NFL Free Agency for 2023 is almost here. The legal tampering period begins March 13 and free agency becomes official for March 15 with the start of the new league year. Per my last article, NFC North teams have some holes to fill. Teams begin to fill needs in free agency prior to the NFL Draft (April 27-29) for long term talent additions. Let’s continue with running backs
Saquan Barkley (Giants), Josh Jacobs (Raiders) and Tony Pollard (Cowboys) all got non-exclusive franchise tags for 10 million. Probably not worth trading for but maybe if you can get it down to one first not two.
Philly stud with the Eagles up against the cap. 1,269 yards at 4.9 YPC and 11 TDs in his best season. Someone will pay up for Sanders as the best back in the FA class.
Workhorse for the Bears over the last four seasons. Bears have a ton of cap space to bring him back to complement Herbert. They have another good running back in Justin Fields though too. Depends on the price but I bet he hit the open market. 801 yards and 4 YPC was a down year for him.
Bills committee running back that had a great rookie season then didn’t live up to the hype. 819 yards and 4.6 YPC.
Seattle former first round pick replaced by Kenneth Walker who played well the last two seasons while finally being healthier.
Second fiddle to Nick Chubb but still a good back at 27. Worth exploring to be a full-time starter like he was with the Chiefs before his off-field troubles.
914 yards at 4.5 YPC for Carolina. Had a good year at the right time and is a strong back.
Never worked out for the Bucs but has a good skillset.
Jamaal notched career best 1,066 yards and 17 TDs (Lion’s franchise record) in 2022. Coming off a 2 year 6-million-dollar deal, he is due a pay raise but will be 29. Lions are looking to re-sign him, but the price must be right.
Patriots’ workhorse that got replaced by Rhmondre Stevenson (5 YPC). Harris will be a solid RB for a new team.
891 yards at 4.9 YPC but 30 years old and from SF/Miami systems.
49er system but could be a decent back. 860 yards and 4.9 YPC 2022 season
Leonard Fournette (cut)
Productive for the Bucs when needed the most but not worth the cap hit. Can still be a workhorse but just not explosive. Worth a short-term deal. 3.5 YPC is concerning.
D ’Ernest Johnson
Third fiddle in Cleveland but made most of his opportunities.
Boston Scott, Samaji Perine, David Johnson, Matt Breida, Kenyan Drake, Marlon Mack, Malcolm Brown, Alexander Mattison, Ameer Abdullah, Mark Ingram, Royce Freeman could offer some depth.
Running back FA class is deep for teams looking for veteran backs. Nobody but Sanders should break the bank really.