Free agent lists in December are teases. Fans see the big names and dream of offseason purchases their favorite team should acquire. In reality, most of the names on the free agent list below won’t become available.
From now until March, teams will begin to re-sign the players they truly want to keep. If a long-term deal can’t get done, the franchise tag will be used. Green Bay’s four-year, $42 million deal for Mike Daniels on Monday was a great example of this trend. He would have been a the top-10 player on our list.
With the salary cap expected to soar this offseason, we suspect that deal will wind up looking like an absolute bargain.
Without further adieu, the list below is our early rough list of the top unrestricted free agents set to hit the market. We will expand our free agency coverage dramatically in the coming months, with our annual Top 101 list coming out in February.