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Report: “Significant Interest” In Former First-Round Free Agent

Green Bay Packers former first-round pick Darnell Savage is rumored to have significant interest in free agency
Darnell Savage Free Agency

Time is running out for the Green Bay Packers to sign Darnell Savage before he hits free agency. Originally selected in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft, the Maryland product has had a mixed career through his first five seasons. At his best, Savage has looked like one of the better safeties in the league, finishing with the 15th-best PFF grade in the league last year. However, he also has plenty of bad film, as his 2022 season was one to forget.

With Joe Barry out of town, nobody knows exactly what will happen with Darnell Savage in free agency. However, early signs indicate that he will not be going back to Green Bay. Savage’s contract was recently voided, creating $5.36 million in dead cap space, and his agent, Seth Katz noted that he will have multiple suitors on the open market.

“Darnell has loved his time in Green Bay, and we remain optimistic that a deal can get done before the league year. But realistically, the window for free agent communication is right around the corner, and there will be significant interest in Darnell.”

Darnell Savage Will Have “Significant Interest” In Free Agency

Let’s start by addressing the elephant in the room: Darnell Savage’s agent has every reason to lie about his expected market in free agency. Katz’s entire job is to get Savage the biggest payday possible, so he’s going to drive up the safety’s price tag as much as he can.

With that disclaimer out of the way, it makes sense that multiple teams would be interested in Darnell Savage in free agency. While he might not be the most consistent player in the league, the 2023 season proved that he can perform at a high level, and there was a reason he was a first-round prospect in the first place.

While he might not be Antonie Winfield, Darnell Savage is still a solid safety who will have some interest in free agency. Even if he’s nobody’s first choice, the following five teams could pursue him on the open market.

Possible Team Fits

New Orleans Saints

The New Orleans Saints have holes on their roster, but no money to address their problems. While they’re destined to restructure contracts to clear up cap space, they probably won’t have the financial freedom to go after top-dollar players at a relative luxury position like safety. Because of this, Darnell Savage could be a smart free agency signing, as he probably won’t break the bank and has a decently high ceiling.

New England Patriots

Nobody loves the safety position more than the New England Patriots. Kyle Dugger and Jabrill Peppers are a great duo (assuming Dugger re-signs), but they could use a third option. Darnell Savage makes sense for this team in free agency, as he can do a little bit of everything, and versatility is incredibly valuable to New England’s ever-changing scheme.

Baltimore Ravens

The Baltimore Ravens have several key players to hit the open market, and they won’t be able to re-sign all of them. While the team will probably prioritize Justin Madubuike, they might be willing to let safety Geno Stone head off to the highest bidder. The Ravens use three safeties more than just about any other team in the league, so Darnell Savage should get plenty of playing time if he signs here in free agency.

Detroit Lions

If the Detroit Lions want to make it to the Super Bowl and improve on their 2023, they’ll need to fix the defensive side of the ball. All of the pieces are there on offense, as Ben Johnson, Jared Goff, and Amon-Ra St. Brown are all coming back for the 2024 season. Signing Darnell Savage in free agency won’t fix every problem on the defense, but it is a good first step in the right direction. If any team should know how to properly utilize Savage, it’s the one that’s gone up against him twice a year since he entered the league.

Los Angeles Chargers

Jim Harbaugh has a lot of work to do to fix this defense, and he doesn’t have much money to do it with. While cutting Mike Williams will help, the Chargers probably don’t have the resources to invest too heavily in the safety position. Darnell Savage is an ideal buy-low free agency signing who should be able to start right away in this defense.

Main Photo: Mark Hoffman – USA Today Sports


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