Free agency is an exciting time for NFL teams, as they look to make moves, improve their roster, and strategically manage their salary cap. During this period, teams can negotiate and sign contracts with unrestricted free agents, who have played out their contracts and can now test the open market. With the first week of free agency coming to a close, let’s dive into the teams with the most cap space remaining (according to Spotrac) and the potential moves they could make.
5. Las Vegas Raiders – $16.5 million | Team Needs: OT, LB
Jimmy G is officially in black and silver ☠️
(via @Raiders) pic.twitter.com/KhBex8sn5s
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) March 17, 2023
The Las Vegas Raiders, after losing Derek Carr, recently signed Jimmy Garoppolo to fill the void at quarterback. With $16.5 million in cap space remaining, the Raiders have the fifth most cap room in the NFL, and can still afford to add a few more pieces to their roster.
They’ve already brought in Jakobi Meyers at wide receiver, but they could likely use some help at offensive tackle and linebacker. With enough room in their budget, the Raiders are in a good position to bring in a couple of key pieces to strengthen their team.
4. Green Bay Packers – $21 million | Team Needs: WR, TE
The Green Bay Packers and former quarterback Aaron Rodgers have officially parted ways, leaving the team to move forward with Jordan Love as their signal-caller. However, the Packers need to surround Love with weapons to succeed, making tight ends and wide receivers their top priorities.
Jordan Love learned this from someone, I just can’t put my finger on it.
— Matthew John B (@Matthew_Bassham) February 28, 2023
With $21 million in cap space, the Packers could target players like Adam Thielen and Dalton Schultz to bolster their offense.
3. Atlanta Falcons – $22.6 million | Team Needs: D-Line, Secondary
The Atlanta Falcons, with a whopping $22.6 million in cap space, have a lot of work to do to improve their roster. Their defense struggled mightily last season, ranking near the bottom of the league in various metrics.
The Falcons will likely focus on upgrading their pass rush and secondary, as these were two significant weaknesses. With plenty of cap room, the Falcons have the flexibility to make impactful signings to bolster their roster.
Falcons to sign safety Jessie Bates III to 4-year, $64M deal. (via @RapSheet) pic.twitter.com/OyQ3NgB5lj
— NFL (@NFL) March 13, 2023
They’ve already made a couple of seemingly shrewd signings but will need to do some more to improve to playoff level.
2. Chicago Bears – $38.8 million | Teams Needs: Everything
In full rebuild mode, the Chicago Bears are looking to surround quarterback Justin Fields with talent. After stripping the team in 2022, the Bears now have a massive $38.8 million in cap space to acquire talent through both the draft and free agency. This financial flexibility puts the Bears in a strong position to build a competitive roster around their young signal-caller.
They traded down from one in the NFL draft and got some help at wide receiver in DJ Moore. They also acquired some nice draft capital from the Panthers, and Bears fans will be hoping they put that to good use over the next couple of seasons.
JUSTIN FIELDS GOT HIS WR1 🔥 pic.twitter.com/kHbUDzGtI8
— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) March 10, 2023
1. Arizona Cardinals – $41.8 million | Team Needs: Edge Rusher
The Arizona Cardinals, with a league-leading $41.8 million in cap space, have plenty of money to make moves. However, they also have numerous roster spots to fill. Following the retirement of legendary edge rusher JJ Watt, the Cardinals may look to splash on big-name players like Frank Clark or Jadeveon Clowney. While they have the most cap space, the Cardinals will need to be strategic in their spending to fill out their roster effectively.
The Cardinals allowed the second-most points in the NFL last year and have subsequently lost three of their four best defensive players:
JJ Watt (retirement)
Zach Allen (Broncos)
Byron Murphy (Vikings)
— Kyle Odegard (@Kyle_Odegard) March 15, 2023
As the free agency period continues, these teams have the financial flexibility to make significant moves and improve their rosters. With plenty of cap space at their disposal, they’ll be closely watched as they aim to become contenders in the upcoming NFL season. With a combination of shrewd signings and draft picks, these teams could soon find themselves rising up the ranks and making a run for the playoffs.
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