Now that most of the top 2024 NFL free agents are off the board, it’s a good time to look at which highly-anticipated signings are bound to disappoint — and which under-the-radar moves will pay more dividends than you think.

So with that, let’s take a dive into the five most overrated NFL free agent signings of 2024 thus far…as well as the five most underrated.

Overrated: Calvin Ridley

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – JULY 27: Calvin Ridley #0 of the Jacksonville Jaguars speaks to the Media during Training Camp at Miller Electric Center on July 27, 2023 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
The Tennessee Titans were the unexpected winners of the Calvin Ridley sweepstakes, signing away the veteran wide receiver from the division rival Jacksonville Jaguars on a mammoth four-year deal worth $92 million.

On one hand, the Titans had plenty of cap space and the incentive to add another playmaker to help Will Levis and DeAndre Hopkins. But was this really the best use of cash by GM Ran Carthon?

Ridley has only two 1,000-yard seasons in his career. And he barely hit 1,000 this past season with the Jaguars thanks to the 17-game schedule.

Ridley also turns 30 in December. As a man who relies on his speed more than his route-running tree to get open, there’s a really good chance that his contract doesn’t age well at all for the Titans.

It just feels like Tennessee could have, say, used that $92 million to sign multiple playmakers instead. Why not give that money to, say, two of Mike Williams, Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown or Gabe Davis? Why not trade for Keenan Allen or Jerry Jeudy, who were both given away for pennies?

Ridley makes the Titans’ passing game better, yes. But they’re paying him like he’s a top-five receiver, which he isn’t. The fact Ridley has the ninth-highest average annual value among wideouts at $23 million is ludicrous, considering he was Jacksonville’s No. 2 receiver while Christian Kirk was healthy.

Underrated: Russell Wilson

HOUSTON, TEXAS – DECEMBER 03: Russell Wilson #3 of the Denver Broncos in action against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on December 03, 2023 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Despite a stellar rebound year under Sean Payton, Wilson wasn’t wanted anymore by the Denver Broncos. They released the nine-time Pro Bowler, taking on an NFL record $85 million dead money charge over the next two years.

That worked out just fine for the Pittsburgh Steelers, who picked up Wilson on a one-year deal.

Wilson completed 66.4 percent of his pass attempts and had 26 touchdowns against eight interceptions in 2023. This was playing behind a crappy o-line and in an offense that didn’t have a single 1,000-yard receiver or rusher. Wilson also had NO help from a defense that finished 27th in scoring.

But now, Wilson joins a Steelers team that won 10 games and reached the playoffs with the Kenny Pickett-Mitch Trubisky-Mason Rudolph QB trio. Since 2022, by the way, Steelers QBs have combined to throw 24 touchdown passes.

So please tell us that Russ is a bad option for Pittsburgh when he needed just 15 games last year to top the Steelers’ passing TD totals over the past two years?

Wilson is loaded with weapons in George Pickens, Pat Freiermuth and the dynamic rushing duo of Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris. Considering the Steelers have a top-10 defense, you know Wilson won’t have to do a whole lot.

If he plays like a game manager, the Steelers can win. Pure and simple. And if he happens to be washed up? Hey, it’s a one-year deal for pennies — and Pittsburgh has Justin Fields as a fascinating plan B if the occasion calls for him.

Someone just hand GM Omar Khan the Executive of the Year award now!

Overrated: Saquon Barkley

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – OCTOBER 29: Saquon Barkley #26 of the New York Giants looks on after his team’s 13-10 overtime loss against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on October 29, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)

Plenty of analysts and passionate Philadelphia Eagles fans are gushing over the Barkley signing, but this one carries a giant red flag.

The Eagles signed the former New York Giants superstar to a three-year contract worth $37.75 million. At first glance, why wouldn’t Philadelphia add a top-five running back at a not-super-duper-crazy price, especially after last year’s humiliating late-season collapse?

Well, consider that Barkley has struggled with durability throughout his career. He last played a full season in his 2018 rookie year, which was six years ago now. He missed three games in 2019, all but two games in 2020 after suffering a torn ACL, four games in 2021 and three games in 2023.

Even if you take injuries out of the picture, Barkley has only averaged at least 80 rushing yards per contest in two of his six NFL seasons.

And for those who want to scream “But he has four seasons of over 1,000 yards of offense”. Yeah, great and all — but who else did the Giants have to feed the ball to again?

Did the Eagles forget that anyone can run behind that elite offensive line with a dual-threat QB in Jalen Hurts? D’Andre Swift just had a career year in Philly before signing with Chicago, one year after Miles Sanders had a career year with the Eagles, too.

Philadelphia could have found a capable 1,000-yard rusher for a fraction of what they paid Barkley. Heck, Derrick Henry only cost the Baltimore Ravens $16 million over two years! Josh Jacobs is essentially playing on a one-year deal for the Green Bay Packers.

The Eagles should have spent this money on other positions of need, knowing darn well they can pick up a 1K rusher off the street. Surprisingly reckless spending here by the usually alert Howie Roseman.

Underrated: Denico Autry

JACKSONVILLE, FL – NOVEMBER 19: Denico Autry #96 of the Tennessee Titans looks on from the sideline during the national anthem prior to an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Stadium on November 19, 2023 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Perry Knotts/Getty Images

The Texans’ two biggest moves were signing four-time Pro Bowl defensive end Danielle Hunter and trading for ex-Cincinnati Bengals star running Joe Mixon.

Those moves can’t be counted as underrated, though. Everyone knows what those two can bring to the table. One sneaky-good signing that isn’t getting enough attention? The pickup of Denico Autry, who signed for just $20 million over two years.

Often lost in the mix of star Tennessee Titans pass-rushers, Autry was a consistent performer over his three years in Music City. He posted at least eight sacks every year there — including a career-best 11.5 this past season.

Pro Football Focus had Autry’s 2023 pass-rush win rate at 12.8 percent. Though his run defense is average at best, he has Will Anderson Jr. and the aforementioned Danielle Hunter to take care of that.

Houston just needed to bring in additional pass-rushing support for Anderson. Hunter is the marquee addition, but Autry’s arrival cannot be overlooked. He is going to feast on opposing QBs with Anderson and Hunter commanding their fair share of double teams.

Overrated: D’Andre Swift

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – DECEMBER 18: D’Andre Swift #0 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on in the first half at Lumen Field on December 18, 2023 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
Like the Eagles with Barkley, the Chicago Bears overpaid for a running back when it wasn’t at all necessary.

With Caleb Williams replacing Justin Fields behind center, Khalil Herbert can expect official RB1 status. Seeing limited carries in 12 games last year, Herbert still finished with 611 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

And yet, the Bears just couldn’t help but give D’Andre Swift a three-year deal worth $24 million. Did the Bears not think that maybe Swift’s success was largely thanks to playing on the Eagles?

What happened to Miles Sanders after moving from Philadelphia to Carolina again?

Swift is a good-not-great running back. With Williams, Herbert, Keenan Allen, DJ Moore and Cole Kmet already on offense, why do the Bears want to pay $8 million a year to a 1B running back?

I mean, Austin Ekeler, Aaron Jones, Gus Edwards and Zack Moss are near Swift’s level and signed for much lower prices. It’s another case of how the Bears could have spent that money elsewhere.

You just don’t need to pay above-market value for running back anymore — yet the Bears ignored that. And with Williams about to lead a pass-happy offense, how will Swift realistically live up to his salary?

Underrated: Leonard Floyd

ORCHARD PARK, NY – SEPTEMBER 17: Leonard Floyd #56 of the Buffalo Bills stands on the sidelines during the national anthem prior to an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Highmark Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images
The San Francisco 49ers decided to rebuild their front seven after losing to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl 58. Gone are Arik Armstead, Javon Kinlaw and Chase Young.

In comes Leonard Floyd, Maliek Collins and Yetur Gross-Matos. But make no mistake, Floyd is the 49ers’ crown jewel offseason addition so far. They got themselves another stud pass-rusher at a bargain rate: $20 million over two years.

As hard as it is to believe, Floyd has never been to a Pro Bowl despite four seasons of nine or more sacks. The 10.5 he posted for the Buffalo Bills in 2023 matched a personal best for Floyd, who won a Super Bowl 56 ring with the Los Angeles Rams.

Per PFF, Floyd’s 2023 pass-rush win rate came in at a stellar 11.1 percent. Now he joins a 49er pass-rush led by Nick Bosa, Fred Warner, Javon Hargrave and newcomers in Collins and De’Vondre Campbell.

Playing alongside Aaron Donald, Khalil Mack, Von Miller and Ed Oliver, Floyd has always been overlooked. Now he’s in San Fran, perhaps serving as the final piece needed to get this team over the top.

Overrated: Robert Hunt

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA – AUGUST 21: Robert Hunt #68 of the Miami Dolphins looks on during a preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons at Hard Rock Stadium on August 21, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
We know the Carolina Panthers desperately had to fix up the offensive line to help fix Bryce Young, but WOW.

$100 million over five years to ex-Miami Dolphins guard Robert Hunt? Holy overpayment, Batman!

That’s what you pay an All-Pro-level lineman like Trent Williams, Zack Martin or, Tristan Wirfs or Joe Thuney. That’s not what you pay someone who’s not even close to Pro Bowl caliber.

Hunt’s highest single-season PFF grade is 77.1, which he garnered last year. But he was limited to 11 games in 2023, so the sample size isn’t exactly giant here.

PFF’s data shows that Hunt is above-average, but not elite. So why did Carolina pay him superstar money? The dude has never been a Pro Bowler or All-Pro, and we also must ask who the Panthers were bidding against to pay out nine figures to Hunt?

It’s easy to see that $100 mil and assume Hunt has been a top-tier lineman. But a closer look at the advanced stats shows that Carolina is getting a solid but not elite guard in Hunt. Yet he’s being paid like he’s already a future Hall of Famer.

Underrated: Gardner Minshew II

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – OCTOBER 15: Gardner Minshew #10 of the Indianapolis Colts reacts before the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Stadium on October 15, 2023 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
This may seem like a minimal transaction on paper, hence why we have it listed as an “underrated” signing.

Remember, nobody really batted an eye when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed Baker Mayfield last year. Or when the Cleveland Browns added Joe Flacco late last season. Or when Geno Smith was named the Seattle Seahawks’ starter to begin the post-Russell Wilson era.

Minshew has been arguably the best backup QB in football over the last three years. Now he gets the chance to compete with unproven sophomore Aidan O’Connell for the Las Vegas Raiders’ starting QB job after signing a two-year deal worth $25 million.

Remember, this is a guy who threw for over 3,200 yards and 21 touchdowns on a lousy Jacksonville team in 2019. After spending two years as Jalen Hurts’ backup, Minshew landed with the Indianapolis Colts in 2023 and wound up being their main starter due to Anthony Richardson’s season-ending shoulder injury.

Minshew won seven of 13 starts and threw for 3,305 yards and 15 touchdowns against nine picks. He nearly guided a rebuilding Colts team into the postseason, but they narrowly lost a win-or-go-home Week 18 game to Houston.

Well, Minshew now joins a Raiders team with superstar wideout Davante Adams, the vastly underrated Jakobi Meyers plus young studs Zamir White and Michael Mayer. Not to mention he’ll be accommodated by a Vegas defense that finished ninth in scoring last year.

If Minshew could sling it on a woeful Jacksonville team and with a rebuilding Colts club, imagine what he can do on a deeper Vegas team with one of football’s top receiving duos.

Overrated: Christian Wilkins

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – AUGUST 26: Christian Wilkins #94 of the Miami Dolphins warms up prior to a preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Stadium on August 26, 2023 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Rich Storry/Getty Images)
As much as we loved the Raiders’ addition of Minshew…the signing of Wilkins raises a ton of eyebrows here.

Las Vegas signed the ex-Miami star to a whopping four-year deal worth $110 million. Like Robert Hunt, this is a LOT of money for a guy with zero Pro Bowl or All-Pro selections on his resume.

Wilkins had nine sacks in his last season with Miami. Before that, his personal best in a season was 4.5. He’s an elite run defender, yes, but Vegas is paying him to be a consistent double-digit sack threat lining up with Maxx Crosby.

It’s just too risky paying this much money to a guy with four “meh” statistical seasons followed up by one great one. And it’s not like the Raiders have a rich history of turning big-named defensive players into stars. How did the Clelin Ferrell draft choice go again? Or that Chandler Jones signing?

Vegas could have filled plenty of other voids with that $110 million. But again, they’re paying a non-superstar-level player the All-Pro-like money.

Underrated: Marquise Brown

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – OCTOBER 22: Marquise Brown #2 of the Arizona Cardinals looks on before the game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field on October 22, 2023 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
After a disappointing final season with the Arizona Cardinals, Hollywood took his talents to Kansas City — signing a one-year deal with a max value of $11 million.

This is the ultimate low-risk, high-reward signing by the Chiefs. The defending champions have nothing to lose in rolling the dice on Brown, whose career has been marred by injuries to both himself and his starting QBs: Lamar Jackson in Baltimore and Kyler Murray in Arizona.

Brown had his best year in 2021, notching 91 receptions for 1,008 yards and six touchdowns. But if he didn’t miss five games in 2022, Brown would have pushed for a second straight 1K season.

The Chiefs needed to fix up their pass-catching corps and help out the aging Travis Kelce and 2023 rookie sensation Rashee Rice. And the lightning-quick Brown could very well regain his star-like form in a Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid-led offense.

It’s only a one-year deal for Hollywood. If it doesn’t work out, no harm, no foul. But if he’s healthy, he’s at the very least an upgrade over the likes of Marques Valdes-Scantling, Kadarius Toney, Skyy Moore and Justin Watson.