2023 Fantasy Football Free Agency Frenzy: Miles Sanders, JuJu Smith-Schuster & More!
Free agency is in full swing, and we are going to take a look at some of the top signings that will impact your fantasy season in 2023. These are all guys who look like they have fallen into a starting role with their new teams, and we have excluded trades in this one.
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2023 Quarterback Free Agent Signings
Jimmy Garoppolo, Las Vegas Raiders
The biggest free agency QB to move with the exception of his predecessor in Vegas Derek Carr is Jimmy G. The Raiders went out and made him one of the first free agents off the board on Monday. They locked him up on a three-year deal, so it looks like the team plans on having him as more than a stop-gap QB. This is as good a spot as any for him to land considering he is now throwing to Davante Adams. This is a downgrade from the San Francisco 49ers offense, but his time had run out there as they are destined to move forward with either Trey Lance or Brock Purdy under center. More importantly, Adams and the other weapons in Vegas have a competent quarterback. This is the status quo for the Raiders and fantasy owners should be thrilled by that. Adams remains a WR1 and Hunter Renfrow should have PPR value.
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Baker Mayfield, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
This is an intriguing move as it looks like Mayfield has a legitimate shot to start in Tampa. He only has to beat out Kyle Trask and they have a few special weapons there on the outside. Most fantasy owners aren’t looking to start Baker either way, but Chris Godwin and Mike Evans are certainly relevant pieces. This is not the best-case scenario for either of them. The hope had to be that the Bucs would add a better QB like Carr, Jimmy G, or even Aaron Rodgers. After a few disastrous stops, Mayfield did show some hope late last season with the Rams. Nevertheless, this is a huge downgrade for the Bucs’ wideouts. While they still have big upside, their floor got a lot lower as well.
2023 Running Back Free Agent Signings
Miles Sanders, Carolina Panthers
We like this move for Sanders. While not running behind an elite offensive line with attention-grabbing weapons around him could hurt, Sanders was never going to get the consistent volume in Philly that fantasy owners are always seeking. He has a shot to go to Carolina and be the man. We’ve seen lesser running backs like D’Onta Foreman and Chubba Hubbard have success in this offense so Sanders is more than capable of having a big year. The situation may limit some scoring opportunities, however, after signing a $25 million deal we expect him to be the guy now for the first time in a long time.
David Montgomery, Detroit Lions
We don’t know what to make of this Lions’ backfield and neither does anybody else. Conventional wisdom would say he just slides into the Jamaal Williams role and it’s that simple. Really, who knows though? Let us not forget DeAndre Swift is still in Detroit and it’s very possible he could take on a much larger role now that Williams is gone. They loved him in Detroit and Montgomery could become nothing more than a complementary back. Surely, fantasy owners will debate this all offseason. This definitely isn’t the best-case scenario for Swift or Montgomery no matter how you slice it.
Jamaal Williams, New Orleans Saints
This is one of the most interesting signings for fantasy owners. Williams has done nothing but produce and score TDs every time he’s been given an opportunity and he may have a big one in New Orleans. There is a great chance that Alvin Kamara misses a big chunk of this season due to suspension, and this would leave the backfield to Williams. He could have massive value early in the season, and maintain a strong role throughout the season. The Saints have always limited Kamara’s touches and used another back along with him to work between the tackles. Williams will be a popular sleeper pick this summer.
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2023 Wide Receiver Free Agent Signings
Juju Smith-Schuster, New England Patriots
It’s really hard to put a value on Juju. He was great opposite Antonio Brown" data-toggle="modal" data-target="#player-pop-up" href="/nfl_player_news/Antonio_Brown/">Antonio Brown, then fell off a cliff in Pittsburgh before heading to Kansas City to play with the greatest quarterback of a generation. He looked good with Mahomes. Good enough that if he got a chance to be a true WR1 somewhere else he could have a lot of value. That’s the opportunity he will be given with the Pats. However, two things will hold him back. Mac Jones just isn’t very good and this offense will struggle through the air because of it, and Juju has a knee issue that doesn’t seem like it will ever be 100%. So you will be dealing with that if you draft him. This has to be a downgrade though when you go from Mahomes to McCorkle.
Allen Lazard, New York Jets
This is just the Jets trying to appease Aaron Rodgers’s demands so he’ll go there. Quite frankly it’s embarrassing. Lazard should be irrelevant in New York because he’s not nearly as talented as Garrett Wilson or Elijah Moore. At best he should be the WR3. Nonetheless, Rodgers wants to bring along his buddies and not have to practice so he could have a strong start to the season. Still, you are probably better off avoiding him if you’re looking for long-term success or consistency.
Jakobi Meyers, Las Vegas Raiders
We have all wanted Meyers to be a thing for years now, but he’s just a guy. Maybe we are wrong and getting away from New England will do wonders for him. We just don’t think so. Adams is the clear WR1 and Renfrow will soak up targets in the slot. Meyers will definitely have his games when he sees targets and finds the end zone, but it would likely take an injury for him to see any true fantasy relevancy in Vegas.
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