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Top 10 Remaining NFL Free Agents in 2021

Written by: Mike Lukas
Updated October 14, 2022
6 min read
Free Agents Nfl 2021
  • The best free-agent still on the market is Browns former DL Sheldon Richardson
  • There are four offensive tackles still available, including former Chief Mitchell Schwartz
  • Three free-agent cornerbacks are left, with Pittsburgh’s Steven Nelson the best of them

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With plenty of time still left on the NFL’s offseason clock, there are plenty of talented free agent players on both offense and defense still looking for a franchise to call home in 2021, for a hefty price, of course.

With most of the league’s thirty-two football franchises struggling to tackle their salary cap issues, it might be difficult for many of these players to get paid what they deserve, which is the main reason why most of them are still on the market.

Here we go over the top-10 remaining NFL free agents, including their ages and stats and which teams could be a nice fit for each of them.

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NFL Top-10 Remaining Free Agents

Rank Player Pos. Former Team Age
1. Sheldon Richardson DL Cleveland Browns 30
2. Steven Nelson CB Pittsburgh Steelers 28
3. Mitchell Schwartz OT Kansas City Chiefs 32
4. Brian Poole CB New York Jets 28
5. Russell Okung OT Carolina Panthers 32
6. Melvin Ingram EDGE Los Angeles Chargers 32
7. Richard Sherman CB San Francisco 49ers 33
8. Rick Wagner OT Green Bay Packers 31
9. Justin Houston EDGE Indianapolis Colts 32
10. K.J. Wright LB Seattle Seahawks 32

1.Sheldon Richardson, DL

Over the last two seasons, this energetic defensive lineman has been a productive contributor for the Browns.

Stats: With Cleveland, Richardson posted 7.5 sacks, 16 QB hits, and 116 combined tackles (nine for loss) over 32 games.

Possible Fit: With DL DaQuan Jones still unsigned, the Tennessee Titans could use a flexible nose tackle like Richardson, but they are dealing with cap space issues.

2.Steven Nelson, CB

A 28-year-old four-year starter for the Steelers’ historically excellent defense, this 5’ 11” corner might be worth snagging for at least a one-year prove-it deal.

Stats: Over the last three seasons in Pittsburgh, Nelson has posted six interceptions with 52 pass breakups earning him a respectable 68.1 pass coverage grade from Pro Football Focus.

Possible Fit: The San Francisco 49ers could use some secondary depth (which team couldn’t?) and they might be able to get Nelson for the upcoming season for a steal.

3.Mitchell Schwartz, OT

The 32-year old former offensive tackle with the Kansas City Chiefs struggled with injuries during the 2020 season, dealing with lingering back issues after Week 5.

Stats: Schwartz is not only a Super Bowl Champion he is also a first-team All-Pro and a former Cleveland Brown who, at 6’5” and 320-pounds, has the size to keep his quarterback safe.

Possible Fit: For his tenth NFL season, Schwartz has let it be known through the media that he would be happy returning to Kansas City, which “feels like home” to him.

4.Brian Poole, CB

The 28-year old cornerback played for the Jets for the last two seasons where he started 17 games and played in 23 of them.

Stats: In his last two seasons in New York, Poole posted 3 interceptions, 12 passes defended, a sack, a forced tackle, and 103 total tackles.

Possible Fit: The Las Vegas Raiders would do well to snag Poole for their secondary while they are still in the middle of shuffling a few defensive pieces around.

5.Russell Okung, OT

Still waiting to find a 2020 home is offensive tackle Russell Okung who played his college ball at Oklahoma State where he was twice recognized as an All-American.

Stats: In his eleven NFL seasons, Okung has started all 131 games he has played in first with the Seahawks, then the Broncos, the Chargers, and finally last season with the Panthers.

Possible Fit: At 32-years old, Okung might have to take a prove-it deal to show he still has gas left in the tank for a few more seasons.

6.Melvin Ingram, EDGE

Normally a hungry edge rusher, Ingram was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury in September 2020.

Stats: In seven games last season and injury hampered Ingram had just ten total tackles, one interception, and 2 passes defended for the Chargers.

Possible Fit: At this point, Ingram must prove his rebuilt knee is up to the task so any rebuilding franchise (like the Jaguars?) might take him on for the 2020 season.

7.Richard Sherman, CB

The former Super Bowl Champion cornerback finds himself looking for a franchise to coast out the rest of his impressive career.

Stats: In ten NFL seasons for the Seahawks and the Niners, Sherman posted 36 interceptions and 115 passes defended with almost 500 total tackles during that time.

Possible Fit: According to some reports, the 49ers are open to bringing him back, as are the Seahawks and possibly the Saints.

8.Rick Wagner, OT

The 31-year old offensive tackle played in all sixteen games last season for the Green Bay Packers but was released during the offseason to free agency.

Stats: Wagner has proven to be durable in his eight NFL seasons, playing in 188 total games first for the Ravens, then the Lions, and finally last year for the Packers.

Possible Fit: The Packers could bid to bring him back, but Wagner also mentioned possible retirement, understandable for a big guy in the trenches.

9.Justin Houston, EDGE

One person who does not doubt Houston’s ability to still play the game is Texans QB Deshaun Watson who was sacked 3 times by him in Week 13 last year.

Stats: In the league since 2011, Houston has 97.5 sacks, 16 forced fumbles, 4 interceptions and 426 total tackles.

Possible Fit: The Colts say they have a “pretty full room,” so it will most likely be up to another O-Line hungry team to pay his salary in 2020.

10.K.J. Wright, LB

Arguably one of the most productive Seahawks in the last decade, the 32-year old linebacker finds himself in search of a new home in 2021.

Stats: In ten NFL seasons, Wright has dominated Seattle’s secondary, posting 6 interceptions, 54 passes defended, 13.5 sacks and 941 total tackles.

Possible Fit: The Seahawks thought Wright would be taken by now, so they could still be in the market for his services this upcoming season depending on how the salary cap balances out.

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Mike Lukas

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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager.
Nationality: American
Education: N/A
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23 years
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