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When does NFL free agency start?

The NFL season is officially beginning, as the free agency window opens up. We take a look at key dates and players in this year's free agency

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - MARCH 06: Percy Butler #DB45 of Louisiana-Lafayette runs the 40 yard dash during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on March 06, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana.   Justin Casterline/Getty Images/AFP
Justin CasterlineAFP

The NFL season is officially marked with the beginning of free agency in the run up to the draft and it is just about upon us.

It kicks off on Monday, March 14 with a two day “legal tampering” period during which teams are allowed to negotiate with players or their agents. They may not, however, agree to terms during this period, even in principle.

The new season begins on March 16, and from this date, free agency officially begins. No signings can be reported before 4 p.m. on this date.


The market for free agents is open April 22 for restricted free agents, although off season workouts may begin on the 18th.

Six days after the cutoff date for restricted free agency, the NFL will hold the 2022 draft in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Notable free agents expected to enter this window are Terron Armstead (Saints Offensive Lineman), Marcus Williams (Saints Safety), Von Miller (Rams Linebacker), Tyrann Mathieu (Chiefs Safety), J.C. Jackson (Patriots Corner Back), Carlton Davis (Buccaneers Corner Back), and Emmanuel Ogbah (Dolphins Defensive End)

All teams must work within the league salary cap, this season set at $202.8 million. This will guarantee that the wealthier teams can’t just vacuum up all the talent on offer, so expect to see some financial acrobatics as teams buy, sell, and trade to create some cap room for certain acquisitions.