2022 NFL Free Agents: Latest Predictions for Ndamukong Suh, Odell Beckham Jr., More

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxCorrespondent IAugust 18, 2022

2022 NFL Free Agents: Latest Predictions for Ndamukong Suh, Odell Beckham Jr., More

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    Ndamukong Suh (Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

    The 2022 NFL season is mere weeks away, and teams are busy preparing their rosters for the final 53-man cut. Tuesday marked the cutdown to 85 players, and rosters must be further trimmed to 80 players on August 23 and 53 by August 30.

    While most teams are figuring out which players they can't carry into Week 1, others will be looking to make last-minute additions. Several notable free agents remain unsigned, and there's a good chance some of them find new homes soon.

    The New York Jets, for example, just added Pro Bowl tackle Duane Brown on a two-year, $22 million deal. It wasn't exactly a surprise in the wake of Mekhi Becton's fractured right kneecap. More of a surprise was the fact that Brown was available this late in the offseason.

    Here, we'll examine three other high-profile free agents who we'd expect to be picked up in the coming weeks. You'll find the latest information on each player's situation and some predictions based on factors like player value, team needs, salary cap and any relevant buzz.

Ndamukong Suh

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    Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    It's also a bit surprising that defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh is still available.

    While the 35-year-old isn't the same dominant defender he was early in his career, he would still be valuable on many defenses.

    Last season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Suh tallied 27 tackles and six sacks in 17 starts. Though he's entering the back end of his career, he is still a quality starter. He's a reliable presence on the defensive front too, as he has never missed a game due to injury.

    There was some buzz early in the offseason that the Nebraska product was interested in joining the Las Vegas Raiders—he actually expressed that interest on Twitter. However, CBS Sports' Josina Anderson reported in June that they were not in pursuit.

    The Cleveland Browns are also out on Suh, Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com reported in July.

    However, the Minnesota Vikings did have discussions with the five-time Pro Bowler, according to Tyler Dragon of USA Today. He reported in June that the team had "multiple conversations" with the defensive tackle.

    The odds from Bovada (h/t Arash Markazi of ESPN Radio) also favor Suh landing with the Vikings. Minnesota is -110 (bet $110 to win $100) and a heavy favorite over the Raiders at +275.

    More important than odds, though, is the fact that Minnesota could use a player of his caliber to bolster a defense that ranked 30th in yards allowed last season.

    With $7.9 million in cap space available, the Vikings could at least make Suh an enticing offer.

    Prediction: Suh signs a two-year deal with Minnesota

Odell Beckham Jr.

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Odell Beckham Jr.'s spot on the open market is a little less shocking. The prolific wide receiver helped the Los Angeles Rams win Super Bowl LVI, but he also suffered a torn ACL in that game.

    The 29-year-old won't be available early, if at all, during the regular season.

    However, this hasn't prevented teams from showing interest in the three-time Pro Bowler. According to NFL Media's Ian Rapoport, Los Angeles is one of several potential suitors.

    "He's continued to receive interest from several teams, contending teams," he told NFL Network.

    Rapoport noted the Rams have "maintained interest" in Beckham and that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were interested before signing Julio Jones. He also mentioned the Green Bay Packers as a team that could have interest.

    Another interesting angle that Rapoport brought up is the fact that since Beckham can't play right away, he may simply wait. The LSU product could, in theory, wait until midseason to figure out which teams have a need at receiver and which of those have a legitimate chance of contending.

    This reality probably isn't lost on Rams general manager Les Snead, who still has $8.6 million in cap space with which to work. He is no stranger to aggressively pursuing free agents, and if he believes Beckham can help L.A. return to the Super Bowl, he won't want him weighing other options.

    It might not happen before Week 1, but I'd expect the Rams to make a strong push to sign Beckham before we're deep into the regular season.

    Prediction: Beckham signs a two-year deal with Los Angeles

JC Tretter

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    Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    Fans might not be as familiar with JC Tretter as they are with Suh and Beckham. However, the center is a quality starter who hasn't missed a game due to injury over the past five seasons—he missed one game on the reserve/COVID-19 list in 2021.

    The 31-year-old also happens to be the NFL Players Association president. Former Browns teammate Joel Bitonio recently raised the question of whether the NFLPA and Tretter's stance on increasing player safety plays a role in him remaining unsigned.

    "Maybe some of the owners don't appreciate what he brings to the table on certain topics, where he's trying to protect player safety and things of that nature," Bitonio told reporters. "It seems a little suspicious to me."

    It is odd to see Tretter still available, but it would be a shock if he remains so when the regular season kicks off. There are teams that need a starting-caliber center right away. The Buccaneers, for example, appear unlikely to have starter Ryan Jensen after he suffered what appears to be a significant knee injury in training camp.

    Cleveland is in even worse shape after placing both Nick Harris and Dawson Deaton on injured reserve. The Browns do have Ethan Pocic, who started 10 games for the Seattle Seahawks last season, but bringing back Tretter would make an awful lot of sense.

    And with a league-high $45.7 million in cap space, it's a move that the Browns could afford to make.

    Prediction: Tretter signs a one-year deal with Cleveland


    Cap information via Spotrac

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