Looking Ahead to the 2024 NFL Free Agency Class


The biggest signings of the 2023 free agent class have taken place, and the 2023 NFL Draft is just around the corner. This means it is the perfect time to look ahead to the 2024 free agent class to start assessing the talent that is going to be available to teams next season in the free agent pool.


This article will go through all of the fantasy-relevant positions and highlight some of the biggest names that can be available in the 2024 free-agent class. Some of these players will find themselves extended in the coming months or hit with a franchise tag at the end of next season, so this article won’t focus so much on landing spots. Check out the 2024 free agent class below.


Lamar Jackson

Lamar Jackson is currently a free agent (on the non-exclusive franchise tag), so many potential outcomes could remove him from this list. However, there is also a chance that he’s in a similar situation next year by either playing on the tag or possibly sitting out the year. Contract demands aside, Jackson remains one of the more dynamic quarterbacks in the league.

The former MVP has had at least 695 rushing yards in all five of his NFL seasons. Since becoming the full-time starter in 2019, Jackson has never had a completion percentage under 62% and has a 6.1% career touchdown rate as a passer with just a 2.3% interception rate. There is a chance we get two straight offseasons of landing spot analysis for the veteran quarterback.

Injuries are a concern (Jackson has played in 12 games in back-to-back seasons), and the rushing upside won’t always be there, but Jackson still can break fantasy with his mobility and could do even more damage if he lands in a situation that asks him to air the ball out even more.

Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles

Jalen Hurts was a second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, which means he signed a four-year deal without a fifth-year option. That means he can be a free agent after this upcoming NFL season. Of the names on this list, he seems like the most likely to sign a long-term (and record-breaking) deal before training camp even starts, but as of now, he’s slated to become a free agent.

Jalen Hurts Fantasy Football 2024 NFL Free Agency Look Ahead

Hurts has thrived in his two seasons as the starter in Philadelphia. He set career highs in pass attempts (460), completion percentage (66.5%) passing yards (3,701), passing touchdowns (22) and rushing touchdowns (13) in 2023. The Eagles seem fully committed to making Hurts the quarterback of the future and he remains a stable fantasy option with a top-three upside (as long as he remains the first rushing threat in the red zone).

Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings

Kirk Cousins‘ most recent short-term fully guaranteed contract is set to expire after the 2023 season. The Vikings don’t have a long-term successor under contract (yet), which means Cousins could sign another similar deal going forward. In five seasons with the Vikings, Cousins has averaged a 67.8% completion percentage, 4,168.8 passing yards and 30.6 passing touchdowns per season. Cousins remains a solid fantasy quarterback into his mid-30s and hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down in recent years.

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans

The least sexy name on this list is Ryan Tannehill, but he remains fantasy viable. The Titans seem committed to the veteran quarterback for the last season of his deal (they could still add a young quarterback to the room in the upcoming NFL draft). Injuries last season ultimately caused Tannehill’s worst season as a Titan, but he still showed the same consistency when healthy.

In four seasons with the Titans, Tannehill has averaged a 66.9% completion percentage, 3,207.8 passing yards, 22.3 passing touchdowns, and 8.3 interceptions per season. He’s also provided some rushing ability by averaging 204.8 rushing yards and 5.0 rushing touchdowns per season.

Tannehill seems like the most likely of these quarterbacks to hit the free-agent market and lacks the upside of the other names on this list. However, he has proven to have enough consistency to provide solid QB2 numbers in his career and should have a few more solid years left in him, even if they aren’t with the Tennessee Titans.  

Other Notable Names

Sam Darnold, San Francisco 49ers
Drew Lock, Seattle Seahawks
Marcus Mariota, Philadelphia Eagles
Baker Mayfield, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gardner Minshew, Indianapolis Colts
Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints 


Running Back

Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts

It feels highly unlikely that the Colts allow Jonathan Taylor to hit free agency after this season given his importance to the team. But as a second-round pick, he will be eligible for free agency after his fourth year in the league, which gets him to this list to begin.

Taylor has been stellar to start his career in the NFL. Even with last year’s injury-riddled campaign, Taylor is averaging 1,280.3 rushing yards (5.1 yards per carry) and 11 rushing touchdowns per season. The biggest knock on Taylor is his underwhelming role in the receiving game (104 receptions for 802 yards and three touchdowns) even though he has shown he’s a capable pass catcher.

If Taylor does somehow hit the free agent market, he will be one of the most talented players, regardless of position, available for teams to sign. Taylor should remain a top-three running back (when healthy) for the foreseeable future.

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

A last-minute extension for Daniel Jones meant Saquon Barkley would get the franchise tag, which puts him at the top of the free agent class again next year.

After two injury-riddled seasons, Barkley looked the part of a workhorse running back in 2022. The fifth-year veteran had 295 carries for 1,312 yards and 10 rushing touchdowns while adding 57 receptions (on 76 targets) for 338 yards. While there were certainly times that Barkley looked to have lost some explosiveness after his 2020 ACL tear, he was one of the best running backs in the league and the focal point of the Giants’ offense.

Teams seem increasingly wary of signing running backs to long-term deals in today’s NFL, so Barkley could become a free agent. But he’s once again proved that when healthy he can dominate games and make explosive plays, which keeps him as a top-12 running back in fantasy going forward.

Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans

Derrick Henry silenced a lot of critics questioning his durability after missing nine games during the 2021 season in 2022. The veteran running back returned to play 16 games last year, carrying the ball 349 times for 1,538 yards and 13 rushing touchdowns. He also had the best season of his career as a receiver, catching 33 of 41 targets for 398 yards.

Henry isn’t getting any younger (he just turned 29) and the Titans have put quite the workload on his plate the last four seasons (312.3 rushing attempts per season), but aside from 2021, he’s shown remarkable durability. Henry is still the primary option in the Titans’ run-heavy offense, but time will tell how much the team values him after putting so much work on his plate in recent seasons. His fantasy value feels safe as long as he’s able to stay on the field, there is just some risk in projecting his future given the huge workload on his shoulders.

Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders

Josh Jacobs Fantasy Football 2024 NFL Free Agency Look Ahead

Josh Jacobs played like a man possessed after the Las Vegas Raiders declined to pick up his fifth-year option before the 2022 season. The veteran running back played his way into a franchise tag by totaling 340 carries for 1,653 yards and 12 rushing touchdowns while adding 53 receptions on 64 targets for 400 receiving yards. Jacobs emerged as one of the best fantasy values in 2022 thanks to his newfound role as a bell-cow back in a run-heavy offense.

The Raiders will likely be leaning on Jacobs again in 2023 with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. If the massive workload we saw him handle last season continues into next year, consider Jacobs a top-12 running back once again in 2023. His future remains murkier beyond that.

Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys

Tony Pollard maintained his excellent efficiency while taking on a greater workload for the Cowboys in 2022, leading to a top-10 PPR finish at the running back position. Pollard logged a career-high 53% snap share and turned it into 193 carries for 1,007 yards and nine touchdowns and 39 receptions (on 55 targets) for 371 yards and three receiving touchdowns. Dallas wasted no time franchise-tagging Pollard this offseason. He’s poised to see an even greater workload increase with the release of Ezekiel Elliott.

Pollard’s ankle injury suffered in the playoffs shouldn’t cost him any time to start the 2023 season. While it is very likely the Cowboys add a running back in the draft to complement the veteran running back, Pollard should see the same, if not a greater, workload next season. He’s poised to remain a top-10 running back.

J.K. Dobbins, Baltimore Ravens

There was a rough start to the 2022 season for J.K. Dobbins coming off the knee injury that cost him his second season in the league. The third-year running back missed the first two games of the season before putting up four underwhelming games worth of stats (35 carries for 123 yards and six receptions for 39 yards and two total touchdowns). He would miss six additional games after having a follow-up procedure to clean out his knee.

Once Dobbins returned, he flashed the ability that made him a second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. In his next four games, Dobbins carried the ball 57 times for 397 yards and a touchdown while adding one reception for three yards. Dobbins should be poised to have a big season two years removed from his surgery and played well down the stretch of the 2022 season. Given the uncertainty at the quarterback position in Baltimore (and a new offensive coordinator), it is hard to know how the team will value Dobbins going forward.

He’s a boom-or-bust RB2 given his lack of receiving production as an NFL player and could easily see himself hitting free agency after this season.

D’Andre Swift, Detroit Lions

Fantasy managers have patiently waited for D’Andre Swift to ascend into a top-five fantasy running back given Detroit’s offensive line. Unfortunately, injuries and the touchdown vulturing of Jamaal Williams have made it difficult for him to reach that potential. Swift played 14 games in 2022 and set a career-low in rushing attempts (99). He had just 542 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns while catching 48 of 70 targets for 389 receiving yards and three receiving touchdowns.

The outlook doesn’t seem much better for Swift in 2023 after the Lions replaced Williams with David Montgomery this offseason. Swift will likely retain his role as a pass-catching specialist for one last season. He’s got an RB2 upside and seems destined to hit free agency after this season.

Cam Akers, Los Angeles Rams

Similar to J.K. Dobbins, Cam Akers came into the 2022 season with injury concerns after an Achilles tear cost him a majority of the 2021 season. After a slow start, Akers put together a solid third season after the Rams moved on from Darrell Henderson. Akers finished his third season with 188 carries for 786 yards and seven rushing touchdowns while adding 13 receptions for 117 yards.

Akers will head into 2023 as the lead back, although the offensive line in front of him is still a work in progress. Akers should get a solid workload once again and figures to hit free agency as the Rams continue to try and rebuild on the fly to compete for a Super Bowl due to their lack of draft resources.

AJ Dillon, Green Bay Packers

AJ Dillon Fantasy Football 2024 NFL Free Agency Look Ahead

Many expected AJ Dillon to take on a bigger role during the 2022 season after he flashed as an efficient runner with solid catching ability out of the backfield during his second season. While Dillon did see an increase in snap share during his third season (career-high 49% of the offensive snaps), his workload stayed relatively the same. The veteran running back finished his third year with 186 carries for 770 yards and seven touchdowns while adding 28 receptions for 206 receiving yards.

Dillon will once again share a backfield with Aaron Jones after the latter agreed to restructure his contract to stay on the team. The Packers could lean on the run game a bit more this season with the eventual trade of Aaron Rodgers, which could lead to more opportunities for Dillon. Dillon would likely need an injury to finish as a locked-in top-24 running back, but his touchdown upside does give him a higher ceiling.

Antonio Gibson, Washington Commanders

2022 was a frustrating season for Antonio Gibson fans. Gibson looked like the next big thing at running back coming off a 1,000-yard rushing season in 2021 and with a chance at a bigger role in the passing attack given J.D. McKissic’s pending free agency. The Commanders wound up bringing McKissic back and drafting Brian Robinson in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Robinson cut into Gibson’s workload considerably in the run game, forcing the third-year running back to career lows in rushing attempts (149), rushing yards (546) and rushing touchdowns (three). Gibson did see a slight uptick as a receiver with career-highs in targets (58), receptions (46) and receiving yards (353) while adding two receiving touchdowns.

The Commanders brought Eric Bieniemy in as their offensive coordinator during the offseason, so there is hope that Gibson will have a more dynamic role in the offense ahead of free agency. Assuming Gibson hits the free agent market, he could find himself with a massive uptick in fantasy value if he lands in the right situation.

Other Notable Names

Gus Edwards, Baltimore Ravens
D’Onta Foreman, Chicago Bears
Damien Harris, Buffalo Bills
Ronald Jones, Dallas Cowboys
Zonovan Knight, New York Jets
Rashaad Penny, Philadelphia Eagles
Devin Singletary, Houston Texans

Wide Receiver

Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals

There is an outside chance Tee Higgins will enter free agency after the 2023 season, which would make him arguably the most talented player on the market. On most teams, Higgins would be the unquestioned WR1; he just happens to play with Ja’Marr Chase on the Cincinnati Bengals. The fourth-year wide receiver has averaged 109 targets, 71.7 receptions, 1,009.3 receiving yards and 6.3 touchdowns per season.

Cincinnati seems dedicated to keeping their passing attack as intact as possible, so it seems far more likely that Higgins will be either franchise tagged or signed to a long-term extension. Higgins is a locked-in WR2 as long as he remains in Cincinnati and has a much higher ceiling if he lands with a new team after next season.

Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

There is a chance Mike Evans gets traded if the Buccaneers commit to a rebuild. If that’s the case, the team acquiring him may decide to extend the veteran wide receiver. If Evans stays in Tampa Bay, then he will certainly hit the market as a free agent after the 2022 season.

Few wide receivers in the NFL can beat Evans’ resume through the first. Evans has nine straight seasons with at least 68 receptions and over 1,000 receiving yards. Additionally, he has at least six touchdown receptions in seven of nine years in the league. While Evans is starting to lose a step as an athlete, he can still have a long career as a big-bodied end-zone threat. He remains a WR2 with massive upside thanks to his role in the red zone. He will remain so if he hits the free agency market after his 10th season in the league.

Michael Pittman, Indianapolis Colts

Michael Pittman Fantasy Football 2024 NFL Free Agency Look Ahead

Michael Pittman has struggled to reach his ceiling as a WR1 in fantasy thanks to inconsistent quarterback play throughout his first three seasons in the NFL. Even with the subpar quarterback play, Pittman is averaging 110.3 targets, 75.7 receptions, 836.7 receiving yards and 3.7 touchdowns per season.

Indianapolis is in a position to massively upgrade its quarterback position for 2023. They’ve already signed Gardner Minshew (probably an upgrade over Matt Ryan) and could use the fourth pick in the 2023 NFL Draft to get the signal caller of the future. Pittman could find himself operating as the WR1 in the best passing situation of his career and will likely be an extension target by the team. Even if he hits the free agent market, his size and production indicate he would at worst be a great 1B on most teams in the league.

Marquise Brown, Arizona Cardinals

It seems likely the Cardinals will try to retain Marquise Brown past this season. The team gave up a first-round pick in the 2022 draft (pick 23) to acquire him and is actively shopping DeAndre Hopkins this offseason. Then again, the team recently overhauled its coaching staff, and the new staff may not view Brown in the same light as former head coach Kliff Kingsbury and former GM Steve Keim.

Brown had a relatively successful first season in Arizona despite playing just 12 games due to an injury. Brown averaged 8.9 targets, 5.6 receptions and 59.1 receiving yards per game during his first year with the team. He also added three touchdowns, all of which were scored with Hopkins serving a suspension to start the year.

At the very least, Brown will have a role as a downfield threat. According to FTN’s advanced receiving stats, Brown was 13th in the NFL among wide receivers in the percentage of his team’s AirYards (35%, tied with CeeDee Lamb). Finishing as a top-10 wide receiver probably isn’t in Brown’s range of outcomes anymore, but he’s an excellent boom-or-bust receiver regardless of landing spot.

Gabe Davis, Buffalo Bills

Speaking of boom-or-bust players, Gabe Davis once again had an up-and-down season despite being the unquestioned WR2 in Buffalo in 2022. Despite the underwhelming WR36 finish, Davis set or tied career-highs in targets (93), receptions (48), receiving yards (836) and receiving touchdowns (seven). The Bills are actively tied to DeAndre Hopkins via trade rumors, so there is a chance that Davis reverts to his field-stretching role after this season.

It is anybody’s guess as to what will happen with Davis once he is eligible to hit free agency after the 2023 season. His role in the NFL (field stretcher) is historically inefficient, but that is balanced out by the high-volume passing attack in Buffalo (and Josh Allen’s ability to extend plays). It’ll be hard for Davis to find himself in a better situation unless a team truly invests in him to be their WR1 going forward.

The post-2023 landing spot will have a bigger impact than most on Davis’ fantasy ability going forward.

Calvin Ridley, Jacksonville Jaguars

Calvin Ridley’s big payday was pushed back a year when he was suspended for a year for gambling on football. After being traded to Jacksonville from Atlanta, the veteran receiver will essentially be playing under a one-year deal, which is his fifth-year option worth $11.1 million.

The last time we saw Ridley, he was averaging 10.4 targets, 6.2 receptions and 56.2 receiving yards per game (five games) after the team moved on from Julio Jones. Ridley has the makings of a WR1B and will have nearly two years of rust to work through, but his role in Jacksonville alongside Trevor Lawrence, Christian Kirk and Travis Etienne is intriguing.

Ridley’s free agency market will be interesting given his age (he will turn 29 during the NFL season) and the lost year of production. A big year in Jacksonville should translate into a great opportunity for Ridley if he hits the free-agent market.  

Other Notable Names

Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals
Chase Claypool, Chicago Bears
Parris Campbell, New York Giants
DJ Chark, Carolina Panthers
KJ Hamler, Denver Broncos
Mecole Hardman, New York Jets
Van Jefferson, Los Angeles Rams
Darnell Mooney, Chicago Bears
K.J. Osborn, Minnesota Vikings
Donovan Peoples-Jones, Cleveland Browns
Curtis Samuel, Washington Commanders
Sterling Shepard, New York Giants
Quez Watkins, Philadelphia Eagles
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine, Tennessee Titans


Tight End

Evan Engram, Jacksonville Jaguars

Evan Engram fit right in with the Jacksonville Jaguars after signing a one-year deal with the team in 2022. The veteran tight end earned 98 targets and set career highs in receptions (73) and receiving yards (766). He also added four touchdowns, which led him to a TE5 finish in PPR leagues.

The Jaguars liked what they saw from Engram so much they used their franchise tag on him this offseason. He will have to continue to compete with established weapons Christian Kirk, Zay Jones and Travis Etienne and also earn targets over new addition Calvin Ridley. Engram has seemingly found himself with a coaching staff that knows how to utilize his abilities. There is some risk that the next staff (if he doesn’t sign long-term with Jacksonville) won’t be able to utilize him well (think the Giants in 2021).

Noah Fant, Seattle Seahawks

Noah Fant produced similarly in his first season with the Seattle Seahawks after being one of the pieces in the Russell Wilson trade with the Denver Broncos. That’s somewhat surprising considering he drew 30 fewer targets in Seattle (63) than he did in each of his two prior seasons with Denver. Despite the reduced target share, Fant still caught 50 passes for 486 yards and four touchdowns, good for a TE17 finish.

It seems increasingly likely that Fant won’t reach the massive ceiling many projected for him coming out of college in 2019. Seattle continued to be a run-heavy team with Geno Smith under center, so it will likely take a more pass-heavy offense in 2024 for Fant to find his way into the top-12 tight ends for fantasy.

T.J. Hockenson, Minnesota Vikings

T.J. Hockenson Fantasy Football 2024 NFL Free Agency Look Ahead

A midseason trade from the Lions to the Minnesota Vikings opened up a whole new level of opportunity for T.J. Hockenson, catapulting him to a TE2 finish in PPR leagues. In seven games with the Lions, Hockenson had 26 receptions on 43 targets for 395 yards and three touchdowns. He shattered that pace in 10 games with the Vikings, getting 60 receptions on 86 targets for 519 yards and three scores.

Hockenson’s situation looks excellent again in 2023. The Vikings have moved on from Adam Thielen and Irv Smith, and rumors are swirling about the team cutting Dalvin Cook. That leaves Hockenson poised to reprise his role as the team’s second target behind Justin Jefferson. It seems likely that Hockenson will be an extension or franchise tag target for the Vikings, so he could have a top-five fantasy upside for the foreseeable future. Especially if that future is in Minnesota.

Cole Kmet, Chicago Bears

Cole Kmet has struggled to remain fantasy-relevant during his time in Chicago thanks to a low passing volume and one of the best rushing quarterbacks in the NFL. Kmet saw a massive dip in his targets from 2021 to 2022 (93-69), but his fantasy value was saved due to a massive leap in touchdowns (seven) in Justin Fields‘ second season.

Chicago has done a lot to add to their receiving room over the past year, adding Chase Claypool and DJ Moore to the wide receiver corps. That means Kmet will likely remain a low-volume option that will have to get his fantasy value from touchdowns. While that is a worthwhile gamble to take at the tight-end position, it doesn’t make him trustworthy beyond 2023.

The Bears don’t have many players worth extending on their roster, so if they want to keep Kmet for his blocking and pass-catching ability, they can. Unfortunately, until we see a clear increase in the passing volume, that doesn’t help us much in fantasy.

Dalton Schultz, Houston Texans

Many expected Dalton Schultz to garner some level of interest in free agency this season after a successful year in Dallas playing on the franchise tag. In his last three seasons with the Cowboys, Shultz averaged 94 targets, 66 receptions, 666.7 receiving yards, and 5.7 touchdowns per season.

Unfortunately for Schultz (and fantasy managers), the free agent market never materialized. The veteran tight end wound up on a one-year deal with the Houston Texans. The good news? Houston is a lock to draft a quarterback with the second overall pick and the weapons around Schultz (Nico Collins, Robert Woods, Noah Brown and John Metchie) aren’t top-level receiving options in the league at this point.

Schultz could once again fall into an excellent situation in the passing attack as the safety blanket for a young quarterback. His long-term outlook is far murkier given the one-year deal.

Other Notable Names

Harrison Bryant, Cleveland Browns
Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers
Mike Gesicki, New England Patriots
Hunter Henry, New England Patriots
Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams
Austin Hooper, Los Vegas Raiders
Albert Okwuegbunam, Denver Broncos
Robert Tonyan, Chicago Bears
Adam Trautman, New Orleans Saints

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