One of the top-tier Free Agents this season, Yannick Ngakoue is looking for a fresh contract. This defensive end is coming off another productive 8-sack season within the confines of a dangerous Jaguars’ D-line. Far from the only threat in ‘Sack-sonville’, Ngakoue is ready for a change in scenery and his first full professional contract.
Commanding a heavy payday, he looks to set the market at his position for this offseason; barring a massive overspend on mid-tier talent. Missing only 1 game in his entire 4 season career, this young, athletic playmaker is expected to wreak havoc on opposing linemen and QBs wherever he ends up. Let’s get into it.
5 – Cleveland Browns
Cleveland took a step back this year. Well, maybe not back, but definitely not forwards. Sideways, then. They failed to hit the mark that was set arguably far too high for them after an exciting rookie year from Baker Mayfield, and a Free Agency period that had them looking (on paper) like Super Bowl contenders. Yannick Ngakoue would bring the boom to a team that many agreed were on the cusp of greatness. Paired with beastly DT Myles Garrett, opposing QBs would need to work hard to avoid losing their helmets.
4 – Seattle Seahawks
This one is conditional. Assuming Jadeveon Clowney stays in Seattle: they don’t shell out the big bucks for a second scary pass-rusher. If he does leave the Hawks then Clowney would shift the market, creating room in Seattle for Ngakoue to shine. It would be no surprise to see his stats hold steady in a new system, but the double-teams he’d draw would ensure success across the line. Not quite as pretty a payday as he may want, but the opportunity for Super Bowl stardom is hard to pass up.
3 – Miami Dolphins
Speaking of Clowney, he said he would never play here. The issue likely doesn’t persist in Yannick’s case, as it’s only a short Florida skip from Jacksonville to Hard Rock stadium. They may be rebuilding, but with plenty of time to carve out success in his young career, enduring one or two more seasons of mediocrity may be worth the significant payday they’d be offering him.
2 – Houston Texans
This is an exciting one. A defensive line that looks like jello (without the hospital-case that is J.J. Watt) could use a boost of pressure, and living in arguably the most up-and-coming city in America is certainly a plus. The Texans are only a few pieces away from contending and have the money left in the bank to give Yannick a reason to stick around. Though the fit is great, there’s still one team left that could do better.
1 – Buffalo Bills
If he finds that he cares more about football than any other factor, than the Bills make far too much sense for Ngakoue to refuse. Yes it may be cold sometimes but, with the cap space required to break the piggy bank wide open, a host of draft picks, a top-2 secondary, speedy linebackers, and a growing offense: the Bills look good. A vicious pass-rush is the only thing their defense lacks and the opportunities will be plenty alongside 1st-round DT Ed Oliver and Veteran DE Jerry Hughes.