You’re going to blink, and the NFL season will be here before you know it. Lots of big-name players were on the move this offseason so it’s only fair that we grade the teams and judge who had the best signings. Let’s dive into the 2023 NFC free agent class.
Arizona Cardinals: D
The Cards are a franchise in distress it seems. They released star receiver DeAndre Hopkins and lost two defensive starters – CB Byron Murphy and DL Zach Allen. Oh, J.J. Watt retired also. The Cards could be playing for a top draft pick because they did not do anything to upgrade the talent level here.
Atlanta Falcons: A
The Falcons were hard at work, adding DE Bud Dupree, S Jessie Bates III, DE Calais Campbell, WR Mack Hollins, WR Scott Miller, and QB Taylor Heinicke. CB Isaiah Oliver and QB Marcus Mariota were their only real losses.
Carolina Panthers: A+
I love what the Panthers did this offseason, bringing in RB Miles Sanders to be the Christian McCaffrey replacement. They also gave number one pick Bryce Young some help by adding receiving targets Adam Thielen, DJ Chark, and Hayden Hurst. They also brought in QB Andy Dalton as a mentor for Young. Von Bell’s addition to the secondary helps as well.
Chicago Bears: A
What a major offseason for Chicago who added a lot when they moved back in a trade with Indy. They added RB D’Onta Foreman, TE Robert Tonyan and OL Nate Davis to their offense. And on defense, they got better with LB T.J. Edwards in the middle and DT Andrew Billings up front.
Dallas Cowboys: C
The Cowboys had to make some necessary financial moves like moving on from RB Ezekiel Elliott and TE Dalton Schultz. While they didn’t make a splash in the free agent market, they did upgrade the talent level by trading for CB Stephon Gilmore and speedy WR Brandin Cooks.
Detroit Lions: C
I hate the departure of RB Jamaal Williams. He had 17 rushing touchdowns last year breaking Barry Sanders single-season record. More importantly, he was the voice and leader of the clubhouse and fully bought into the franchise. I don’t understand how you let a guy like that go. They did sign RB David Montgomery to replace Williams and added three players to the secondary.
Green Bay Packers: D-
The Packers basically just let a bunch of guys who wanted to continue to play with Aaron Rodgers walk away, which is a tough pill to swallow for the fans. They added minor guys like TE Matt Orzech and S Tarvarius Moore. Nothing to get excited about here.
Los Angeles Rams: F
I mean, it doesn’t get any worse than this. The Rams had to make financial moves but look at the names they lost: CB Jalen Ramsey, LB Leonard Floyd, LB Bobby Wagner, WR Allen Robinson II, S Taylor Rapp, and K Matt Gay. This is going to be a tough Rams team to watch this season.
Minnesota Vikings: C-
The Vikings got some big names like CB Byron Murphy and DE Marcus Davenport, but they let CB Patrick Peterson and Adam Thielen walk. Then they released RB Dalvin Cook. Those three were all key players.
New Orleans Saints: B
The Saints made a big move at quarterback by signing Derek Carr. They had to lose big names in DE Marcus Davenport and DT David Onyemata but they added reinforcements in defensive tackles Khalen Saunders and Nathan Shepherd.
New York Giants: A
Keeping Saquon Barkley while adding receivers Parris Campbell and Jamison Crowder was huge for the Giants offense. They made reinforcements on defense by bringing in DT Rakeem Nunez-Roches and CB Amani Oruwariye.
Philadelphia Eagles: B
The Eagles continue to win offseasons. They decided they didn’t want to overpay for RB Miles Sanders, so they brought in Rashaad Penny and made upgrades on defense with CB Greedy Williams and safeties Terrell Edmunds and Justin Evans.
San Francisco 49ers: B
Another team that does well in free agency, the 49ers struck gold again. They brought in DT Javon Hargrave from Philly on a huge contract and then added Sam Darnold to compete at quarterback. They did lose safety Jimmie Ward and OT Mike McGlinchey.
Seattle Seahawks: A
The Hawks did what they should have done a season ago and brought back LB Bobby Wagner who is the heart and soul of that defense. LB Devin Bush will be a fun player to watch in Seattle and they retained Geno Smith at quarterback. Their only loss was RB Rashaad Penny which I’m not sure is major.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: C
The Bucs’ big move was bringing in Baker Mayfield who is expected to replace Tom Brady at quarterback. Sorry Bucs fans. They made a lot of necessary moves like moving on from OT Donovan Smith who is a walking penalty and releasing RB Leonard Fournette after a disappointing year.
Washington Commanders: C+
Not a whole lot here for Washington who lost QB Taylor Heinicke but brought in Jacoby Brissett to replace him. Adding three offensive lineman was a smart move after the group allowed 48 sacks last season.