It’s been a couple weeks since the NFL Draft where teams were able to get players added onto their rosters to meet some needs that they were unable to address in the initial free agency wave. Acquisitions have died down but there still are 10 notable veterans on the free agency market and we’ll be ranking them along with placing them in their ideal landing spot.
#10: Justin Houston
Houston is nearing the end of his career and doesn’t have much juice left in the tank. He’s had himself a fairly decent career earning 4 Pro Bowl appearances and currently sharing the title for most safeties in a career & holding the record for most safeties in a single season. It would be fitting for Houston to play the final years of his career where he started it all and earned all 4 of his Pro Bowl appearances with Kansas City where he can provide a strong depth role.
Ideal Landing Spot: Kansas City Chiefs
#9: Leonard Fournette
With Tom Brady retiring, the Buccaneers are entering a weird transition stage in the future of their franchise. They decided to part ways with many of their core veteran players including Leonard Fournette. Despite his age, Fournette was still putting up quality stats and would make a good addition to a backfield needing a bridge back or as a top backup in case their #1 guy goes down. We think Fournette will end up in a situation like the latter and a good fit would be the Indianapolis Colts in case star Jonathan Taylor goes down, they could use someone new since previous backup Nyheim Hines was moved in the middle of the year to Buffalo. The Colts did not fare well without Taylor and Fournette would be able to step in and do a serviceable job.
Ideal Landing Spot: Indianapolis Colts
#8: John Johnson III
The Cleveland Browns have a knack for not properly utilizing players and that’s exactly what happened with safety John Johnson III as the Browns ended his 3 year deal a year early. The Browns don’t know what to do with talent once they get it and this is a reason why players once they leave go off to do better things. Johnson III should do well if he ends up with Green Bay paired with former coach Matt LaFleur who he spent time with when they both were with the Rams and the Packers are in serious need of a safety.
Ideal Landing Spot: Green Bay Packers
#7: Ben Jones
The Tennessee Titans made the decision to release both veteran lineman Ben Jones & Taylor Lewan in the offseason. Both have had injury problems over the last several years, but the more desirable one on the market is Jones. He’s an interior lineman that significantly helped with Derrick Henry’s success and should find a good home with a team that has a workhorse back or a traditional pocket passer which the New York Jets now do after acquiring Aaron Rodgers. We could see the Jets going all in on winning a Super Bowl in the next year or two with this squad.
Ideal Landing Spot: New York Jets
#6: Ezekiel Elliott
In a move that they should have done a year or two ago, the Cowboys finally moved on from Ezekiel Elliott. There still is a chance that they might bring him back, but it is finally time to give Tony Pollard the spotlight he has earned. Zeke’s legs have slowed down on him, but he still would be a powerful 3rd down back or red zone rusher which would make him a great fit for a team like the Buffalo Bills who move the ball down the field well but have had goal line struggles.
Ideal Landing Spot: Buffalo Bills
#5: Jadeveon Clowney
The former #1 overall pick might end up back where he started in Houston after he’s spent the last few seasons bouncing around teams. The Texans are a team that should seriously consider bringing him back as he was a fan favorite and would bring a lot of energy to a team needing some love from the fans.
Ideal Landing Spot: Houston Texans
#4: Yannick Ngakuoe
One player that has been significantly undervalued since they’ve entered the league is Yannick Ngakuoe. The Jaguars made a mistake in letting him go a few years ago and he’s now bounced around a few teams since then. We think Ngakuoe will need to endure another one year contract before he can lock up a longer-term deal. A team that can help get him to the next level is the Detroit Lions where he can line up alongside Aidan Hutchinson and provide a dual threat attack on the quarterback.
Ideal Landing Spot: Detroit Lions
#3: Marcus Peters
The Baltimore Ravens have had one of the better defenses over the last decade and that trend isn’t going to die down anytime soon. The Ravens have one of the best secondaries and that is even without Marcus Peters sticking around. The Ravens got a steal with Kyle Hamilton and now it’s his turn to be a leader in Baltimore and time for Peters to move on. Peters is still one of the better defensive backs in the league despite his age and a team with terrible pass coverage like the Detroit Lions could benefit from bringing in someone to help make a playoff push in what was one of the league’s worst defenses last season.
Ideal Landing Spot: Detroit Lions
#2: Leonard Floyd
Despite never making the Pro Bowl, Leonard Floyd has quietly been having a respectable career. He’s someone that teams don’t plan around and that’s a mistake on their part and he’s been a leader of the defense in both Chicago & for the Rams thus far in his career. Floyd would bring a veteran presence to a team in need and it’s in his best interest to get out of Los Angeles and land somewhere like Carolina where he can be a mentor to someone like Brian Burns with taking some of the workload off his plate.
Ideal Landing Spot: Carolina Panthers
#1: Frank Clark
After making the Pro Bowl for 3 years in a row, Frank Clark followed that up with a Super Bowl Championship in 2022. This past season, he had arguably a better season than what he had in 2020 & 2021 which netted him those Pro Bowl nods. Shortly after winning the Super Bowl, Clark found out he was being released, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t hope for him to stay in Kansas City but serve in a mentor role for players like George Karlaftis who will be the building blocks for the defensive front line.
0 comments on “2023 NFL Free Agency: Top 10 Free Agents Remaining”