As the NFL draft inches closer, some NFL free agents may want to get back on the horn with NFL teams and try to sign a deal before their potential position is taken by a hungry rookie. There are still plenty of quality free agents left and some will demand big money, wherever they go. Here are four of the top remaining 2022 NFL free agents.
Tyrann Mathieu – Safety
The Honey Badger has balled out for the Chiefs defense several times over the past three seasons, but it seems that they can no longer afford his services as he looks to cash in one of his last big contracts in the NFL. At just 29-years-old, it isn’t crazy to think that Mathieu still has some very productive football days ahead of him. He is an absolute playmaker, and a guy that will improve any defense that he is on. There have been plenty of rumors linking him to New Orleans, but it will be interesting to see if the Saints can pull off any salary cap magic to get him back to the state where he played his college ball.
Jadeveon Clowney – Defensive End
The latest rumors predict that Clowney will be back in a Cleveland Browns uniform where he spent the 2021 season. After leaving Houston, Clowney bounced around from Seattle to Tennessee to Cleveland. Injuries have hurt Clowney and while he never turned into the star player we thought he would be coming out of South Carolina, he is one of the most premier rotational guys that any defensive line can employ. 2021 was an excellent season for the pass-rusher who notched nine sacks and 19 QB hits to go along with 37 tackles. His veteran presence is a huge addition for whichever team ends up signing him.
Odell Beckham Jr. – Wide Receiver
OBJ is entering a very difficult offseason after winning a Super Bowl with the Los Angeles Rams. It was certainly a bittersweet night for the wide receiver who caught the first touchdown of the game but also tore his ACL just a quarter later. His spot has been filled in Los Angeles by Allen Robinson who signed a hefty contract with LA after spending the last four years with the Chicago Bears. Injuries and attitude issues have plagued Beckham Jr. since he came into the league, and it isn’t a stretch to say that his best days may be behind him. Depending on when he can make a return to the field, he may be a player who waits until midseason to sign somewhere.
Melvin Gordon – Running Back
The former Chargers and Broncos running back was essentially replaced by rookie Javonte Williams in Denver last season. Gordon is still young enough to make an impact for some NFL team looking for a second-string back who can provide some carries to spell a younger lead guy. He has more than 900 rushing yards in each of the last two seasons and has compiled 17 rushing touchdowns in that span. Gordon could benefit from waiting until week one or two and seeing which teams need a running back desperately if there are injury issues, like what the Baltimore Ravens experienced in 2021.
Any of these four remaining 2022 NFL free agents could be a welcome addition to the right team. Ultimately, it’s just a question of finding a way to fit them into the salary cap fold.