Which Two Free Agents Best Fit Each NFC North Team

The Chicago Bears have $12.4 million in cap space. The first FA they should pursue is Larry Warford. Originally drafted by Detroit in the third round, Warford played four seasons and then signed in free agency by New Orleans to a four-year $34 million deal. He made the pro bowl each of the three seasons while playing for the Saints. New Orleans released Warford at the end of 2019 to clear his $12.875 million cap hit. He is reportedly seeking around a $7 million deal. At the age of 29, this is a player that could drastically help Chicago’s offensive line. The second FA Chicago should pursue is safety Eric Reid. Reid was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the first round at 18th overall. He played for the 49ers until 2017 then the Carolina Panthers signed him and he played there until being released last March. He has 11 interceptions, 520 tackles and 4 forced fumbles in his career. Last year Reid had a career high of 130 tackles. At the age of 28, Reid has a lot of playing time left and could help Chicago’s need at safety.

Tennessee Titans / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0) No changes made.

The Detroit Lions have $27.9 million in cap space and should utilize this be grabbing the best available FA, Jadeveon Clowney. Clowney was drafted by the Houston Texans as the first pick in the 2014 draft. He played for Houston through 2018 and was then traded to Seattle before the start of the 2019 season. Clowney has 236 tackles, 172 solo tackles, 32 sacks, and 9 forced fumbles in his career. Clowney is reportedly looking for a deal worth around $21 – $17 million a year and Detroit is one of the few teams that have the available cap to to match. They could snag one of the league’s premier pass rushers and greatly improve their pass rush. The second FA I would suggest for Detroit would be OG Larry Warford, but since I have talked about Warford already, I suggest CB Darqueze Dennard. Dennard was drafted by the Bengal’s in the first round of the 2014 draft and has played for them until becoming a FA this year. He was reportedly signing a 3-year deal worth $13.5 million with the Jacksonville Jaguars but both sides could not agree, so he remains a FA. Dennard has played in 77 games and accrued 274 tackles, 22 passes defensed, 3 interceptions, and 3 sacks in his career. Dennard is a solid slot CB who wants to play outside CB and is just the player to help Detroit bolster their defense and give some veteran help to a young CB room.

Keith Allison: Flickr, e-mail, Twitter, Instagram, website / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0) No changes made.

The Minnesota Vikings have $11.75 million in cap space. The Vikings should get Larry Warford, Darqueze Dennard, or Logan Ryan. Considering I already have them in this article, I will talk about some other free agents that could help Minnesota. First would be 30-year-old CB Dre Kirkpatrick. Kirkpatrick was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals out of Alabama in the first round of the 2012 draft. Kirkpatrick has 302 total tackles, 254 solo tackles, 65 passes defensed, 10 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble in his career as a Bengal. Kirkpatrick is a solid tackler who fits Mike Zimmer’s type of physical CB and could be a needed veteran voice in the Vikings young CB room. The other player Minnesota could utilize is 27-year-old DT Timmy Jernigan. Jernigan was set to sign a 1-year $3.75 million deal with the Texans, but the deal fell through. Jernigan was drafted in the second round of the 2014 draft by the Baltimore Ravens. Jernigan played with the Ravens until 2017 when he was traded to the Eagles. He has 132 total tackles, 70 solo tackles, and 17.5 sacks. Jernigan could be a young addition to Minnesota’s defensive line and, at the very least, provide them with some much needed depth up front.      

Jeffrey Beall / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0) No changes made.

The Green Bay Packers have $11.7 million in cap space. The Packers should go and pick up 29-year-old corner back Logan Ryan. He was first drafted by the New England patriots in 2013 in the 3rd round. He played for the Patriots for four years and went into FA and was signed by Tennessee for three years for $30 million. During his career, Ryan has compiled a total of 494 tackles, 367 solo tackles, 78 passes defensed, 17 interceptions, and 8 Forced fumbles. After letting go of Tramon Williams, Green Bay could use another veteran voice in the CB room. Not to mention, at 29 years old, Ryan has plenty left in the tank to contribute to this Packers secondary. The Second FA that Green Bay could use is 29-year-old linebacker Nigel Bradham. Bradham was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the fourth round in the 2012 draft. He played for the Bills until leaving as a FA in 2016 when he signed with the Philadelphia Eagles. Bradham has 619 total tackles, 403 solo tackles, 34 passes defensed, 8.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles and 3 interceptions in his career. Bradham could help a Green Bay’s thin linebacker core and could even move between outside and middle linebacker.

Tennessee Titans / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0) No changes made.

Thank you for reading! What are your thoughts? Do you agree or is there a different FA one of the NFC North teams should go after? Please comment below. 

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