Houston Texans wide receiver Deandre Hopkins traded in NFL Free Agency

2020 NFL Free Agency recap: Day one winners and losers

  • 2020 NFL Free Agency
  • NFL
  • nfl free agency
By Jordan Katz March 16, 2020 0 Comment
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Free Agency is here, and it started with a bang. Who were the winners and losers from day one of the 2020 NFL Free Agency Frenzy?

What a wacky and wild first day of the NFL Offseason! We had blockbuster trades, massive contracts given out, and the Houston Texans doing whatever it is they were doing. Let’s jump right in, here are the winners and losers of day one of the NFL Free Agency.

WINNER: The Arizona Cardinals

What an unbelievable move General Manager Steve Keim pulled off. Somehow, he convinced the Houston Texans that it was a good idea for them to trade their All-Pro wide receiver for nothing! DeAndre Hopkins heads out west, along with a fourth-round pick (we’ll come back to that later). In exchange, the Cardinals sent back David Johnson, along with a 2020 2nd round pick and a 2021 fourth-round pick.

The Cardinals found a way to unload a bad contract at a nonvaluable position, for a premium player that can help Kyler Murray from day one. Hopkins still has three years left on his deal too. On top of that, he will probably receive a contract extension before this one runs up. Keim did not even have to give up a first-round pick to get Hopkins! This is an absolute home run for the Cardinals.

Also, the audacity of Steve Keim to ask for draft compensation back in this trade is laugh out loud hilarious. Imagine being in his shoes and negotiating an offer for DeAndre Hopkins. ‘Nuke would have cost you at least a first-round pick in Madden. This man had the audacity to ask for a fourth-rounder back when he was getting away with keeping his first-round selections. Absolutely insane on Keim’s part.

Losers: The Houston Texans

Well, if one goes up, the other must go down. No one understands what the Houston Texans did today. Reports indicate that Head coach Bill O’Brien and Hopkins did not see eye to eye. Furthermore, there was a monetary issue. Deshaun Watson is due a contract extension soon. Hopkins needs on in a few years as well.

Having said that, huh? Houston only got a second and fourth-round pick back for a superstar? The Texans entered the day without first-round selections in 2020 and 2021. They traded an elite receiver, arguably a top 10 player in the sport…and they still do not have a first-round pick!

The biggest loser of the offseason will be the Houston Texans, and we have not officially started the league year yet.

Winner: The New York Football Giants

It was just one move, but James Bradberry received a terrific contract from Big Blue. The Giants needed a true number one corner, and they got one in Bradberry. Dave Gettleman drafted Bradberry back when he was in Carolina, and now they reunite in New York.

Moreover, the contract is tremendous. Bradberry signed a three year deal worth 45 million dollars with $32 million in guarantees. His contract is set to run up when the NFL television contract runs up. It means that the salary cap is set to spike when Bradberry runs up. If Bradberry works, you pay him again. If he does not, you let him walk. A terrific first move by Dave Gettleman here.

Losers: The New York Jets

General Manager Joe Douglas comes from prominent organizations. He came into this job highly respected. So how did the Jets strike out on day one amidst all of their team needs?

Two words; Adam Gase. The Jets needed players that came off the board today. They were in the mix for Jack Conklin and Graham Glasgow. They were also in the mix for Byron Jones and James Bradberry.

The reason the Jets struck out is because of Gase. Gase has the reputation of a coach that players do not trust. He traded away every big-name player in Miami when he had roster control. He alienated some of his top players in New York during his first year with the Jets. This was the risk Joe Douglas ran when he kept Gase on board after a disappointing 2019 season.

The Jets have the New York market, a promising young quarterback, a hungry General Manager, and all they could muster up was George Fant. This is a straight loss for the Green and White.

Winners: The Indianapolis Colts AND The San Francisco 49ers

Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a rare win-win trade! The Indianapolis Colts traded the 13th overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft to the San Francisco 49ers for DeForest Buckner. The Colts then extended Buckner and made him the highest-paid defensive lineman in football.

From the Colts perspective, this is the kind of player they needed in the middle of their defense. Buckner is a game wrecker, he’s an elite pass rusher, and he’s hitting his prime.

From the 49ers perspective, they had to trade one of their talented defensive linemen because they could not afford to pay them all. Buckner had more trade value and would have costed more (clearly) than Arik Armstead. They chose to sign Armstead, who is very valuable to their defense, and trade Buckner.

Simply put, both teams win this deal.

Bonus Winner: The Philadelphia Eagles

There were so many good moves today. We’re adding an extra winner in here instead of a third loser. Philadelphia may not have landed the cornerback that they need, but they bolstered their defensive front with Javon Hargrave. Hargrave is a terrific player against the run, and he has solid pass rushing upside as a one tech defensive tackle. Pairing him with Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham makes for a lethal front four in the City of Brotherly Love.

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