There’s a whole heck of a lot that can still go down around the NFL between now and Week 1. Which star players might be moved? Will there be a few surprise signings?
From the New England Patriots making some bold moves to two of the game’s best corners being traded, here are 10 bold predictions for the remainder of the NFL offseason.
Bengals trade A.J. Green to the Patriots
We already know that the Patriots are in the market for proven receivers. Signing Demaryius Thomas made this clear. Going against the grain and selecting N’Keal Harry in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft was yet another indication.
We fully expect New England to be proactive on the trade market throughout the remainder of the offseason. That includes checking in with the Bengals on the availability of Green. Given he has one year remaining on his deal, the six-time Pro Bowler might be available.
Cowboys trade for Patrick Peterson
How can Dallas afford someone of Peterson’s ilk with the likes of Dak Prescott, Amari Cooper and Ezekiel Elliott in line for massive extensions? After all, the team missed out on Earl Thomas in free agency because a lack of finances.
With all that said, the NFL’s hard cap isn’t really that. Dallas could move things around to add one of the best corners in the game. In turn, Peterson’s issues with the Cardinals’ organization would give in to an ugly divorce. Just imagine Peterson teaming up with Pro Bowler Byron Jones. That’d be all sorts of scary.
Eric Berry signs with the 49ers
After missing out on an upgrade at safety during the first couple waves of free agency, San Francisco surprisingly avoided that position in the draft.
This could continue to be a weak point in 2019. If so, GM John Lynch and Co. might look to fortify this unit if it becomes clear during the summer that the in-house candidates are not optimal. Berry’s track record remains the best of any open-market safety.
Seahawks trade Bobby Wagner
Seattle’s decision to trade Frank Clark coincided with the need to extend Russell Wilson, Jarran Reed and Wagner. GM John Schneider made it clear that the team wouldn’t be able to retain all four. With Wilson now locked up on a record-breaking contract, Wagner might very well be the next odd-man out.
Despite being one of the best linebackers in football over the past five seasons, Wagner’s next contract will take him well into his 30s. Ask Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman how the Seahawks feel about extending players nearing that plateau.
Dak Prescott lands richest contract in NFL history
Recent reports suggest that Prescott could be looking at $30-plus million on a long-term extension. It’s not necessarily a surprise given how the quarterback market has reset itself a plethora of times over the past two-plus years. Even then, there is certainly a question about Prescott’s worth.
We’re going to boldly predict that Prescott receives $32 million annually on a five year contract — surpassing the $150 total cash Matt Ryan got on his deal with the Atlanta Falcons back in 2018. Though, his average salary will be lower than the above-mentioned Wilson and Aaron Rodgers.
Gerald McCoy lands with the Browns
Raise your hand if you don’t think Browns general manager John Dorsey is going to pull off another shocking trade this offseason. We didn’t think so. In McCoy, the Browns would be adding an interior force to go with edge pass rushers Myles Garrett and Olivier Vernon — creating one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL.
McCoy’s future is up in the air with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. New head coach Bruce Arians has noted he’d like for the six-time Pro Bowler to be back in the mix. Though, McCoy’s absence from off-season activities might tell us he’s on his way out of Tampa.
Vikings trade Xavier Rhodes
Most around the NFL were surprised when Minnesota did not move one of its high-priced veterans prior to the draft. There seemed to be a market for both Rhodes and defensive end Everson Griffen. It’s now time to predict that Rhodes, a former Pro Bowl performer, will be moved for either draft picks or a veteran at another position.
Set to count $13.34 million against the cap, there’s no real reason for Minnesota to keep Rhodes around at that cost. Youngsters Mackensie Alexander, Trae Waynes, Holton Hill and Mike Hughes should all be in a position to step up.
Broncos net massive haul for Chris Harris Jr.
Short of a pay raise, Harris won’t be long in Denver. He’s made that clear more than once in the past. It make perfect sense. Harris, 29, has been among the best corners in the NFL over the past five seasons. He’s yielded a sub 80 quarterback rating when targeted during that span.
Wanting a new deal while he can cash in on his prime years, Harris would net a whole lot in a trade. We’re willing to go as far to say that Denver could land a 2020 second-round pick and a player for the four-time Pro Bowler.
NFL/NFLPA agree to CBA extension
Unlike back in 2011, it looks like there’s real momentum in avoiding a shut down around the NFL. The league and Players’ Association are going to continue talks this summer with the hopes of honing in on an extension ahead of the CBA expiring following the 2020 season.
The issue here is not revenue share. That’s good. Instead, it’s about guaranteed contracts and the NFL’s archaic marijuana policy. In a vacuum, these don’t seem to be on the same level as revenue share. It leads us to believe that an extension will be worked out ahead of Week 1.
Ndamukong Suh lands with the Patriots
Relatively quiet in free agency, New England has been smart about adding players while the compensation pick formula is still in place. Now that this is no longer the case, we’re expecting the team to be more active. The signing of veteran Jared Veldheer magnified this.
In Suh, New England would be getting a tremendous replacement for the departed Malcom Brown. He’s an interior pass rush force. In turn, that would help the likes of Michael Bennett and rookie Chase Winovich on a revamped Pats defensive line.