Welcome to the start of NFL free agency, which is, as usual, not even close to the start of NFL free agency.
The official league year began Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET, but many agreements have been in place for several days. Most big-name players, like J.C. Jackson, Brandon Scherff, Randy Gregory, and Chandler Jones, have already found new homes.
But, because the NFL is getting a head start on its business, we can do the same by bestowing some superlatives on the significant actions so far!
Here are the best signings of the free agency 2022 so far….
WR Allen Robinson
Allen Robinson was regarded as one of the best free-agent wideouts, capable of signing a contract that would place him among the top five highest-paid receivers.
Instead, he surprised everyone by agreeing to a three-year, $46.5 million contract with the current Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams.
His AAV of $15.5 million places him outside the top 15 highest-paid receivers, making this a bit of a deal for the Rams, but more significantly, they have landed someone who has the potential to be one of the best receivers in the NFL.
Robinson has almost never had a decent quarterback performance. He now has it in Los Angeles, thanks to Matthew Stafford.
CB J.C. Jackson
J.C. Jackson is one of the reasons why the Los Angeles Chargers have been one of the biggest winners in NFL free agency.
According to CBS Sports NFL Insider Josina Anderson, the Chargers signed the Pro Bowl cornerback to a five-year, $82.5 million contract with a $40 million guarantee. The 26-year-old cornerback was regarded as the finest available in free agency.
For the New England Patriots in 2021, he has eight interceptions and 23 passes defensed. Jackson has 25 interceptions since joining the NFL in 2018, which ranks first in the league over that time period.
Jackson’s AAV of $16.5 million places him outside the top five highest-paid cornerbacks, which was unexpected. That’s great news for the Chargers.
OG James Daniels
The Pittsburgh Steelers signed free agent offensive lineman James Daniels, previously of the Chicago Bears, to a three-year, $26.5 million contract.
That $8.83 million AAV ranks 13th among all offensive guards, which is excellent value for Pittsburgh. Daniels, 24, is a versatile interior player who has also played some centre.
He and fellow newcomer Mason Cole could help to shore up what was a dismal offensive line in 2021.
WR Jamison Crowder
The Buffalo Bills released slot receiver Cole Beasley, but they found an excellent replacement in Jamison Crowder.
He’s definitely not on the radar of casual NFL fans, but he’s led the New York Jets in receiving in two of the last three seasons, with 833 yards and six touchdowns in 2019, and 699 yards and six scores in only 12 games in 2020.
Crowder will turn 29 in June, but he has the potential to make a significant contribution to the Bills’ dynamic attack. Keep him in mind if you play fantasy football.