The 2021 NFL free agency kicks off on March 17th, however, the tampering window begins on the 15th. NFL teams around the league will finally be able to make some offers before signing becomes official on Wednesday.
With multiple top-tier players receiving the franchise tag, the 2021 NFL free agency pool thinned out. However, there are a plethora of talented players still available this year. This year, however, front offices will have to be dealing with a smaller cap than anticipated due to money lost during the pandemic.
Set at $182.5 million, front offices will finagle their way into signing free agents this year, which is something we’ve already seen during the re-signing period. It’ll be interesting to see who lands where, as this should be one of the more exciting offseasons to date. Here are the top remaining players available in the 2021 NFL free agency.
2021 NFL Free Agency: Best Available
After only playing five games last season, Kenny Golladay enters the 2021 NFL free agency as the top wide receiver available. His lack of production in 2020 was of no fault of his own, as he dealt with nagging injuries throughout the year. However, we’ve seen Golladay’s ceiling in 2019, where he finished with 65 receptions, 1,190 yards, and 11 touchdowns.
The Detroit Lions will do whatever it takes to retain their star receiver. Especially with their new quarterback Jared Goff under center. The Lions will be busy this offseason searching for receivers, but Golladay may want out of Detroit. He should gain a hefty paycheck in the 2021 NFL free agency.
Potentially the most consistent offensive lineman in the NFL, Joe Thuney surprisingly hits the free-agent market this offseason. He’s one of the most versatile linemen in the league, playing guard, center, and tackle for the New England Patriots. He’s played in every single game so far in his career, which means multiple teams should be showing interest for the five-year veteran.
Any franchise with a depleted O-line will be offering Thuney a giant contract. He might be loyal to the Patriots, but it’ll be difficult for the franchise to retain him. You can expect teams like the Arizona Cardinals, or the Cincinnati Bengals to make a strong push for Joe Thuney.
Playing his entire career for the Los Angeles Chargers, Hunter Henry hits the 2021 NFL free agency for the first time in his career. Putting up an impressive stat line of 60 receptions, 613 yards, and four touchdowns, Henry leads the way for tight ends in the free-agent market.
He may stay in Los Angeles, as it seems as though he has a strong bond with rookie quarterback Justin Herbert. However, the Chargers need more help on the offensive line and a solid wide receiver group, they could settle for a cheaper option. Henry will gain the interest of multiple playoff-caliber teams during the 2021 NFL free agency period. The Indianapolis Colts make the most sense to make a push for Henry this offseason.
Carl Lawson has made steady improvements each season of his career. Last year was his best yet, as he ended up with 36 total tackles, 32 quarterback hits, 5.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. The Bengals would love to keep him, but Lawson will likely prefer a deal with a team making a push for playoffs next year.
Lawson seems like someone who still has some unlocked potential and finding the right landing spot could open that up. One team that should consider making a push for Lawson during the 2021 NFL free agency is the Tennessee Titans. Their 19 total sacks were pathetic, and Lawson would be an immediate improvement for that franchise. It’ll be interesting where Lawson signs though, as there will likely be a bidding war between multiple teams.
Emerging as a solid safety for the Minnesota Vikings, Anthony Harris aims to receive a payday in the 2021 NFL free agency. He’s been a great player in the secondary and went off last season. Harris finished the year with 104 total tackles, seven pass deflections, and played in every single game for the Vikings.
He’s a rare tackle machine in the secondary who plays aggressively up in the front-seven. Any franchise in search of a safety likely has Harris high on their list. Considering his abilities as a tackler, he’ll do well for a team that likes to bring the safeties up.
Mackensie Alexander had a spectacular season for the Cincinnati Bengals last year. He’s shaping up to be one of the best available cornerbacks in the 2021 NFL free agency, as he dominated in the slot all season long. He finished with 47 total tackles, six pass deflections, and one interception. What’s more impressive, is Alexander accrued those stats in just 13 games.
With the NFL being a passing league, it’s a necessity to have elite cornerbacks in the secondary. Alexander brings a competitive edge to any team that elects to sign him during the 2021 NFL free agency. He plays aggressively and has proven to lock down some of the top wide receivers in the league.
Thanks for reading my article on the top available players in the 2021 NFL free agency!
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