NFL free agency is just a week away, but just because signings can’t officially be made until March 12th, doesn’t mean this week will be devoid of action. From the franchise tag deadline to the unofficial start to free agency, this week is almost as important, if not more important to free agency than the day things actually start. So before we get too far into rumors, let’s take a look at everything we need to know about free agency:
- March 4th: Franchise Tag Deadline – 3pm EST
Teams must decide by this day whether or not to place their franchise tag on an exiting free agent. After the 3pm EST deadline, teams can no longer place the tag on a player and all players not re-signed or tagged will become free agents.
- March 8th: Unofficial Start to Free Agency – Midnight
While teams can’t officially sign players, they are allowed to legally “tamper” with them and talk about contracts. Before this date, it is strictly illegal for a franchise to have any contact with a free agent, but starting on this day, teams and players can meet and discuss potential deals. Nothing can be made official until March 12th.
- March 12th: Free Agency Officially Opens – 3pm EST
Players can officially sign deals that may have been discussed over the weekend and teams can officially offer players contracts. While it’s legal for teams to talk over the weekend, no deal can be offered until the start of Free Agency on this day. The trade season also begins on this day, which means teams can make trades from now until the October deadline.
So as you can see, even though teams and players can’t seal anything with a kiss until March 12th, there is plenty of time for action to happen and rumors will no doubt be flying. Stay tuned to Fansided all week long to stay up to date with the latest free agent rumors as they happen.