Ron Rivera's goal in free agency last year was to figure out whom he could build around on his current roster and which lesser-valued, available players could thrive in expanded roles.
With March approaching and his second season in Washington off in the distance, now Rivera could very well turn his attention toward being much more aggressive in scooping up outside help.
So, with that in mind, below is a list of the top player at each position who is set to become available in a few weeks.
Before the snarky snarkers get involved, no, the franchise can't grab a bunch of the upcoming names, and yes, there are some guys about to be mentioned who make no sense for the Burgundy and Gold to pursue.
Regardless, this should give you a solid idea of what could be going down at each spot on the field and, at a few particular ones, where Washington might be eager to unfold a handful of extra dollar bills.
QB: Dak Prescott
Dallas keeps saying they intend to lock up Prescott... and then they keep not locking up Prescott.
If the respected passer somehow, some way isn't either handed a long-term deal or another franchise tag, Washington would absolutely be enticed to hand him all the money he wants. And hey, Stephen A. Smith thinks that'd be a good idea, so there's no way it'd end up poorly.
RB: Aaron Jones
Jones has been a real-life and fantasy stud of late for the Packers, but if Washington is searching for more backfield bodies, they'll likely hunt for someone at a lower price point and smaller role.
WR: Allen Robinson
The wideout class this year is oozing with talent, and Robinson headlines the group. Washington, meanwhile, headlines the group of offenses that'd be lining up for his services.
Some believe the Bears will do whatever it takes to keep him in their uniform, even if that means tagging him. However, he was fairly disgruntled in 2020, so if he can leave, expect him to.
Terry McLaurin could use a friend opposite of him, Allen. Just sayin'.
TE: Hunter Henry
Tell the next person you run into how amazing of an acquisition Logan Thomas was for the Football Team last offseason. More people need to recognize it.
Yet despite Thomas' breakout, two tight end sets are all the rage in the league, so don't count out Henry as a fit for Scott Turner's scheme.
Health questions do remain, though, and he's not the rising star he was early on in his Chargers career.
C: Corey Linsley
Chase Roullier is entrenched at center, so Linsley won't be fielding any calls from Rivera and Co.
G: Brandon Scherff
PFF has Scherff as the ninth-best overall free agent for 2021, so fans of Washington who've lost a little reverence for the guard should probably halt that as soon as possible.
The All-Pro is going to command a sizable contract, but Rivera has already indicated on a few occasions how much he appreciates Scherff's work along the interior of the line. Then there's Scherff, who's never shown any desire to join another franchise.
Sure, he could stand to be a bit more durable. That said, Scherff is a baller and, hopefully, he continues to ball with the organization that originally drafted him.
T: Trent Williams
Thanks again, Bruce Allen. You rock.
DE/EDGE: Shaquil Barrett
Bruce Arians is quite keen on retaining Barrett. Problem is, the Tampa coach is also quite keen on retaining Lavonte David, Antonio Brown, Rob Gronkowski, Leonard Fournette and Ndamukong Suh, among other pieces from his Super Bowl roster.
Barrett's blossomed since becoming a Buc. Time will tell if he opts to stick around in Florida or cash in elsewhere.
DL: Leonard Williams
Williams hasn't fully justified the sixth overall pick the Jets spent on him in 2015 — as evidenced by the Jets no longer employing him — though he has developed into a reputable run defender and did rack up 11.5 sacks with the Giants this past season.
If Rivera and Jack Del Rio didn't already have the pleasure of rolling out Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne and Matt Ioannidis and Tim Settle, then Williams would represent a tempting target.
Maybe he'll get out of the NFC East, at the very least.
LB: Lavonte David
As already mentioned, the Buccaneers would prefer to have all their studs stick around. It's just unlikely to happen.
David, their do-it-all linebacker, put on a show in the playoffs — and has put on a show basically throughout his entire time in the pros.
Earlier this week, JP Finlay predicted that Washington will be David's next home. Let's hope JP's prognosticating is better than his putting.
CB: William Jackson III
With Ronald Darby's future unclear — his one-year deal is about to expire — corner could instantly go from a somewhat well-stocked part of Washington's depth chart to one that requires reinforcements.
Because Jackson has been toiling with the Bengals since 2016, the former first-rounder isn't as popular as he should be. If Cincy doesn't act quickly in March, others will gladly take him off their hands.
S: Justin Simmons
Those familiar with the Broncos envision them franchise tagging Simmons, which they did in 2020, just to ensure he doesn't slip away. From there, negotiations can open for something more stable.
Simmons is a 27-year-old DB who'd be an asset on every defense in the sport, but by the sound of it, Denver isn't prepared to watch him patrol a different secondary.