The 2020 season is less than weeks away, and while no teams will be looking beyond the new season, we can always take a look at some of the best upcoming free agents and where they may fit in 2021. With some top players set to hit the open market, some familiar faces could find themselves in new uniforms come Fall 2021.
These players could always re-sign with their current teams or be franchise-tagged, but for the sake of this article, these are the best fits if they were to hit the open market next winter.
Dak Prescott – Best fit: Indianapolis Colts
Colts GM Chris Ballard has quietly assembled one of the best young rosters in the league, and is already well-respected around the league. Even with the sudden retirement of Andrew Luck last August, the Colts remained competitive, going 7-9.
With both Philip Rivers and Jacoby Brissett off the books after 2020 and the Colts currently sitting at second in 2021 cap space with over $79 million (according to Over The Cap), Ballard could lure Prescott to Indy.
Indianapolis would become favorites out of the AFC South, and even compete among top teams in the AFC in Baltimore and Kansas City.
Yannick Ngakoue – Best fit: Las Vegas Raiders
Ngakoue has been adamant about getting out of Jacksonville, and Mike Lombardi reports that a deal may be imminent. If Ngakoue decides to play out his tag and hit the market, the Raiders could make a run for him after the 2020 season, as they have the most cap space in 2021, with $110 million.
The Raiders had 32 sacks last season, ranking just 25th in the league. The year before was even worse, ranking dead last with just 13 sacks, 17 less than the Giants, who were in 31st.
Since dealing Khalil Mack to Chicago, the Raiders have been lacking a true number one pass rusher, and Ngakoue could rush opposite Maxx Crosby, who had 10 sacks as a rookie in 2019.
With Patrick Mahomes and Drew Lock in the division, the Raiders will need a proven pass rusher alongside Crosby.
Jalen Ramsey – Best fit: Las Vegas Raiders
Letting Ramsey walk would be a huge mistake for the Rams, who traded two first-round picks and a fourth-round pick. Giving that much up for a rental is the kind of move that sets a franchise back for years.
That being said, if Ramsey leaves, Jon Gruden will try to be all over it. Ramsey has already shown interest in playing for the black and silver, and the Raiders would love to bring in a star cornerback opposite Trayvon Mullen.
Putting Ramsey in the secondary along first-round safety Jonathan Abram would make the Raiders secondary respectable at least, and in a division with young quarterbacks in Mahomes and Lock, the Raiders defense will need to be able to hold its own.
Allen Robinson – Best fit: Miami Dolphins
Robinson put together the second-best year of his career in 2019, tallying over 1,100 yards and seven touchdowns. With another strong season in 2020, Robinson could be a hot target on the free agent market.
With what they hope is their franchise QB in Tua Tagovailoa, the Dolphins could from a formidable duo with Robinson opposite DeVante Parker for Tagovailoa.
Robinson would only propel that offense and help the young quarterback, and the Dolphins future appears bright under Brian Flores.
Ronnie Stanley – Best fit: Seattle Seahawks
Similar to Ramsey with the Rams, the Ravens would be foolish to let Stanley walk. Left Tackle is one of the most important positions in football, and MVP Lamar Jackson certainly would benefit Stanley being re-signed.
Once again however, if he were to hit the open market the Seahawks would be a good fit.
Russell Wilson was sacked 48 times in 2019, most in the league, and has been sacked 40 times every year since his rookie season in 2012.
Stanley would help protect Wilson, who while still playing at an elite level, turns 32 in November and would benefit from better blind-side protection.
The Seahawks are already an annual contender in the NFC, and extra time for Wilson to work his magic could be the difference in the toughest division in football.