Devonta Freeman finds himself still in the market after a successful six year run in Atlanta.
Despite still being a free agent, Freeman has reportedly caught the eye of at least three NFL teams. Michael Silver reported Freeman was offered a one-year contract worth up to $4 million with the Seattle Seahawks. The New York Jets and Philadelphia Eagles are also interested in the running back.
While it is a surprise that Freeman has not landed a job yet, it isn’t too much of a surprise that teams are clamoring for his services. He produced two 1,000 yard season and led the league in rushing touchdowns in 2015.
Despite a strong 2015 and 2016 season, Freeman’s production has dropped in the past three seasons. Most of that has to do with the Falcons becoming more of a passing team. 2018 was simply because of multiple injuries around his legs forced him on IR. In 14 games last year, he produced a combined 1,066 yards ans six total touchdowns.
A big reason for his initial release from the Falcons this offseason was his five-year, $41.25 million contract he signed in 2017. The team felt like since his production was going down, he was not worth the money.
How Soon Will Freeman Land a Job?
It appears that it is looking good for Freeman to be playing in 2020. Three teams want his services and know he can make an impact on their teams immediately. So if all these teams know of his abilities as a running back, then what is the hold up?
The main problem is Freeman needs to take a pay cut which is tough after coming off a big contract. Freeman wants starting running back money, but most likely won’t get it. He might be waiting out on another team to offer more than $4 million Seattle offered. He probably won’t get it from the Jets or the Eagles.
It’s a tough pill to swallow for a running back who is used to be the feature back and being paid like it. The problem is if he keeps holding out, he might not get on the field in 2020. He might not even get the same deal he was initially offered. Silver has also reported Seattle is interested in Carlos Hyde so time might be running out. Freeman is taking a chance on himself, but it isn’t clear now if that’s the right decision.
What Should Freeman Do?
Taking the Seattle contract and playing for them appears to be the right decision. He’s got the best chance of winning the starting running back job there. Plus, the contract offer is the best he’s going to get. Chris Carson would be his biggest competition in Seattle which should lead to the two splitting carries.
New York, at this point, doesn’t make much sense for Freeman to go. That would be a crowded backfield consisting of Le’Veon Bell and Frank Gore. Two top backs who should have no problems getting most of the carries. A situation like that would be the most likely to have Freeman get cut if he can’t beat Gore out for the backup job.
Philadelphia is an interesting landing spot for Freeman. The Eagles do need a power back and have been reportedly interested in Hyde as well. Freeman’s problem there is the Eagles would offer less than $4 million and he wouldn’t be the lead back. Miles Sanders would get the majority of the playing time. That would not fly well for Freeman.
The good news for Freeman is he has options to pick from. He already has an offer in place that would land him a home where he could start. The ball is in Freeman’s court to decide when and where to go.