true cornerstone. Oakland can add more space by cutting Matt Schaub, LaMarr Woodley and Maurice Jones-Drew, saving another $13 million or so. If the Raiders are planning to compete in the brutal AFC West, using some of this cap space is a must.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars ($62.4 million)
No team has more money than Jacksonville, and there is a reason for that … the roster is terrible. The Jaguars can use help all over the depth chart, although the offensive line needs to be the top priority. Jacksonville is invested in Blake Bortles at quarterback and must surround him with talent. The secondary also needs a total overhaul. With upwards of $60M in cap space, the Jaguars have to acquire some top players, even if it means overspending a bit.