NFL free agency grades 2020: Live analysis of every free agent signing and trade


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O Free NFL Agency and the negotiation period has come to 2020, with the new year of the league taking effect on Wednesday. Although several players are out of the market, re-signed or with franchise tags by their teams, many others must change teams, either by signing with or being traded to another team.

As the news unfolds, Sporting News will provide the latest analysis of the most significant NFL moves here.

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FREE NFL 2020 AGENCY:
Ranking the 50 best players, following signings

Amari Cooper and Dak Prescott

Cowboys franchise marks QB Dak Prescott at $ 33 million

Grade A

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Cowboys needed to get their replacement before the label's deadline. While it looks like Prescott and the team should have a deal by now, it saves time in the summer to give him his long-term deal with the bank. It is your unquestionable QB franchise for many other seasons. Dallas simply got an extension until July 15th.

Vikings extend QB Kirk Cousins ​​for two seasons until 2022

Grade A

Cousins ​​is coming out of an exceptional season of the best playoffs of his career and was worthy of securing his future in Minnesota, beyond the 2020 season. The Vikings could not afford to mess with the rumors of the 49ers and Kyle Shanahan possibly having more interest in hiring Cousins ​​next season.

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Titans re-sign QB Ryan Tannehill for 4 years, $ 118 million

Serie B

Tannehill proved to be a perfect fit for the Titans' heavy attack, as he replaced Marcus Mariota, thanks to his strong pass and athletics. Keeping it intact was better than looking for an external holp in the free agency or in the draft. The price was high, including the guaranteed $ 62 million, but it can still give them many more solid years in the 32-year season.

Texans negotiate with Cardinal RB David Johnson, second and fourth round

Grade: D

Houston helps Arizona by taking Johnson's contract, while the last team moves on with Kenyan Drake, marked by the transition. The price was high, but the player gives Texans the chance to play ahead of Duke Johnson Jr, with Carlos Hyde and Lamar Miller being free agents. If he can return to full health with something left at 28, he will add a strong red zone finisher and a key reception element for Deshaun Watson, which is desperately needed now because …

… Cardinals negotiate with Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins and choose in the fourth round

Grade A

The pressure was on Steve Keim to have a great off-season for the Cadinals and he started with a bang. He dropped Johnson's massive salary after making sure Drake was in place for next season and put Kyler Murray's new candidate, with Larry Fitzgerald and Christian Kirk taking on high-profile complementary roles. Kliff Kingsbury will have fun designing great plays across the field, with the smooth reliability of Hopkins' route.

Browns agrees to live with TE Austin Hooper for 4 years, $ 44 million

Grade A

The Falcons couldn't afford to keep Hooper and the Browns won a bidding war for him, allegedly making him the NFL's highest-paid new end. This is a great choice, given the friendly nature of Kevin Stefanski's attack and Hooper is much more reliable and durable than David Njoku. Hooper fits perfectly as one of Baker Mayfield's three main targets, behind Odell Bekcham Jr. and Jarvis Landry, especially due to the limited depth of the team. Look for the team to employ more double sets and action passes to help Mayfield recover.

Titans: RB Derrick Henry wins $ 12.4 million

Grade A

They were unwilling to let the most dominant NFL runner and current running champion walk and drain the life force from their attack. It was a no-brainer when Tannehill was locked up. Finally, Henry will be paid $ 15 to $ 16 million per season when the long-term contract closes this summer, matching or exceeding what the Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott achieved.

Crows swap Jaguars DE Calais Campbell for choice of fifth round

Grade A

The Jaguars needed to create some salary to try to keep Yannick Ngakuoe much younger, after being labeled a franchise, so they were forced to change Campbell before he was 34 years old. The Ravens will try to resurface at the end of their career, like Terrell Suggs, five times Pro Bowler and the reigning Walter Payton Man of the Year. They badly needed that extraordinary presence, even after scoring Matthew Judon.

Chris Jones

Chiefs-tag franchise DT Chris Jones at $ 16.1 million

Grade A

The Chiefs have enough space to keep Jones and also work on that extension for Patrick Mahomes. Jones is indispensable for their defense and is almost the key to the chances of repeating themselves as Super Bowl champions.

Colts re-signs LT Anthony Castonzo for 2 years, $ 33 million

Grade A-

Castonzo suggested a possible retirement at age 31, but he returns to keep intact one of the NFL's strongest offensive lines from left to right. He is a vital part of passing protection, as the Colts are potentially looking to improve in the quarterback over Jacoby Brissett.

49ers re-sign DE Arik Armstead for 5 years, $ 85 million

Serie B

The 49ers surprised some by keeping Armstead at a high price, as they have Nick Bosa and Dee Ford and also need to pay DeForest Buckner before their free 2021 agency. This is an indication that they see Armstead, which exploded with 10 bags, as the key complement for Bosa, with Ford being more of the situational treadmill behind both.

Raiders agree to terms with ILB Nick Kwiatkoski for 3 years

Grade A

Las Vegas' first free agency move is a low-risk, high-reward bet. Kwiatkoski is the active and risky line player that the Raiders were missing in the position of greatest need. They had assets in the pass and secondary, but now they receive a cleaning man who had three bags, an interception and 76 total tackles in just eight games for the Bears last season.

TE Hunter Henry franchise loader at $ 10.6 million

Grade A

Henry is one of the most impactful youngsters in the league, with tight finishes and little depth of field, he is a third important target in the attack for whoever replaces Philip Rivers in the defender, right there with Keenan Allen and Mike Williams. The price was too good not to bring it back easily, even with its concern for durability.

Falcons switch to Ravens TE Hayden Hurst

Serie B

The Falcons lost Hooper, so giving up a second and fifth round for Hurst is a good recovery. The Ravens gave up just a fourth to move Hurst, which was superfluous on their list because Mark Andrews and Nick Boyle provided a lot of help for Lamar Jackson.

Steelbags: OLB Bud Dupree – $ 15.8 million

Serie B

Dupree had 11.5 bags in his career last season and it may have been difficult to replace, but the Steelers are tied and could let him walk and find a fair replacement in the draft. They chose not to mess with their mojo pass-rush, however.

Bengals WR A.J. Verde franchise tag at $ 18 million

Grade: C

Green lost all of last season with an ankle injury and is entering the 32-year season. Although, presumably, he remains Joe Burrow's primary goal, $ 18 million is a lot to invest in an aging and recovering player, despite his pedigree and high level of success in the past.

Joe Thuney

Patriots franchise Joe Thuney receives $ 15 million

Grade A

This was surprising, as everyone expected New England to let Thuney walk around with limited space, especially if it could bring Tom Brady back. But Thuney is an absolute force and an asset that keeps the strength of the Patriots' power game intact.

Kenya Drake RB-tag transition cardinals at $ 8.5 million

Serie B

Arizona did Drake's dubious trade in the middle of the season, only to see him take control of the backfield and take off as a productive and explosive runner in Kliff Kingsbury's scheme after being underutilized in Miami. it is a bonus that the cardinals were also able to change David Johnson.

Buccan brand OLB Shaquil Barrett for $ 15.8 million

Grade A

The Bucs stole Barrett from last year's free agency when he left the Broncos. He led the league with 19.5 bags, standing out in Todd Bowles' 3-4 scheme. He was worth going from bargain to boast when he turned 28 in November.

Ravens OLB franchise brand Mathew Judon for $ 15.8 million

Serie B

Judon was Baltimore's best passing defender in 2019, with 9.5 high career bags, playing and starting 16 full games for the first time. Regarding Barrett, however, the Ravens do not get the same value with the tag.

Broncos franchise Justin Simmons scores $ 11.4 million

Grade A

Simmons was a play animal in 2019 and, as always with security guards, they have a relative bargain price when linked to the franchise etiquette. He is your secondary glue with his coverage and prolific approaches.

Devin McCourty

Patriots re-hire S Devin McCourty for 2 years, $ 23 million

Grade A

The Patirots were facing a major dropout from the versatile cover man, had they not signed him again after another strong season. He is still playing at a high level, reaching 33 years of age and is an important leader, which is why the team also had no problems maintaining long-standing special teams like Matthew Slater.

Jaguars DE Yannick Ngakuoe franchise tag for $ 19.3 million

Grade: C

Ngakuoe really doesn't want to stay in Jacksonville and it has to hurt more that they part ways with Campbell to separate Todd Wash's 4-3 bookends. Jacksonville should think about negotiating it, because he may not sign the proposal and be out of the door in 2021, anyway.

Tag: Vikings franchise, Anthony Harris, $ 11 million

Grade A

Minnesota became aggressive with other defensive cuts (Linval Joseph, Xavier Rhodes) and a major restructuring of the cousins ​​to ensure that there was enough space to keep Harris roaming and making great plays alongside Harrison Smith in high school. Again, like Simmons, the price was too favorable not to bring him back to a key position for Mike Zimmer's defense.

Texans re-sign CB Bradley Roby for 3 years, $ 36 million

Serie B

Houston had all sorts of side problems in 2019 and had to shake things up, but Roby was a stabilizing force after coming from the Broncos. It is a bit exaggerated for its services, but the Texans did not want to move and further weaken the position before the draft.

Redskins franchise tag: G Brandon Scherff for $ 14.8 million

Serie B

There is nothing wrong with assessing Scherff's strengths as a race blocker, because few men in the countryside have been so consistently good at everything. But to rebuild Washington, saving and investing elsewhere could have made a little more sense.

Giants franchise tag DE Leonard Williams at $ 17.4 million

Grade: C

The Giants had to do this after exchanging several choices to get him out of the Jets last season. Williams is a solid player for his 3-4 scheme, but fell far short of the spectacular during his short spell. They are paying him thinking that he will do more with additional help in a better group for the new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham.

A.J. Bouye

Broncos swap Jaguars CB A.J.Bouye for fourth round choice

Grade: C

They didn't give up much, which is good. But Bouye has really declined with his coverage skills to be more of an average corner compared to his salary. If Chris Harris Jr. is not signed again, this looks like a downgrade.

Packers sign RT Rick Wagner

Grade: C

The Packers had to go here knowing that they will not be with Bryan Bulaga. Wagner is coming off a bad season with rival Lions and is a definite downgrade.

Packers sign ILB Christian Kirksey for 2 years, $ 16 million

Grade: D

The Packers again demote knowing they will need to replace Blake Martinez at a free agency. Coming out of a bad season with the Browns, he is a big consolation prize after the team looks more locked in Rams' Cory Litttleton.

Dolphins sign LG Ereck Flowers for 3 years, $ 30 million

Grade: D

Flowers was the bust of the Giants in an offensive attack and, although it was greatly improved playing inland for the Redskins, he was not worthy of that lucrative deal for a team trying to overhaul their racing block.

Dolphins sign DE Shaq Lawson for 3 years, $ 30 million

Grade: D

Lawson had the best 6.5 bags of his career last season as a rotary dowel. The Dolphins showed some despair here with a defensive line that doesn't have much beyond second player Christian Wilkins.

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