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First blush: 2019 free agents around the NFL

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Free agent frenzy is just two months away

NFL: Denver Broncos at Washington Redskins Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Click through to the article in the tweet above to see a complete list of veteran players currently reaching the end of their contracts and expected to become 2019 veteran free agents.


  • Some of these players will be re-signed by their current team before March, and will never reach free agency.
  • Some of these players have reached the end of their careers, and will never play in the NFL again.
  • Some of them will play, but are not premium or priority free agents. Some, like Adrian Peterson in 2018, will have to wait until injury or suspension forces a team to call them.
  • Still other players, like Nick Foles, actually have contracts for 2019, and at this point do not show up on free agent lists, but have unique situations that may see them entering the free agent market this off-season.

Trying to make sense of the full list of free agents based solely on contract expirations, therefore, is really difficult right now.

13 March 2019 - the end of the league year and the start of free agent frenzy

Still, NFL contracts expire on 13 March, so free agency frenzy is just over 60 days away. Front offices are busy evaluating rosters with an eye toward both veteran free agency and the draft.

Redskins draft picks

The Redskins currently are projected to have 8 draft picks (after the allocation of compensatory draft picks following the annual Spring League Meeting). While the Redskins qualify for the maximum of four compensatory picks, only 32 picks are allocated by the league annually, and OverTheCap projects the Redskins to lose their “fourth” pick (the expected 7th rounder associated with Niles Paul) to the 32-pick limit.

Redskins salary cap surplus

When it comes to free agency, the Redskins are projected to have about $22.9m in cap space (per OverTheCap). Of course, a lot can be done to change that number.

Some players may be cut to create cap space. Players like Vernon Davis, Zach Brown and Stacy McGee seem to be prime candidates. Releasing those three players alone could add about $11m to the team’s cap space.

In addition, the team could seek to re-negotiate or re-structure contracts. Some key player deals that the team may want to look at this off-season could include Jordan Reed, Josh Norman, and, possibly, Alex Smith. Depending on how aggressively the team wanted to attack those contracts, Washington could free up an estimated $15-20m in cap space while still keeping these three key players on the roster.

With only the currently projected $22.9 million in available cap space, the Redskins would need to be relatively quiet in free agency this off season. Cutting players like Davis, Brown and McGee would push the available space to around $34m, allowing the team to be fairly active in free agency. By re-structuring two or three key contracts on top of selected roster cuts, the Redskins could enter free agency with $45 or $50m in available 2019 cap space, which would allow the Redskins to go shopping for some veteran free agent talent.

Poll

Which starting offensive position is most likely to be filled with a veteran free agent not currently on the Redskins roster?

This poll is closed

  • 27%
    Quarterback
    (459 votes)
  • 0%
    Running Back
    (9 votes)
  • 2%
    Tight End
    (37 votes)
  • 27%
    Wide Receiver
    (473 votes)
  • 2%
    Offensive Tackle
    (38 votes)
  • 38%
    Offensive Guard
    (655 votes)
  • 1%
    Center
    (21 votes)
1692 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Which starting defensive position is most likely to be filled with a veteran free agent not currently on the Redskins roster?

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    Defensive Line
    (32 votes)
  • 8%
    Outside Linebacker
    (123 votes)
  • 14%
    Inside Linebacker
    (224 votes)
  • 17%
    Cornerback
    (269 votes)
  • 56%
    Safety
    (847 votes)
1495 votes total Vote Now

Poll

How many veteran free agents not currently under contract with the Redskins do you expect the front office to sign in the 2019 offseason?

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    zero
    (25 votes)
  • 27%
    1 or 2
    (385 votes)
  • 59%
    3 or 4
    (824 votes)
  • 9%
    5 or 6
    (127 votes)
  • 1%
    7 or more
    (26 votes)
1387 votes total Vote Now