Advertisement

Most notable free agent from each NFL team who remains unsigned in 2023

We’ve reached the dead portion of the 2023 NFL offseason, where teams are wrapping up their offseason programs with mandatory minicamp before breaking for the summer.

As teams ready their training camp rosters, there are still some notable free agents on the open market who could help shore up positions of need. That includes wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney, kicker Robbie Gould and (unofficially) running back Dalvin Cook.

Our NFL Wire editors identified the most notable free agent from each NFL team who remains unsigned (at the time of publication) ahead of training camp.

Arizona Cardinals: WR DeAndre Hopkins

Hopkins is one of the best receivers in the game still even having missed 15 games the last two seasons between injuries and a six-game PED suspension. His skill is unquestioned. His contract demands are what are keeping him unsigned, as he is seeking at least as much as Odell Beckham Jr. got from the Ravens. In nine games  last season, he caught 64 passes for 717 yards and three scores. Jess Root, Cards Wire

Atlanta Falcons: LB Rashaan Evans

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons used free agency to add some much-needed talent to all three levels of their defense, but the team’s leading tackler from last season remains unsigned. Rashaan Evans started all 17 games at inside linebacker for Atlanta in 2022, finishing with 110 solo tackles, two sacks, two fumble recoveries and four passes defended. However, the former first-round pick has struggled in pass coverage over his five-year NFL career and he may not be a great fit in defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen’s scheme. If the Falcons choose not to bring back Evans, they still have Mykal Walker under contract and the team drafted Troy Andersen in the second round last year. – Matt Urben, Falcons Wire

Baltimore Ravens: CB Marcus Peters

Peters has long-been one of the better cornerbacks in the NFL, and has been a seamless fit in Baltimore ever since being acquired in 2019 by the Ravens. However, he suffered a torn ACL before the 2021 season began, and struggled after coming back from the injury in 2022. There’s still a chance that Peters is brought back by the team as a depth option, but that possibility is looking less and less likely with each day that passes by. Baltimore still has questions in their cornerback room, and time will tell if they feel like Peters can answer them or if the veteran moves on to another team. – Kevin Oestreicher, Ravens Wire

Buffalo Bills: OL Rodger Saffold

Saffold is a bit of an anomaly of a free agent. He signed a one-year deal in Buffalo last offseason and started every game at left guard last season. On top of that, he earned his first Pro Bowl nod. All considered, no one is all that surprised Saffold isn’t back in Buffalo. Pro Football Focus graded Saffold a brutal 43.7 overall mark in 2022. His run blocking was particularly bad. Still, it is a bit of a surprise he’s not getting another one-year deal elsewhere. The lone thing keeping him on the sideline is likely his age of 35. – Nick Wojton, Bills Wire

Carolina Panthers: DL Matt Ioannidis

The most productive ball of Ioannidis’ seven-year career came between 2018 and 2019, when he ran in a 3-4 base for Washington. Those two seasons saw the 6-foot-3, 310-pounder notch 16.0 sacks and 91 pressures while playing primarily as a defensive end. So you’d think, with Carolina’s recent transition to the three-man front, he would’ve been brought back by the organization. Alas, that’s not been the case. Ioannidis, however, can still get after it in any alignment—as he proved to be a solid and consistent interior presence for the Panthers in 2022. – Anthony Rizzuti, Panthers Wire

Chicago Bears: S DeAndre Houston-Carson

The Bears’ top free agents are long gone, but there’s still a notable name in Houston-Carson who’s still on the open market. Houston-Carson has been a mainstay on Chicago’s roster since he was drafted in the sixth round in 2016. While Houston-Carson has served in a reserve role, he’s been a key special teams contributor who’s shown the ability to step in at safety when needed. While Houston-Carson is 30 years old, he’s shown no signs of slowing down. While many expected the Bears to re-sign him to another one-year deal, it looks like a top special teams leader and depth piece could find a new home. – Alyssa Barbieri, Bears Wire

Cincinnati Bengals: CB Eli Apple

Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Apple gets clowned on social media and doesn’t help his case in that regard at times, but he’s been low-key great for the Bengals. Over the last two seasons, he’s turned his career around while stepping in for injured No. 1 corners when he was supposed to be the fourth option at best. Quarterbacks targeted him often as a result, yet had a sub-60 completion percentage going after him for 79 targets last year. There might be a stigma that Apple can only make this happen in Lou Anarumo’s defense that has kept his market quiet, but the Bengals should probably still be interested in bringing him back after losing key secondary veterans such as Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell. – Chris Roling, Bengals Wire

Cleveland Browns: DE Jadeveon Clowney

Former first overall pick Jadeveon Clowney is notorious for waiting until training camp rolls around to sign anywhere, so this is not necessarily a surprise. However, after his tumultuous ending in Cleveland (where he leaked quotes of unhappiness), his time with the Browns is over. Clowney has never turned into a consistent presence off the edge as a pass rusher, but has had spurts of high pressure numbers. He can, however, still provide a rock solid body in run support who sets a strong edge and can force action back inside. – Cory Kinnan, Browns Wire

Dallas Cowboys: RB Ezekiel Elliott

After being the face of the franchise from the moment he was drafted, it’s still a little surprising to see Elliott available. Ranking third in franchise history in both rushing yards (8,042) and rushing TDs (60), Elliott still has the same yards per carry average as Tony Dorsett (4.4) which is higher than Emmitt Smith’s (4.2). Weight added to withstand the pounding the Cowboys were putting on him in his early seasons robbed him of his long speed and lower-body injuries have had an impact as well. Now regarded as a short-yardage specialist, Elliott is still elite in his ability to escape the backfield and get the dirty yards. At some point teams will pick up the phone but one has to wonder if the delay is related to his dominant presence. Could the Cowboys be waiting for Tony Pollar to entrench himself as the position group’s leader before bringing Elliott back for a lesser role? K.D. Drummond, Cowboys Wire

Denver Broncos: G Dalton Risner

Risner (27) was a four-year starter for the Broncos from 2019-2022, only missing four games due to injury. In 62 career starts, the guard has been penalized seven times and allowed 10.5 sacks, according to STATS LLC. While his numbers don’t jump off the screen, Risner is still a starting-caliber guard who could provide excellent depth and competition if nothing else. He also has experience at center and even at tackle, but Risner is best-suited to play as an interior offensive lineman. Risner and his agent likely miscalculated the guard’s market value early in free agency and he might now have to settle for a one-year prove-it deal and then hope to get a better deal in 2024. – Jon Heath, Broncos Wire 

Detroit Lions: OL Dan Skipper

The Lions don’t have a single player from the 2022 roster listed amongst the top 200 available free agents at Pro Football Focus. Out of the slim pickings, Skipper is the most useful unsigned ex-Lion. At 6-foot-10, he’s got length and decent athleticism, as well as experience filling in at both guard and tackle. Skipper is at his best as a depth tackle who can contribute as an extra lineman in six-man OL formations. – Jeff Risdon, Lions Wire

Green Bay Packers: S Adrian Amos

Amos, who turned 30 years old last month, played in all 66 regular-season games for the Packers over the last four seasons and was a captain for Matt LaFleur’s team in 2022. While he took a step back in coverage last season, Amos is still one of the more reliable and versatile safeties in football. He’s played at least 900 defensive snaps in seven of his eight NFL seasons. Was his struggles in coverage in 2022 an aberration, and just part of the overall dysfunction of the Packers defense? A team in need of a safety should attempt to find out. The Packers haven’t closed the door on his return, but Amos is likely to be playing elsewhere in 2023. – Zach Kruse, Packers Wire

Houston Texans: C Pat Elflein

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Adding the former Carolina Panther would give the Texans a veteran with versatility. Elflein started 28 games for the Minnesota Vikings at center from 2017-20, and has logged 36 starts at guard between the Vikings, New York Jets, and Panthers. Elflein could push veterans Scott Quessenberry, Michael Deiter, and Jimmy Morrissey for the job while also giving effective competition for rookies Juice Scruggs and Jarrett Patterson. The 28-year-old will help the Texans determine, not only their starting center, but also what combination of interior linemen provides the most effective versatility on game days. – Mark Lane, Texans Wire

Indianapolis Colts: DE Yannick Ngakoue

The 28-year-old has played for five different teams over the course of the last four seasons and is easily the biggest name on the market from the 2022 Colts roster. Despite leading the defense with 9.5 sacks during a tumultuous campaign, Ngakoue remains unsigned. His 11% pass-rush win rate (PFF) ranked 50th among all edge rushers and is a better indicator of the type of season he had with the Colts. Ngakoue is a solid player, and he still has some juice running the arc as a speed rusher. But he may be better suited as a rotational, sub-package edge rusher than a starter at this point in his career. – Kevin Hickey, Colts Wire

Jacksonville Jaguars: DE Dawuane Smoot

Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union
Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union

Smoot has never been a star for the Jaguars defense, but he’s as consistent and reliable as it gets. In each of his last four seasons, he’s finished with exactly five to six sacks. Smoot was the Jaguars’ leader in sacks last year when an Achilles tear in December ended his season. That injury has also complicated Smoot’s return. A reunion with the Jaguars appears likely, but the team may wait a little longer to see how the recovery is coming along for the veteran pass rusher. – Adam Stites, Jaguars Wire

Kansas City Chiefs: DE Carlos Dunlap

A free agent acquisition by Kansas City in 2022, Dunlap played a pivotal role in the Chiefs’ D-Line rotation last season. He accumulated 32 total tackles, 12 QB hits, four sacks and also eight passes batted down at the line of scrimmage in 17 regular season appearances. Dunlap chose to join the Chiefs as a free agent to accomplish three goals – get over 100 career sacks, win a playoff game and win a Super Bowl. He accomplished all of those things and he may choose to walk off into the sunset instead of joining another club. – Charles Goldman, Chiefs Wire

Las Vegas Raiders: FS Duron Harmon

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

For the sixth season in a row, FS Duron Harmon recorded multiple interceptions in a season. He had a 75-yard pick-six against the Texans last season and was a welcomed addition to the secondary of the Raiders. However, Harmon turned 32 this year and has lost a bit of his athleticism. While he is still a ballhawk (23 career interceptions), teams might be worried about some of his tackling woes at this stage of his career. – Marcus Mosher, Raiders Wire

Los Angeles Chargers: LB Kyle Van Noy

Van Noy was signed to a one-year deal last offseason. When Kenneth Murray was working his way back from offseason ankle surgery, Van Noy played inside linebacker. He was then deployed as an interior blitzer and was also rushing off the edge and playing in coverage. When Joey Bosa suffered his groin injury, Van Noy became a starting edge defender and played exceptionally well, going on to post a sack in five consecutive games. The 32-year-old Van Noy showed that he still has juice in the tank to contribute, and his leadership, championship pedigree and versatility should be appealing assets. – Gavino Borquez, Chargers Wire

Los Angeles Rams: CB Troy Hill

It was surprising that Leonard Floyd remained a free agent as long as he did before signing with the Bills this week, but Hill is another player who wasn’t expected to be unsigned this long. He’s still on the market after starting 12 games for the Rams last season and 55 in his career, providing versatility in the secondary as a slot defender or boundary corner. Hill had an up-and-down 2022 season and will turn 32 before Week 1, so teams could be deterred by that combination of regression and age. But he still deserves to be on a 53-man roster this year. – Cameron DaSilva, Rams Wire

Miami Dolphins: LB Melvin Ingram

Dolphins general manager Chris Grier has had an active offseason, which included making decisions on over 30 players from the 2022 roster that were expected to hit the market. After nearly three months since free agency opened, Miami’s top free agent still available is veteran linebacker Melvin Ingram. The 34-year-old played 44.8% of the team’s defensive snaps last year, even earning Defensive Player of the Month honors. However, his production seemed to dip toward the end of the season, as in the final five games, he recorded just two tackles and no sacks. Ingram, despite his age, can absolutely still play a valuable rotational role for a contender. If Miami has someone go down on the edge, and Ingram is available, a call could certainly be made. – Mike Masala, Dolphins Wire

Minnesota Vikings: RB Dalvin Cook

Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports
Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

At the time of publishing, Cook is not yet a free agent. According to multiple reports, the Vikings have informed Cook that he will be released, but they will make one last effort to trade him. Despite having good counting stats like yards and touchdowns, his underlying metrics were not great. He finished 36th/36 in rush yards over expected, 36th/42 in DYAR and 33rd in PFF rushing grade. What was more alarming was that 32% of his carries went for a yard or less. There is still some juice to squeeze out of the career of Cook, but not for the $14.1 million cap hit he was due in Minnesota for the 2023 season. – Tyler Forness, Vikings Wire

New England Patriots: T Marcus Cannon

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Nearly all of the Patriots’ free agents have either been re-signed by the team or taken their talents elsewhere. But one of the few standouts that remain is former longtime Patriots offensive tackle Marcus Cannon. At 35 years old, you have to wonder if this is the end for the former fifth-round pick from the 2011 NFL draft. An argument could be made that Cannon is the most underrated player to ever suit up in a Patriots uniform. He overcame non-Hodgkin lymphoma right out of college and helped New England win three Super Bowls, while earning an All-Pro nod in 2016. It’s an incredible journey and career that hasn’t been spoken about enough. – Jordy McElroy, Patriots Wire

New Orleans Saints: DB P.J. Williams

Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Williams has always been an underrated part of the Saints’ secondary, and he’s done nothing but play capably at both corner and free safety while helping out on special teams and signing a series of one-year, $2 million deals with New Orleans from 2019 to 2022. They finally added enough depth this offseason to push him off the roster, but he’s the kind of veteran presence that many teams should like to have on their depth chart. I don’t understand why he’s still a free agent when there are older players who don’t tackle as well as him still cashing checks around the league. – John Sigler, Saints Wire

New York Giants: CB Fabian Moreau

Tom Horak-USA TODAY Sports
Tom Horak-USA TODAY Sports

The vast majority of free agents from last year’s Giants squad have signed elsewhere but it’s notable that Fabian Moreau has not. Excluding quarterback Daniel Jones and running back Saquon Barkley, the 29-year-old cornerback was arguably the most notable player to hit the market out of East Rutherford. He was thrust into an unexpectedly large role on Wink Martindale’s defense in 2022 and performed well above expectations. He wasn’t perfect by any means but he was solid and consistent, especially over the first half of the season when he played above-average football. Moreau still has gas left in the tank and can provide valuable depth for a team in need. – Dan Benton, Giants Wire

New York Jets: LB Kwon Alexander

Most of the top free agents from the 2022 Jets are signed somewhere, but Kwon Alexander still remains on the open market and there’s still a chance he comes back to the Jets, though he did recently visit the Pittsburgh Steelers. Alexander had a solid season in his first year with the Jets as the third linebacker, racking up 69 tackles and six tackles for a loss. He can still be a serviceable linebacker and only going to be 29 years old next season. – Billy Riccette, Jets Wire

Philadelphia Eagles: DL Ndamukong Suh

The five-time Pro Bowl and five-time All-Pro selection said he won’t make a decision on his playing future until after training camp.  Still a formidable run-stopper and pass rusher at defensive tackle, Suh could return to Philadelphia at some point if he decides to continue playing. – Glenn Erby, Eagles Wire

Pittsburgh Steelers: LB Myles Jack

The Steelers released inside linebacker Myles Jack to free up cap space but we never imagined he’d still be on the market. Jack wasn’t the new Ryan Shazier by any means but he did lead the Steelers in tackles in 2022 and still has some really good football in him. With Pittsburgh still hunting for another inside linebacker, Jack could be a player who returns to the team on a more cap-friendly deal. – Curt Popejoy, Steelers Wire

San Francisco 49ers: K Robbie Gould

It became clear early in the offseason that Gould wouldn’t return to San Francisco for a seventh season with the 49ers. The door on a reunion was officially closed when the team used the No. 99 pick in this year’s draft to select kicker Jake Moody out of Michigan. The 49ers surely would’ve obliged if Gould expressed a desire to return to the club. Even at 40-years old the 18-year veteran is still a capable kicker who has yet to miss a field goal in the playoffs. Reliable place kicking isn’t easy to find and Gould can still help a team looking for some special teams stability. – Kyle Madson, Niners Wire

Seattle Seahawks: DL Shelby Harris

Seattle’s defensive line took most of the blame for their struggles against the run. That wasn’t entirely fair, especially in Harris’ case. After coming over from Denver as part of the Russell Wilson trade Harris continued to fly under the radar despite performing well all around. He graded out particularly well against the run in 2022 and recorded five tackles for a loss. While he was less impactful as a pass rusher, teams who pay attention know how valuable Harris can be. We expect him to eventually land on his feet for a playoff contender. – Tim Weaver, Seahawks Wire

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: RB Leonard Fournette

As all running backs do, Leonard Fournette took a steep dive in production last year after previous years of good play. He’ll probably try to argue that this was in part due to former OC Byron Leftwich’s atrocious playcalling — and he’d be right on one front — but other arguments that he seeks out contact too much and no longer has good burst speed are also valid. It’s likely one team out there will gamble on him before the start of the regular season. – River Wells, Bucs Wire

Tennessee Titans: LT Taylor Lewan

Joshua Bessex/Getty Images
Joshua Bessex/Getty Images

The Titans cut Lewan after a season in which he suffered a second torn ACL in three years. Since then, the left tackle has filed a lawsuit alleging that a botched ACL surgery has cut his career short, making it unlikely we’ll see Lewan suiting up in the NFL again. – Mike Moraitis, Titans Wire

Washington Commanders: QB Carson Wentz

It was no surprise that the Commanders released Wentz back in March. After trading for him last offseason, Washington realized early that Wentz wasn’t the answer. The Commanders gave him one more shot against Cleveland in a must-win game and Wentz performed predictably. He was a good teammate in Washington. He has said he would accept any role to continue his NFL career. Still only 30, Wentz could land somewhere as a backup and reset his career. Even if he lands somewhere as a backup, he could earn some serious money over the next several seasons by barely playing. – Bryan Manning, Commanders Wire

[lawrence-auto-related count=3 category=675075007]

Story originally appeared on Touchdown Wire