Free Agency Recap: — NFC East: Giants Close the Gap

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New York Giants free agency.

Free Agency Recap — NFC East: Eagles Step Back, Giants Close the Gap


Over the next week, we’re going to discuss the early returns for each NFL team in the free agency period. But first, a couple of notes about the structure and theme of these free agency recaps:

  • We’ll do these free agency recaps four teams at a time, grouped by division
  • These are early returns on the action that we saw between the start of the legal tampering period on March 13 and the end of the day on March 27.
  • There will be no arbitrary “grades” assigned.
  • If your favorite team didn’t get the love you expected, just know that I’m not sorry.
  • Let’s have some fun and talk some football.

Washington Commanders

Washington had another .500-ish season in 2022, in what may very well be Daniel Snyder’s final as the owner of the Commanders. The free agency recap was about as underwhelming for the Commanders.

Notable Acquisitions

  • DT Daron Payne (4 years, $90 million)
  • OT Andrew Wylie (3 years, $24 million)
  • DB Danny Johnson (2 years, $7 million)
  • LB Cody Barton (1 year, $3.5 million)
  • QB Jacoby Brissett (1 year, $10 million)
  • DE Efe Obada (1 year, $3 million)


Ron Rivera says Sam Howell will get the first crack at the QB1 role in 2023. Still, the Commanders brought veteran Jacoby Brissett to compete with Howell in camp. Rivera also said at the owner’s meetings this week that Washington hasn’t ruled out the possibility of drafting a quarterback next month.

Aside from bringing in Brissett and tackle Andrew Wylie, the Commanders inked defensive tackle Daron Payne to a four-year, $90 million extension.

Dallas Cowboys

Dallas bowed out of the NFC playoffs early again in 2022. So, they said goodbye to OC Kellen Moore as Mike McCarthy looks to do things his way in 2023.

Notable Acquisitions

  • RB Tony Pollard (franchise tag)
  • S Donovan Wilson (3 years, $24 million)
  • CB Stephon Gilmore (trade)
  • LB Leighton Vander Esch (2 years, $11 million)
  • WR Brandin Cooks (trade)
  • CB C.J. Goodwin (1 year, $1.3 million)


The Cowboys also said goodbye to long-time running back Ezekiel Elliott. Dallas cut Zeke and franchised tagged Tony Pollard.

They also got Dak Prescott some more help in the receiving game by trading for Brandin Cooks and paired Trevon Diggs with veteran cornerback Stephon Gilmore. But, overall, it was an underwhelming free agency period for a team needing upgrades to get over the divisional round hump that’s ended their season in back-to-back years.

Philadelphia Eagles

The defending NFC Champions took a significant hit in the coaching staff and on the defensive side of the ball.

Notable Acquisitions

  • RB Rashaad Penny (1 year, $1.3 million)
  • QB Marcus Mariota (1 year, $8 million)
  • DT Fletcher Cox (1 year, $10 million)
  • CB James Bradberry (3 years, $38 million)
  • DE Brandon Graham (1 year, $2 million)
  • CB Darius Slay (2 years, $42 million extension)


Philadelphia re-signed Fletcher Cox, James Bradberry, Darius Slay, and Brandon Graham to new deals or extensions. However, they saw C.J. Gardner-Johnson, T.J. Edwards, Marcus Epps, and Kyzir White depart via free agency.

The Eagles also lost both their offensive and defensive coordinators with Shane Steichen (Colts) and Jonathan Gannon (Cardinals) taking head coaching jobs.

The Eagles added Marcus Mariota as Jalen Hurts’ new backup QB with Gardner Minshew following Shane Steichen to Indianapolis. Mariota signed a one-year, $5 million deal worth up to $8 million.

New York Giants

The Giants juggled the impending free agency of both their starting QB and RB and did so pretty well.

Notable Acquisitions

  • QB Daniel Jones (4 years, $160 million)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (franchise tag)
  • TE Darren Waller (trade)
  • LB Bobby Okereke (4 years, $40 million)
  • WR Paris Campbell (1 year, $1.7 million)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (1 year, $1.3 million)
  • DL Rakeem Nunez-Roches (3 years, $12 million)


After beating the clock to extend quarterback Daniel Jones to a new four-year, $160 million extension earlier this month, the Giants tagged Saquon Barkley. Thus, both stars were back in New York for at least the 2023 season.

New York also re-signed Isaiah Hodgins and Sterling Shepard and added Darren Waller and Paris Campbell to the offense. The Giants made an early splash on defense, inking linebacker Bobby Okereke to a four-year, $40 million deal.

While the Giants didn’t close the gap between themselves and the Eagles and Cowboys, they definitely narrowed it.

Author: Patrick K. Flowers

Patrick is the Lead NFL Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @PatrickKFlowers.