Jadeveon Clowney is one of the top edge defenders in the NFL today. He may not have the sack numbers of other edge rushers, but his run defense and ability to pressure the quarterback make an invaluable impact on the field. Clowney will receive a premium payday when free agency begins, but with what team? Here are the 5 most likely spots where Jadeveon Clowney will sign.
#5: Miami Dolphins
Clowney did say he wants to sign with a contender, but the Dolphins could pay him more than any other team. They have one of the best cap space situations in the entire league, and could easily improve with the $93 million they have to spend. The Dolphins badly need an edge defender, as they racked up just 23 sacks and allowed 4.5 yards per carry in 2019.
#4: Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens have the least amount of cap space of any team on this list at $31 million, but that is still enough to sign Clowney. They would likely have to let Pro Bowl OLB Matthew Judon go, but Clowney would certainly be an upgrade. The Ravens were torched by Derrick Henry in their Divisional round loss to the Titans, so it is clear they need an elite run defender like Clowney.
#3: New York Jets
The Jets are on the edge of the playoffs, but need pieces to establish themselves as true playoff contenders. Luckily for Jets fans, they have $56 million to address key needs, such as offensive guard and edge rusher.
The Jets are no contender, but they have a young quarterback in Sam Darnold with lots of potential and a solid running back in Le’Veon Bell. Clowney would get a chance to play in a big market in New York, and the Jets can pay him the money he feels he deserves.
#2: Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks hoped to sign Clowney to a long-term deal after trading for him in 2019, but the deadline to do so had passed. Clowney can’t be retained in the Emerald City via franchise tag, but Seattle could offer him a long-term deal. They have $60 million in cap room and are a contender in the NFC, so it would make perfect sense for Clowney to resign, assuming he doesn’t want a change of scenery.
#1: Indianapolis Colts
The Indianapolis Colts haven’t had an elite edge defender since the days of Dwight Freeney, who last played for the Colts in 2012. Indy is 1 year removed from playing in the Divisional Round of the playoffs, and might not be a contender in the eyes of some, but they can make some big upgrades with the $86 million they have to spend.
Bringing in a quarterback to compete with Jacoby Brissett could revive a high-powered offense, and signing Clowney could solidify the defense to make the Colts a contender in the AFC.