The one advantage that comes with losing free agents during the offseason is that if you lose enough of them, the NFL eventually makes up for it with extra draft picks.
The league hands out compensatory picks every year and those picks were released on Friday. Although the exact formula the league uses to award picks hasn't been released, we do know that it basically comes down to this: a team that loses more or better compensatory free agents than it acquires in the previous year is eligible to receive compensatory draft picks.
Using that "formula," the big winners this year were the Cowboys, Packers, Bengals and Raiders, who all received four extra picks. That means Jon Gruden is going to have some extra draft ammo to work with heading into April.
The Cowboys and Packers have actually become experts at acquiring compensatory picks. Since the league started handing them out in 1994, the Packers have been given 42, while the Cowboys have been given 41. Only the Ravens have been given more compensatory picks (49) over the past 24 years.
The Cardinals (3), Texans (3) and Vikings (2) were the only other teams that received multiple compensatory picks. The highest awarded pick went to the Cardinals, who were given the 97th overall selection in the draft for losing several free agents last year, including Calais Cambell, D.J. Swearinger and Tony Jefferson.
The lowest two picks handed out went to the Buccaneers and Falcons, who were given the final two picks of this year's draft. The compensatory pick for Atlanta gives the Falcons the final pick of the 2018 draft, which means, barring a trade, they'll be selecting Mr. Irrelevant this year.
One other twist with compensatory picks is that teams are actually allowed to trade them this year. Trading compensatory picks was illegal until last year when the NFL decided to change the rule and allow teams to swap picks. The 2017 draft was the first time that trading compensatory picks was allowed.
The NFL Draft is set for April 26-28 and will be held in Dallas.
Here's the full list of picks that were awarded for this year's draft.
Fourth-round pick (133rd overall selection), Fifth-round picks (171st overall, 173rd overall), Sixth-round (208th overall)
Fourth-round pick (137th overall selection), Fifth-round picks (172nd overall, 174th overall), Sixth-round (207th overall)
Third-round pick (100th overall selection), Fifth-round pick (170th overall), Seventh-round (252nd, 253rd overall)
Sixth-round picks (210th overall selection, 212th overall, 216th overall, 217th overall)
Third-round pick (97th overall selection), Fourth-round (134th overall), Seventh-round (254th overall)
Third-round pick (98th overall selection), Sixth-round picks (211th overall, 214th overall
Sixth-round picks (213th overall selection, 218th overall
Third-round (99th overall)
Fourth-round (135th overall)
Fourth-round (136th overall)
Sixth-round (209th overall)
Sixth-round (215th overall)
Seventh-round (251st overall)
Seventh-round (255thth overall)
Seventh-round (256th overall, final pick in the draft)