We're one week into NFL free agency and a steady stream of signings, cuts and creative restructuring continues to flow even while NFL owners meet in Arizona.
Monday evening saw a flurry of news, including the announcement of the compensatory picks for the 2013 NFL Draft and a pair of veteran quarterbacks getting new homes.
Here's a look at what you may have missed last night. Be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation NFL and SB Nation's free agent StoryStream for the latest.
The Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs and Tennessee Titans were among the biggest winners Monday, all earning third-round picks in the 2013 NFL Draft. The Atlanta Falcons and the Baltimore Ravens paced the league with four compensatory picks each, and the San Francisco 49ers earned three to improve on an already impressive collection of draft picks. With Monday's announcement, the final order for April's draft is set, barring any trades.
After releasing Matt Hasselbeck on Monday, the Tennessee Titans moved quickly to give Jake Locker another veteran backup. Ryan Fitzpatrick was released by the Buffalo Bills at the start of NFL free agency last week after failing to live up to his big contract, but he should be steady enough to fill in should Locker struggle or get hurt.
The Titans' passing game struggled mightily last year, averaging just 208 yards per game and putting up 16 interceptions to just 17 touchdowns between Locker and Hasselbeck. Fitzpatrick's presence may not help as much as a bit of luck regarding the health of wideouts Kenny Britt, Nate Washington and Kendall Wright, however.
Hasselbeck won't stay on the free agent market for long. The same day he was released by the Titans, reports surfaced that the Colts will sign the 37-year-old as a backup to Andrew Luck on Tuesday. No one is expecting Hasselbeck to compete for a starting job but, should anything happen to Luck in 2013, the veteran ought to be a capable backup.
Hasselbeck completed 62 percent of his passes for 1,367 yards in five appearances last season, albeit for a pedestrian 6.19 yards per attempt and five interceptions to seven touchdowns. He reportedly drew interest from several teams before settling on the two-year offer by the Colts.
With a bit of creative accounting, the Detroit Lions freed up more than $10 million in 2013 salary cap space by restructuring the contracts of wide receiver Calvin Johnson and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. Neither player will be making any less money, however. The Lions simply converted nearly all of the 2013 base salaries due to the superstars into signing bonuses, reducing the immediate cap hit.
The plan could backfire. Money is essentially being displaced for later seasons, when Johnson and Suh will account for massive chunks against the salary cap. For now, however, the Lions are using the space to enjoy one of the more productive offseasons of any team in the NFL.