We are just over 24 hours away from one of the busiest periods on the NFL calendar.
The legal tampering period opens up on Monday at 12 p.m. ET followed by the start of the new league year on Wednesday afternoon, which is when free agency officially kicks off.
In a free-agent class that’s headlined by stars like J.C. Jackson, Von Miller and Chandler Jones, hundreds of players will hit the open market in search of new deals.
So which teams have the most players who are set to become free agents, and which teams have the fewest?
Which NFL team has the most free agents in 2022?
New Giants general manager Joe Schoen has decisions to make on a ton of players from last year’s team, as New York has a league-high 36 free agents (h/t Over The Cap). The biggest decision will come on former first-round pick Evan Engram after New York didn’t apply the $10.9 million franchise tag. Despite having the most free agents in the league, the Giants are still strapped for cash. New York is currently $3.7 million over the cap, per Over The Cap.
The team with the second-most free agents also has a first-year GM: the Chicago Bears. The Bears’ 32-player free-agent class is headlined by a pair of one-time Pro Bowlers in wide receiver Allen Robinson and defensive tackle Akiem Hicks. In his first offseason steering the franchise, Bears general manager Ryan Poles has over $28 million at his disposal, good for the ninth-most cap space in the league.
The Atlanta Falcons and Washington Commanders are tied for the third-most free agents with 31 apiece. Like New York, Washington’s biggest free agent is a former first-round pick in guard Brandon Scherff. The Commanders had over $30 million in space until they acquired quarterback Carson Wentz from the Indianapolis Colts. Now, Washington has just under $6 million to spend.
Meanwhile, the Falcons have around $16 million in space with utility man Cordarrelle Patterson, linebacker Foyesade Oluokun, who led the NFL in tackles last season, and wideout Russell Gage as their biggest free agents.
The Colts are the only other team with at least 30 free agents. Indy is now in search of a new quarterback, but also has tackle Eric Fisher, wideout T.Y. Hilton and tight end Mo Alie-Cox hitting the open market. The good news for the Colts? After the Wentz trade, Indy now has the most cap space in the league at just under $70 million. The next-closest team is the New York Jets at $48.5 million.
A total of 15 NFL teams have at least 25 free agents. Here’s a full look at that group:
New York Giants: 36
Chicago Bears: 32
Atlanta Falcons: 31
Washington Commanders: 31
Indianapolis Colts: 30
Tennessee Titans: 29
Cincinnati Bengals: 28
Denver Broncos: 28
Las Vegas Raiders: 28
Miami Dolphins: 28
Houston Texans: 27
Kansas City Chiefs: 27
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 26
Dallas Cowboys: 25
*Total includes exclusive rights free agents
Which NFL team has the fewest free agents in 2022?
There are only four teams with fewer than 20 free agents, led by the Philadelphia Eagles with a league-low number of 14. Safety Rodney McLeod, cornerback Steven Nelson and defensive end Derek Barnett are among a handful of 2021 Eagles defensive starters who are set to become free agents. General manager Howie Roseman does have some cap flexibility despite the low number of free agents though, with around $17 million in space.
The Buffalo Bills have the second-fewest free agents with 17. As the Bills gear up for another strong Super Bowl push, they have several free agents along the defensive line, headlined by Mario Addison and Jerry Hughes, in addition to cornerback Levi Wallace and wideout Emmanuel Sanders. The Bills don’t have much breathing room cap-wise at the moment with less than $1 million in space.
The Detroit Lions and Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams are tied for the third-fewest free agents with 19 apiece. However, the Rams need to rework their books as they try to put together a team to defend the Lombardi Trophy. Los Angeles is more than $20 million over the cap with linebacker Von Miller, wideout Odell Beckham Jr., guard Austin Corbett and center Brian Allen among their key free agents.
Detroit’s biggest addition this offseason seems likely to come via the No. 2 overall pick, but the Lions also have some spending power with around $24 million in space.
The Carolina Panthers, Minnesota Vikings and New England Patriots each have 20 free agents, tying for the fifth-fewest. Arguably the best free agent in the class comes from the Pats in cornerback J.C. Jackson, who New England opted not to franchise tag for $17 million. The Panthers and Vikings each have a big-name free agent of their own as well in cornerback Stephon Gilmore and linebacker Anthony Barr. The Pats ($13.4 million) and Panthers ($28.9 million) are both under the cap while the Vikings are more than $15 million over it.
Here’s a full look at the teams with fewer than 25 free agents:
Philadelphia Eagles: 14
Buffalo Bills: 17
Detroit Lions: 19
Los Angeles Rams: 19
Carolina Panthers: 20
Minnesota Vikings: 20
New England Patriots: 20
Los Angeles Chargers: 22
Pittsburgh Steelers: 22
New Orleans Saints: 22
Seattle Seahawks: 22
Cleveland Browns: 23
Jacksonville Jaguars: 23
New York Jets: 23
Arizona Cardinals: 24
Baltimore Ravens: 24
Green Bay Packers: 24
*Total includes exclusive rights free agents