By the time NFL free agency in 2020 technically begins Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET with the start of the new league year — as is the case every year — the majority of notable moves will have already taken place. But there is still plenty of free agent talent left to be claimed on the open market.
The legal tampering period for soon-to-be free agents and the franchise tag window took many of our top 50 free agents off the market, including nine of the top 10 and 22 of the top 25. That obviously includes the biggest domino of 2020 NFL free agency, Tom Brady, who is leaving the Patriots and signing with the Buccaneers.
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The Brady decision directly impacted Jameis Winston, who is now the top quarterback on the market.
Below are the 10 best players still available in 2020 NFL free agency (contract value projections are courtesy of Spotrac).
NFL free agency tracker: 10 best available players
1. Jadeveon Clowney, EDGE
- Age: 27
- Projection: $20 million per year
The market for the best player still available in NFL free agency reportedly hasn’t been what Clowney’s camp expected, but he’s still expected to receive a solid deal.
If a team doesn’t step up with a big enough offer, don’t rule out a return to Seattle for the defensive end.
2. Jameis Winston, QB
- Age: 26
- Projection: $26.8 million per year
At least we now know Winston won’t return to Tampa Bay, where Tom Brady is set to take over as the starting quarterback. Despite his turnover issues, he’s young enough to be the most intriguing quarterback on the market. The problem is most quarterback-needy teams have already made moves.
As for teams that could still covet Winston’s services simply due to their current situations, the Chargers and Patriots are possibilities.
3. Chris Harris Jr., CB
- Age: 30
- Projection: $11 million per year
The best corner left on the market reportedly was drawing interest from the Cowboys, Bills, Jets and Raiders at the beginning of free agency. He would be a good signing on a relatively short-term deal.
4. Melvin Gordon, RB
- Age: 26
- Projection: $8.3 million per year
Gordon, 26, can still be a solid starting running back. But he’s having a hard time finding a team willing to pay top-market money. According to NFL Media, his market might be down to the Falcons, Dolphins and Buccaneers.
5. Everson Griffen, DE
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said last month he expected Griffen to re-sign with Minnesota in free agency. However, a team like the Cowboys, who lost Robert Quinn to the Bears, could try to spoil that plan.
6. Desmond Trufant, CB
The Falcons released Trufant on Monday in order to clear some salary cap space. A broken arm limited him to nine games last season, but when healthy, the 29-year-old can still be a strong corner for a team looking to sign such a player.
7. Linval Joseph, DT
Joseph is another player who was released (by the Vikings) in a cap space-clearing move. He remains a good defensive tackle and a worthy signing, despite his age.
8. Robby Anderson, WR
- Age: 26
- Projection: $12 million per year
Anderson literally dreams about playing with Tom Brady, but with the quarterback headed to Tampa Bay, the receiver likely won’t see that become a reality.
The Jets would like to re-sign Anderson for the right price. The question is whether Anderson will settle for that.
9. Breshad Perriman, WR
- Age: 26
- Projection: $8.7 million per year
The Buccaneers reportedly were not expected to re-sign Perriman when free agency began, but we have to wonder whether Tampa Bay’s Tom Brady signing changes the plan.
10. Dante Fowler Jr., EDGE
- Age: 25
- Projection: $14.8 million per year
Fowler is a cheaper alternative for a team that needs an edge-rusher but doesn’t want to pay what it will take to sign Jadeveon Clowney.