With NFL free agency looming in just two weeks, here’s a look at eight impending free agents who teams would be better off avoiding on the open market on or beyond March 18.
QB Tom Brady: All of this talk about Brady landing a deal worth more than $30 million a year is insane. The dude will be 43 years old and is coming off a bad season. He’s declining rapidly, and is almost out of gas. I know Brady’s name is worth something, but that only takes you so far if you’re not winning. I’d honestly rather have Teddy Bridgewater.
QB Ryan Tannehill: He was the league’s highest-rated qualified passer during a career year in 2019, but that might have been an aberration for a soon-to-be 32-year-old who was an inconsistent mess for much of his first seven seasons in this league. I wouldn’t trust Tannehill enough to give him a long-term deal.
RB Derrick Henry: He’s an aggressive runner coming off a workhorse season. That makes him a bad commodity at such a devalued position. The nine highest-paid running backs in the NFL didn’t appear in the 2019 playoffs. Save money and find a back in or after the draft, which is pretty damn easy. Look at this year’s Super Bowl starters at that position.
WR A.J. Green: He’ll get huge money, maybe even a franchise tag, but that’s silly considering Green’s age (he’ll be 32 in July) and injury history (he’s missed 29 games the last four years). You’d be much better off investing in a young, less accomplished wideout like Robby Anderson.
OL Andrew Whitworth: The 38-year-old showed some serious signs of decline in 2019. He’ll likely command big bucks just because of his premium position, but that would be a mistake. Go the draft route instead.
Edge Jadeveon Clowney: The most highly-touted pass-rusher on the free-agent market just doesn’t make enough big plays on the edge. He’s a great all-around player with plenty of talent and upside, but he’s not worth elite money with just 32 sacks in 75 career games. I’d go with Bud Dupree or Shaq Lawson instead.
CB Chris Harris: This would be another example of buying a stock high. There appears to be a lot of interest in Harris, but he’s a declining 30-year-old who tied career lows with six passes defensed and one interception in 16 games last season.
S Devin McCourty: He’ll likely be overpaid because of his name and his longtime home, but McCourty will be 33 in August. Anthony Harris and Justin Simmons are much smarter investments at that position.