Bell, Brown, OBJ Headline ’19 FL Free Agency

As anticipated, the 2019 NFL Free Agent period came in like a lion, with teams choosing not to wait until the March 13th, the official first day in which teams can either sign their own and other players, and this year’s first week also included a few major trades.

Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown scored his only receiving touchdown on this play in the 23-16 win against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on November 4, 2018. (Brian Cook / Golden Sky Media)

Make no mistake, the player who made the most noise in the offseason was WR Antonio Brown. Ever since the 7-time Pro Bowler missed the Pittsburgh Steelers Week 17 game against the Cincinnati Bengals, there’s been constant friction which eventually led to Brown publicly requesting a trade, which eventually led to Brown getting traded to the Oakland Raiders for a 2019 3rd and 5th round picks early Sunday March 10th.

But Brown’s trade almost got upstaged as 3 days later, the NY Giants traded a WR of their own as they sent the 3-time Pro Bowler to the Cleveland Browns for 1st and 3rd rounders and S Jabrill Peppers.

Veteran WR Desean Jackson asked the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to trade him back to the Philadelphia Eagles, the team who drafted him and his wish was granted as he was sent to the Eagles for a 6th round pick.

But it’s easy to forget the first trade of the NFL offseason involved QB Joe Flacco as the Baltimore Ravens shipped him off to the Denver Broncos for a 2019 4th round pick, and then thesecond trade of the NFL involved QB Kase Keenum as he was shipped by the Broncos to the Washington Redskins for a 6th round pick. The Redskins also receive a 7th round pick.

As for the Free Agents, once again the focus is on a former Pittsburgh Steeler. RB Le’Veon Bell made it plain that he wasn’t going to play unless he got the contract that he wanted, and after the Steelers Franchise Tagged him a second straight year, and after he turned down several Steelers contract offers, he sat out the 2018 season, and late Tuesday night, Bell officially became a member of the NY Jets after he signed a 4-year $52 million deal, cutting ties with the team who drafted him in 2013.

S Earl Thomas also found a new home. The former Seattle Seahawk who missed the entire preseason and then the regular season due to injury, inked a 4-year $55 million deal with the Baltimore Ravens, who also signed former New Orleans Saints RB Mark Ingram.

The Ravens also lost a few of their veterans: LB CJ Mosely left to sign a $85 million deal over 5 years with the Jets, LB Terrell Suggs left to sign a 1-year deal with the Arizona Cardinals and S Eric Weddle inked a 2-year deal with the NFC Champion LA Rams.

It was also a free agency for Safeties so far: Landon Collins signed a six-year, $84 million deal with the Redskins, Kenny Vaccaro inked a four year, $26 million deal with the Tennessee Titans, Tyrann Mathieu signed a 3-year deal worth $42 million with the KC Chiefs,, Lamarcus Joyner

inked a four year, $42 million with the Raiders Tashaun Gipson grabbed a three year, $22.5 million deal to play for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots saw DE Brandon Flowers sign with the Detroit Lions for $90 million over 5 years, and the Lions also signed former Steelers TE Jesse James for a $25 million deal over 5 years.

Former LA Chargers WR Tyrell Williams signed with the Raiders, while the Buffalo Bills added WRs Cole Beasley and John Brown. Veteran RB Adrian Peterson re-signed with the Redskins on a 2-year deal.

Although the Steelers suffered losses, they signed former Chiefs CB Steven Nelson and retained LB Anthony Chickillo and Punter Jordan Berry, while the New Orleans Saints kept backup QB Teddy Bridgewater for another year. The Chargers signed QB Tyrod Taylor to backup Philip Rivers and The Jaguars signed Super Bowl 52 MVP QB Nick Foles and in turn, released QB Black Bortles.

And to think, this is just the beginning of the Free Agent Period.

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbanmediaRay on twitter

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