NFL Free Agent Flurry; Cousins to Atlanta, Barkley to Philadelphia

Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Kenny Clark (97) pressures Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) during their football game Sunday, October 29, 2023, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. Minnesota defeated Green Bay 24-10.  Wm. Glasheen USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin
Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Kenny Clark (97) pressures Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) during their football game Sunday, October 29, 2023, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. Minnesota defeated Green Bay 24-10. Wm. Glasheen USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin

In a flashy effort to steal attention from college football's busy transfer portal, the NFL began its soft launch of free agency at noon Monday by opening something called the "tampering window."

All hell broke loose immediately thereafter. 


Technically, none of the negotiations or moves revealed will be legit until the official start of Free Agency when the 2024 season begins Wednesday. Meantime all manner of deals are discussed and revealed without fear of consequences thanks to the NFL's two-day period of legitimized hanky panky.


Sure some deals may still go awry, but there are already big names, big contracts and huge moves queued up to open the 2024 season. 

Among the hottest headlines: 


—Quarterback Kirk Cousins agreed to a four-year, $180 million contract with the Atlanta Falcons on Monday, according to NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero. Cousins' deal includes a $50 million signing bonus and $90 million guaranteed over the next two seasons with an additional $10 million guaranteed in 2026 for a whopping $100 million total in guarantees. One immediate consequence is that Atlanta is no longer looking at quarterback Justin Fields in Chicago, where the Bears have the No. 1 pick and a shot a USC quarterback Caleb Williams, rated by most as the top QB in the draft.


—Running back Saquon Barkley reached agreement with the Philadelpia Eagles  on a three-year, $37.75 million contract that could be worth up to $46.75 million and includes $26 million fully guaranteed at signing, The Eagles have upgraded their offense by swapping out D'Andre Swift (Bears) for Barkley, who figures to have the best offensive line of his career after spending six years with the division-rival New York Giants. 


 —Quarterback Russell Wilson's strange stopover in Denver is done after he announced a one-year contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Broncos  will pay almost all of his $38 million 2024 salary. Wilson's only guaranty this that Pittsburgh's no-nonsense coach Mike Tomlin will not set aside an office or a special parking spot for Wilson, who seemed to have lost his way after leaving Seattle. If you think Wilson and the Steelers are an odd match, you have plenty of company.


—Defensive tackle Christian Wilkins will sign a four-year, $110 million deal with the Las Vegas Raiders, where he will team with DE Maxx Crosby and become one of the most formidable defensive lines in football. The Dolphins opted not to franchise tag Wilkins after he broke out with 65 total tackles (10 for a loss), 9.0 sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries in 2023.


—Running back Josh Jacobs is moving from Las Vegas to Green Bay where the Packers released Aaron Jones. Though he missed four games last season and was forced to overcome questionable quarterback play, Jacobs managed to accrue 1,101 yards from scrimmage and six touchdowns.



**Other announcements Monday, March 11**


RB Joe Mixon: Released by Bengals

Mixon was released by the Bengals on Monday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: It was suspected that Mixon could be a potential cap casualty for the Bengals, and that has turned out to be the case. He spent his first seven seasons in Cincinnati and finished the 2023 campaign with 1,410 yards and 12 touchdowns from scrimmage. The veteran back turns 28-years-old in July and will now be looking for a fresh start elsewhere.


RB Zack Moss: Going to be a Bengal

Moss agreed to terms on a two-year, $8 million contract with the Bengals on Monday, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: Moss vaults to the No. 1 spot on the running back depth chart for Cincinnati, as the team also released Joe Mixon on Monday. The 26-year-old is cashing in after an impressive showing during Jonathan Taylor's absence from the Colts last season. He finished the 2023 campaign with a career-high 794 yards and five touchdowns on the ground to go along with 192 yards and two touchdowns on 27 receptions.


QB Jacoby Brissett: Returns to New England

Brissett has agreed to terms on a one-year, $8 million contract with New England, Jeremy Fowler of reports.


FACTS: It remains to be seen what the Patriots choose to do with their No. 3 selection in this year's draft, but Brissett is now the No. 1 option under center with New England, one day removed from dealing Mac Jones to the Jaguars. The journeyman quarterback started his career with the Pats in 2016 and actually started two games in place of a suspended Tom Brady. He then spent his next four seasons with the Colts, both as a backup and starter before subsequently spending one year each with the Dolphins, Browns and Commanders. If the Patriots do decide to draft a quarterback, Brissett still could start while the team develops someone behind him or use him as a top-tier backup option.


TE Noah Fant: Staying in Seattle

Fant (hand) agreed to terms on a two-year, $21 million contract with the Seahawks on Monday, Jordan Schultz of Bleacher Report reports.


FACTS: Fant, a 2019 first-round pick for the Broncos, has accumulated 2,805 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns across his first five seasons. He's coming off a disappointing contract year with Seattle that saw him record 414 yards and no touchdowns on 32 receptions in 17 games. However, the 26-year-old showed enough for the team to continue believing in him as a top option at tight end, which he currently projects to be for 2024, thanks to the departures of both Will Dissly (Chargers) and Colby Parkinson (Rams) in free agency.


RB Austin Ekeler: Will carry for Commanders

Ekeler is signing a two-year contract with the Commanders, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: The deal reportedly is worth up to $11.43 million, but with only $4.82 million guaranteed in the first season and a significant portion being incentives. Ekeler turns 29 in May and is coming off a 2023 campaign in which he experienced a massive downturn from his 2021-22 production while dealing with a high-ankle sprain and poor blocking. Even if he can't recapture his peak form, he should be useful as a passing-down threat given his 3,884 career receiving yards and 30 receiving TDs. The Commanders likely envision Ekeler and Brian Robinson sharing backfield snaps, though it might look quite a bit different than Robinson's split with Antonio Gibson in 2023. (Gibson is signing with the Patriots, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.) The Commanders have a new offensive coordinator (Kliff Kingsbury) and are widely expected to acquire a new quarterback with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.


LB Brian Burns: Big payday after trade to Giants

The Giants are acquiring Burns in a trade with the Panthers and signing him to a five-year contract, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: The initial report has it as a $150 million contract, with the Giants sending second- and fifth-round picks to Carolina for the right to make Burns one of the highest-paid non-QBs in league history. The 2019 first-round pick has been both durable and consistent, recording at least 7.5 sacks every season while missing just three games. He's never had the kind of dominant campaign produced by defenders with similar contracts, but it's possible that lies ahead for Burns, who will be 26 when the 2024 season starts. It's also possible the contract numbers initially reported are inflated with incentives or other money that's unlikely to actually end up in his pocket. Either way, the Giants now have the fastest pair of edge rushers in the league with Burns (4.53 40) joining 2022 fifth overall pick Kayvon Thibodeaux (4.58), who had 11.5 sacks in 2023.


CB Carlton Davis: Traded to Detroit

The Buccaneers are trading Davis to the Lions, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: Detroit gets an experienced starter to address the obvious weak point of an otherwise stellar roster. The Bucs probably won't get much in return; for them, the appeal largely comes from avoiding more than $14 million in non-guaranteed payments scheduled for Davis in 2024 (after the recent re-signings of QB Baker Mayfield and WR Mike Evans). The 27-year-old Davis has played between 10 and 14 games each season since the Bucs took him in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft, starting 75 of his 76 regular-season appearances while averaging 54 tackles, 12.2 pass defenses, 1.5 interceptions, 0.5 forced fumbles and 0.7 fumble recoveries per season.


WR Jauan Jennings: Gets second-round tender

The Niners gave Jennings a second-round restricted free-agent tender Monday, Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area reports.


FACTS: This gives the Niners the right to match any offer Jennings receives from another team, with a second-round pick coming back in return if they decline. No team is going to give up a pick that early for the right to hand Jennings a considerable contract, meaning a trade is now the only way he'd end up on a new team for 2024. While he hasn't seen many targets as the No. 3 receiver in a loaded offense, Jennings had Super Bowl MVP hype at one point in the big game after throwing for one TD and catching another. Fantasy relevance in 2024 seems unlikely if fellow wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel both are on the team and healthy.


WR Russell Gage: Contract option declined

Gage (knee) is a free agent after the Buccaneers declined his contract option for 2024, Greg Auman of Fox Sports reports.


FACTS: Gage signed a three-year, $30 million contract in March 2022 and ended up playing just 13 regular-season games in two years with Tampa Bay. He missed the entire 2023 season after suffering a torn patellar tendon in August — an injury that's considered one of the toughest to come back from. Gage turned 28 in January and should still generate some interest as a potential third/fourth WR if he's able to continue his NFL career and complete his rehab.


TE Will Dissly: To sign with Bolts

Dissly is slated to sign a three-year deal with the Chargers, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.


FACTS:  Pelissero relays that Dissly's pending contract is for $14 million, including $10 million guaranteed. With Gerald Everett in line to become a free agent, Dissly will bolster the Chargers' tight end corps in 2024, while providing the team with a reliable run-blocking option at the position. During the 2023 regular season, the 27-year-old recorded 17 catches (on 22 targets) for 172 yards and a touchdown over 16 games with the Seahawks, whom he joined as a fourth-round draft pick in 2018.


K Wil Lutz: Changes mind, stays in Denver

Lutz plans to remain with the Broncos after agreeing to a two-year deal with Jacksonville,  Chris Tomasson of The Denver Gazette reports.

FACTS: The report notes that Lutz originally had an arrangement with Jacksonville in place, but the kicker instead elected to re-up with Denver. The 29-year-old converted 30 of 34 field-goal tries and 29 of 31 extra-point attempts in 17 regular-season games with the Broncos in 2023.


QB Gardner Minshew: To battle for Raiders No. 1  QB spot

Minshew has agreed to a two-year deal with the Raiders, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: Per Pelissero, Minshew's deal is for $25 million and includes $15 million fully guaranteed. Given those reported numbers, Minshew should have a chance to compete with Aidan O'Connell for the Raiders' starting QB job. Minshew, who turns 28 in May, recorded 3,305 passing yards to go along with 15 TDs and nine picks in 17 regular-season games (13 starts) with the Colts last season. Minshew on his way out means 2023 first-rounder Anthony Richardson, who is recovering from a shoulder injury last October, is poised to reclaim Indy's starting signal-caller assignment this coming season.


RB Gus Edwards: Headed to Chargers

Edwards has agreed to a two-year deal with the Chargers, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: The pending deal is set to reunite Edwards with former Ravens and current Chargers assistant Greg Roman. In 17 regular-season games with Baltimore in 2023, Edwards carried 198 times for 810 yards and 13 TDs to go along with 12 catches for 180 yards. With Los Angeles, the Rutgers product, who turns 29 next month, seems destined to carve out a significant early-down role, though at this stage the composition of the Chargers' backfield is TBD, given that Austin Ekeler, coming off a bad year, is slated to become an unrestricted free agent.


RB Devin Singletary: Joining NYG backfield

Singletary is slated to sign a three-year deal with the Giants, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: Per Schefter, Singletary's looming three-year pact with New York is a $16.5 million agreement, that could be worth up to $19.5 million. The 26-year-old, who carried 216 times for 898 yards and four TDs to go along with 30 catches for 193 yards in 17 regular-season games with the Texans in 2023, will be called upon to help offset the departure of Saquon Barkley. It's a role that should yield enough touches for Singletary, who profiles as the team's lead back at this stage, to merit fantasy consideration in 2024.


S Xavier McKinney: Gets big deal with Packers

The Packers and McKinney agreed to terms on a four-year, $68 million contract Monday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: McKinney is coming off a career-best 116 tackles with the Giants in 2023, supplementing that total with three interceptions, two fumble recoveries, one forced fumble and 0.5 sacks in 17 contests. With Darnell Savage moving on to the Jaguars earlier Monday, free safety is among the top needs for the Packers this offseason, and McKinney will slot in at the spot.


WR DeVante Parker: To be released by Pats

The Patriots have informed Parker that they will release him Wednesday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: The report notes that Parker has been given permission to talk to other teams in the meantime. The veteran wideout is coming off a 2023 campaign in which he caught 33 passes on 55 targets for 394 yards in 13 regular season games. In the wake of Parker's looming departure, JuJu Smith-Schuster (ankle), Kendrick Bourne (knee) and Demario Douglas currently head New England's WR corps, with additions to the unit presumably slated to arrive via free agency and/or the draft.


RB Josh Jacobs: Top Dog in GB with release of Jones

Jacobs is slated to sign with the Packers and become the team's clear top running back, with Aaron Jones being released and AJ Dillon poised for free agency, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: Jacobs initially looked set to join Jones atop Green Bay's RB depth chart after agreeing to terms with the team, but he instead now has a clear path to a true workhorse role. It's still possible that Jones, or even Dillon, could end up re-signing with the Packers after testing the free-agent market, but it remains to be seen how much Green Bay will be willing to invest in the backfield after already making a one big splash in the form of Jacobs. Though he missed four games last season and was forced to overcome questionable quarterback play, Jacobs managed to accrue 1,101 yards from scrimmage and six touchdowns in 2023. His 3.5 YPC was a career-worst mark, but at just 26 years old and only two years removed from having led the NFL with 1,653 rushing yards in 2022, Jacobs' ceiling upside as the true No. 1 back for the Packers could be tremendous.


RB Aaron Jones: Leaving Green Bay

The Packers released Jones on Monday after reaching agreement with RB Josh Jacobs on a contract, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: Packers GM Brian Gutekunst said in February that he expected Jones to be back with the team in 2024 for the final year of his contract. The 29-year-old RB enjoyed one of the best stretches of his career at the end of the 2023 season and into the playoffs, but his $12 million in non-guaranteed compensation for 2024 meant staying with the Packers was never a sure thing. The team ended up releasing Jones less than an hour after reports of an agreement being reached with Jacobs, who now takes over as the lead back in coach Matt LaFleur's well-designed offense. Age and durability are reasonable concerns with Jones, but the strong finish to 2023 should have him in good position to land a starting RB job with another team.



**March 11 NFL Personnel News**


RB Antonio Gibson: Headed to New England


The Patriots are slated to sign Gibson, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: With Ezekiel Elliott set to become a free agent, the pending addition of Gibson gives the Patriots a versatile back to pair with lead rusher Rhamondre Stevenson. In 16 regular season games with Washington in 2023, Gibson recorded 65 carries for 265 yards and a touchdown, while adding 48 catches for 389 yards and two receiving scores on 59 targets. In his first campaign with New England, look for Gibson to spell Stevenson on early downs and give the offense change-of-pace presence with his pass-catching abilities. In such a scenario, Gibson should have an opportunity to earn enough touches to merit lineup consideration in point-per-reception (PPR) formats in 2024.


RB Saquon Barkley: Signing with Eagles


Barkley and the Eagles have reached agreement on a three-year, $37.75 million contract that could be worth up to $46.75 million and includes $26 million fully guaranteed at signing, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: While the dollar amounts in initial contract reports are suspect, Schefter was specific about all the key details on this one. The Eagles have upgraded their offense by swapping out D'Andre Swift (Bears) for Barkley, who figures to have the best offensive line of his career after spending six years with the division-rival Giants. QB Jalen Hurts' proficiency as both a scrambler and short-yardage runner takes away some of the receiving and TD production that might otherwise go to a running back, but the Eagles will surely make Barkley a priority after signing him to a large contract. At the very least, it should be a good situation for Barkley to pile up the rushing yards.


QB Kirk Cousins: Signing with Atlanta


Cousins (sideline with Achilles injury last season) is signing a four-year contract with the Falcons, according to agent Mike McCartney at Vayner Sports.


FACTS: The Falcons were rumored to represent Minnesota's strongest competition for the 35-year-old QB and apparently won the bidding within the first three hours of the free-agent negotiating period. Cousins can't sign a contract until Wednesday afternoon, and it might take a bit longer than that to become official, given the possible complications of his rehab from a torn Achilles'. The injury is less of a concern for a pocket passer than for other NFL players, but it may nonetheless impact Cousins' ability to participate in offseason practices under new Falcons coach Raheem Morris and offensive coordinator Zac Robinson. The signing is excellent news for WR Drake London and TE Kyle Pitts, and it also bodes well for RB Bijan Robinson's continued involvement as a receiver. Cousins won't necessarily have the deepest group of pass catchers in Atlanta, but he'll have high-end talent and a strong offensive line. The Vikings, meanwhile, are left without a starting QB and figure to take a look at both veteran and draft options.


TE Colby Parkinson: Moving down the West Coast


The Rams and Parkinson agreed to terms of a three-year, $22.5 million contract Monday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: Parkinson thus will get a chance to serve as L.A.'s top tight end in 2024 until Tyler Higbee completes his recovery from ACL and MCL tears that he sustained in the team's wild-card loss to the Rams in January. Considering the damage to Higbee's right now, that may result in Parkinson handling TE duties for a good portion of the upcoming campaign, assuming the Rams don't make any big splashes at the position this offseason. Parkinson was modestly productive for the Seahawks the last two seasons, combining for a 50-569-4 line on 68 targets in 34 games.


DT Christian Wilkins: Moves to Vegas, Baby


Wilkins is slated to sign a four-year, $110 million contract with the Raiders, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: Wilkins will immediately form one of the league's most dangerous pass-rush tandems alongside Maxx Crosby in Las Vegas, giving the Raiders one of the most intimidating defensive fronts in the league. The Dolphins opted not to franchise tag Wilkins after he broke out with 65 total tackles (10 for a loss), 9.0 sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries in 2023, and the contract now offered to him by Las Vegas is clearly one Miami couldn't have matched. The 28-year-old is one of the few interior defenders in the NFL to show outstanding ability as both a run-stuffer and pass rusher.


WR Calvin Ridley: Still wanted by Jags after signing Gabe Davis


The Jaguars hope to re-sign Ridley, despite reaching an agreement with fellow wide receiver Gabe Davis on Monday, Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports.


FACTS: That may be so, but the signing of Davis decreases the odds of Ridley staying in Jacksonville. If the team somehow ends up with both guys, Zay Jones' chances of sticking around for the final year of his contract would be close to nil. Jones has a non-guaranteed $7 million base salary and another $1 million in non-guaranteed bonuses.


WR Gabe Davis: Will catch on in Jacksonville


Davis (knee) is slated to sign a three-year deal with the Jaguars, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.


FACTS: Davis, who is presumably past the knee issue that sidelined him for the Bills' two postseason games, is in line to join a Jacksonville wide receiver corps that also includes Christian Kirk and Zay Jones, while Calvin Ridley is poised to become a free agent. If Ridley heads elsewhere, Davis should step into a key role with the Jaguars on the heels of logging 45 catches on 81 targets for 746 yards and seven TDs in 17 regular-season outings with Buffalo in 2023.


TE Drew Sample: Three-year extension with Bengals


Sample has signed a three-year contract extension with the Bengals.


FACTS: Per Ben Baby of, the deal is worth $10.5 million. Sample is coming off a 2023 camapign in which he recorded 22 catches for 163 yards and two touchdowns in 17 regular season games. While the 2019 second-rounder is back in the fold, Sample's potential workload, and in turn fantasy upside, in 2024 hinges on what other moves the Bengals make at the tight end position in free agency and the draft.


RB Tony Pollard: Set to sign with Tennessee


Pollard is slated to sign a three-year, $24-million deal with the Titans, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS: This looming move makes it apparent that Derrick Henry will be playing elsewhere in 2024, while Dallas will be in the running back market in free agency and/or the draft. Pollard is now slated to join a backfield that also includes 2023 third-rounder Tyjae Spears, a context that figures to result in some form of an RB timeshare in Tennessee this coming season.


OT Dion Dawkins: Extended in Buffalo


Dawkins has agreed to a three-year extension to remain with the Bills.


FACTS:  Dawkins is thus slated to continue to anchor the Bills offensive line through the 2027 season. Per Adam Schefter of ESPN, the Pro Bowler's three-year extension is worth $60.5 million, with the move expected to make the 2017 second-rounder the fourth highest-paid tackle in the league.


RB D'Andre Swift: Headed to Chicago


Swift and the Bears agreed to terms Monday on a three-year, $24 million contract, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.


FACTS:  It's the first major deal reported during the free-agent negotiating period and can't be made official until Wednesday afternoon. Swift figures to step in as the lead back for an offense with a new coordinator (Shane Waldron) and likely a new quarterback (Caleb Williams?), though he probably won't be a workhorse given that the Bears also have Khalil Herbert and 2023 fourth-round pick Roschon Johnson under contract. Herbert, in particular, is a threat to take a good chunk of the carries, as he's averaged 4.9 yards on 364 totes through three pro seasons. Herbert hasn't done much in the passing game — 43 catches, 4.9 average — and doesn't figure to get many chances there now that Swift is on the team.


WR Michael Pittman: Three-year extension in Indy


Pittman has agreed to a three-year deal to remain with the Colts, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.


FACTS:  The team had previously placed its franchise tag on Pittman, but the two sides worked out a long-term deal. Per Rapoport, the wideout's looming new contract can reach up to $71.5 million and includes $46 million guaranteed. The 26-year-old is coming off a 2023 regular season in which he posted a career-high 109-1,152-4 line on 156 targets in 16 games. With Pittman staying in the fold in 2024 and beyond, the Colts have stabilized the wide receiver position, which no doubt will benefit the development of young franchise QB Anthony Richardson (shoulder).


QB Kenny Pickett:  May not compete with Wilson


Pickett won't necessarily have the opportunity to compete with newly signed Russell Wilson for a starting job, ESPN's Brooke Pryor reports.


FACTS: Wilson may be past his prime but nonetheless became a strong favorite for the Week 1 start when his decision to sign with the Steelers was announced Sunday night. GM Omar Khan said a week earlier that he had "full faith" in Pickett, a 2022 first-round pick (20th overall) with more regular-season wins (14) than TD passes (13). A good defense and strong record in one-score games has allowed the Steelers to stay in the playoff hunt the past two years, but Wilson gives the offense some actual upside in what likely will be a run-first system under new coordinator Arthur Smith. Meanwhile, QB Mason Rudolph now seems likely to sign with a new team, leaving Wilson and Pickett as the experienced QBs in Pittsburgh.


RB Trayveon Williams:  Staying with Bengals


Williams is signing a one-year contract to stay with the Bengals.


FACTS: There was some discussion last offseason about Williams potentially replacing Samaje Perine as Cincy's No. 2 running back, but the 2019 sixth-round pick mostly played special teams again. Williams' 156 snaps on offense were easily a career high, but that equated to only 14.4 percent of the team total, whereas on special teams he took 64.2 percent of available snaps (294 overall). He has 77 touches for 381 yards and no touchdowns in 51 career games, and likely will be the third-string RB again in 2024.


QB C.J. Beathard: Will compete with Jones for Jags


Beathard is expected to compete with Mac Jones — who is slated to be traded to from the Patriots to the Jaguars — to be Trevor Lawrence's top backup in 2024, Mike Reiss of ESPN reports.


FACTS: The report notes that Beathard is in the final year of a two-year, $4.5 million contract that he signed prior to last season. Per Jeremy Fowler of, part of the Jaguars' motivation for the deal is that Beathard has been banged up at times during his stint with the team, with Jones, a 2021 first-rounder, giving the team a healthy backup option (with plenty of starting experience) ahead of the coming season.


WR Tee Higgins: Wants out of Cincy 


Higgins has reportedly requested to be traded by the Bengals, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.


FACTS: The Bengals previously placed their franchise tag on Higgins, but Schefter indicates that the wideout is disappointed in the lack of progress toward a long-term contract extension and thus is seeking a new situation. It remains to be seen how amenable Cincinnati will be to his request, and it's still possible that the two sides move toward a resolution that would keep Higgins in the fold in 2024. However, the 2020 second-rounder's future with the franchise is up in the air..


TE Dawson Knox: Restructures with Bills


Knox and the Bills have agreed to a restructured contract that lowers his scheduled $14.4 million cap hit for 2024, Jeremy Fowler of reports.


FACTS: The tight end is entering the second season of a four-year, $52 million extension that guarantees most of his money through 2024 but none thereafter. It's possible this agreement changes that, but if not, Knox's future with the team could come into question next offseason. His fantasy value has taken a big hit since the Bills drafted fellow tight end Dalton Kincaid in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.



**March 10 Personnel news**


QB Russell Wilson: Plans to sign with Pittsburgh


Wilson plans to sign a one-year contract with the Steelers, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS:  According to Schefter, it will be a "team-friendly" deal, with the Broncos being on the hook for most of his $38 million salary in 2024. Wilson still hasn't even officially been released by Denver, but it sounds like he's already found his new team. The move should become official when the new league year opens Wednesday afternoon. In Pittsburgh, Wilson will link up with new OC Arthur Smith and be the heavy favorite to open the 2024 season as the Steelers' starter over 2022 first-round pick Kenny Pickett. For fantasy purposes, it's not a great landing spot in Smith's run-centric, methodical offense, but Wilson should be viewed as an upgrade over Pickett. Wilson's insertion does boost the fantasy stocks of George Pickens, Diontae Johnson and Pat Freiermuth.


WR Kendrick Bourne: Re-signs with Pats


Bourne (knee) and the Patriots agreed to terms on a three-year deal worth up to $33 million on Sunday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.


FACTS:  Before suffering a season-ending torn ACL in Week 8 last season, Bourne was easily the Patriots' best receiver. It wasn't a high bar to clear, but it made too much sense to bring Bourne back after he put up a 37-406-4 line on 55 targets in eight appearances. He was on pace for a career year and will turn 29 later this year. Bourne has already stated he expects to be ready for training camp. Look for the Patriots to further address their wideout depth chart in free agency and the draft.


QB Baker Mayfield: Gets $100 mil from Bucs


Mayfield agreed to terms on a three-year, $100 million deal with the Buccaneers on Sunday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.


FACTS:  Mayfield will remain with Tampa Bay as its presumptive starting quarterback for at least the next two years. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the 28-year-old's new deal includes $50 million guaranteed, including $30 million guaranteed in 2024 and $20 million guaranteed the following season. This contract also includes $5 million per year in incentives, increasing its max value to $115 million.


Mayfield originally signed with the squad in May 2023 on a flier, one-year deal worth $8.5 million. He went on to notch career highs in both passing yards (4,044) and passing touchdowns (28) while tossing just 10 interceptions across 17 regular-season starts, and he led the team to a NFC South title and an appearance in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs. Star wideout Mike Evans also re-signed on a two-year, $52 million contract with Tampa Bay this offseason while standout slot receiver Chris Godwin also still has two years remaining on his current contract with the team. The retention of these two core receivers should provide Mayfield with a strong base of receiving talent heading into the 2024 campaign.


Some information from, and other online sources

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