We haven't seen the impact of 2021 NFL free agency play out on the field, though a team's offseason plan can make more sense after the draft.
In hindsight, analysts may have to rethink initial grades for early roster additions. Perhaps a team cut or traded a player with the intent to expand a veteran newcomer's role. In some cases, rookie acquisitions or the lack thereof could change our perspective of how the club addressed a position during free agency.
Let's reassess eight of the biggest free-agency moves with a more complete look at the rosters across the league. We've highlighted the marquee deals by considering a combination of contract value, total guaranteed money and a player's resume (i.e., Pro Bowlers and All-Pros).
Based on the player's fit, projected role and his contract, we've provided an up-to-date grade for each free-agent deal. This list doesn't include veterans who re-signed with their teams.
Tennessee Titans Sign Edge Bud Dupree
Contract: Five years, $82.5 million ($35 million guaranteed)
The Tennessee Titans' deal with Bud Dupree made sense months ago after the team dismantled the secondary, cutting Adoree' Jackson, Malcolm Butler and Kenny Vaccaro. As well, the defense ranked 28th in quarterback pressures and 30th in sacks last season.
At cornerback, free-agent addition Janoris Jenkins and rookie first-rounder Caleb Farley or Kristian Fulton could start on the boundary with rookie third-rounder Elijah Molden as an option in the slot. With Amani Hooker at safety, the Titans may have multiple first- and second-year players in their starting secondary.
Because of the question marks and inexperience on the back end, Tennessee needs a reliable pass-rusher. Harold Landry couldn't generate enough pocket pressure on the edge alone. Dupree can provide some help.
Through six seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Dupree had 39.5 sacks, but he saw a significant uptick in production over the last two seasons, logging 19.5 sacks.
Dupree won't line up opposite a player of two-time All-Pro T.J. Watt's caliber, but he can benefit from playing behind defensive linemen Jeffery Simmons and Denico Autry, the latter of whom the Titans also signed in free agency.
When you consider Dupree has to rebound from a torn ACL, the Titans made a risky investment.
He can't definitively say he'll suit up for Week 1, so that leaves some concerns for the start of the year, though the 28-year-old should help a weak pass rush once he's cleared to take the field.
New York Giants Sign WR Kenny Golladay
Contract: Four years, $72 million ($40 million guaranteed)
In his third term, quarterback Daniel Jones goes into a crucial prove-it year. The New York Giants will find out how he fares with a lead wideout in Kenny Golladay, whose contract lists 11th in total guarantees among players at his position, per Spotrac.
When healthy, Golladay has produced at the level of a No. 1 receiver. The Pro Bowl wideout eclipsed 1,000 yards in back-to-back seasons (2018 and 2019) and led the league in touchdown receptions (11) for the latter of those terms.
Last year, Golladay missed 11 contests with hamstring and hip injuries. Based on his contract numbers, Big Blue seems confident he'll bounce back to elevate the offense.
As a big-bodied target (6'4", 213 lbs), Golladay brings a different skill set to a wideout unit that includes Darius Slayton, slot receiver Sterling Shepard and speedy first-rounder Kadarius Toney. He's a possession receiver who wins with strong hands and physicality.
If Jones doesn't play up to expectations in 2021, Golladay can become a unique asset for the next quarterback to take over the offense.
New England Patriots Sign Edge Matt Judon
Contract: Four years, $54.5 million ($32 million guaranteed)
As the New England Patriots' most notable pickup on defense, Matt Judon received a contract that lists 21st among edge-rushers in guaranteed money.
Judon's sack numbers don't jump off the screen, but he should lead New England in the category. Last season, Chase Winovich topped the club in sacks with 5.5 while playing 58 percent of the defensive snaps.
Judon is a complete edge defender, and his run-stopping ability will allow him to play a majority of the defensive snaps and strengthen the Patriots' 26th-ranked run defense from the previous campaign. He's recorded at least 10 tackles for loss in three out of five seasons.
With the addition of an every-down playmaker on the edge, the Patriots have addressed two weaknesses in their pass and run defense. While Judon shores up the front seven, New England can develop its top rookie defenders, Christian Barmore and Ronnie Perkins, without immense pressure to contribute right away.
Judon isn't a flashy pickup with eye-popping numbers, but the two-time Pro Bowler can plug the remaining holes in an otherwise stout defense.