The sports leagues around the world that are currently “in season” — ranging from the NBA and the NHL to the English Premier League and the Bundesliga — are all currently on hold, in the hopes that shutdowns and social distancing will help blunt the awful effects of COVID-19, commonly known as the coronavirus. The disease has impacted several figures in global sport already, whether it is the multiple NBA players or NFL head coach Sean Payton, who have tested positive for the virus, or whether it is the owners of the most lucrative sports books. Free agency has entered full swing in the National Football League, and there is still hope that the virus will peter out in time for a full fall season. As you think about sports betting for later in 2020, take a look at some of the latest rumors in NFL free agency. Also we have NFL Odds and Super Bowl Odds for your wagering.
Latest Free Agency Rumors March 24th
The Chicago Bears just admitted that their experiment with Mitch Trubisky at quarterback was a failure. They won a division in 2018 — but then lost a home playoff game in the wild-card round to Philadelphia when they could not move the ball (and could not make a clutch field goal). They went 8-8 last year, despite an ironclad defense, because the league knew how to play Trubisky. So the Bears went out and got Nick Foles, who is a Super Bowl MVP — against New England, no less — but who couldn’t dislodge Gardner Minshew as the starting quarterback of the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Bears have one pick in the first four rounds of the 2020 draft, so free agency will be their ticket to improvement in 2020. They brought in edge rusher Robert Quinn from Dallas — but probably overpaid (5 years, $70 million). They added tight end Jimmy Graham, although he has not delivered in at least three seasons. So the Bears look headed to more futility.
The Dallas Cowboys are another team that won their division in 2018 but then missed the postseason in 2019. They even started the 2019 season 3-0 but then lost to the New York Jets, of all teams, and stumbled their way through the second half of the season, losing the NFC East to a Philadelphia team that did not seem particularly interested in winning it either. Out went coach Jason Garrett, and in came Mike McCarthy. But the change just begins there.
Dallas came into the offseason with 30 in-house free agents. Some have gone, such as Jason Witten, the tight end who had spent his whole career wearing the blue-and-white star until he went to the ESPN broadcast booth for Monday Night Football. Things didn’t work out, so he came back to the field for 2019 and decided that he could still play. Dallas gave his understudy, Blake Jarwin, a nice extension, so Witten is now headed to Las Vegas, where he will play for the Raiders.
Dallas has a ton of cash and could leverage their way to nine figures of cap space. Their priorities so far have been interesting, at best. They haven’t written quarterback Dak Prescott the big check he has earned. Instead, they have inked his backup, Cooper Rush, to a new contract and put the franchise tag on Prescott. They did give wide receiver Amari Cooper a big extension despite a drop in Cooper’s production in 2019. Wide receiver Randall Cobb looked headed out of town until his former coach ended up getting the head job in Dallas, but he still left, going to Houston to sign a three-year contract. Wide receiver Tavon Austin established himself in the return game and gives Prescott (assuming he doesn’t sit out in response to the franchise tag) another speedy target down the field along with Michael Gallup. With the departure of safety Jeff Heath, Dallas added Ha Ha Clinton-Dix from Chicago. C.J. Goodwin signed an extension to play at safety in Dallas. Kicker Kai Forbath, who came on late to replace Brett Maher, has also signed an extension.