Baltimore Ravens 2023 Positional Needs

The Baltimore Ravens 2022 season was another rough outing, despite the team finishing with a 10-7 record and a playoff berth. Baltimore’s star quarterback Lamar Jackson missed the latter half of the season with an injury and the offensive struggles mounted in his absence.

The last few weeks have been tough sledding for fans and the team itself as all of their frustrations boiled over following Baltimore’s Wild Card loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. With rumors swirling about Jackson’s departure, there is little room for optimism for fans. 

Despite this, the Baltimore Ravens staff is already taking steps into rectifying their recent failures. Chiefly, the team announced Thursday afternoon they will be parting ways with maligned offensive coordinator, Greg Roman.

In addition to a new offensive coach, the Ravens have several positional needs that must be filled. The team possesses only five draft picks, so they may need to rely more heavily on free agency this time. Despite this, here are the following positional needs for the Baltimore Ravens. 

Photo Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

Baltimore Ravens Needs by Position Heading into 2023

Wide Receiver 

It’s a tale as old as time for the Baltimore Ravens. Wide receiver is a position that has the team perpetually snakebit, and is always a topic of conversation. Every off-season the Ravens seek to add receiver talent, with varying degrees of success. The team has found quality players in Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay, however, the former has struggled with injuries early in his career. 

Unfortunately for the Ravens, the free agent class of receivers isn’t stellar this year, with many of the potential additions playing past their prime in 2022. Many fans clamor for veterans like DeAndre Hopkins, but with limited draft capitol it may be a bit more difficult to trade for a player of that caliber. 

Conversely, the 2023 NFL Draft boasts several exciting receiver talents. USC’s Jordan Addison, Ohio State’s Jaxon Smith-Njigba, and UNC’s Josh Downs are three players that would be immediate upgrades on offense. With a late first-round pick, the Baltimore Ravens could be in range for either one of those players to address their needs at wide receiver. 

Cornerback

Marcus Peters and Kevon Seymour will be free agents and will be entering their age-30 seasons this year. Kyle Fuller is coming off of a knee injury and may not return in 2023, despite a promising start. Brandon Stephens and Pepe Williams have flashed in their limited playing time this past year but are not enough.  

Similar to the wid receivers, the free agency pool isn’t inspiring however the draft has far more promise. While they’re likely out of range for star players such as Christian Gonzalez or Joey Porter Jr., Baltimore could settle for someone like Devon Witherspoon or Kelee Ringo — great consolation prizes for Mike MacDonald’s defense.  

Five-Technique Defensive End

Calais Campbell is 36 years old and mulling his retirement, while Brent Urban is a free agent yet again. Both have been key parts of Baltimore’s past defensive philosophy, and a lot of what they do up front hinges on a stout five-technique. 

Urban is younger and could come back on a team-friendly minimum deal. Additionally, veterans like Dean Lowry, A’Shawn Robinson, and Matt Ioannidis would be typical Baltimore Ravens signings that would help bolster their front seven. 

As for the NFL Draft, there are quite a few players who fit the Baltimore Ravens mold at the defensive end. Tyree Wilson is the best of the bunch, while Iowa’s Lukas Van Ness is a high-upside player who could be more in their range. Conversely, later options such as Keion White from Georgia Tech or Colby Wooden could be plug-and-play starters for Baltimore. 

Offensive Guard 

A sneaky need for the Baltimore Ravens, as both Ben Powers and Trystan Colon-Castillo are set to hit free agency. Additionally, Baltimore may not feel comfortable playing former-third round pick Ben Cleveland after his struggles during camp and in the preseason. Given the free agency crop this year, Baltimore may be better off signing one of the two rather than taking a chance with a veteran past their prime. 

However, prospects such as O’Cyrus Torrence and Emil Ekiyor feel like players Baltimore could feasibly target — despite their limited picks in 2023. Torrence is often mocked in the latter half of first-round mock drafts, which is right in range for the Ravens.

Edge Rusher 

Justin Houston and Jason Pierre-Paul are both aging free agents that are not guaranteed to return to Baltimore in 2023. Former first-round pick Odafe Oweh had a sophomore slump in 2022, despite expectations. Rookie David Ojabo flashed in his limited play time, so the jury is still out if he can become the elite pass rusher the Baltimore Ravens envisioned for him. 

This isn’t as much of a pressing need for the Ravens as other positions, so signing low-risk free agents such as Clellin Ferrell, Arden Key, or Jadeveon Clowney would be smart.

The 2023 edge class is also incredibly deep, so locating a rotational pass rusher on day three is on the table as well. Names to watch for Baltimore include CMU’s Thomas Incoom, Iowa State’s Will McDonald IV or Auburn’s Eku Leota. 

Ravens Free Agency Wishlist

The Ravens are looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2021 and make a run for the Super Bowl in 2022. Targeting any of these seven free agents will help.

Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu should be a target for the Ravens in free agency
Photo Credit: Rob Carr/Getty Images

The Ravens are looking to bounce back after an injury filled year sank the team to an 8-9 record and out of the playoffs completely. With the team coming back healthy, most feel Baltimore has the talent to make a run at the Super Bowl. Free agency could be just what the Ravens need to get there.

Boasting a slew of superstars on both sides of the ball, such as quarterback Lamar Jackson and defensive back Marlon Humphrey, the Ravens are a stacked team. However, the Ravens aren’t without their weakness and will certainly use free agency to help shore up those glaring holes on the roster.

Listed below are seven free agents the Ravens could target in free agency that will help strengthen those weaknesses on both sides of the ball. It should be noted that not every player on this list is an unrestricted free agent, but are rumored to be released within the coming weeks. Let’s take a look at some potential future Ravens!

Baltimore Ravens Free Agency Wishlist

Tyrann Mathieu, S

The Ravens have been searching for a play-making safety since the departure of Hall of Famer Ed Reed. Taking several swings at the issue, the Ravens have routinely missed. High draft picks such as Matt Elam (2013) and Terrance Brooks (2014) have not panned out, and several free agent additions have only ended in failure. In fact, Baltimore is still reeling from the large contract the team gave to Earl Thomas.

Tyrann Mathieu has a chance to change that unfortunate trend. The “Honey Badger” is still playing at a high caliber and would be a tremendous asset for a Baltimore secondary that produced too few big plays last season.

The Ravens got an up close and personal look at Mathieu in a week two victory over the visiting Kansas City Chiefs. In that game, Mathieu hauled in two interceptions, returning one for a touchdown. While he certainly won’t come cheap, Mathieu would certainly be well worth the investment.

There seems to be plenty of desire by Mathieu to come to the Ravens in free agency. Combining him with the returning Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters would give Baltimore a terrifying defensive backfield.

Ryan Jensen, C

This signing is completely dependent on what the Ravens are wanting to do at center. Bradley Bozeman was phenomenal as the team’s starter in his first full year at center in the NFL. But, he is a free agent and will certainly command a substantial contract.

The Ravens also have plenty of in-house options. Patrick Mekari recently inked a 3-year extension and has shown the versatility to play every spot along the line, but may be best suited at center. Trystan Colon-Castillo has started a handful of games and while he didn’t “wow” anyone, he proved to be a solid option. Also, the 2022 NFL draft is deep with centers and the Ravens may just go that route.

However, if the Ravens want to add some nastiness to the middle of their line, they could turn to a familiar face in Ryan Jensen. A Raven from 2013-2017, Jensen signed a big contract with the Buccaneers in 2018 and earned a Pro Bowl selection in 2021.

Jensen is still a popular player in Baltimore due to his toughness and willingness to get into scraps. He would certainly be an unrelenting road grader for a Ravens team that loves to grind the ball. A team leader and respected locker room leader, Jensen may very well end up being an upgrade over Bozeman.

Trent Brown, RT

The need Baltimore has along the offensive line was made painfully obvious in a week one loss to the Raiders. The Raiders applied unrelenting pressure on Lamar Jackson, and it never let up all season long. Franchise left tackle Ronnie Stanley would miss the rest of the year after that, and the rest of the line would remain an absolute mess.

It is clear that the Ravens need to make substantial investments along the line, especially right tackle. Trent Brown could be a big target for Baltimore. Though Brown is hardly the picture of a clean bill of health himself, he has proven to be one of the best right tackles in the league when he has been on the field.

Standing at 6’8, 380 lbs, Brown is a monster of a human being who would fit in well with the type of bullying the Ravens want from their offensive linemen. While his health is certainly a concern, there is no denying that Brown can make a massive difference for an ailing Baltimore offensive line. Protecting Lamar Jackson should be top on the priority list for the Ravens in free agency. Brown would go a long way towards doing that.

Za’Darius Smith, EDGE

Though not officially a free agent as of right now, it is widely assumed that the Green Bay Packers will release Za’Darius Smith in the coming weeks due to his massive cap hit in 2022. Smith missed most of last season due to injury, appearing only in one game in 2021. The Packers may not feel Smith is worth his substantial contract.

If the Packers do indeed release Smith, expect Baltimore to be on the phone with the star pass-rusher. A 4th round pick by the Ravens in 2015, Smith signed a large contract with the Green Bay Packers in 2019, where he posted 13.5 sack and 12.5 sacks in 2019 and 2020, respectively. The Ravens have a glaring need at pass-rusher. While Baltimore did use a 1st round pick on EDGE Odafe Oweh in 2021, adding some more juice in that area can only help.

If he’s healthy, Smith can still play at a high level and would be a massive boon for his former team.

Bobby Wagner, MLB

After 10 years of outstanding production in Seattle, middle linebacker Bobby Wagner was released by the Seahawks on the 9th of March. The move saved nearly $16 million for Seattle as the Seahawks look to be in a rebuild. But Wagner’s release was not without its controversy. Players and fans of different teams alike took to social media to recruit the potential future Hall of Fame linebacker to their defense.

Though he is drawing interest from plenty of suitors, the Ravens should not hesitate acquiring the services of the eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker. The Ravens have had a need at inside linebacker for some time now. They would only benefit from an addition like Bobby Wagner.

Patrick Queen, the team’s 1st round draft pick in 2020, took major strides for Baltimore last season when he was shifted from MIKE to WILL and playing next to veteran Josh Bynes. While Queen continues to improve, having a defensive general like Wagner to command the defense will help a young linebacking corps while giving the Ravens tremendous production at the position

DJ Jones, IDL

Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta said in a recent press conference he wants the team to get younger along the defensive line. That isn’t good news for pending free agents Calais Campbell (35) and Brandon Williams (33). While Campbell played like a maniac for the Ravens last season, it is unclear if there is a willingness to bring him back.

Williams, who had a down season after being the highest paid nose tackle in 2021, will certainly hit the open market. If the Ravens are serious about replenishing the talent along the defensive line and bringing about a needed youth movement, there is one player that should quickly come to mind.

DJ Jones enjoyed a tremendous breakout season for the San Francisco 49ers in 2021. Jones (age 27) is a young and stout defensive tackle who made the most of his opportunities in 2021. Accumulating two sacks, 20 quarterback pressures and 10 tackles for a loss (the latter two being career highs), Jones earned himself a nice paycheck.

As one of the league’s most efficient interior pass rushers, Jones would be a massive addition for the Ravens. Outside of Campbell, Baltimore has lacked that true difference maker along the defensive line since Haloti Ngata. Jones can come in and add some explosiveness to the defensive front. He will certainly command a large contract — and rightfully so — but Jones is a player the Ravens should explore in free agency.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR

While the Ravens have invested plenty into the wide receiver position over the last few years, Ravens fans are still wanting more. There seems to be a missing piece in this receiving corps, and that is a deep threat who can reel in those deep passes. The Ravens have plenty of speed, but Baltimore’s inability to connect on those deep passes over the last few years has been maddening.

That is what Marquez Valdez-Scantling brings to the table. Valdez-Scantling is one of the best deep ball trackers in the NFL, averaging 17.5 yards per reception over his four-year career. Having that proven deep threat would do wonders for Lamar Jackson and Baltimore’s passing game as a whole. At 6’4, 205 lbs, Valdez-Scantling even has the added bonus of great size, as well.

Miami Dolphins Free Agency Targets

Chicago Bears offensive lineman James Daniels, a potential target for the Miami Dolphins in free agency
Photo Credit: chicagobears.com

It’s only been about seven weeks without Miami Dolphins football, but it feels like it’s been seven years. The good thing for Miami Dolphins fans is that NFL Free Agency is rapidly approaching. The Miami Dolphins holes and positional needs on this roster were made abundantly clear during the 9-8 campaign. Fortunately, many of these needs will be filled during free agency.

Team Needs

The Miami Dolphins will surely be in the market for a top-tier OL in free agency, maybe even two. Miami had a bottom-3 offensive line in 2021 and was a big part of the reason the offense struggled. The Dolphins offense finished  25th in yards per game and 24th in points per game. With new OL coach Matt Applebaum and a run-heavy offense with HC Mike McDaniel, expect GM Chris Grier to look for top-tier offensive linemen when FA opens. 

For a second straight offseason, the Dolphins will likely be looking for wide receivers. Aside from Jaylen Waddle, no WR from the Dolphins 2021 roster is a guarantee to be back. In the Dolphins new offense, guys who can make plays in space with the ball in their hands will be valued. 

The Dolphins will also look to add front-seven starters/depth pieces on defense. The linebacking corp was a weakness last year on defense, and getting a key piece next to defensive play-caller Jerome Baker would be significant.

Potential Miami Dolphins Free Agency Signings

Wide Receiver, Amari Cooper

Cooper is still under contract with the Cowboys. Fortunately, Dallas is expected release the veteran due to cap concerns.

Amari Cooper would be an huge signing for Miami for obvious reasons. He is still a big-playmaking receiver who would become an instant threat in the Dolphins offense.

A huge part of what makes Cooper’s game so special is his route-running.

The Dolphins will have to spend more money on Cooper than other WRs I’ve listed, but they have the space.

If Miami can make a hometown reunion with for Cooper, Miami’s offense will instantly look more powerful.

Wide Receiver, Juju Smith-Schuster

Juju Smith-Schuster has been a key part of the Steelers offense for the last five seasons. He is set to hit free agency for the second offseason in a row.

In five years, he’s missed a combined 18 games(more than one season). That hasn’t stopped him front putting up nearly 4,000 yards and 26 touchdowns.

What doesn’t show up on the stat sheet though is his ability to block in the run game. In a offense that will place an emphasis on running the ball, receivers who can block downfield will be a great advantage.

Smith will also be a great addition in the passing game for Miami. He can stretch the field vertically as well as make guys miss in space.

Steelers GM Kevin Colbert implied that the Steelers will try and keep Juju in Pittsburgh, but if he makes it to FA, expect Miami to be mentioned as a potential landing spot.

Wide Receiver, Byron Pringle

Pringle just finished his fourth season with the Chiefs and is expected to hit the open market. Pringle, like Wilson, is the perfect fit for the Dolphins offense.

The way Pringle can move with the ball in his hands in traffic is incredible. In an offense that will feature quick passes to receivers in space, Pringle’s skill set would be perfect.

According to Hussam Patel on the Donna Daily podcast, the Dolphins are interested in Wilson Jr. and Pringle and view both as an “Albert Wilson type” player.

Similar to Wilson Jr., Miami should not have to break the bank for Pringle. 

Center/Guard, James Daniels

The offensive line is clearly Miami’s biggest need. It was the downfall of the offense last year and will be key in Mike McDaniel’s run-heavy offense. Daniels, who spent his first four seasons in Chicago, has shown he can play multiple positions on the OL. 

During his rookie campaign, Daniels started nine games at left guard and one game at right guard. In 2019, Daniels split time between guard and center. 

Daniels has had an under-the-radar yet impressive career so far. In four seasons, he’s allowed just four sacks and only has five penalties. 

The Dolphins OL struggled significantly against stunts last season.

While using his experience at three out of five OL positions, Daniels has become elite at picking up stunts.

In the video above, Daniels picks up a stunt and takes on Aaron Donald one-on-one.

Clearly, he can do similar things at left guard. In an offense that expects to run the ball a lot, linemen who can get to the next level are a necessity. Daniels’ ability to block upfield would be a huge addition for the Dolphins. Miami could likely get Daniels in the $10M/year range.

Guard, Brandon Scherff

Scherff will probably cost Miami more money. Scherff has spent seven seasons in the league, all in Washington. Almost all of his time has been spent at right guard. Scherff is clearly a top guard in the game and has the accolades to prove it. He’s a five-time Pro Bowler and was voted First-team All-Pro in 2020. 

Although Scherff is a star guard who has established himself at the top of his position in this league, there are a few reasons Miami may shy away from him.

Scherff was moved to RG during his rookie offseason because of his strength and ability to handle bull rushes. Miami currently has Robert Hunt at right guard. Hunt played solid football down the stretch last season, and it would not be surprising to see him get a shot there this season. There will be movement along the OL this offseason, so it will depend on whether the Dolphins feel that Hunt or Scherff can play another position or whether Hunt is just not the answer at RG. 

There’s also the money issue. Miami has a plethora of cap space, but Brandon Scherff will not be cheap. After playing last season on the franchise tag at over $18  million, Scherff is probably looking for one of his final big deals like Terron Armstead.

Whether or not he will be in South Florida next season will depend on numerous factors, but he is a name Dolphins fans should keep an eye on. 

Linebacker, Rashaan Evans

The Dolphins were considered a landing spot for Evans in the 2018 NFL Draft, but they elected to select Evans’ Alabama teammate, Minkah Fitzpatrick. Evans has had a somewhat underwhelming career thus far in Tennessee but has significant potential. 

Miami will be thin at linebacker this offseason with Vince Biegel and Elandon Roberts set to hit free agency and will need to add veteran pieces to the middle of the defense. 

Evans is an aggressive linebacker who can make tackles in the open field, stuff run gaps, and play coverage when needed. A versatile linebacker will thrive in the Miami defense.

Evans will be a low-risk high-reward free agent and will likely generate lots of traction if his asking price is right.

Potential Miami Dolphins Free Agency Re-signings

Aside from the obvious potential re-signings like Emmanuel Ogbah or Mike Gesicki, there are a few other Miami Dolphins that Chris Grier should try and bring back in free agency for the 2022 season.

Wide Receiver, Mack Hollins

In 2020, Mack Hollins showed flashes of potential at the depleted WR position; however, he proved to be inconsistent and was not a reliable piece at the position. He was brought back last season and showed incredible improvement. He became a solid option in the passing game and was a dog on special teams.

Hollins is highly respected in the locker room. The leadership and passion he brings to the squad is second to none.

Bringing Hollins back on the right price tag is something the Dolphins seriously should and will consider.

Running Back, Duke Johnson

The Dolphins RB room has been a cause for concern for the past few years. The lack of run game can partially be attributed to a lackluster offensive line, but also due to a lack of experience and/or talent.

Johnson, who was drafted in 2015, joined the Dolphins in late October and got his first start in a home game in December. Johnson broke out for over 100-yards and two touchdowns. 

He is a hard-runner and has the ability to hit holes and make guys miss in the open field. 

He clearly also has the ability to be a threat in the passing game. Johnson will find himself a nice role in a Mike McDaniel offense should Miami decide to re-sign him.

Johnson’s asking price should not be unreasonable, and he may even take a hometown discount to stay in Miami, where he was born, raised, and attended college.

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MLB Free Agent Predictions

MLB free agent
via ClutchPoints

The 2021 Major League Season has concluded with the Atlanta Braves winning their first title since 1995. Now, it’s time for all 30 teams to strategize and figure out their needs during a hectic offseason. Below are my top 25 MLB free agent predictions this offseason. 

  1. Carlos Correa – SS: There is not a better MLB Free Agent available on the market than Correa. He is in line for a huge payday that will likely lead him away from the Astros. As of last night, the Astros have offered him a five-year contract worth $160 Million. Aside from the Astros, other teams that are showing interest include the Rangers, Tigers, Twins, and Yankees.

    Prediction: Detroit Tigers sign Correa to 10 years, $310 Million

  2. Corey Seager – SS: This free agent class is the year of the Shortstops and Seager is next on that list. When healthy, he is another one of the premier Shortstops in Baseball but that’s his only issue – staying healthy. Still, for his production and impact on your team, he is most certainly worth the money.

    Prediction: New York Yankees sign Seager to 7 years, $240 Million

  3. Kris Bryant – 3B: There are no questions about it – the Giants will be aggressive this offseason and will try to re-sign Bryant. The issue is, they will not be the only ones aggressive in signing Bryant. He will be patient in the signing process but will have no shortage of suitors no matter how long he takes.

    Prediction: Texas Rangers sign Bryant to 7 years, $260 Million


  4. Trevor Story – SS: One of the more underrated Shortstops in the game, Story had another excellent year in Colorado. Story is from Irving, TX and all signs point towards the Rangers and Astros. With the Rangers predicted to get Bryant, it’ll be interesting to see if they sign Story as well.

    Prediction: Houston Astros sign Story to 6 years, $180 Million


  5. Max Scherzer – SP: In terms of length, Scherzer will not get the best deal due to his age but he will certainly get a nice AAV. Scherzer posted a sub-1.00 ERA down the stretch and proved to be a high-level player. Rumor is Mike Trout is convincing the Angels to go after Scherzer hard.

    Prediction: Los Angeles Angels sign Max Scherzer to 3 years, $120 Million

  6. Robbie Ray – SP: The likely Cy Young winner is on the market in Robbie Ray. He bounced back in a big way and almost helped lead Toronto to the playoffs. The Blue Jays will have some serious competition for Ray.

    Prediction: San Francisco Giants sign Robbie Ray to 5 years, $125 Million

  7. Freddie Freeman – 1B: The star of the World Champion Braves, this is one free agent staying home for sure. He deserves the big payday he is due and will most certainly receive that.

    Prediction: Atlanta Braves re-sign Freddie Freeman to 5 years, $130 Million

  8. Clayton Kershaw – SP: Dodgers didn’t extend a QO to Kershaw, but don’t worry he will be back in L.A.

    Prediction: Los Angeles Dodgers re-sign Clayton Kershaw to 2 years, $80 Million

  9. Marcus Semien – SS/2B: After a rough pandemic year, Semien bounced back big with 45 Homers in 2021. Semien’s ability to play both middle-infield spots and offensive prowess will be valuable to any team interested in him.

    Prediction: San Francisco Giants sign Marcus Semien to 5 years, $120 Million

  10. Kevin Gausman – SP: After struggling to start out his career, Gausman bounced back in a nice way for the Giants. He’s in the running for the NL Cy Young award which should reward him with a big payday.

    Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies sign Kevin Gausman to 4 years, $90 Million

  11. Marcus Stroman – SP: Stroman received a qualifying offer from the Mets and capitalized big time. His best year yet, Stroman should be a top priority for the Mets this offseason.

    Prediction: New York Mets re-sign Marcus Stroman to 4 years, $85 Million

  12. Javier Baez – SS/2B: Led the league in strikeouts but still had a nice slash line down the stretch in New York. Baez and Lindor would like to play together, and I think the Mets make that happen.

    Prediction: New York Mets re-sign Javier Baez to 4 years, $88 Million

  13. Nick Castellanos – OF/DH: Castellanos opted out of his remaining deal with the Reds in hopes of a big contract. His defense leaves a lot to desire but his bat is one of the best in the league, making him a better fit in the AL.

    Prediction: Texas Rangers sign Nick Castellanos to 4 years, $80 Million

  14. Starling Marte – OF: Started the season on the IL but ended up with a nice slash line and led the league in stolen bases. Despite his age, can still make a high-level impact on a contender.

    Prediction: Boston Red Sox sign Starling Marte to 3 years, $65 Million

  15. Noah Syndergaard – SP: He’s pitched two games in the past two seasons due to Tommy John surgery. There are questions surrounding his value but no doubts about his talent.

    Prediction: New York Mets re-sign Noah Syndergaard with Qualifying offer

  16. Kyle Schwarber – OF/1B/DH: Having one of his better seasons yet, Schwarber played himself to a multi-year deal. He is limited in terms of position, with his best fit being at DH. Maybe we see universal DH come into effect sometime in the near-future.

    Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies sign Kyle Schwarber to 3 years, $60 Million

  17. Carlos Rodon – SP: After being non-tendered last offseason, Rodon bounced back in a big way and pitched himself into the Cy Young conversation. Unfortunately, his injury history knocks him down his list as he dealt with arm fatigue down the stretch in 2021.

    Prediction: Chicago White Sox re-sign Carlos Rodon to 2 years, $34 Million

  18. Justin Verlander – SP: Recovered now from Tommy John Surgery, Verlander is ready to pitch after missing all of 2021. There will still be plenty of suitors looking to add the veteran righty to bolster their rotation.

    Prediction: Detroit Tigers sign Justin Verlander to 2 years, $40 Million

  19. Chris Taylor – UTIL: A very Ben Zobrist-like player, Taylor provides a ton of value as a Utility guy. He had an outstanding postseason once again and is in line to get nice contract for once.

    Prediction: Toronto Blue Jays sign Chris Taylor to 4 years, $52 Million

  20. Michael Conforto – OF: After a down 2021, it’ll be interesting to see what Conforto’s market will look like. Once rumored to be a $100+ Million player, Conforto’s value plummeted. He is still one of the better fielders in the Outfield and has a ton of talent in his bat.

    Prediction: New York Mets re-sign Michael Conforto with Qualifying offer

  21. Anthony Rizzo – 1B: Rizzo didn’t have his traditional year on Offense, but he still produced well enough and offers you consistency in his health. He wants to be back in Pinstripes next year, according to a family member close to him.

    Prediction: New York Yankees sign Anthony Rizzo to 2 years, $26 Million

  22. Brandon Belt – 1B: If Belt were to leave the Giants it would be a huge surprise.

    Prediction: San Francisco Giants re-sign Brandon Belt to 2 years, $24 Million

  23. Raisel Iglesias – RP: He’s been one of the better relievers in Baseball over the past couple years. The Angels could obviously use him and will want him back but Iglesias will have a lot of interest.

    Prediction: Seattle Mariners sign Raisel Iglesias to 3 years, $30 Million

  24. Kenley Jansen – RP/CL: Jansen bounced back in a big way in 2021 after struggling for a couple years. He is still one of the more dependable Closers in Baseball and will be a suitor for contenders around the league.

    Prediction: Los Angeles Angels sign Kenley Jansen to 2 years, $30 Million


  25. Jon Gray – SP: The Rockies didn’t extend a Qualifying offer to Gray, making him an immediate free agent. Gray has a lot of talent who was in a bad situation in Colorado. He won’t be costly so he will be sure to have a good bit of interest.

    Prediction: Washington Nationals sign Jon Gray to 3 years, $33 Million


Others who missed cut:

  • Nelson Cruz – DH: Seattle Mariners sign Nelson Cruz to 1 year, $11 Million
  • Eduardo Rodriguez – SP: Boston Red Sox re-sign Eduardo Rodriguez to 3 years, $27 Million
  • Eddie Rosario – UTIL: Atlanta Braves re-sign Eddie Rosario to 2 years, $14 Million
  • Kyle Seager – 3B: New York Yankees sign Kyle Seager to 2 years, $10 Million
  • Avisail Garcia – OF: Seattle Mariners sign Avisail Garcia to 2 years, $14 Million
  • Seiya Suzuki – OF: Chicago Cubs sign Seiya Suzuki to 2 years, $10 Million

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Mock Packers Off-Season 1.0

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Even though the 2021 NFL Season just started, it is never too early to talk about the offseason. Here is a mock Packers off-season for your reading pleasure.

Most of us know that teams do this stuff all through out the season. They work many different scenarios to prepare themselves for the offseason and also to work out their plan A, B, C, etc… Now obviously these change throughout the season due to injuries, trades, resigning’s, etc… So I will periodically update this through out the season and the coming off season to give you guys an idea of what the Packers are probably planning. Its too soon to go through the probably 50 plans they have right now so I will just go over what I think are the top two.

The cap numbers I will present in this article are not exact. They are ball park/rounding up or down. This is just to give an idea what the plan could be. I did use cap numbers from overthecap.com. You could also look up Ken Ingallas on twitter at twitter.com/keningalls

Heading into the 2022 season the Packers are projected to be about 40 million over the cap. So to get under here are the moves I feel the Packers will do.

Trades:

Trade Aaron Rodgers post 6/1. This will give them a cap relief of about 27 million.

Cuts:

Preston Smith pre June 1 which saves 7.25 million. Billy Turner post June 1 which nets them another 3.14 million. Kevin King post June 1 as well, which saves them another 750k. Marcedes Lewis which saves 2.08 million. Dean Lowry which takes off another 2.1 million and Randall Cobb which saves about 2.8 million.

Extentions:

I feel the Packers will extend Jaire Alexander, Adrian Amos, and Za’Darius Smith to the maximum salary cap savings for 2022, than take a big hit on ’23 and ’24 when the cap is expected to go up a lot. The most they can save on Z is 12.2, Jaire would be 10.64, and Amos would be 6 million.

Free Agents:

I feel in this scenario they let Issac Yiadom, Tyler Lancaster, MVS, Lucas Patrick, Oren Burks, De’Vondre Campbell(he is technically under contract), Dennis Kelly, Robert Tonyan, Will Redmond.

They resign Davante Adams, Allen Lazard(who is a restricted free agent) and any other lower tier free agents and or restricted free agents like Bojorquez, Nijman, Malik Taylor, Dafney, Black, etc…

Before those signings they would have about 26 million in cap space, which seems like a decent amount; but its not. You need space for your draft class, undrafted free agents, your practice squad, and any restricted free agents as well. You also want to leave yourself a few million of space in season in case you need to sign a free agent due to injuries or move a few guys up from the PS to the active roster. Davante and Lazard would take up most of the space. There would probably be a few million let to sign one or two lower tier free agents like a Dennis Kelly or De’Vondre Campbell level player. They would not have the space to sign Tonyan or MVS unless they did more restructuring.

Draft:

With that being the roster entering the draft this would be how I would think Gutekunst would approach the draft.

29. Zion Nelson, OT, Miami-Fl

Right tackle of the future. His style of player. Young, athletic with tons of upside. Could move to left tackle down the line.

61. Deslin Alexandre, DT, Pittsburgh

Clark needs more help. Slaton helps against the run. They need more help getting after the QB.

93. George Pickens, WR, Georgia

Pickens is MVS’ replacement. He’s not not as purely physically talented, but he has higher upside. Way better hands. He needs a lot of work on his release package. Perfect guy to learn from in Adams. If he develops he’s a #1 receiver.

129.Charlie Kolar, TE, Iowa State

Replacement for Tonyan. Similar skill set. Great hands. OK blocker. Good route runner. Decent athlete.

161. Amari Gainer, LB, Florida State

Athletic freak to replace Campbell as the weakside backer. He could be the dime backer by year two.

196. Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State

Perfect fit for the star spot. He can play inside, outside, safety, defend the run, can even blitz a little. Has good size too. Like a poor mans Charles Woodson.

224. Zamir White, RB, Georgia

Freakish explosion. Could return kicks and is just a value pick.

Second option:

Everything is the same as above but Davante walks and they resign both Lazard and MVS.

28. George Pickens, WR, Georgia

Lazard and MVS are both great #2/#3 receivers but neither is a true #1. This mock draft didn’t fall the way the last one did. Receivers went a lot earlier.

60.Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT, Ohio State

Similar to Nelson. Athletic freak with tons of upside. Last year was his first as a starter.

92. Amari Gainer, LB, Florida State

Same as above

130. Arnold Ebiketie, EDGE, Penn State

another athletic freak with upside. Packers will need a 3rd pass rusher.

135. Bubba Bolden, S, Miami

Packers finally get their 3rd safety. High RAS guy. Lots of upside, still a bit inconsistent.

170. LaRon Stokes, IDL, Oklahoma

Similar to Alexandre. a DL to help with the pass rush.

206. Jammie Robinson, CB, Florida State

South Carolina transfer that has upside.

219. Trey McBride, TE, Colorado State

Blocking TE with some receiving upside to replace Marcedes.

248. Zacch Pickens, IDL, South Carolina

Another DL with upside