Free Agency

Free Agency Thoughts: NFC South

After looking at the AFC North a few weeks back, this week I will be looking at the Free Agency moves for the NFC South.

 

ATLANTA FALCONS —————–

The Falcons have been busy staying focused on re-signing their own players this off season. The only fantasy relevant player they have seen walk away so far is Taylor Gabriel. I expect them to continue to be quiet in FA and look to the draft to replace Gabriel, and depending on what prospect/round they look to take that replacement it could effect Sanu’s value as well. I suspect they will continue to roll with Julio and Sanu locked in as their 1 and 2 options through the air though.

They did sign TE Logan Paulsen to replace Levine Toilolo but I don’t think this affect’s Hooper’s value much, with that said, I am not sure how much value Hooper has outside of a streaming option.

Tevin Coleman will probably see his last season with the Falcons this year, and will get a small boost in my rankings, as I believe he looks to take every opportunity on the field to increase his FA value next season. I expect Atlanta to look for a RB to replace him in this years super deep class on the third day in the draft, whomever that ends up being, may be worth a 3rd to 4th round pick in dynasty leagues in preparing for next years departure of Coleman.

Re-signed;

-K Matt Bryant to a three-year, $10.5 million contract.

– CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson to a one-year contract.

– OT Austin Pasztor to a one-year, $880,000 contract.

– OG Ben Garland to a one-year, $2.914 million contract.

– DE Derrick Shelby to a one-year, $2 million contract.

– LB Kemal Ishmael to a one-year contract.

Released;

– TE Levine Toilolo

-DE Derrick Shelby.

Acquired;

– RG Brandon Fusco to a three-year, $12.75 million contract.

-TE Logan Paulsen to a one-year, $1.005 million contract.

-CB Justin Bethel to a one-year, $1.75 million contract.

 

 

CAROLINA PANTHERS ————–

The Panthers have let a couple players I would have liked to see stay walk, and a few I am glad to see finally move on go.

Jonathan Stewart was released, opening the door for Christian McCaffrey to have an RB1 type of season in 2018. Naturally that could be derailed in the draft if Carolina looks for a replacement to Stewart in the first 3 rounds. Artis-Payne was serviceable in his role last season and could look to get more involved in the running game as well. I expect this is still Cmac’s and, of course, Cam’s backfield more than anyone elses in 2018 though.

Carolina signed Torrey Smith to the receiving corps, adding in the speed element they missed with Ted Ginn since his departure after the 2016 Super Bowl run for the Panthers. They also added Jarius Wright from Minnesota as well. I still like Curtis Samuel for this offense if he can make it back healthy. A lot of experts have Carolina looking at WR in the late 1st of the draft but if Samuel is healthy I think they pass on WR early. A sleeper to keep an eye on in this corps is Damiere Byrd. On just 17 targets last season he had 10 catches for 105 yards and 2 TDs. No matter how the draft or health for Samuel shakes out though, I think Funchess is still the lead WR by the end of the 2018 season.

Carolina brought back Julius Peppers for at least one more season to the Defensive line and added Dontari Poe as well. Thomas Davis and Luke look to keep this Defensive unit rolling but will do it with a lot of new help in the secondary after seeing Coleman be released and move over to New Orleans. Carolina should still be a top 10 D/ST unit this upcoming season.

Re-signed;

– G/C Greg Van Roten to a two-year, $1.66 million contract.

– K Graham Gano to a four-year, $17 million contract.

– DE Julius Peppers to a one-year, $5 million contract.

– CB Ladarius Gunter to a one-year contract.

– OG Amini Silatolu to a one-year contract.

Released;

-DE Charles Johnson and S Kurt Coleman.

– RB Jonathan Stewart.

– CB Teddy Williams.

Acquired;

– WR Torrey Smith from the Eagles in exchange for CB Daryl Worley.

– DT Dontari Poe to a three-year, $28 million contract.

– OT Zach Banner off waivers from the Browns.

– WR Jarius Wright to an undisclosed contract.

– G/T Jeremiah Sirles to a one-year contract.

– S Da’Norris Searcy to a two-year contract

– CB Ross Cockrell to a two-year contract.

 

 

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS —————–

The Saints have been active so this off season, trying to capitalize on the window still open for Drew Bress and company to get a 2nd Championship. They wasted no time getting him locked in for at least 1 if not 2 more seasons helping to sustain the notion that Michael Thomas should be a late 1st round pick in almost all formats in fantasy this year. While his TD numbers came down a bit, his production was one of the most consistent in the NFL last season for fantasy. Touchdowns are always sort of fickle year to year and I like Thomas for some positive TD regression this coming season.

I also like Kamara to keep rolling this year. I in no way think he maintains his efficiency and maintains his 6.1 YPC, I do think he sees more volume this year to make up for the difference in the loss of efficiency. Ingram will still be involved and probably siphon goal line carries from Kamara, but I still like him for his current 5th round asking price in a Zero RB strategy draft.

I love the addition of Kurt Coleman from Carolina to this secondary that already saw Marshon Lattimore and Marcus Williams step up in their rookie years. Yes, Williams is mainly remembered for being “that guy” in the below picture, but he honestly was solid as a rookie with 73 tackles, 7 passes defended, and 4 INTs (including one in that very same game as below).

Williams

NO also signed Benjamin Watson to go along with Flenner at TE. I think Flenner probably is not on this team by the time the season rolls around. I like the Saints to add a TE in the draft this year and could even be looking at Dallas Goedert or Mike Gesicki in the late 1st round.

I expect this offense to keep rolling in 2018 after scoring 28 points per game through the 18 they payed last season. I also still like the New Orleans D/ST unit if you miss out on the top tier group.

Re-signed;

– LS Zach Wood to a one-year, $555,000 contract.

– DE George Johnson to a one-year, $1.005 million contract.

– QB Drew Brees to a two-year, $50 million contract.

– DE Alex Okafor to a two-year, $6,812,500 contract

– P Thomas Morstead to a four-year, $15.6 million extension through 2022.

Released;

– DT Nick Fairley.

– LB Gerald Hodges.

Acquired;

– S Kurt Coleman to a three-year, $16.35 million contract.

– Signed MLB Demario Davis to a three-year, $24 million contract

– CB Patrick Robinson to a four-year, $20 million contract.

– QB Tom Savage to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.

– G/T Jermon Bushrod to a one-year, $1.105 million contract.

– TE Ben Watson to a one-year, $2 million contract.

 

 

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS —————–

Tampa started the off season by getting Mike Evans locked in for the next 5 years, that was a good decision. I think Evans had a “down” year last season and still put up, 71 catches, 1001 yards, and 5 TDs. I expect him to rebound in 2018 and be closer to the 12 TDs he put up in year 1 and 3.

The Bucs also released Doug Martin, opening the door for Peyton Barber to take over a larger work load in the running game. This is where I WANT to see Barkley go!  If he falls to 7, I expect that Tampa jumps all over him. This should be the fantasy dream situation for owners of the 1.01 in dynasty drafts.

The other big re-signing Tampa has so far is Cameron Brate. I love this signing for Cameron Brate in real life, I hate it for fantasy football. Both Brate and Howard will continue to get work in this offense, lowering the ceiling for both players potential. With reaching for O.J. Howard in the 1st round of last years draft, this signing did not make a lot of sense to me personally. I am staying away from both on draft day in redraft and fading Howard considerably in dynasty.

Djax should also be someone you look at in re-draft this year, I think he and Jameis take a step forward and he delivers on value at his current ADP. I love Chris Godwin, and while Djax is still hurting his value, it leaves a good buy low value for Godwin if you are looking to rebuild in dynasty. Grab him now, if you can!

Re-signed;

– QB Ryan Fitzpatrick to a one-year, $3.3 million contract.

– WR Mike Evans to a five-year, $82.5 million extension through 2023.

– TE Cameron Brate to a six-year, $40.8 million contract

– CB Brent Grimes to a one-year, $7 million contract.

– LB Adarius Taylor to a one-year, $1.04 million contract.

– RB Peyton Barber to a one-year, $630,000 contract.

– S Keith Tandy to a two-year, $2.74 million contract.

– K Chandler Catanzaro to a three-year, $9.75 million contract

– G/C Evan Smith to a two-year, $4 million contract.

– DE Will Clarke to a one-year, $880,000 contract.

Released;

-RB Doug Martin, DT Chris Baker, and K Nick Folk.

– C Joe Hawley.

– DE Robert Ayers.

Acquired;

– NT Beau Allen to a three-year, $15 million contract

– DT Mitch Unrein to a three-year, $10.5 million contract.

– C Ryan Jensen to a four-year, $42 million contract.

– DE Vinny Curry to a three-year, $27 million contract.

– DE Jason Pierre-Paul and the No. 102 overall pick in the 2018 draft from the Giants in exchange for the Nos. 69 and 108 overall picks in the 2018 draft.

– LB Cameron Lynch to a one-year, $705,000 contract.

 

 

 

 

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