As the new league year is set to start on March 15, this week will mark the opening of free agency in the National Football League. As teams gear up for free agency, this week has been marked with some massive stories that are sure to shake up the offseason.
Let’s take a look at the biggest stories of the week around the NFL.
Bears Trade The Top Pick To Panthers
In an unprecedented move, the Chicago Bears traded the No. 1 overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for a massive haul. In return, they will receive a first and second-round pick this year, a first-round pick next year, a second-round pick in 2025, and wide receiver D.J. Moore.
The Bears struggled mightily this season, but with general manager Ryan Poles feeling comfortable with Justin Fields under center, he was able to turn the top pick into a huge return that will help build around Fields moving forward.
While the Panthers were willing to offer a first-round pick in 2025 as well, Poles decided that he would rather have the Panthers’ top receiver in Moore. Last season, Moore had 63 receptions for 888 yards and seven touchdowns. While he did not eclipse the 1,000 yard mark like the previous three years, the seven touchdowns was his career high.
The 25-year-old Moore will now become the top receiver for the Bears, with wide receivers Darnell Mooney and Chase Claypool slotting in behind him. This addition should certainly help an offense that ranked last in passing, averaging just 130.5 yards per game.
For the Panthers, they now get their choice of quarterbacks in the top spot. Currently, Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud is the favorite to be taken first overall at -300. Other options include Bryce Young (+300), Anthony Richardson (+450), and Will Levis (+2500).
Miami Makes Big Splash In Their Secondary
The Miami Dolphins made a huge addition to their secondary on Sunday as they agreed to terms with the Los Angeles Rams to acquire 28-year-old cornerback Jalen Ramsey in exchange for a third round pick and tight end Hunter Long, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
The 28-year-old Ramsey played in all 17 games for the Rams, amassing 88 tackles, two sacks, 2 forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and four interceptions.
The Rams’ defense has seen several big names leave the roster as Ramsey, Bobby Wagner, and Leonard Floyd will all not be back next season.
Miami’s defense ranked 24th in the NFL last season, allowing 24.1 points per game. Against the pass, they ranked 28th, allowing 239.3 yards per game. They are hoping Ramsey can help to improve that area of their game.
Miami is currently tied for the 10th-best odds to win the Super Bowl next season at +2500, while the Rams sit at +3000.
Commanders Agree To Deal With Payne
After getting the franchise tag placed on him this offseason, defensive tackle Daron Payne and the Washington Commanders were able to come to an agreement. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, he is signing a four-year deal worth $90 million, with $60 million of that guaranteed.
Payne is only 25-years-old and was a big part of the Commanders’ defense last season. In 17 games, he had 64 tackles, 11.5 sacks, one fumble recovery, and 20 quarterback hits.
Payne’s return will help the Commanders compete in a loaded NFC East, which they currently have the worst odds of winning at just +1000.