By Barry Wilner, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — Nick Foles is headed to Jacksonville, Landon Collins to Washington and Trent Brown to Oakland.
The big-money offers for NFL free agents began Monday, two days before they can sign contracts. Foles brings a Super Bowl pedigree to quarterbacking the Jaguars and Brown has a championship ring as he moves to the Raiders' offensive line at left tackle. Safety Collins heads a few hours south from the New Jersey Meadowlands, where he could haunt his former team twice a year.
All of Monday's deals are confirmed by people with knowledge of the agreements who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because nothing can be official until Wednesday.
Foles has agreed to sign a four-year, $88 million contract with the Jaguars. The deal includes $50.125 million guaranteed and could be worth up to $102 million with incentives as he replaces Blake Bortles, who threw 103 touchdown passes in five seasons but was known more for inaccuracy and inconsistency that led to Jacksonville's offensive instability. Bortles is expected to be released this week before a $1 million roster bonus comes due Sunday.
The Redskins agreed to sign the 25-year-old Collins to a six-year, $84 million deal with $45 million guaranteed. He led the Giants with 96 tackles last season and his 437 since entering the NFL in 2015 are the most among safeties in that time, but the Giants opted not to give him the franchise tag. Collins fills one of Washington's biggest needs on a defense that ranked 17th in the league last season.
Brown was a real find for New England before last season, and his payday will come with the Raiders after agreeing to a four-year deal worth $66 million. He will receive $36.75 million guaranteed in the richest contract ever for an offensive lineman.
According to Pro Football Focus, Raiders tackles allowed 30 sacks in pass protection last season, most in the NFL, while Brown gave up just three in 580 pass blocking snaps.
The biggest name in free agency remains Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell, who sat out the 2018 season. Some of the standouts on defense received franchise tags: edge rushers Demarcus Lawrence, Jadeveon Clowney, Frank Clark and Dee Ford, tackle Grady Jarrett.
Other top guys sure to draw interest soon are New England's Trey Flowers, probably the top edge threat available; veteran safety Earl Thomas; linebackers C.J. Mosley, Preston Smith, Za'Darius Smith and Anthony Barr; and defensive backs Tyrann Mathieu and LeMarcus Joyner.
Teams with younger rosters or in a rebuild mode might look for veteran leadership. Forget how Thomas' stint ended with Seattle, he could be a foundation piece for a retooling team.