The 2023 NFL free agent class looks loaded, especially at defensive line, offensive line, defensive back and running back. Depending on how the next few weeks play out, top-end quarterbacks could be available to join new teams when the negotiation period begins on March 13, and free agency officially opens two days later on March 15. Which playmakers and impact players will land big deals? We ranked the top 50 on track to hit the open market.
A few top players on expiring deals have already signed new contracts with their respective teams -- including Green Bay guard Elgton Jenkins and Baltimore linebacker Roquan Smith -- since I ranked my top 25 free agents in November, and a few more will join them with extensions or franchise/transition tags before free agency officially opens. But this list is deep with talent. To make the 1-50 ranking, I factored in each player's age, positional value (QBs get a boost, explaining why six make the list), expected future production and scheme versatility.
Let's get to it, starting with the obvious No. 1 potential free agent.
Note: Tom Brady was originally No. 7 on this list but announced his retirement on Feb. 1. Derek Carr was also added to this list on Feb. 15 after the Raiders released him.
1. Lamar Jackson, QB, Baltimore Ravens
Age entering 2023 season: 26
Jackson is the league's most electric player, with an upper-tier skill set that creates major issues for opposing defenses. Before a knee injury that sidelined him for the final six games of the season, he had 2,242 passing yards -- with 17 touchdowns -- and 764 rushing yards with three more scores. He's still young and can keep improving. With the positional value to demand a multiyear contract, Jackson is clearly the top player on the board. The Ravens have said they want to bring him back, and they could use the franchise tag next month.