The National Football League offseason is one of the most chaotic times in sports as there are so many moving pieces going on while teams try to improve their rosters heading into the next league year. Every off-season we see teams surprisingly release star players in an effort to save money or to begin rebuilding for the future, and then it becomes a race to see which Super Bowl hungry team is able to acquire the available star players. There are also major trades that go down in the off-season that not even NFL experts and insiders can predict or see coming. Lastly, the draft and free agency also shake up rosters to the point that it's impossible to predict what each team will look like next season.
But the 2019 NFL offseason could be an especially intriguing one as there will be many teams entering a rebuilding mode, while there will also be a handful of teams ready to risk it all in order to obtain that last piece for their championship hopes. In all, this should be an explosive and exciting offseason to say the least. Given the drama that will unfold in a few short months, this article takes a look at some of the biggest names that could be on the move and projects where they might land. These are very bold predictions to be making at this point of the year, but for many of them they seem like they could be spot on. So sit back, take a deep breath, and get excited as you read about which star player will be joining your team in 2019.
20 Derek Carr Goes To Tampa Bay
It's not too late for Derek Carr with the Oakland Raiders, but given that the Raiders are stockpiling first round draft picks and are clearly rebuilding for the future, he might not fit into their plans for much longer. Although Carr was once viewed as the future franchise face of the Raiders, he has since regressed into a mistake prone quarterback that looks uneasy in the pocket.
It's not all his fault, however, as the level of talent surrounding him in Oakland is pathetic. With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers having their own quarterback conundrum right now, it's not hard to see them making a move for a guy like Carr.
19 LeSean McCoy Joins The Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions are wasting the career of one of the more talented quarterbacks in the NFL. Matthew Stafford is a gunslinger and makes his fair share of mistakes, but he is consistently surrounded with sub-par talent in the Detroit offense. Seriously, the Lions have not had a capable running back in any of the past five or six seasons.
While rookie Kerryon Johnson looks very promising, the Lions would not hesitate to trade for LeSean McCoy should he become available this offseason, which is looking more and more likely each week. McCoy would bring an element to this team that they have lacked for some time.
18 Golden Tate Returns To Seattle
This would be a fitting reunion for Golden Tate and the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks have a very family style organization with Pete Carroll leading the college like camaraderie, so of course the Seahawks would welcome Tate back with open arms after all these years. Plus he would immediately become a presence in their offense again as he is perfect for getting open during Russell Wilson's crazy scrambles. It wouldn't be the biggest signing of the offseason, but it would be a good one for both parties. Seeing Tate back in a Seattle uniform would feel very natural for most NFL fans.
17 Joe Flacco Joins Jacksonville's Title Quest
The Baltimore Ravens selected Lamar Jackson in the first round with the belief that he would one day become the starting quarterback. Much like the Chiefs did with Alex Smith, the Ravens will dangle Joe Flacco out on the trade wire in an effort to obtain assets for him while still creating room for Jackson to take over at starter. Should this happen, the Jaguars would be wise to take the bait and trade a second round pick to the Ravens to get Flacco.
The Jaguars defense is built to win now and the one thing holding the franchise back is the quarterback position. Flacco may not be great anymore, but he's a championship proven quarterback and is exactly what the Jaguars need at this time.
16 Spencer Ware Becomes A Star In Green Bay
This one may not be all that spicy, but Spencer Ware to the Green Bay Packers in free agency should be talked about in 2019. The Packers have stockpiled young running backs the past few years, but none of them are really that impressive so far. Just two years ago, Ware was projected as the Kansas City Chiefs starting running back after posting nearly 1,000 yards in 2016. But an injury forced him out and paved the way for now star Kareem Hunt to take over in K.C.
Ware would provide the Packers with a legitimate starting running back who can also be a dangerous threat in the passing game. Having a running back like Ware also take a lot of the pressure off of Aaron Rodgers every week.
15 DeSean Jackson Goes Deep For New Orleans Saints
The New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees love fast receivers. In fact, the Saints were able to resurrect the career of Ted Ginn for several seasons just by having him use his speed and run deep routes most of the game. Well Ginn appeared to lose a step and is now hampered with injuries so the Saints could look to move to another veteran speedster in 2019.
With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ready to rebuild, they could look to move their aging wide-out to a new team in exchange for a later round draft pick. The Saints should try and acquire Jackson to give Brees another true deep threat in what could be his final run for another Super Bowl in 2019.
14 Nick Foles To Denver
Let's face it, the Case Keenum experiment in Denver has backfired terribly. Not only has Keenum been pretty basic on the field, he was a reason that the Broncos chose to pass on drafting a future franchise quarterback with the #5 pick (albeit drafting a great player in Bradley Chubb). But at some point the Broncos are going to need to draft a young franchise quarterback. That won't happen next year, however, as general manager John Elway will use his swagger to entice free agent to be Nick Foles in to signing with the Broncos. Could this turn out terrible for Denver? Of course, but picking up a Super Bowl MVP is never a bad idea.
13 Dez Bryant Tries To Salvage His Career In New England
It seems like every year the New England Patriots take a risk on an aging wide receiver (if it's on a bargain) in an effort to use up the final bit of their talent, even if it's just for one season. Some examples of this include Randy Moss, Josh Gordon, and even the attempt/fail of Eric Decker.
Well Dez Bryant, despite his recent torn Achilles, should get an opportunity to prove himself to Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots in 2019. If he can regain his health, Bryant could be the next veteran wide-receiver to revive his career in Foxborough. Would it really surprise you if Belichick was able to squeeze out the last bit of production that Bryant has left in his tank?
12 Teddy Bridgewater Gets Chance To Start In Oakland
Poor Teddy Bridgewater. This man continues to work his rear-end off every year in order to finally get a chance to prove himself as a starter in the NFL again, but each year teams just kind of write him off as a backup or a project. Well Bridgewater's persistence will pay off when he signs with the Oakland Raiders this offseason. Will he likely have to hold off a high round rookie quarterback in Oakland? Probably. But this is Bridgewater's best shot at starting in 2018 and if he succeeds, he's still young enough for the Raiders to build around. Plus head coach Jon Gruden loves Bridgewater as a player and as a person.
11 Adrian Peterson Joins The Dallas Cowboys
Easily the greatest running back of his generation, Adrian Peterson continues to wreck havoc on NFL defenders every Sunday despite being 33 years old, which is like a dinosaur in running back years. But Peterson takes care of his body like no other player in the NFL and it clearly pays off with his ability to continue being a bell-cow style running back this late into his career. The Redskins love Peterson, but their franchise is very close to having to rebuild and that will likely come sooner than later if they miss the playoffs in 2018. While Peterson would love to continue being a starter in 2019, he might have to settle for returning home to play for his childhood favorite team Dallas Cowboys as a backup.
10 Randall Cobb To The 49ers
Randall Cobb's days in Green Bay appear numbered. The Packers have some surprisingly good and young talented receivers coming up through their system, while Cobb has struggled to stay on the field. There's no denying that Cobb would miss the chemistry he has with Aaron Rodgers, but he would be welcomed with open arms by the wide-receiver needs San Francisco 49ers.
Cobb presents in an immediate upgrade to veteran Pierre Garcon and would provide Jimmy Garoppolo with another play-maker in 2019. Cobb is a free agent this offseason so he will obviously be able to pick wherever he wants, but this would certainly be a good landing spot for the veteran wide-out.
9 Tyrod Taylor Provides Stop-Gap For Miami, Who Drafts A QB
For some reason this fit just sounds perfect doesn't it? Tyrod Taylor as the starting quarterback for the 2019 Miami Dolphins is the best fit on this list. Ryan Tannehill cannot stay healthy and clearly lacks some of the same spark he held earlier in his career. Taylor would provide the Dolphins with a safe, reliable style of play that just wins games in the NFL.
Seriously, Taylor seems to be overlooked in both Buffalo and his brief playing time in Cleveland. The Dolphins will also likely want to draft a quarterback and Taylor could provide the right stop-gap until they're ready for a long-term starter.
8 Tevin Coleman Gets A Starting Job In Tampa Bay
Again, this may not be one of the more exciting picks here, but Tevin Coleman to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would have huge fantasy football implications. The Bucs clearly don't have a starting caliber running back on roster right now (Peyton Barber and Ronald Jones haven't shown nearly enough to earn the job in 2019 yet), so stealing Coleman from inner division rival the Atlanta Falcons would be huge.
Coleman would thrive in the opportunity to be the true lead back and would love to finally be out of Devonta Freeman's shadow. This could further weaken Atlanta, as Freeman has had trouble staying healthy in recent seasons.
7 Kelvin Benjamin Replaces Larry Fitzgerald In Arizona
What once looked like such a promising career for Kelvin Benjamin has slowly been coming back down to earth the past few seasons. As a rookie Benjamin had over 1,000 yards and 9 touchdowns receiving, but sadly it's been all downhill from that (including injuries). But Benjamin will be a free agent in 2019 and he may find a home in the desert next season.
The Arizona Cardinals have an all-time great in Larry Fitzgerald and a solid rookie in Christian Kirk, but not much else in their receiving room. Regardless of whether Fitzgerald retires this offseason or not, the Cardinals should take a chance on Benjamin to provide young quarterback Josh Rosen with another big redzone target.
6 Jameis Winston Becomes A Project In New England
As mentioned earlier, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are on the verge of a major franchise meltdown and might turn to somebody like Derek Carr to try and stabilize their ship. The Bucs would probably just want somebody boring like Carr after dealing with the inconsistencies of Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick the past several seasons. Winston's days are certainly numbered and he could be on the move this offseason.
This creates a perfect Bill Belichick situation: the Patriots trade the Bucs a 6th round pick for Winston and then Belichick grooms him into the Patriots backup quarterback SPOT in the hopes that he can one day be ready to replace Brady. Long shot? Yes, but that's why these are called "bold" predictions.
5 Mark Ingram Signs With The Philadelphia Eagles
This move makes sense, considering Mark Ingram is a free agent and the Saints will have trouble paying him what he wants. Not to mention, Alvin Kamara is the back that the Saints will value more.
The Eagles have a need at running back (who really thinks Ajayi is the long-term answer in Philly?) and the Saints happen to have two of the best. The Eagles have seen their offense sputter this season and a big reason for that is they haven't been able to run the football like they did in 2017 with the two-back attack of Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount. Adding Ingram to a backfield with Ajayi, and Wendell Smallwood gives the Eagles a great chance of finding their running game again.
4 Josh Gordon Becomes A Dallas Cowboy
The Dallas Cowboys receiving corps in 2018 has been disappointing. Honestly, this group has been hard to watch at times and it has to be extremely frustrating for quarterback Dak Prescott. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has already come out and stated that Prescott's job is safe and that it's up to him to surround him with better talent. Well the best receiver on the market in 2019 will be Josh Gordon.
The troubled wide-out appears to have finally moved past his off the field issues and is currently thriving in New England (of course). Jones is never one to shy away from adding a player with red flags, so expect Gordon to be playing in the Big D this time next year.
3 Le'Veon Bell Gets A Big Pay Day From Baltimore
It appears that the Le'Veon Bell drama is over in Pittsburgh. After it was announced that Bell would be reporting at all this season, there's no way the Steelers can bring him back in 2019. It seems petty for Bell to be sitting out and turning down over $14 million this season, but he realizes that the career span of a running back is tied to the health of his legs. He felt the Steelers were overworking him and was upset that they refuse to give him a guaranteed contract.
One spot that hasn't been talked about all that much is the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens could be moving on from Joe Flacco's contract this offseason which would save them a lot of money. On top of that, running backs Javorius Allen and Ty Montgomery are on expiring contracts. Alex Collins is an RFA, but has not proven to be a long-term solution. Bell may not get the payday he's thinking he will, as teams may be hesitant to throw money his way now. But the Ravens could pay him fair market value, and provide him a chance to stick it to his old team twice a year.
2 Odell Beckham Jr. Soap Opera Traded To Jacksonville
This may be the boldest prediction of all the predictions on this list and it's fitting that involves perhaps the boldest personality in all of the NFL. The New York Giants and Odell Beckham Jr are a constant soap opera each week. How long will Giants ownership put up with this constant drama? Well Beckham's production level certainly helps overshadow the drama he brings with him, but if the Jaguars were to make a massive draft pick offer to the Giants, it could work. The Jags need to take advantage of the defense they have and capitalize on their small championship window. Trading multiple future first round picks for Beckham would do a lot to help improve this offense in the short term and give them firepower to compete in the playoffs.
1 Carlos Hyde Creates One-Two Punch For Colts
The Indianapolis Colts have apparently found a new running back of the future in Marlon Mack, but the team could still use a big bruising style runner like Carlos Hyde to help change the pace on offense. Hyde is a proven leader in the NFL and would be a solid voice in the locker room for the younger Colts players, while also still being a productive player on the field. Plus the last time the Colts took a chance on a physical runner that use to play in San Francisco (i.e. Frank Gore), things worked out pretty well for a couple of years. Hyde would form a formidable one-two punch with Mack.