Even before the end of the season (and for some teams, much, much sooner), NFL team owners and brass had already started looking ahead to the next year with hopes of building a winning squad.  As the new season officially gets underway on March 18, there will be a number of players – more than 500 – entering unrestricted free agency, and teams are starting to strategize in order to figure out how much they can spend on whom.  Get ready for the big guns to be brought out, even Tom Brady is apparently going to enter as a free agent.

Pats Tom Brady A Free Agent?

Tom Brady isn’t sure if he’s coming or going.  The star quarterback of the New England Patriots likes his home, and with good reason, but he’s curious to see if the pastures really are greener on the other side.  Brady is reportedly going to enter as a free agent next month, after getting the green light from head coach Bill Belichick, to see what might happen.

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, “From what I understand, (Patriots owner Robert) Kraft’s thinking on this is, if the sides come together, if Brady decided the Patriots were his best option after testing as a free agent and if Bill Belichick, who of course is making the decisions for New England, if he decides that Brady is his best option at this price, that … it will mean that it’s meant to be and it’s best for both sides.”  Brady will have to wait until March 16 to see what happens.

More Free Agency News

Another quarterback is going to join Brady as a free agent.  According to the football wire, Philip Rivers and the LA Chargers are about to go their separate ways, with Rivers looking to find a new field with better options.  The move follows 16 years the QB spent with the team, and there is already talk that he could end up tossing for the Indianapolis Colts.

Chuck Clark was just given a nice bonus to stay with the Baltimore Ravens.  He became a huge part of the team’s defense last year, and the Ravens, who fell just short of a Super Bowl LIV appearance, want to let him know how much they appreciate his efforts.  The safety has just signed a deal with his team that will carry through for three more seasons and put $16 million in his pocket at the same time.

There’s a possibility – a strong one – that Drew Brees will be walking away from the New Orleans Saints.  Whether it’s to become a broadcaster or to enter retirement isn’t clear, with these two being the primary options.  There is a third option, though, which could see him land a new job as quarterback with a different team if he were offered the right amount of money.  The smart money is on one of the first two options.

Nick Foles was apparently close to packing his bags and looking for a new team away from the Jacksonville Jaguars.  The Super Bowl LII MVP and champ wants a repeat of that 2018 performance and started to feel concern that it wouldn’t happen as long as he stayed with the Jags.  However, the team has something special in mind for next year, and want him to be a part of it.  A four-year contract worth $88 million, with bonuses that take it up to $102 million, was enough to convince him to leave his bags right where they were.

The New York Jets tried to steal linebacker Anthony Barr away from the Minnesota Vikings and almost got away with it.  The Jets would love to have his blitzing strength as they look to rebound from a dismal season, but they’ll have to find it somewhere else.  The Vikings don’t want to let go of their talent, putting in Barr’s hands a five-year deal worth $67.5 million.  The fact that it carries a rider to guarantee him $33 million was certainly the icing on the cake.

As well as Tom Brady, there are plenty of other free agency deals in the works and many more have already been completed.  Time is running out, though, and teams will start to scramble as the deadline approaches.