Free Agency: What We Saw on March 18, 2020
While most of the sports world is in limbo, the NFL free agency period is in full swing. We’ll be giving you daily updates all week covering the moves and their fantasy implications. Check out our podcast recapping days two and three of free agency as well.
Nick Foles is Traded to The Bears
I was quite surprised to hear rumors of quarterback Nick Foles being targeted by other NFL teams. His contract was looking like an absolute albatross. He was also coming off of a year in which he played four games, and he didn’t look great in that limited action with three touchdowns to two interceptions and 6.2 yards per attempt. Foles reunites with quarterback coach John DeFilippo who he worked with during his super bowl run in Philadelphia and last year in Jacksonville. He is also familiar with head coach Matt Nagy, who was the offensive coordinator during his time in Kansas City. It has been said that he has come in to provide Mitchell Trubisky competition, not overtake him automatically.
It is no surprise that the Bears were looking for some competition for incumbent Trubisky. He ranked in the bottom half of the league in most passing categories including 31st in adjusted yards per attempt and 32nd in true passer rating according to his player profile. He also finished the year with 17 passing touchdowns and 10 interceptions in 15 games. In what will be his fourth NFL season, it is now or never for Trubisky to show he can be a capable NFL starting quarterback.
Chargers Moving Forward With Tyrod Taylor at Quarterback
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports that the Chargers are now expected to not sign or trade for a veteran quarterback. It means that Tyrod Taylor will be in competition with whomever the Chargers select with the number six overall pick to open the year as the starting quarterback.
Taylor has been with head coach Anthony Lynn since their days in Buffalo, so there are a lot of familiarities there. It is worth noting that Buffalo led the league in rushing when Taylor was under center and Lynn was the offensive coordinator in 2016. The Chargers have plenty of weapons and have bolstered their offensive line with the additions of Trai Turner ( 33rd/86 ranked guard according to PFF) and Bryan Bulaga ( 13th/88 ranked tackles according to PFF). Taylor could make for a decent streaming or DFS option if he starting for the ‘Bolts next year.
Cam Newton is on the Block
With the Panthers going into full rebuild mode, it has come out that former MVP quarterback Cam Newton is available for trade. Before any deal could take place, a thorough physical would have to be done for Newton and with travel restricted it may be tough for a trade to take place quickly. Newton has been dogged by injuries (shoulder and foot) the last couple of seasons and is slated to make $18.6 million this upcoming season according to pro football rumors. That is slightly below average in terms of salary for a quarterback and shouldn’t be an obstacle in getting something done. The Bears and the Buccaneers were rumored to be interested but they have since acquired other quarterbacks. With the Panthers signing Teddy Bridgewater, Newton is sure to be dealt but now the question is to whom.
Chris Harris Stays in Division and Signs with Chargers
Cornerback Chris Harris signed with the Chargers Wednesday. He joins strong corners Casey Hayward and Desmond King along with stud safety Derwin James to form one of the top secondaries in the league without a doubt. It will be something to monitor when streaming this coming season as this does not look like a unit that we will want to attack through the air with everybody healthy. This secondary combined with a pass rush with some potential could make for a top-10 defense next season.
J.D. McKissic to the Redskins
With Chris Thompson and Wendell Smallwood free agents, J.D. McKissic should slide into the third-down/passing game role in Washington. He will be playing behind Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson on early downs and shouldn’t see much work there. McKissic likely won’t have much value in Washington and can be ignored for now in fantasy leagues. This signals the end for Thompson in Washington and he can still provide value in leagues if he gets in the right situation.
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)