NFL free agency brings excitement like none other in sports. It’s seemingly filled with nonstop action across the board as teams look to load up for the following year. With that in mind, some signings come as a major shock to the football world. So without further ado, let’s take a look at potential bold free agent signings the NFL Fan Blitz staff could see happening in the AFC East.
New York Jets: RB Le’Veon Bell
With cap room, a new head coach, and a commitment to a young quarterback in Sam Darnold, the New York Jets need just one move to push the envelope offensively – sign Le’Veon Bell.
Even though technically the Pittsburgh Steelers retain the rights to the All-Pro running back, that doesn’t end the speculation as to where he’ll play next season. Even if the Steelers place the Transition Tag on their 2018 holdout franchise running back, the New York Jets should be the place this superstar lands in 2019.
However, Bell is a locker room nightmare –– and there is always the possibility he could a poison to Darnold. This won’t be an easy decision for new Jets head coach, Adam Gase. The Jets won’t be the only AFC East team hoping to land Bell either via trade or as a free agent. The Miami Dolphins are in the running, along with a handful of other teams who want to add the problematic, but talented back to their roster.
Still, if the Jets want to chip away at the New England Patriots dynasty in the AFC East, adding Bell would be the next big step in that decade-old steeplechase.
– Nick Athan
Miami Dolphins: QB Nick Foles
Have you ever heard the saying “go big or go home?” In this case, the Dolphins would be taking a huge gamble, but it could be worth the risk. They would be getting the free agent that could turn the franchise around.
Nick Foles is that free agent.
The man that beat Tom Brady and the Patriots last year in the Super Bowl, Nick Foles had over 350 yards through the air and accounted for four touchdowns: three throwing and one receiving. This guy has the clutch gene that a team wants in their quarterback, and that was on full display as he led Philly back to the playoffs in 2018. In fact, he orchestrated a game-winning drive against the daunting Chicago Bears defense. The clutch gene is something Miami has lacked in Ryan Tannehill, so adding Nick Foles could be a big move for the Dolphins.
– Caleb Barnhouse
Buffalo Bills: TE Tyler Eifert
A bold signing for the Bills would be Bengals tight end, Tyler Eifert. One of the best in the game when healthy, Eifert has been one of Andy Dalton’s best targets over the past several years. Drafted by the Bengals with the 21st pick in the 2013 draft, Eifert made the pro bowl in 2015 but has yet to play a full season in the NFL. In his pro bowl season, he averaged four receptions per game for 47.3 yards.
The following year, he averaged 3.6 receptions per game and 49.3 yards, in only eight games. Overall, he is averaging 3.3 receptions per game for 39.9 yards. Current Bills tight end Charles Clay averaged 3.3 receptions and 33.7 yards-per-game in his three years with the team.
However, Eifert seems to always be on the mend. He has struggled to be on the field consistently with only two of his six seasons has he played in more than 10 games. He has also played in less than five games in three of those seasons. However, if healthy, Eifert could be a serious weapon for Josh Allen.
– Vinnie Christiano III
New England Patriots: S Earl Thomas
News broke today that if the Patriots win the Super Bowl, veteran safety Devin McCourty could call it quits. Although it put a damper on the otherwise electric week for the Patriots leading up to Super Bowl 53, it was for a heart-warming reason; in Devin’s eyes, winning a Super Bowl with his brother, cornerback Jason McCourty, would be the ultimate achievement.
If the fan favorite is true to his word and retires after going out on top, who could possibly be a better replacement than Seahawks safety Earl Thomas? Coach Bill Belichick could immediately restore the stacked Patriots secondary by throwing in a proven veteran.
The Patriots don’t pay up for free agents, and coming off of a season-ending injury, Thomas could prove to be a cheap deal. Plus, the last remaining member to of the Legion of Boom is a dedicated player and certainly would enjoy competing with a contender.
Thomas has been linked to the Cowboys, but he will most certainly not be returning to Seattle after the events which transpired following his season-ending injury (Google it). If the Patriots win their sixth Super Bowl on Sunday, and Devin McCourty concludes his amazing career, look for New England to start the search party early for filling in the massive void McCourty will leave unoccupied.
– Grayson Pinney