Going, going…almost gone.
Free agency opened Wednesday, and most of the marquee players who weren’t already committed to deals soon found their way into them. Defensive players generally went earlier and for money, but by the time the smoke began to clear on the first few hours of a spending frenzy, plenty of offensive linemen and skill position players had cashed in, too.
The surprise of the day was Brock Osweiler leaving a contract staredown with the Broncos to become the new quarterback of the Texans, who also signed running back Lamar Miller. Olivier Vernon started the day as the Dolphins’ transition tag player and ended it with a $52.5 million guarantee from the Giants. Wide receiver Marvin Jones leaving the Bengals wasn’t a surprise, but his destination, Detroit, probably was.
As of 9 p.m. ET Wednesday, only four of the top 25 on PFT’s Hot 100 Free Agent List didn’t have a rich new contract or a franchise tag. The four still unsigned were Chiefs cornerback Sean Smith (No. 14), Chargers safety Eric Weddle (No. 16), Bengals tackle Andre Smith (No. 18) and Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (No. 25).
By one count — and it was changing quickly, even well past regular business hours — only 43 of the top 100 were still on the board just a few hours into the free agent period. Add in the dozens of other signings and extensions of players who weren’t on the top 100 list and it’s fair to wonder how Twitter (or this site) didn’t explode.
Wednesday’s spending spree was one for the ages.