The 2022 NFL Draft is a done deal, so what better time to look at the top unsigned veteran free agents?
With most of the top players already finding new teams-16 of the top 20 free agents according to NFL.com have already signed-there are some options remaining, However, as one might expect, those without a new team or re-signing with their former squad could come with a “buyer beware” label.
Here’s a look at 10 players who could make a difference, as the top player on the list may soon be removed from this group. They final destinations could impact NFL predictions as well.
10. Will Fuller | WR
His potential is intriguing, though his inability to stay on the field is a reason why he’s currently looking for a team. Fuller flirted with a 1,000-yard season in 2020, but played in just two games in 2021. He’s missed 40 of a possible 81 regular-season games over the last five seasons.
There isn’t a team that wouldn’t love a 28-year-old deep threat, The injury history makes him a risky signing.
9. Larry Ogunjobi | DT
If not for health concerns, he would already be signed. Ogunjobi played a key role in helping the Cincinnati Bengals make into the playoffs. He suffered a season-ending foot injury in the postseason, and didn’t play in the Super Bowl. That was a bitter pill to swallow for a player who was on some non-playoff teams early in his career.
A 300-pounder in the 20s would be a player worth taking a shot, though he would have to pass a physical before teams bring him in.
He is one of the intriguing unsigned players that those who bet online have examined,
8. Melvin Ingram | DE
Ingram had 49 sacks in a five-year span with the Chargers. Since then, production has fallen off rapidly Ingram has one sack in 22 games with three teams over the last two seasons.
At the age of 33, there’s risk involved in a player a couple of years removed from being a game-wrecker coming off the edge. The team that signs him has to believe he has another season or two left of torturing quarterbacks.
7. Duane Brown | OT
A 37-year-old offensive tackle coming off a down year isn’t going to have suitors knocking at his door, but Brown has been an effective player for quite some time. Finding reliable blind-side protectors is no easy task, so perhaps somebody takes a shot on Brown.
Brown has started every game eight times during his NFL career, so he’s a player who can be counted on to be there game in and game out.
6. Eric Fisher | OT
One of the former No. 1 overall picks on this list, Fisher had to fight his way back from a torn Achilles. With the extra time to get ready, he could provide a quality option to play either tackle position for a team looking to fill a need on the offensive line.
Other than the 2009 season, Fisher has always answered the call game day, having missed a total of three games dating back to the 2014 campaign. His reliability is something that could adjust the Las Vegas odds if a contending team takes a chance on him.
5. JC Tretter | OL
Tretter won’t create many headlines when he signs, but he’s a reliable and effective interior offensive lineman. At age 31, there’s still some time left in the NFL. He had a very tough 2021, when injuries impacted his ability to practice. However, when the games rolled around, he was there for pretty much every snap.
Tretter had started all but one game for the Cleveland Browns over the last five seasons. He also can play either center or guard.
4. Jadeveon Clowney | DE
Edge rushers proved to be a valuable commodity in the recently-concluded draft. Three of the top five picks were defensive ends expect to prove a boost in the pass-rush department.
Clowney, a 29-year-old former No. 1 overall pick, believes he brings that dimension to a team. He’s still waiting to see who that is.
Clowney had nine sacks in 14 games for Cleveland in 2021. Headed to a potential fifth team in the last five seasons is a bit of a red flag.
3. Odell Beckham Jr. | WR
It is hard to believe that the former New York Giants’ first-round pick is just 29. Moving around and carrying that baggage goes with bringing Beckham on board. Ideally, a veteran receiver would be one that can handle a different role while mentoring younger receivers as well. Beckham doesn’t fit that description, as there’s always the threat of him becoming a disruptive influence.
He did seem to tone down his act n Los Angeles, but the way he forced his way out of Cleveland has to be concerning to teams, especially after the antics Antonio Brown pulled with the Buccaneers. There’s risks that go with signing players like Beckham and Brown that have nothing to do with catching the ball.
According to the NFL betting odds, Beckham has +2500 odds to be the NFL Comeback Player of the Year.
2. Julio Jones | WR
It wasn’t that long ago that Jones was in the conversation as the best receiver in football. Now, he’s looking for a new home.
Jones was an absolute beast during his heyday with the Atlanta Falcons. Now at age 33, he isn’t the same player that kept opposing defensive coordinators awake at night.
From 2014-19, Jones had three seasons with at least 100 catches, another with 99 and more than 80 in the other two campaigns.
His one season with the Tennessee Titans was rather forgettable, though. The question is how much will a team be willing to give Jones, or another veteran receiver such as T.Y. Hilton.
Emmanuel Sanders, DeSean Jackson and Cole Beasley are other receivers over 30 yet to be signed. However, none of those receivers has the track record of Jones.
1. Tyrann Mathieu | S
The Kansas City Chiefs’ decision to move on from Mathieu wasn’t production-related. Mathieu had more than 50 solo tackles for the fifth time in his eight NFL seasons, along with three interceptions.
What ending Mathieu’s time with the Chiefs after two seasons was the signing of Justin Reid.
Reports had the former LSU star signing with the New Orleans Saints in the next few days. He will be part of the restructured secondary in NOLA, joining former New York Jets’ safety Marcus Maye. another free-agent signing.
The Honey Badger visited the #Saints and did a zoom with the #Eagles, but New Orleans was always the leader in the clubhouse. In the coming days, this should be finalized. A homecoming. https://t.co/wi1yZ5dupA
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) May 2, 2022
A New Orleans native heading home seems like the perfect fit for both him and the Saints..