NFL Free Agency: Who are the 25 best players on the market?

NFL Free Agency
Fantasy Football - Chargers RB Melvin Gordon

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – OCTOBER 27: Melvin Gordon III #25 of the Los Angeles Chargers runs with the ball while being chased by Eddie Jackson #39 of the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at Soldier Field on October 27, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

Heading toward the start of NFL free agency for this year, who are the 25 best players available?

Speculation and rumors are rampant heading the launch of NFL free agency and a new league year. The legal tampering window opens on March 16, with signings able to be made official on March 18.

This year’s free agent class is rare in one major sense. Multiple notable quarterbacks are set to be available, to varying degrees as franchise tags possibly come into play for some and long-term deals feel inevitable to stay put too. Of course, regardless of position, there will be players who get head-turning contracts that ultimately become an albatross for the team that signs them.

The following players won’t appear here, because they’ll be franchise tagged or signed:

Chris Jones, Dak Prescott, Drew Brees, Brandon Scherff, Arik Armstead, Matthew Judon, Hunter Henry, Shaq Barrett, Ryan Tannehill, Justin Simmons, Leonard Williams, Yannick Ngakoue, Bud Dupree, A.J. Green.

Good moves and mistakes to be analyzed in hindsight aside, here are the 25 best players on the open market in NFL free agency this year.

25. RB Melvin Gordon

Gordon staged an ill-conceived holdout in concert with a reported trade demand last year, before ultimately showing up to play for the Chargers in Week 5. Outside of a pretty good five-game run in the middle of season, over which he averaged 4.7 yards per carry with at least 20 carries three times, the only thing Gordon can take out of a disappointing season is saving four games of wear-and-tear on his body.

Gordon had said he hoped to re-sign with the Chargers. But that never seemed likely in the wake of his holdout, and now he seems resigned to hitting the market. The Chargers re-signing Austin Ekeler sealed it.

Gordon averaged a career-best 5.1 yards per carry in 2018, and he is a capable pass catcher (42 receptions last year, 50 or more catches in each of he previous two seasons). He should get a decent deal in free agency, it’s only a matter of where he lands.

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