The NFL offseason is here! The free agency frenzy officially begins on March 13, when teams and players can agree to terms on deals before making the signings official on March 15.
Below is an attempt to rank the top 100 players in this year’s free agency class. Factors taken into account: performance, durability, age, and positional value. The last two are important. Younger players get paid more than older players even when the older players have performed better. And quarterbacks get paid a lot of money—even the mediocre ones. I don’t make the rules. That’s just how it is.
Bottom line: If you’re confused about why I have one player ranked ahead of another player, in most cases it’s related to how much I think the league will be willing to pay each guy.
The Washington Commanders used the franchise tag on defensive tackle Daron Payne before this list was first published on March 2, so he’s not listed below. News happens fast in free agency, and we will update this file as other players receive the franchise tag before Tuesday’s deadline, or as players sign with new teams, like Derek Carr did with the Saints on Monday.
The ages listed here for each player reflect how old they will be on September 1. Stats are courtesy of TruMedia and Pro Football Focus unless otherwise noted. Contract information is from Over the Cap. Now let’s get to it!
1. Lamar Jackson, QB, Baltimore Ravens (26)
We know that Jackson won’t actually hit unrestricted free agency. There are four potential outcomes:
- Jackson and the Ravens agree to a long-term deal.
- Jackson plays for the Ravens on the franchise tag.
- Jackson refuses to play on the franchise tag and is willing to sit games out.
- Jackson gets tagged and is then traded.
Jackson is 26 years old and has an MVP under his belt. The Ravens have gone 45-16 in the regular season with him as the starter. Per an ESPN report, Jackson wants a fully guaranteed deal in line with the one that Deshaun Watson received from the Browns last year, but the Ravens aren’t willing to go there.
There is statistical evidence to support the case that Jackson is essentially a one-man offense. When he’s been on the field for the Ravens over the last three seasons, they’ve performed like the NFL’s sixth-ranked offense in terms of expected points added per play. Without Jackson, the Ravens have performed like the 31st-ranked offense.
On the other hand, Jackson has missed 10 games over the past two seasons, and a trade would require a team to be willing to give up multiple first-round picks and be willing to meet his contract demands. This one could really go in a number of different directions in the weeks and months ahead.
Update, March 7: The Ravens used the non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson. That means that starting on Wednesday, he can negotiate a contract with other teams. If he signs an offer sheet, the Ravens would have five days to match the offer to retain him, or they could let Jackson go, and the team he signs with would send Baltimore two first-round picks. If Jackson does not sign with another team and plays on the tag for the Ravens, he would be paid a guaranteed salary of $32.4 million for 2023 and hit free agency again next offseason.
2. Derek Carr, QB, Las Vegas Raiders (32)
Among the 40 quarterbacks with at least 500 dropbacks over the past three seasons, Carr ranks 12th in EPA per pass play. Here’s how he stacked up last year.
Derek Carr in 2022
|EPA per play||11th|
Carr is not going to put an offense on his back and can look bad when pressured. But with the right pieces around him, Carr can offer consistent, above-average quarterback play. Last year Kirk Cousins got an extension from the Vikings that paid him $35 million last year (he’s scheduled to make $36.2 million in 2023 in salary and bonuses). That type of deal could be what Carr is looking at.
Update, March 6: Per multiple reports, Carr has agreed to a four-year contract with the New Orleans Saints that will pay him an average of $37.5 million per year. Carr’s new contract reportedly includes $100 million in guarantees, including $60 million guaranteed at signing.
3. Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants (26)
The Giants’ new regime of GM Joe Schoen and coach Brian Daboll declined Jones’s fifth-year option when they took over last offseason. Now they’ll have to decide whether to use the franchise tag on Jones, sign him to a long-term extension, or let him walk (unlikely). Here’s where Jones ranked in a number of statistical categories last year:
Daniel Jones in 2022
|EPA per play||12th|
The Giants’ passing game was limited, at least in part because of their lack of talent at receiver. They didn’t ask Jones to do too much. His average pass traveled just 6.3 yards, which was the shortest distance of any starter in the NFL. Instead, the Giants unleashed Jones as a runner, and he rushed for a career-high 708 yards.
Jones is young and has the physical tools to be an above-average starter. There’s a case for him to take another step forward with more help around him. Then again, his performance from 2019 to 2021 (which was bad!) can’t be ignored. The Giants’ best option is probably to kick the can down the road a year, see how Jones performs in 2023, and then decide whether it makes sense to invest in him long term.
Update, March 7: The Giants and Jones agreed to terms on a four-year, $160 million contract with $82 million guaranteed, according to ESPN, to keep him from hitting free agency. Jones has another $35 million available in incentives.
4. Geno Smith, QB, Seattle Seahawks (32)
Here’s where Smith ranked in a number of statistical categories last year:
Geno Smith in 2022
|EPA per play||15th|
Smith exceeded expectations and performed as an above-average starter. The question is: What’s that worth? Figuring out the answer is tricky, considering that Smith is 32 and coming off of just one good season as a starter.
There are currently 10 quarterbacks making north of $30 million per year. Given how Smith performed last year, he can make a legitimate case that he belongs in that group. The Seahawks’ other option would be to use the franchise tag and pay Smith $32.4 million for 2023. If he balls out, they can talk about a long-term deal next offseason. If he regresses, they’re not stuck. But the downside there for the Seahawks is that the entire $32.4 million would count against their cap in 2023.
Update, March 6: The Seahawks and Smith agreed to terms on a three-year, $75 million contract, according to NFL Network. Smith gets $40 million fully guaranteed and can make up to $30 million in incentives.
5. Orlando Brown Jr., OT, Kansas City Chiefs (27)
The Chiefs acquired Brown from the Ravens during the 2021 offseason and prevented him from being a free agent last year by using the franchise tag. They might have to go that route for a second straight season. Brown has been an above-average left tackle, and he’s been one of the most durable offensive linemen in the NFL. He’s missed just one game due to injury during his five-year career. Given his age and durability, Brown is likely looking at a deal north of $23 million per year, which would make him the highest-paid left tackle in the NFL.
6. Javon Hargrave, DT, Philadelphia Eagles (30)
Hargrave was hands down one of the best interior pass rushers in the NFL last year. According to Next Gen Stats, his 11 sacks from a defensive tackle alignment ranked third, and his 53 pressures ranked second. Hargrave was productive in 2021 too, notching 7.5 sacks and 18 QB hits. The only thing working against him is his age. But Hargrave is likely looking at a deal in the neighborhood of $16 million to $18 million per year.
Update, March 13: Hargrave is headed to the 49ers after agreeing to a four-year, $84 million deal that includes $40 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
7. Jessie Bates III, S, Cincinnati Bengals (26)
The Bengals used the franchise tag on Bates last offseason but might let him walk this year. Playing primarily free safety, he’s played the third-most snaps of any defensive back over the past five seasons and finished last year with a career-high four interceptions. The safety market can be tough to predict, but Bates’s floor probably aligns with the five-year, $70 million ($14 million per year) deal that Marcus Williams got from the Ravens last year. And if a team falls in love with Bates, he could easily jump to the $17 million per year range.
Update, March 13: Bates is headed to the Falcons on a four-year, $64.02 million deal, according to ESPN.
8. Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers (31)
The numbers for Garoppolo are pretty bonkers. Among 36 quarterbacks with at least 600 dropbacks over the past three seasons, Garoppolo ranks fifth in EPA per pass play and 11th in success rate. We all have eyes and know that Garoppolo is not a top-five quarterback. But put in position to succeed, he can be the point guard for an efficient offense. It’s hard to project Garoppolo’s market, given that the 49ers were unable to find a trade partner for him last offseason and he’s coming off another injury. Durability has been an issue, but taking a one-year flier on Garoppolo could make sense for teams in need of a short-term QB solution. Garoppolo is not the eighth-best player on this list if we go just off performance. But starting quarterbacks pretty much always get paid more than expected in free agency.
Update, March 13: Garoppolo agreed to a three-year, $67.5 million deal with the Raiders, per ESPN. He’ll be reunited there with Josh McDaniels, who was his offensive coordinator in New England from 2014 to 2017.
9. Jamel Dean, CB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (26)
He’ll likely be the top corner available for a lot of teams. Originally a third-round pick in 2019, Dean started 38 games on his rookie contract, including 15 last year. He missed just one tackle last season, according to PFF’s charting. In 109 snaps of man coverage, Dean allowed just 60 total yards on 13 targets. Last offseason, Charvarius Ward got $13.5 million per year from the 49ers, and Dean’s teammate Carlton Davis got $14.8 million per year to stay in Tampa. That’s probably the range Dean is looking at, and he could go higher.
Update, March 13: Dean is returning to the Bucs on a four-year, $52 million deal, according to ESPN.
10. Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Buffalo Bills (25)
Edmunds fits the profile of the type of free agent who cashes in on the open market. He entered the league young and will play the 2023 season at 25 years old. He has 74 career starts, and ace Bills reporter Joe Buscaglia noted on The Athletic that 2022 was Edmunds’s best season yet. Given his rare size and speed, along with his age, Edmunds should find a healthy market. Foye Oluokun got $15 million per year from the Jaguars last offseason. That’s likely the neighborhood for a potential Edmunds deal in free agency.
Update, March 13: The Bears are signing Edmunds to a four-year, $72 million deal with $50 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
11. Jawaan Taylor, OT, Jacksonville Jaguars (25)
Taylor is a young, competent right tackle, and he’s been one of the NFL’s most durable offensive linemen. Taylor has not missed a game (68 consecutive starts, playoffs included) since entering the league in 2019. It’d be no surprise to see Taylor find a deal that will pay him in the $15 million per year range.
Update, March 13: Taylor is signing with the Chiefs on a four-year, $80 million deal with $60 million guaranteed, per ESPN.
12. James Bradberry, CB, Philadelphia Eagles (30)
If this list were ranked based solely on 2022 performance, Bradberry would be much higher. He was terrific last season, earning second-team All-Pro honors. Bradberry is a savvy veteran with excellent cover skills, and he’s scheme-versatile. Bradberry’s 34 passes defended over the past two seasons are tied for second league-wide, behind only Dallas’s Trevon Diggs. The issue is age—teams are generally cautious with 30-year-old corners. Darius Slay ($16.7 million per year) and Xavien Howard ($18 million per year) got lucrative deals when they were nearly the same age as Bradberry. If teams are more cautious, Bradberry could find himself closer to the $13 million per year range.
Update, March 14: Bradberry is returning to the Eagles on a three-year, $38 million deal with $20 million guaranteed, per ESPN.
13. Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Philadelphia Eagles (25)
The Saints traded Gardner-Johnson to the Eagles before last season. He transitioned from slot corner to safety and finished the season with six interceptions. The floor for Gardner-Johnson is solid starter, and given how young he is, it’s reasonable to think that his best days are ahead of him. He’s also shown he can be one of the NFL’s better slot corners. If a team views Gardner-Johnson as a top-10 safety, he’ll be looking at around $13 million per year. But, as mentioned above, the safety market is tricky to project. Justin Reid got a three-year, $31.5 million deal ($10.5 million per year) from the Chiefs last year. That could end up being a good comp for Gardner-Johnson.
14. Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Unrestricted Free Agent (30)
This ranking will likely elicit some eyerolls, but we should know by now that receivers get paid in free agency. That’s especially the case for the top guys this year because it’s a weak free agency class, and the draft class doesn’t look great either. Beckham took some free agent visits last season but was unable to find a deal to his liking and sat the year out after suffering a torn ACL in Super Bowl LVI. He played well for the Rams in 2021 with 48 catches for 593 yards and seven touchdowns in 12 games, including the postseason. He probably projects as a solid no. 2 option at this stage of his career. Interested teams will need to make sure that Beckham is healthy, but he has a chance to cash in.
15. Mike McGlinchey, OT, San Francisco 49ers (28)
He’s started 69 games in five seasons and been a solid, but unspectacular, right tackle. But demand outweighs supply with offensive linemen, so McGlinchey will have a market. It’s just hard to say whether teams will view him more as an $11 million per year right tackle or as a $17 million per year right tackle, which would put him among the top five players at the position.
Update, March 13: McGlinchey is headed to the Broncos after agreeing to a five-year, $87.5 million deal with over $50 million guaranteed, according to NFL Network.
16. Tony Pollard, RB, Dallas Cowboys (26)
Pollard might have the most juice of any skill-position player in this year’s free agency class. He was terrific last year, piling up 1,378 yards from scrimmage and averaging 5.2 YPC. His 31 runs of 10-plus yards were tied for sixth, and his nine runs of 20-plus yards were tied for fourth. He averaged 3.82 yards after contact per rush, which was first among the 42 backs with at least 100 carries. But he suffered a broken fibula and high ankle sprain in the playoffs, which could give interested teams some pause. Working in Pollard’s favor is the fact that he’s had a lighter workload than the other backs in this class. Given his age and explosiveness, it’d be no surprise to see Pollard command a deal in the $12 million per year range.
Update, March 6: The Cowboys announced that they are using the franchise tag on Pollard, which means a one-year guaranteed salary of $10.09 million. The two sides can continue to negotiate a long-term deal.
17. Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants (26)
Barkley stayed healthy last year and finished fifth among running backs with 1,650 yards from scrimmage. There’s a boom-or-bust element to Barkley’s game. Among backs with at least 100 carries, he finished 35th out of 42 in success rate. But Barkley’s nine runs of 20-plus yards were tied for fourth. Committing to any running back with a second contract is risky, and Barkley missed 21 games from 2019 to 2021. There are currently seven backs making at least $12 million per year—that’s probably the floor for Barkley. The question is whether any team will fall in love and pay him in the Christian McCaffrey range of around $16 million per year.
Update, March 7: The Giants used the franchise tag on Barkley to keep him from hitting free agency. The tag for running backs means a guaranteed one-year deal worth $10.09 million. The two sides can continue to negotiate a long-term deal.
18. Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders (25)
He made the most of his contract year. Jacobs’s 2,053 yards from scrimmage led all running backs in 2022. He also led all backs with 393 touches and 109 first downs. Jacobs’s 4,576 yards from scrimmage over the past three seasons ranks fourth among all backs, behind only Derrick Henry, Dalvin Cook, and Jonathan Taylor. Among the 43 backs with at least 300 carries during that span, Jacobs ranks 10th in success rate. On one hand, Jacobs has been one of the most productive backs in the NFL. On the other, teams will have to decide whether they want to pay up for a back who has had the second-most touches (987), behind only Henry, in the past three seasons. There are currently seven running backs making at least $12 million per year. Jacobs will look to join that group.
Update, March 6: The Raiders are using the franchise tag on Jacobs, per the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The tag for running backs means a guaranteed one-year deal worth $10.09 million. The two sides can continue to negotiate a long-term deal.
19. Marcus Davenport, Edge, New Orleans Saints (26)
Davenport is a tough player to place on a list like this. The idea of Davenport is appealing: a young, long, talented defensive lineman who can get after the passer. He had nine sacks and 16 quarterback hits in 2021. But last year? Just 0.5 sacks and eight QB hits in a down season. Plus, durability is an issue. He’s missed at least three games in four of five NFL seasons. There might not be a bigger boom-or-bust free agent in this class.
Update, March 14: Davenport agreed to a one-year, $13 million deal on Monday night, per NFL Network.
20. Jakobi Meyers, WR, New England Patriots (26)
Meyers’s 2,399 receiving yards over the past three seasons rank 28th among wide receivers. Among the 106 wide receivers who have run at least 600 routes during that span, Meyers is 26th in yards per route run. As we’ve seen in recent years, teams will pay up to get pass-catching talent, and the weak wide receiver free agency class should work in Meyers’s favor, even if he is limited in his ability to stretch the field (career yards per reception of 11.7). But he will interest teams in the market for a sure-handed no. 2 possession receiver. Michael Gallup got $11.5 million per year from the Cowboys last offseason, and Allen Robinson II got $15.5 million per year from the Rams. Meyers probably lands somewhere in between those two.
Update, March 14: Meyers is headed to the Raiders on a three-year, $33 million deal, according to NFL Network.
21. Dalton Schultz, TE, Dallas Cowboys (27)
Schultz played on the franchise tag last year and caught 57 balls for 577 yards and five touchdowns. He’s shown throughout his career that he can be a reliable blocker, too. Competent tight ends generally get paid a lot of money in free agency, although this year could be different, given how strong the draft class is supposed to be. Still, Schultz will likely find a deal worth at least $13 million per year, similar to the deal Dawson Knox signed with the Bills last fall.
22. Mike Gesicki, TE, Miami Dolphins (27)
The Dolphins completely mismanaged the Gesicki situation last offseason. They used the franchise tag on him, paid him $10.9 million, and then barely used him in the offense. Gesicki had 32 catches for 362 yards—his lowest totals since his rookie season. Last offseason, he would have been coveted on the open market. From 2020 to 2021, Gesicki’s 1,483 receiving yards ranked fifth among tight ends. The guess here is that teams will see that Gesicki just didn’t fit Mike McDaniel’s scheme and he’ll still have a market. David Njoku got a four-year, $54.75 million deal ($13.7 million per year) last offseason from the Browns. Gesicki could be in line for something similar.
23. Evan Engram, TE, Jacksonville Jaguars (29)
The Jaguars signed Engram to a one-year, $9 million deal last offseason, and he came through for them with 73 catches for 766 yards (fourth among tight ends) and four touchdowns. Given his production last year and how wild the tight end market tends to be in free agency, Engram could find a deal north of $13 million per year from a team in need of pass-catching help—that’s if the Jaguars don’t use the franchise tag on him.
Update, March 6: The Jaguars are using the franchise tag on Engram, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. That means a one-year guaranteed salary of $11.35 million. The two sides can continue to negotiate a long-term deal.
24. JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (26)
At this point, we have a pretty good idea of what the market will be for Smith-Schuster. He’s a free agent for the third consecutive season. In 2021, he returned to the Steelers on a one-year, $8 million deal. Last offseason, he signed with the Chiefs on a one-year deal with a base value of $3.76 million and incentives that could earn him over $10 million. Teaming with Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid is never a bad idea, and Smith-Schuster had 78 catches for 933 yards in 2022, catching a career-best 77.2 percent of his targets. That performance should lead to a nice pay bump on his next deal.
25. Cameron Sutton, CB, Pittsburgh Steelers (28)
There’s a lot to like about Sutton. He started his career as a slot corner but has played outside the past two seasons and held up well. Last year, Sutton was responsible for 13 forced incompletions, which tied for 10th among all defensive players. And he’s been durable, having not missed more than one game in a season over the last four years. Darious Williams signed a three-year, $30 million deal (an average of $10 million per year) with the Jaguars last offseason. That could be a good comp for Sutton.
Update, March 13: Sutton is going to the Lions on a three-year, $33 million deal with $22.5 million guaranteed, according to NFL Network.
26. Dalton Risner, OG, Denver Broncos (28)
Risner has been a mainstay at left guard for the Broncos, with 62 starts in four NFL seasons. He’s never missed more than two games in a year, and O-line expert Brandon Thorn had Risner as a top-10 player at his position going into 2022. Laken Tomlinson got a deal worth $13.3 million per year from the Jets last offseason. Risner might not reach that number, but teams looking to steady their offensive lines will likely be very interested in adding him.
27. David Long Jr., LB, Titans (26)
Long is a tough player to project. There will be teams enamored of his versatile skill set. He set career highs last year with 86 tackles and seven tackles for loss. The issue has been durability. Long has just 26 starts in four NFL seasons and has missed 12 regular-season games over the past two years because of injuries.
Update, March 13: Long is signing with the Dolphins on a two-year, $11 million deal, per ESPN.
28. Jason Kelce, OC, Philadelphia Eagles (35)
He has earned five first-team All-Pro nods in his 30s, including one in each of the past two seasons. Kelce has not missed a game in the last eight seasons. He has said definitively that he’s not the same player he used to be, but the film still reveals him to be one of the best centers in the NFL. Kelce is at the stage of his career when he’s contemplating retirement every offseason. Last year, he got a one-year, $14 million deal to return to the Eagles, and he’ll likely be looking at something similar if he wants to keep playing.
Update, March 13: Kelce announced on Twitter that he is returning to the Eagles for another year.
29. Isaiah Wynn, OT, New England Patriots (27)
A prove-it deal would make a lot of sense for Wynn. He’s coming off a down year at right tackle and missed eight games. But from 2019 to 2021, Wynn showed he can be a competent starting left tackle. Those guys always get opportunities in free agency. Just last offseason, the Rams gave Joseph Noteboom $13.3 million per year, even though he had limited experience. Wynn can probably find a one-year deal around $13 million, and if he plays well, he can try to cash in on a longer deal next offseason.
30. Dre’Mont Jones, DT, Denver Broncos (26)
Jones started 13 games last year for the Broncos and tied a career high with 6.5 sacks. There’s always a market for interior pass rush, and that’s what Jones provides. We saw last offseason that the floor for starting-caliber defensive tackles who are Jones’s age is generally around $10 million per year, and Jones could do even better than that.
Update, March 14: Jones is signing with the Seahawks for three years and up to $51.5 million, according to NFL Network. He agreed to the deal Monday night.
31. Zach Allen, DL, Arizona Cardinals (26)
He has the profile of an ascending player. Allen has 9.5 sacks and 34 QB hits in 28 games over the past two seasons. He can rush the passer from the interior, and Allen’s seven batted passes in 2022 were tied for second most among defensive tackles. B.J. Hill signed a three-year, $30 million ($10 million per year) deal with the Bengals last offseason. Allen could find a similar deal this offseason.
Update, March 14: Allen is signing with the Broncos on a three-year, $45.75 million deal that includes $32.5 million guaranteed, according to ESPN. He agreed to the deal on Monday.
32. D.J. Chark, WR, Detroit Lions (26)
Coming off an injury in 2021, Chark signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Lions last offseason. He battled injuries once again in 2022 and was limited to 11 games but came on strong toward the end of the season. From Weeks 12 to 18, Chark had 404 receiving yards, which ranked 23rd among wide receivers. And on the season, he caught 30 balls for 502 yards, averaging 16.7 YPR. Chark has been productive when healthy. Given how young he is and his size/speed profile, Chark should attract plenty of suitors.
33. Yannick Ngakoue, Edge, Indianapolis Colts (28)
Ngakoue has been on five different teams—the Jaguars, Vikings, Ravens, Raiders, and Colts—in the past four seasons. When he was last a free agent in 2021, he signed a two-year, $26 million deal. No matter where he plays, Ngakoue continues to hit the quarterback at a remarkably consistent rate. He had 9.5 sacks and 16 QB hits in 15 games last season, and his 57 sacks over the past six seasons are eighth leaguewide. It’s concerning that no team seems to want to stick with Ngakoue for more than a year or two, but given the production, he should still be able to find a deal between $10 million and $13 million per year.
34. Jordan Poyer, S, Buffalo BIlls (32)
Poyer was productive and durable during most of his tenure with the Bills, but injuries slowed him down last year as he missed five games and didn’t perform at his usual high level. Safeties of his age generally don’t command big money in free agency, although Harrison Smith was an exception. The Vikings gave Smith a $16 million per year extension in 2021 when he was 32. Poyer’s running mate with the Bills, Micah Hyde, got a two-year, $19.25 million extension when he was 31. That type of deal is probably more likely for Poyer.
35. Dalvin Tomlinson, DT, Minnesota Vikings (29)
Tomlinson signed with the Vikings in 2021 and gave them two solid years. He’s a very good run defender and tied a career high with 10 quarterback hits last season. Tomlinson’s last deal was for $10.5 million per year. Something along those same lines could make sense again.
Update, March 14: The Browns are expected to sign Tomlinson to a four-year, $57 million deal, according to NFL Network.
36. Kaleb McGary, OT, Atlanta Falcons (28)
The Falcons declined his fifth-year option last offseason, and McGary will now get to test free agency. He has been a durable right tackle for Atlanta, having appeared in 63 of a possible 66 games through four seasons. He’ll be more of a fit for run-heavy teams, and re-signing with the Falcons could make sense. The Steelers signed Chukwuma Okorafor for $9.75 million per year last offseason, and Rob Havenstein got $11.5 million per year from the Rams. That could be the range McGary is looking at.
Update, March 14: McGary is going back to Atlanta on a three-year, $34.5 million deal, per NFL Network.
37. Lavonte David, LB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (33)
If I were basing this list on his 2022 level of play, David would deserve to be much higher. During his age-32 season, David still looked the part of a top-tier linebacker, starting 17 games and finishing with 124 tackles. But teams are generally hesitant to pay linebackers in their 30s. Bobby Wagner essentially got a one-year, $10 million deal from the Rams last offseason, shortly before he turned 32. A similar deal for David could make sense for a contending team.
38. Bobby Wagner, LB, Los Angeles Rams (33)
He started all 17 games last year and earned second-team All Pro honors, filling up the stat sheet with 140 tackles (10 for loss), six sacks, 10 QB hits, and two interceptions. A one-year deal in the $8 million to $10 million range could make sense for a contending team looking to fill a short-term need.
39. Vonn Bell, S, Cincinnati Bengals (28)
The Bengals signed Bell to a three-year, $18 million deal in free agency back in 2020, and he delivered the best stretch of his career. Bell has always been stout against the run, but he set a career high with four interceptions and tied a career high with eight passes defended last year. He logged more than 400 snaps while lined up both in the box and back deep in 2022. Rayshawn Jenkins got a four-year, $35 million ($8.75 million per year) deal with the Jaguars in 2021, and John Johnson signed with the Browns that same offseason for three years and $33.75 million ($11.25 million per year). That’s probably the range Bell will be looking for.
Update, March 13: Bell has agreed to sign with the Panthers, according to NFL Network.
40. Byron Murphy Jr., CB, Arizona Cardinals (25)
He’s been up and down in four seasons with the Cardinals, but Murphy has started 48 games and has experience playing both outside and in the slot. He was limited to nine games last year due to a back injury. If Murphy can’t find a long-term deal he likes, signing a short-term deal and reentering the market next offseason could make sense.
41. Marcus Peters, CB, Baltimore Ravens (30)
It’s tough to figure out what the market will be for Peters. He missed all of 2021 with an injury and returned to start 13 games last year, but didn’t look like the same player. Peters has made his career on being a gambler and a playmaker, but he had just one interception last season. Patrick Peterson signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Vikings in 2021. That could be the type of deal Peters commands.
42. Allen Lazard, WR, Green Bay Packers (27)
Lazard is not a WR1, but he can play a complementary role in the right offense. He finished last year with 60 catches for 788 yards and six touchdowns. Lazard has size and toughness and is a willing blocker. He should benefit from the lack of wide receiver firepower in this year’s free agency class.
Update, March 14: Lazard is signing with the Jets on a four-year, $44 million deal with $22 million guaranteed, per Jordan Schultz.
43. Isaac Seumalo, OG, Philadelphia Eagles (29)
He started 17 games at right guard for the NFL’s best offensive line last season. Seumalo is smart, technically sound, and reliable. Some teams could view him as an option to play center. Alex Cappa signed a four-year, $35 million deal ($8.75 million per year) with the Bengals last offseason. That could be a good comp for Seumalo.
44. Arden Key, Edge, Jacksonville Jaguars (27)
After a disappointing start to his career, Key has shown real improvement with 11 sacks and 32 QB hits over the past two seasons. Last offseason, coming off of just one year of quality production, Key signed a one-year, $4 million deal with Jacksonville, and he delivered again. Key has the versatility to rush the passer from the edge or the interior, and he should be in store for a big pay bump this offseason. The two-year, $19 million deal ($9.5 million per year) Uchenna Nwosu signed with the Seahawks last offseason could be a good comparison for Key.
45. David Onyemata, DT, New Orleans Saints (30)
Onyemata started 17 games for the Saints last year and is another option for teams in the market for an interior pass rusher. All five of his sacks came from the interior, and his 32 pressures from a defensive tackle alignment tied for 15th in the NFL, according to Next Gen Stats. The guess here is that he’ll command a deal in the neighborhood of $9 million per year.
Update, March 13: Onyemata is headed to the Falcons on a three-year, $35 million deal that includes $24.5 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
46. Fletcher Cox, DT, Philadelphia Eagles (32)
It’s clear that Cox is no longer the game-wrecking force he was in his prime, but he still projects as a competent starter. Cox’s seven sacks from a DT alignment were 10th most in the NFL last season, according to Next Gen Stats, and his 34 pressures were 11th. The Eagles rewarded Cox with what was essentially a lifetime achievement contract last offseason—$14 million for one year—but they seem likely to move on this offseason. A one- or two-year deal worth around $8 million or $9 million per season could make sense for a team looking to fill a short-term need.
47. Miles Sanders, RB, Philadelphia Eagles (26)
There’s a strong statistical case for Sanders to get a lucrative contract this offseason. He finished fifth among running backs last year with 1,269 rushing yards. Among 42 backs with at least 100 carries, he finished fourth in success rate. Sanders’s 34 runs of 10-plus yards were fourth most, and his nine runs of 20-plus yards were tied for fourth most. Sanders had a career year, but he was also gifted with the most RB-friendly situation in the NFL. The Eagles had a great offensive line, and the threat of Jalen Hurts as a runner helped all of the Eagles’ backs. Sanders was not a factor as a receiver (just 20 catches for 78 yards), and Eagles coaches replaced him with Kenneth Gainwell on third downs. Given those factors, it’s possible that Sanders will end up with a deal in the $7 million to $8 million per year range, rather than the $10 million to $12 million per year range like Aaron Jones or Joe Mixon.
48. Germaine Pratt, LB, Cincinnati Bengals (27)
Pratt started 54 games in four seasons for the Bengals, including 15 last year. He had 10 passes defended in 2022, which was tied for second among all linebackers, behind only Buffalo’s Matt Milano. Pratt is another young, solid starting off-ball linebacker in a free agent class that is loaded with them.
49. T.J. Edwards, LB, Philadelphia Eagles (27)
Edwards started all 17 games in 2022 and set career highs with 159 tackles, 99 solo tackles, 10 tackles for loss, seven passes defended, and five quarterback hits. He relies on smarts and instincts, not athleticism, and he’s developed into a solid, three-down linebacker. The off-ball linebacker market is difficult to project. No one expected Foye Oluokun to command $15 million per year last offseason. There is a wide range of outcomes for Edwards’s free agency—he just needs one team to fall in love to get paid.
Update, March 13: Edwards has agreed to terms with the Bears on a three-year, $19.5 million deal with $12 million guaranteed, according to NFL Network.
50. Jacoby Brissett, QB, Cleveland Browns (30)
The Browns offense performed better with Brissett last season than it did with Deshaun Watson. Brissett ranked 10th in EPA per pass play and 12th in success rate. He’s not going to put a team on his back, but can certainly offer short-term competency. Being patient and settling for Brissett on a reasonable, one-year deal could prove to be a wise move for a QB-needy team.
51. Taylor Lewan, OT, Tennessee Titans (31)
Lewan is a nearly impossible player to slot because we don’t know how healthy he is or whether he even wants to continue playing. Retirement could be the move for Lewan after the Titans released him last month. His 2022 season was limited to two games because of a knee injury related to his torn ACL in 2020, and Lewan has appeared in just 20 games over the past three seasons. If he wants to keep playing, Lewan would likely be looking at a one-year deal somewhere.
52. Samson Ebukam, Edge, San Francisco 49ers (28)
Ebukam started 15 games for the 49ers last year and set career highs with five sacks and 13 QB hits. When he was last a free agent, in 2021, Ebukam got a two-year, $12 million deal. He should see at least a slight bump from that this time around.
Update, March 14: Ebukam will be signing with the Colts on a three-year deal worth up to $27 million, per ESPN.
53. Darius Slayton, WR, New York Giants (26)
Slayton has had three seasons with more than 700 receiving yards, is young, and has averaged 15.0 YPR for his career. He averaged 1.81 yards per route run last year, which ranked 28th among the 107 wide receivers who ran at least 200 routes. No one seemed interested in trading for Slayton at the in-season deadline, but he seems like a guy worth taking a flier on in free agency.
54. Bobby Okereke, LB, Indianapolis Colts (27)
Okereke finished 10th in the NFL last year with 149 total tackles. Next Gen Stats tracks “stops,” which it defines as successful plays for the defense based on EPA, and Okereke finished 14th league-wide with 75. He’s been durable too, having missed just two games in four NFL seasons. Okereke might not have the highest ceiling of the linebackers on this list, but he’s shown he can be a solid starter.
Update, March 13: Okereke is headed to the Giants on a four-year, $40 million deal with $22 million guaranteed, per ESPN.
55. Mecole Hardman, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (25)
The Chiefs were enamored of Hardman’s speed and selected him in the second round of the 2019 draft, but Hardman never developed into a consistent factor for their offense. He was limited to eight regular-season games last season and totaled 25 catches for 297 yards. Hardman had over 500 yards receiving in each of his first three NFL seasons. He’s averaged just 13.8 yards per reception for his career, but has the speed to stretch the field. Hardman’s skill set will surely intrigue some teams in free agency.
56. Connor McGovern, OC, New York Jets (30)
McGovern signed a three-year, $27 million deal with the Jets as a free agent in 2020 and started 48 out of a possible 50 games in three seasons. He’s a reliable veteran who will likely command a deal in the neighborhood of $7 million to $9 million per year.
57. Larry Ogunjobi, DT, Pittsburgh Steelers (29)
The big question with Ogunjobi is health. He’ll be a free agent for the third straight season. Last year, Ogunjobi agreed to a big deal with the Bears, but they backed out after he failed his physical. He ended up signing with the Steelers on a one-year, $8 million deal. Ogunjobi battled through injuries but still started 16 games. He could be looking at another similar one-year deal.
Update, March 14: Ogunjobi is going back to the Steelers on a three-year, $28.75 million deal, per ESPN.
58. Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Las Vegas Raiders (27)
The Raiders acquired Ya-Sin in a trade with the Colts last offseason, but he was limited to 11 games because of injuries. Ya-Sin has missed 13 games over the past three seasons. The 34th pick in the 2019 draft, Ya-Sin is a talented, physical player, but he’s yet to put it all together. Whatever team signs him will be doing so based on upside, not past performance.
59. Brandon Graham, Edge, Philadelphia Eagles (35)
Graham came back from an Achilles injury and was used in a rotational role in 2022, playing 43 percent of the Eagles’ defensive snaps. But he showed he can still play, setting a career high with 11 sacks, while continuing to be a strong run defender. Given Graham’s age, he’s looking at a one-year deal this offseason. Something in the $6 million range could make sense.
Update, March 10: According to ESPN, Graham has agreed to a one-year contract to remain in Philadelphia, a deal that will keep him from entering free agency next week.
60. Devin McCourty, S, New England Patriots (36)
He returned to New England last year on a one-year, $9 million deal, then started all 17 games and had four interceptions to go along with eight passes defended. He’s now gone seven straight seasons without missing a start. If McCourty wants to keep playing, he’d almost certainly be looking at another one-year deal.
Update, March 10: McCourty announced his retirement from the NFL.
All about the journey ❤️ @devinmccourty | @JasonMcCourty pic.twitter.com/PNcCjWYnsS— New England Patriots (@Patriots) March 10, 2023
61. Bradley Bozeman, OC, Carolina Panthers (28)
The fact that he got only a one-year, $2.8 million deal in free agency last offseason was a stunner, because Bozeman played well, first at left guard and then at center, during his time with the Ravens. Last year, he started 11 games at center for the Panthers and played well again. He brings durability, versatility, and productivity and could be a sneaky-good under-the-radar signing for a team in need of interior O-line help.
Update, March 13: Bozeman is returning to Carolina, according to the team’s website. Per the NFL Network, Bozeman’s deal is for three years and worth up to $18 million.
62. Nate Davis, OG, Tennessee Titans (26)
He’s been up and down in four seasons with the Titans. Davis has started 54 games, but he’s missed eight due to injury in the past two seasons. Davis’s ability to pass protect is still a question, as he allowed eight sacks last year—tied for second most among all guards, per PFF. Mark Glowinski got a three-year, $18.3 million deal from the Giants last offseason. Davis could be in the market for a similar deal.
Update, March 13: Davis is headed to the Bears on a three-year, $30 million deal (with $19.25 million in guarantees), per NFL Network.
63. Jonathan Jones, CB, New England Patriots (29)
After previously playing the slot, Jones was called on to be a full-time starter on the outside last season and produced varying results. On the open market, he’s most likely to get looks from teams in need of a short-term answer in the slot.
Update, March 13: Jones is returning to New England on a two-year, $19 million deal with $13 million guaranteed, per New England reporter Doug Kyed.
64. Jadeveon Clowney, Edge, Cleveland Browns (30)
Clowney has been on four different teams in five years and seems destined to play out his career on a series of one-year contracts. After a nine-sack season in 2021, Clowney had just two sacks and four QB hits in 12 games last season, and he ripped the Browns coaching staff at the end of the year. Clowney signed for $10 million last offseason, but he’s likely looking at a significant pay dip, given the lack of production last season.
65. Matt Ioannidis, DT, Carolina Panthers (29)
The Commanders released Ioannidis last offseason, and he caught on with the Panthers on a one-year, $5.9 million deal. Ioannidis had just one sack, but his 30 QB pressures from a defensive tackle alignment ranked tied for 16th, according to Next Gen Stats. A team in need of interior pass rush could get good value with Ioannidis.
66. Sheldon Rankins, DT, New York Jets (29)
Rankins started 15 games for the Jets last year and was an active run defender, setting a career high with 43 tackles. He didn’t offer a lot of pass-rush juice (three sacks, seven QB hits), but was a solid starter.
67. Poona Ford, DT, Seattle Seahawks (27)
He’s coming off a down season, but Ford played well in 2021, is young, and hasn’t missed a game in the past three years. He’ll find a home somewhere as a run-stuffing nose tackle.
68. Ben Powers, OG, Baltimore Ravens (26)
Powers started every game at left guard for the Ravens last season and turned in a career-best year. According to PFF’s charting, he allowed just one sack on 633 pass-blocking reps. There are plenty of teams that could use a young, competent offensive lineman like Powers.
Update, March 13: Powers has agreed to terms with the Broncos on a four-year, $52 million deal with $28.5 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
69. Jimmie Ward, DB, San Francisco 49ers (32)
He missed five games due to injury last season and moved from safety to slot corner. Ward has long been a feisty, reliable defensive back, and teams will value his versatility and his savvy. But given Ward’s age, he could be looking at a one-year deal.
Update, March 14: Ward will sign with the Texans on a two-year, $13 million deal, per Adam Caplan. He agreed to the deal on Monday.
70. Drue Tranquill, LB, Los Angeles Chargers (28)
Tranquill was a full-time starter for the first time last season and finished 12th in the NFL with 144 tackles. He held up in coverage and produced as a blitzer, piling up five sacks and eight quarterback hits. Add Tranquill to the list of capable, starting off-ball linebackers in this free agent class.
71. Juan Thornhill, S, Kansas City Chiefs (27)
A second-round pick in 2019, Thornhill started 52 games in four seasons, including 16 last year. He set career highs in 2022 with 71 tackles and nine passes defended. Thornhill tied a career high with three interceptions. Thornhill’s play has been a mixed bag, but he’s an excellent athlete with cover skills and could be an intriguing option for teams in need of safety help.
72. Taylor Rapp, S, Los Angeles Rams (25)
A second-round pick by the Rams in 2019, Rapp started 48 games in four seasons, including 33 of 34 in the past two years. Per PFF, Rapp logged more than 150 snaps in the box, in the back end, and in the slot. He has been an up-and-down player, but given Rapp’s age, his best football could still be ahead of him.
73. Marcus Epps, S, Philadelphia Eagles (27)
Epps worked his way into becoming a 17-game starter last year and provided the Eagles with competent safety play—lining up both in the box and back deep (often in split-safety coverages). Epps is at his best when he’s playing downhill. He can be a reliable starter in schemes that major in two-deep coverages.
Update, March 13: Epps is headed to the Raiders on a two-year, $12 million deal ($8 million guaranteed), according to NFL Network.
74. Julian Love, S, New York Giants (25)
Love started 16 games for the Giants last year. He logged over 150 snaps from in the box, at slot corner, and at free safety. Love was asked to play 278 snaps of man coverage—the second most of any safety, according to PFF. He held up well, allowing a total of 140 yards. Given Love’s age and versatile skill set, teams could view him as an ascending player worth spending on in free agency.
75. Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Miami Dolphins (30)
Bridgewater will likely get another look as a high-end backup. The problem is that when given the opportunity to play, he’s struggled to stay on the field because of injuries. Bridgewater is competent when healthy and has 65 starts under his belt. He got a one-year, $6.5 million deal last offseason and figures to find something similar this time around.
76. Foster Moreau, TE, Las Vegas Raiders (26)
He started 14 games last season and set career highs with 33 catches for 420 yards. Moreau averaged 12.7 YPR, which ranked seventh among the 44 tight ends with at least 20 catches. At the risk of repeating myself: Tight ends usually get paid more than you think they’re going to get paid in free agency, so Moreau could have an active market.
77. Hayden Hurst, TE, Cincinnati Bengals (30)
He signed a one-year, $3.5 million deal with the Bengals last offseason and gave them what they needed, catching 52 balls for 414 yards in 13 starts. Hurst will likely get a pay bump this time around.
78. Patrick Peterson, CB, Minnesota Vikings (33)
He was a 17-game starter last season and had five interceptions to go along with 15 passes defended (tied for sixth in the NFL). Peterson will be a free agent for the third consecutive offseason. A contract similar to the one he signed last year—one year, $4 million—could make sense for a team willing to bet that Peterson has one more good year left in him.
Update, March 13: Peterson is signing with the Steelers, per ESPN.
79. Austin Hooper, TE, Tennessee Titans (28)
The Browns released Hooper last March, and Hooper signed with the Titans on a one-year, $6 million deal. He caught 41 balls for 444 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Hooper should interest teams in the market for a short-term solution at pass-catching tight end.
80. Gardner Minshew, QB, Philadelphia Eagles (27)
Minshew started four games for the Eagles in the past two years and produced mixed results—the Eagles went 1-3 in those games, including losing both of his starts in relief of Jalen Hurts in 2022. For his career, he’s completed 62.8 percent of his passes and averaged 7.1 YPA with 44 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Minshew should be able to find a backup job in the $4 million to $5 million per year range.
81. George Fant, OT, New York Jets (31)
Fant bounced between left tackle and right tackle last year and dealt with injuries during a disappointing season. But in 2021, he played almost exclusively at left tackle, started 15 games, and gave up just one sack and three QB hits on 594 pass-blocking snaps, per PFF’s charting. Fant should get a chance to compete for a starting tackle spot somewhere in 2023, assuming he’s healthy.
82. Ethan Pocic, OC, Cleveland Browns (28)
He was a free agent last offseason and signed a one-year, $1.2 million deal with the Browns. Pocic started 13 games and played the best football of his career. Of course, it helped that he was sandwiched between two of the NFL’s best guards in Joel Bitonio and Wyatt Teller. Teams will have to determine whether Pocic can duplicate his 2022 success in a different situation.
Update, March 13: Pocic is staying in Cleveland on a three-year, $18 million deal, according to NFL Network.
83. A’Shawn Robinson, DT, Los Angeles Rams (28)
Robinson started 10 games for the Rams in 2022 before a torn meniscus ended his season. He’s not going to provide much pass rush juice (two sacks in his past 35 games) but can be an asset as a run stopper. The injury makes it tough to project Robinson’s market.
84. Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Edge, Houston Texans (28)
He worked his way into a starting role for the first time in his career in the second half of last year and was productive, finishing the season with five sacks and 11 QB hits. Teams could bring Okoronkwo to compete for a starting job or view him as a rotational pass rusher.
Update, March 13: Okoronkwo is signing with the Browns on a three-year, $19 million deal with $12.5 million guaranteed, per NFL Network.
85. Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Dallas Cowboys (27)
He was a free agent last offseason and returned to Dallas on a one-year, $2 million deal. Injuries have been an issue for Vander Esch as he’s missed 16 games over the past four seasons, including three in 2022. When he was on the field, he played well. But teams could be hesitant to commit to Vander Esch for more than one season.
Update, March 14: Vander Esch is going back to Dallas on a two-year, $11 million deal, per NFL Network.
86. Justin Houston, Edge, Baltimore Ravens (34)
He’s a free agent for the third consecutive season. In 2021, Houston signed with the Ravens for $2.1 million, and last year he re-signed with Baltimore for $3.5 million. Given that he’s coming off of a 9.5-sack season, Houston could see a pay bump once again—whether it’s from the Ravens or another team. He’s shown he can still offer value as a rotational pass rusher.
87. Quincy Williams, LB, New York Jets (27)
He’s started 28 games over the past two seasons, including 15 last year. Williams finished 2022 with 106 tackles (12 for loss), three sacks, and six QB hits. He’s a bit of a throwback style of linebacker, who delivers big hits and makes opponents feel his presence. Williams has some limitations in coverage, but is fun to watch when he’s going downhill.
Update, March 12: Williams and the Jets agreed to terms on a three-year, $18 million deal, according to NFL Network.
88. Donovan Wilson, S, Dallas Cowboys (28)
Wilson was a 17-game starter last season and set career highs with 101 tackles (seven for loss), five sacks, and nine quarterback hits. Wilson is a ferocious hitter who is at his best when he’s running toward ballcarriers. He has limited ball production (three interceptions, six passes defended in 51 games—30 starts). Wilson won’t fit every scheme, but he’ll attract teams looking to add a physical presence to their secondary.
Update, March 14: Wilson is returning to the Cowboys on a three-year deal worth up to $24 million, per NFL Network.
89. Greg Gaines, DT, Los Angeles Rams (27)
Gaines produced 8.5 sacks and 19 QB hits in 33 games (25 starts) over the past two seasons. He played through some injuries last year, and his production dipped. But Gaines should still get looks from teams who need a starting defensive tackle.
90. Melvin Ingram, Edge, Miami Dolphins (34)
Ingram enters free agency for the third straight season. The previous two times around, he signed one-year, $4 million deals. And he is probably in line for something similar this offseason. Ingram had six sacks and 10 QB hits in 17 games with Miami in 2022.
91. Azeez Al-Shaair, LB, San Francisco 49ers (26)
Al-Shaair was limited to 12 games last year, but he started 13 in 2021 and piled up 102 tackles. The 49ers gave him a second-round restricted free agent tender last offseason and paid him close to $4 million. He’s been stuck behind Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw but should now get a chance to be a full-time starter somewhere else.
Update, March 14: The Titans are expected to sign Al-Shaair, per ESPN.
92. D’Onta Foreman, RB, Carolina Panthers (27)
Foreman was given a chance to be the guy down the stretch for Carolina, and he came through, totaling 914 rushing yards and averaging 4.5 YPC. Among the 42 backs with at least 100 attempts, Foreman ranked 15th in success rate. He averaged 3.26 yards after contact, which ranked 10th. Foreman was explosive, too, with eight runs of 20-plus yards (tied for eighth most among all backs). Foreman isn’t going to offer much as a pass catcher, but he could provide nice value for a team looking to bolster its backfield.
93. Devin Singletary, RB, Buffalo Bills (25)
Singletary was solid, but not spectacular, during his four-year stint in Buffalo. Last year, Singletary ran for 819 yards and averaged 4.6 YPC. Among 42 backs with at least 100 carries, he ranked seventh in success rate. Over the last four seasons, his 21 runs of 20-plus yards are tied for seventh most among running backs. Singletary, who will turn 26 just before Week 1, has not been much of a factor as a receiving option, but I’m not giving up hope that he can produce a monster rushing season at some point.
94. Jamaal Williams, RB, Detroit Lions (28)
He had a career year in 2022, rushing for 1,066 yards and 17 touchdowns. Among the 42 backs with at least 100 rushing attempts, Williams ranked 11th in success rate. Williams has never been a big factor as a pass-catcher, and he’s coming off a season in which he had 95 more touches than any other year of his career. Expecting him to duplicate last year’s success is probably unreasonable, but Williams could be a nice option for teams in need of a complementary back.
95. Kyzir White, LB, Philadelphia Eagles (27)
White enters free agency for the second straight season. Last year, he inked a one-year, $3 million deal with the Eagles. He was on the field for 76 percent of the defensive snaps and finished the year with 110 tackles and seven passes defended. White’s film was inconsistent, and his production declined in the second half of the season, which was possibly injury-related. It seems unlikely that his market will be all that different from last offseason.
Update, March 14: White is signing with the Cardinals on a two-year deal worth up to $11 million, per Jordan Schultz.
96. Andrew Wylie, OT, Kansas City Chiefs (29)
He was a free agent last offseason and returned to the Chiefs on a one-year, $2.5 million deal. That ended up being great value for Kansas City as Wylie started 17 games at right tackle for the Super Bowl champs. He has physical limitations that can show up against great pass rushers, but Wylie gave the Chiefs what they needed. He also has experience playing guard. Wylie probably earned himself a pay bump for 2023.
Update, March 13: Wylie is going to the Commanders on a three-year, $24 million deal, according to Ari Meirov.
97. Morgan Fox, DT, Los Angeles Chargers (28)
Fox is coming off a season in which he set career highs with 6.5 sacks and 11 QB hits. His strength is as an interior pass rusher, not as a run defender. That’s generally a desirable skill set in free agency.
98. Adrian Amos, S, Green Bay Packers (30)
Amos signed with the Packers as a free agent in 2019 and did not miss a start (66 straight) in four seasons. At his best, Amos was a versatile free safety with strong coverage skills. But his performance dipped last season, and interested teams will have to determine whether Amos is a declining player or whether he was battling through an injury last season that affected his play.
99. Sam Darnold, QB, Carolina Panthers (26)
No one should be fooled by a small sample, but Darnold played better last year in Carolina than he has for most of his career. Among the 41 quarterbacks with at least 150 dropbacks last season, he was tied for 15th in success rate, and the Panthers went 4-2 in the six games that Darnold started. There should be teams interested in taking a look at him as a backup.
Update, March 13: Darnold is headed to the 49ers on a one-year deal, per ESPN.
100. Baker Mayfield, QB, Los Angeles Rams/Carolina Panthers (28)
He had a couple of nice moments with the Rams, but overall 2022 was a mess for Mayfield. Among the 35 quarterbacks with at least 200 dropbacks, he ranked 33rd in EPA per pass play. Mayfield should be looking for a place where he can reset his career as a backup. Staying in Los Angeles with Sean McVay could make sense.
Editor’s note: This file is being updated to include newly released players, below, who would have made the initial top 100 had they been free agents when this list published on March 2.
Eric Kendricks, LB, Minnesota Vikings (31)
The Vikings released Kendricks on March 6 to clear cap space. He was a 17-game starter last year and had 137 tackles, which ranked 14th league-wide. In his prime, Kendricks was excellent in coverage, but that is the area of his game that might be starting to slip. Coverage stats can be a bit wonky, but according to Next Gen Stats, Kendricks gave up 510 yards as the nearest defender—second most among off-ball linebackers. He had six passes defended and no interceptions. Kendricks should interest zone-heavy teams in need of a short-term fix.
Update, March 14: Kendricks plans to sign with the Chargers on a two-year deal, according to ESPN. He agreed to the deal on Monday.
Marcus Mariota, QB, Atlanta Falcons (29)
The Falcons went 5-8 with Mariota as their starter last year. He ranked 16th among 33 qualifying starters in EPA per pass play and 18th in success rate. Mariota also ran for a career-high 438 yards in 13 games. He finished the season on injured reserve with a knee injury. If Mariota is healthy, he should draw interest as a useful backup.
Frank Clark, Edge, Kansas City Chiefs (30)
Clark spent four seasons with the Chiefs but was not as productive in Kansas City as he was earlier in his career with the Seahawks. His 23.5 sacks since 2019 rank tied for 42nd leaguewide, and his 64 QB hits are tied for 28th. But Clark is a talented pass rusher who should find a job as a starting defensive end, and he should benefit from this being an underwhelming free agent class of edge rushers.
Donovan Smith, OT, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (30)
Smith started 124 games in eight seasons with the Bucs, including 13 in 2022. He’s coming off a down year, but demand usually outweighs supply when it comes to left tackles. Given that Smith is only 29, he should have suitors.
Shaquill Griffin, CB, Jacksonville Jaguars (28)
Griffin was a free agent in 2021 and signed a three-year, $40 million contract with the Jaguars, who released him on Wednesday. He started 14 games in 2021 but was limited to just five last year after undergoing back surgery. Griffin began his career with the Seahawks and has started 72 games in six seasons. He has the size and speed that NFL teams covet in outside corners but has yet to put it all together. This is not a strong class of free-agent corners, and assuming he’s healthy, Griffin should find a starting job somewhere.
Adam Thielen, WR, Minnesota Vikings (33)
The Vikings released Thielen on Friday to clear cap space, and he now hits the open market. Thielen fought through injuries last season but still started 17 games and had 70 catches for 716 yards and six touchdowns. Thielen’s 30 touchdowns over the past three seasons rank fifth in the NFL. Thielen’s best days are almost certainly behind him, but there will likely be teams looking to take a one-year flier on him as an option in the slot.
Ben Jones, OC, Tennessee Titans (34)
Jones signed a two-year, $14 million deal with the Titans last offseason but was released Friday with a failed physical designation. Jones started 12 games in 2022 but suffered two concussions. If he wants to continue playing, he could offer a short-term fix for teams in need of a veteran center.
A previous version of this story said Lamar Jackson could begin negotiating with other teams on Monday. He cannot begin those talks until Wednesday.