The Jacksonville Jaguars have been criticized by a lot fans over the first few days of free agency for playing it slow and picking up some depth and scheme specific fit players, but the bottom has seemed to fall out of the market and that plays right into their hands.
In David Caldwell's first year as a general manager, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to spend tons of money in free agency. Caldwell is in the first year of a rebuild job and there's no pressure. He can sit back and cherry pick players that fit his vision going forward, especially with how the market has started to take shape.
There were only a handful of teams who went hard in the first couple days of free agency and now that the dust has settled and other players have gotten deals, it looks like the smart play was to wait and let free agency come to you, which is exactly what the Jaguars are doing. Just look at the contract that Mike Wallace got from the Miami Dolphins compared to the contracts that Percy Harvin and Greg Jennings got. Is Wallace worth virtually double the guaranteed money of those players?
I don't think so.
Players have now realized they're not going to get those big pay days they had hoped for, such as cornerback Sean Smith reportedly looking for $9 million or so a year, he ended up signing a three-year deal worth $18 million, making him shockingly affordable. You're now seeing an outpour of one- to two-year deals from players because the bottom has fallen out and it's a buyer's market, which is exactly what the Jaguars were hoping for.
Slow playing the market this year was the perfect move for a rebuilding franchise, because now there is a flooded market of players in the mid-to-late twenties and a dearth of teams with money to spend. Caldwell can now begin to pick and choose the players to bring in to compete and for depth that fit exactly what the Jaguars are building towards and fit their price tag.