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Top 2024 NFL Free Agents for All 32 Teams

Chiefs must 'open the checkbook' for Jones quickly
PFT examines Chris Jones' comments about wanting to return to the Chiefs and share why the organization must work quickly to extend their superstar defensive tackle.

Kyle Dvorchak breaks down the top free agents for every NFL team heading into the 2024 offseason.

Arizona Cardinals

WR Marquise Brown

Traded to Arizona two offseasons ago, Brown hasn’t made the type of impact the Cardinals expected after spending a first-round pick to acquire him. He missed time in both seasons and his yards per game fell from 59 in 2022 to 41 in 2023. The Cardinals’ offense struggled in 2023, but Brown proved incapable of making the most of a bad situation. He’s at his best when used as a team’s No. 2 receiver. Luckily for Arizona, they are in a good spot to land Ohio State wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. The Cardinals could re-sign Brown to be a secondary receiver, but Michael Wilson and Rondale Moore plus a bevy of draft picks give them options.

Atlanta Falcons

EDGE Bud Dupree

The Titans released Dupree last offseason, well before the end of his five-year, $82.5 million contract. Atlanta then signed him to a much more modest, one-year, $3 million deal. The prudent move netted the team 6.5 sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. Dupree tied Calais Campbell, who is also a free agent, for a team-high in sacks. Dupree is from Georgia and won’t cost much to bring back, so I suspect there is mutual interest in a new deal from both sides.

Baltimore Ravens

DT Justin Madubuike

Pass-rusher will be a consistent theme for this free agent class as the group is stacked with nightmare-inducing talent for opposing quarterbacks. Madubuike was one of the best interior pass-rushers in the league in 2023. He led all defensive tackles in sacks (13) and finished 15th in total pressures (33). Jadeveon Clowney, who notched 9.5 sacks in his first year is also a free agent, though Madubuike’s age and ceiling will make him Baltimore’s priority in the offseason.

Buffalo Bills

EDGE Leonard Floyd

Buffalo added Leonard Floyd on a one-year deal last offseason as part of the continuing arms race in the AFC. He racked up 10.5 sacks and nine TFLs, though Pro Football Focus charted him with the 50th-most pressures and the No. 81 pass-rush grade for an EDGE defender. Floyd’s sack total will likely earn him a solid payday. With the Bills sitting at a $51.3 million cap deficit, that deal may come in another city.

Carolina Panthers

EDGE Brian Burns

Burns has been one of the few bright spots for the Panthers over the past five years, reaching at least 7.5 sacks in every one of his NFL seasons. He averaged 10 sacks annually from 2020 to 2022 before falling to eight sacks last year. Despite the modest campaign, Burns, who will be only 26 years old at the start of the 2024 season, would be a coveted free agent on the open market. The Panthers will likely prevent this from happening by franchise tagging Burns if they can’t reach an extension.

Chicago Bears

CB Jaylon Johnson

Johnson is another strong candidate for the franchise tag. During the season, Johnson was permitted to seek a trade partner as he and the Bears were unable to agree on an extension. The trade deadline came and went, but Johnson remained with Chicago and an impending free agent. He would end the season with four interceptions, 10 pass breakups, and his first Pro Bowl nod. Bears GM Ryan Poles was confident that Johnson would be a part of the team in 2024 when speaking to reporters at the end of the season.

If the two sides again find themselves at a stalemate in contract negotiations, Poles can simply place the tag on him and prolong extension talks for another year.

Cincinnati Bengals

WR Tee Higgins

Speaking of franchise tag candidates…Higgins getting slapped with the tag appears to be a foregone conclusion.

As The Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr. points out, Joe Burrow’s extension doesn’t affect the Bengals’ cap situation until next year, so they have some money to work with this offseason. He also notes that contract talks between the two sides never came close to creating an extension last offseason. It’s hard to see either side changing their tune this time around, so 2024 could be the last ride for Higgins as a member of the Bengals.

Cleveland Browns

EDGE Za’Darius Smith

Joe Flacco was one playoff win away from being the Browns’ top free agent, but his meltdown versus the Texans ended any quarterback controversy talks in Cleveland. That leaves Smith as the most notable member of the Browns set to hit free agency.

Smith only tallied 5.5 sacks across 17 games, but PFF graded him as a top-10 EDGE defender and charted him with the 23rd-most pressures for an EDGE. Even at 32 years old, Smith still has plenty left in the tank. The only question is if the Browns can afford to pay him. They are currently $19.6 million over the cap for 2024, though a few contract restructures can clear up plenty of space.

Dallas Cowboys

LT Tyron Smith

Smith, who had played 17 regular season games over his past three seasons, agreed to a vastly reworked contract last spring, converting millions in base salary to incentives. He only appeared in 13 games, so not all of those incentives were met, but he did prove once again to be a top-flight left tackle. PFF graded him as a top-five tackle on the back of the No. 1 pass-blocking grade at his position. ESPN charted him with a top-five run-blocking win rate as well. At 33 years old, Smith’s market value should be capped, likely allowing the Cowboys to bring him back on a short-term deal.

Denver Broncos

C Lloyd Cushenberry

Cushenberry was an underwhelming draft pick for the majority of his rookie deal, functioning as a serviceable pass-blocker while struggling on running plays. He turned things around in the final year of his contract, putting together a career season in both aspects of his game. Cushenberry ranked as the No. 11 pass-blocking interior lineman in both PFF’s pass-blocking grades and ESPN’s pass-blocking win rate. He also improved drastically as a run-blocker. Cushenberry isn’t a candidate for a franchise tag, so he will likely get the chance to explore the open market. His success during his first year in Sean Payton’s offense should encourage both sides to agree to a new deal, even if Cushenberry gets other offers.

Detroit Lions

LG Jonah Jackson

The Lions have a number of decisions to make across their offensive line this offseason. PFF graded Jackson as the No. 34 guard in 2023 and has yet to give him an overall grade over 70 in a season. He also missed five regular season games and the Lions’ postseason finale because of injuries. Fellow interior offensive linemen Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Graham Glasgow are also free agents. Glasgow put together a strong season after a few middling years in Denver. He also started at least one game at both guard spots and center. Injuries have derailed Vaitai’s career and he would likely return as a backup. Glasgow is a good bet to return to Detroit while Jackson’s future with the Lions depends on what kind of offers he receives from other teams.

Green Bay Packers

RB AJ Dillon

Green Bay has the luxury of having very few notable free agents this offseason. Even Dillon is more interesting for his impact on the fantasy landscape than his contributions to the offense. He ranked near the bottom of the league in Next Gen Stats’ rush yards over expected and success rate. Despite this, Dillon handled 178 carries and 22 receptions while Aaron Jones nursed a hamstring issue throughout the year. Should the Packers let him walk, Jones will have a path to a three-down role or another back could swoop in for the valuable 1B role in Green Bay.

Houston Texans

EDGE Jonathan Greenard

The Texans are loaded with cap space and have some of their biggest names on rookie contracts for 2024 and beyond. This should make it easy for them to keep any of their free agents. Greenard’s 12.5 sacks led Houston’s defense to the 12th-highest sack rate in 2023. The breakout season will earn him a lucrative contract, but the Texans will have no issues keeping him in town if they want to do so.

Indianapolis Colts

WR Michael Pittman

The Colts tagged Jonathan Taylor last year with disastrous results. He appeared to be holding out with a phantom injury and the team then had him start the season on the PUP list. They ultimately caved to his demands and paid him a three-year, $42 million contract. GM Chris Ballard will want to avoid a similar situation, though it doesn’t sound like Pittman is against the idea of playing on the tag if the two sides can’t come to an agreement.

Pittman earned a massive payday with 109 receptions and 1,152 yards despite the Indy’s injury-based rotation at quarterback. With Anthony Richardson on a rookie contract for at least three more seasons, the Colts shouldn’t be afraid to spend money right now. Locking down Pittman long-term would be a great allocation of funds.

Jacksonville Jaguars

EDGE Josh Allen

Allen followed up a 10.5-sack rookie season with three straight years with fewer than eight sacks. The Jags still chose to pick up his fifth-year option for 2023. In a make-or-break year for the outlook of his second contract, Allen exploded with 17.5 takedowns plus another 17 TFLs. Those numbers are now the all-time record and second-best mark in a single season for a Jaguar.

Allen isn’t going anywhere this offseason. The Jags still need to pay Ridley—or replace him—and Trevor Lawrence is due for an extension in the next year, but Allen played too well for the Jags to let him hit the open market. He will either agree to a top-notch extension or be franchise tagged this offseason.

Kansas City Chiefs

DT Chris Jones

Fellow defender L’Jarius Sneed could have also been put here, but it’s hard to opt against including one of the league’s best interior pass-rushers on this list. Jones held out into the season last year, missing one game as a result. He only got a one-year contract out of the ordeal and is again a free agent. The Chiefs aren’t flush with cap space, but they are beginning the offseason with just over $15.2 million to work with before making any cuts or restructures. Jones has already publicly and loudly stated his desire to come back.

It’s hard to see a scenario in which the two sides don’t come to an agreement at this point.

Las Vegas Raiders

RB Josh Jacobs

The Raiders assigned Jacobs the franchise tag last year and 2022’s rushing leader chose to hold out into training camp. The team upped his salary with a one-year, $12 million contract just before the start of the season and he returned from his holdout prior to Week 1. He put together a disappointing year with 806 rushing yards and six scores in 13 games. Though the team almost certainly wants him back, a rebuilding Raiders franchise may at least let Jacobs test the waters of free agency.

Los Angeles Chargers

RB Austin Ekeler

The Chargers don’t have a lot of big-name free agents. Most of their notable departures this offseason will come from cuts for cap purposes or trades.

You can read more about their potential cap casualties here.

Ekeler was granted permission to find a trade partner last offseason after unsuccessfully lobbying for a new contract. No takers were found and the Chargers juiced his deal with some incentives that he doesn’t appear to have reached.

Via The Athletic’s Daniel Popper, Ekeler has already said his goodbyes in LA, saying, “I’m not going to be with these guys anymore, and it’s one of those journeys that I’ll always remember.” It’s hard to imagine there being much of a market for Ekeler beyond a team-friendly, one or two-year deal. He finished 2023 ranked 36th in rush yards over expected per carry and 38th in success rate. His receiving numbers also took a notable hit.

Los Angeles Rams

RG Kevin Dotson

The Steelers traded Dotson to LA for pennies after three mediocre seasons at left guard. Sean McVay moved him to right guard and Dotson immediately looked like a new player. He made massive strides as a run-blocker and even though his pass-blocking numbers took a hit, that was arguably offset by a drastic reduction in penalties. He was only penalized twice a year after finishing second among all interior linemen in penalties. Dotson’s breakout greatly increased the value of his upcoming contract, but the Rams are in a better spot financially this offseason than they have been in years past. If they want to bring Dotson back, they have the money to do so.

Miami Dolphins

DT Christian Wilkins

Currently sitting over $51 million dollars above the cap, the Dolphins have several difficult decisions ahead of them this offseason. They have some avenues to get under the cap including cutting defensive lineman Emmanuel Ogbah, but Wilkins is going to command a hefty contract on the open market. He finished top-five among defensive tackles in sacks and top-10 in pressures. If a long-term deal isn’t in the cards, Miami could tag Wilkins and let him play on the one-year deal or trade him once tagged.

Minnesota Vikings

QB Kirk Cousins

The Vikings have flirted with moving on from Cousins for years and may finally be in a position to rip the Band-Aid off. The 36-year-old is coming off a torn Achilles’ and has one playoff win in six years with the team. His contract for 2024 automatically voids in March which sets a soft deadline for Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah to make a decision on a possible extension. If the Vikings want to keep Cousins in town, an extension before that void year kicks in would allow them to defuse some of his cap hit over the life of the new deal. Despite the opportunity to start fresh in 2024, it’s hard to see the Vikings pulling the ripcord on Cousins without a strong backup option. They also have little shot at landing one of the top rookie passers with the No. 11 overall pick.

New England Patriots

LT Trent Brown

Brown is one of the better free agents whose 2023 team may have no interest in re-signing. He opened the year as New England’s starting left tackle and was graded as PFF’s No. 2 tackle through seven weeks. He then suffered knee and ankle injuries in Week 8 that sidelined him for a pair of games. He returned to a rotational role, dealt with an illness down the stretch, and was a healthy scratch by the end of the year. His numbers also fell off a cliff during this downward spiral. If a team can get Brown dialed in for the 2024 season, they could have a stud left tackle for a bargain on the open market. However, the 49ers and Raiders were unable to find that version of Brown when he was on their rosters, so it will be a notable risk for any team other than the Pats to sign him.

New Orleans Saints

LT Andrus Peat

Peat has played both left tackle and left guard during his nine years in New Orleans, most recently seeing the bulk of his snaps at tackle. His play has declined in recent years with his career-best PFF grade coming all the way back in 2016. The Saints had Peat take a pay cut heading into 2023 and will likely only bring him back at a massive discount once again. They are currently $83.6 million over the cap and will be cutting corners in several spots this offseason.

New York Giants

RB Saquon Barkley

Barkley appeared on the verge of a holdout last summer after the Giants placed the franchise tag on him in lieu of a long-term contract. The two sides eventually agreed to an amended one-year contract that gave Barkley some extra money in 2023 but nothing beyond the season. The team could franchise tag him again, but that road was messy last summer and would only be worse this time around. The more likely outcome is that the Giants let Barkley test the waters of free agency with the possibility of matching any offer that comes his way. With his numbers taking a massive hit last year, it’s possible Barkley won’t receive any lucrative offers and will remain a Giant for 2024.

New York Jets

EDGE Bryce Huff

Huff was an unheralded backup for the Jets heading into the season, having just 7.5 sacks and seven starts to his name after three pro campaigns. He remained a backup in 2023, taking the field for just 42 percent of the Jets’ defensive snaps while being credited with zero starts. That didn’t stop him from racking up 10 sacks and the highest pressure rate among all EDGE defenders. The Jets are tight on cap space this offseason with just $2.5 million in room before making any moves. They also have 2023 first-round pick Will McDonald waiting in the wings after playing a part-time role as a rookie. GM Joe Douglas will undoubtedly make Huff a competitive offer, but it won’t be hard for a cap-rich team to out-bid the Jets.

Philadelphia Eagles

DT Fletcher Cox

Brandon Graham is also a free agent. A year ago, the thought of losing both players in free agency would have been a nightmare. The duo combined for 18 sacks in 2022. Then, in 2023, both players saw their numbers collapse while the Eagles’ defense fell apart. They combined for eight sacks last year. Both players are Eagles lifers, so it’s hard to imagine either walking in free agency. However, the downturn in production could give GM Howie Roseman more leverage at the negotiating table.

Pittsburgh Steelers

QB Mason Rudolph…?

Starting corner Levi Wallace is the only impending free agent who played on more than 40 percent of Pittsburgh’s snaps on either side of the ball. He allowed a passer rating over 100 when targeted and 13.7 yards per catch. Wallace will only come back to Pittsburgh on a cheap deal.

Rudolph played less than Wallace but his snaps were far more impactful. Including the playoffs, Rudolph ranked 15th in EPA per dropback (min. 100 dropbacks). Kenny Pickett ranked 33rd and Mitch Trubisky, who has already been cut, ranked 42nd. Rudolph is a known commodity, but he’s at least a viable backup. Pickett, on the other hand, is purely a bet on ceiling at this point as the floor doesn’t seem to exist. The dichotomy puts GM Omar Khan in a tough spot.

San Francisco 49ers

EDGE Chase Young

Acquired at the trade deadline from Washington, Young didn’t make his first start in San Francisco until the playoffs and only managed 3.5 sacks in a dozen games with the 49ers. He even showed a stunning lack of effort on some plays including this infamous touchdown run by Jahmyr Gibbs.

Given his middling play and poor effort in the Bay Area, the 49ers will likely let him walk. The former No. 2 overall pick flashed early in the season with the Commanders and has the pedigree of an elite pass-rusher. Despite his quiet end to the season, he should earn a high-end contract on the open market.

Seattle Seahawks

DT Leonard Williams

Another mid-season acquisition, Williams was brought in to bolster the Seahawks’ pass-rush after the loss of Uchenna Nwosu. The move cost them second and fifth-round picks. Williams tallied four sacks and nine TFLs in 10 games with Seattle. The Seahawks will likely do whatever it takes to ensure their costly investment stays in town for more than just half a season.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

WR Mike Evans

Baker Mayfield may be the most important free agent for the Bucs because of the position he plays, but it also appears to be a foregone conclusion that he re-signs. His career was circling the drain before he made it to Tampa Bay and he proceeded to lead the team to a playoff berth a year after Tom Brady made it just as far.

Evans, on the other hand, is more of a wild card. He and the Bucs could not come to an agreement on a long-term extension last summer and there were even trade rumors surrounding him during the season. At 30 years old, Evans is rightfully seeking a big payday as this may be his last shot at a lucrative, multi-year contract. With Mayfield likely returning, GM Jason Licht will want to bring the band back together and get a deal done with Evans this time around.

Tennessee Titans

RB Derrick Henry

The Big Dog era in Tennessee is over as he gave a heartfelt goodbye following the Titans’ final game of the season. Though he’s undoubtedly past his prime, Henry still had juice in 2023. He ranked 17th in rush yards over expected per carry and 19th in success rate. PFF graded him as their No. 6 runner. Henry will be a clear target for contending teams with vacant backfields. The Ravens, Eagles, and Cowboys are all names to watch.

Washington Commanders

CB Kendall Fuller

Fuller quietly punched in his third career top-10 season in PFF grade among corners in 2023. His previous two elite seasons came while playing either a mix of slot and outside corner or purely slot corner. He was deployed exclusively as an outside receiver this year and broke up nine passes. Fuller also grabbed two picks and scooped up a pair of fumbles. The veteran corner has spent the bulk of his career in Washington and the Commanders have over $73 million in cap space. I expect Washington to make a more than competitive offer to keep Fuller in the fold.