Eagles, Packers get high marks for free agency; Cowboys, not so much

AP sports columnist Rob Maadii takes a closer look at how each NFL team has addressed its needs with free agency this year.



March 15, 2024 - 1:46 PM

New Philadelphia Eagles running back Saquon Barkley speaks during an introductory news conference at the NovaCare Complex in Philadelphia on Thursday, March 14, 2024. Photo by Yong Kim/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

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NFL teams have spent hundreds of millions of dollars this week to add new players, re-sign their own and try to improve their chances of winning.

From Kirk Cousins and Saquon Barkley changing teams soon after the league’s tampering window opened to Chris Jones and Mike Evans staying put before hitting the open market, it’s been a wild spending spree.

The grades are in:


Focused on defense, adding defensive tackle Justin Jones (three years, $30.1 million), cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting (three years, $25.5 million) and defensive tackle Bilal Nichols (three years, $21 million). Signed right tackle Jonah Williams (two years, $30 million). Acquired quarterback Desmond Ridder to back up Kyler Murray in a trade for wide receiver Rondale Moore.


Swung for the fences by giving Cousins a $180 million, four-year deal to solve their quarterback woes. Gave him another playmaker by signing wide receiver Darnell Mooney (three years, $39 million). Also added tight end Charlie Woerner (three years, $12 million) and acquired Moore.


Added four-time Pro Bowl running back Derrick Henry (2 years, $16 million) and re-signed defensive tackle Justin Madubuike (4 years, $98 million), wide receiver Nelson Agholor and linebacker Malik Harrison. Lost linebacker Patrick Queen to the Steelers.


Signed wide receiver Curtis Samuel (three years, $24 million) and Mack Hollins but lost Gabe Davis. Released safety Jordan Poyer, cornerback Siran Neal, center Mitch Morse and cornerback Tre’Davious White. Extended tackle Dion Dawkins (three years, $60.5 million), re-signed cornerback Cam Lewis, edge A.J. Epenesa, safety Taylor Rapp and defensive tackle DaQuan Jones. Signed quarterback Mitch Trubisky to back up Josh Allen and added linebacker Nicholas Morrow.


Traded star edge rusher Brian Burns. Acquired wide receiver Diontae Johnson. Strengthened their offensive line by signing guards Robert Hunt (five years, $100) and Damien Lewis (four years, $53 million). Upgraded the defense by adding defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson (three years, $22.5 million), edge D.J. Wonnum and linebacker Josey Jewell (three years, $22.75 million.