NFL free agency
Richard Sherman headlines the remaining group of NFL free agents. (Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

NFL Free Agency 2021: Best Fits For Top Remaining Players

The height of NFL free agency is over, and the offseason has lulled as teams finalize their rosters and prepare for training camp. However, the free-agent class is still littered with unsigned former All-Pros and impact players. Most are on the wrong side of 30, but they can still help teams looking for a veteran presence.

Richard Sherman – CB

Best Fits: 49ers, Cowboys, Saints, Browns

The only sure-fire Hall of Famer left in NFL free agency, Sherman is far removed from his Legion of Boom days in Seattle, but he remains the most intelligent cornerback of the 21st century so far. He spent most of last season recovering from a Week 1 calf injury but was a Pro Bowler when he was fully healthy in 2019. A return to San Francisco would be ideal — they are Super Bowl contenders with a defensive scheme used to his presence — but the 49ers have a ton of free agents with little salary-cap room. A one-year deal with another contender like Cleveland is the most likely outcome as Sherman enters the twilight of his career.

Antonio Brown – WR

Best Fits: Buccaneers, Ravens, Titans, Seahawks

Brown’s production was lost in the clutter of Tampa Bay’s stellar receiving corps last year, but he quietly had 483 yards on 62 targets over the season. He remains an off-the-field concern, but his route-running instincts make him at least a low-end WR2 on any team’s depth chart. Like Sherman, Brown likely has only a couple of years left in the league, but the Ravens are still missing a difference-maker at wideout and his ability to create separation would pair well with Lamar Jackson’s speed.

Mitchell Schwartz – OT

Best Fits: Titans, Ravens, Raiders, Rams

Schwartz headlines a group of good but not great offensive tackles looking to finish their careers with Super Bowl contenders. A staple at right tackle in Kansas City for almost a decade, Schwartz expects to be fully recovered from back surgery for next season. He was never truly elite, but he has been above average for a long time and should still be able to produce. Whether he will return with the same level of explosiveness post-injury is unknown, so a stint on a run-first team like the Titans or Ravens is the most likely outcome for Schwartz.

Melvin Ingram III – DE

Best Fits: Giants, Rams, Colts, Packers

See the theme? Ingram possessed elite athleticism in his prime, but only played seven games last year and failed to record a sack. He was an all-around disappointment until Joey Bosa arrived. He has not proved that he can lead a pass rush, but he can certainly create enough disruption to relieve some of the pressure on his own team’s best edge rusher. Perhaps he stays in LA to play alongside Aaron Donald with the Rams?

Le’Veon Bell – RB

Best Fits: Patriots, Eagles, Bills

Bell is no longer an every-down running back, but top players like Alvin Kamara have proved that Bell’s patient running style still works in the modern NFL. He averaged a decent four yards per carry with Kansas City last year, though his longest rush was 16 yards, so expect him to be used in short-yardage situations or on third down. New England is perhaps the most obvious fit for Bell on this list. They have a history of rejuvenating aging stars’ careers and just declined Sony Michel’s fifth-year option.

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