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NFL Free Agency: Juwan Johnson signs two-year contract with New Orleans Saints

On3 Staff Report03/11/23
Article written by:On3 imageOn3 Staff Report
Juwan Johnson, New Orleans Saints tight end
New Orleans tight end Juwan Johnson turns and runs with the football after a catch in a game on Jan. 1, 2023. (Icon Sportswire / Getty Images)

After a very productive 2022 campaign, tight end Juwan Johnson is set to capitalize with a new contract in NFL free agency. According to his agent AJ Vaynerchuk, Johnson is set to return to the New Orleans Saints on a two-year contract.

Johnson has spent all three of his playing seasons in New Orleans after going undrafted out of Oregon in 2020. The Oregon and Penn State standout has totaled 59 catches for 706 yards and 11 touchdowns, but he’s coming off a breakout season with the Saints. In 2022, Johnson recorded 42 catches for 508 yards and seven touchdowns.

More on the 2023 NFL offseason, free agency

The NFL 2023 calendar year is set to begin at 4 p.m. ET on March 15 when contracts running through 2022 will officially run out, making those players free agents. Prior to the beginning of free agency, teams will have a chance to designate one franchise or transition tag player, starting on Feb. 21 at 4 p.m. ET and ending on March 7. Beginning March 13 through March 15 teams will be allowed a legal negotiation with players who are set to become unrestricted free agents.

In addition to NFL free agency, the new year also marks the beginning of all trades being made official by the league office. April 21 marks the deadline to sign restricted free agents to offer sheets while April 26 marks the deadline for teams to match restricted free agent offers sheets. 722 players are slated to become free agents in 2023.

More on restricted, exclusive rights free agents

Players with only three years of accredited NFL experience become restricted free agents. Their original team will have the option to apply first-round, second-round, original-round, and right-of-fight-of-first-refusal tenders on players at escalating price tags. The higher the round, the more expensive the tender amount; however, if a separate team does offer a contract and the original team does not match that round pick will be conveyed from the new team to the original team. Right of first refusal only gives a team the option to match or not. If they don’t match, they get nothing in return. An original-round tender would send a draft pick from whatever round the player was drafted back to the original team if they chose not to match. The original team will have five days to match once a player signs an offer sheet from a new team.