"What I want is stable management upstairs," Hopkins said on the "I AM ATHLETE" podcast earlier this week. "I think that's something I haven't really had the past couple years of my career coming from Houston and then to Arizona.
"I've been through three or four GMs in my career, so a stable management. A QB who loves the game, a QB who brings everybody on board with him and pushes not just himself but everybody around him. And a great defense. A great defense wins championships."
Not only did Hopkins reveal what he wants regarding his next team, but the 31-year-old wide receiver actually listed the quarterbacks he would like to play with on his next team: Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts and Justin Herbert (in no particular order).
This revelation puts the Kansas City Chiefs, Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Philadelphia Eagles, and Los Angeles Chargers on watch. What's the likelihood any of these teams end up having Hopkins on their roster for 2023?
Let's take a look and review each situation, based on depth at wide receiver and available cap space -- ranked least likely to most likely (salary cap is based by the NFLPA).
5. Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Herbert's contract extension is the top priority for the Chargers, even though adding Hopkins to an already loaded wide receiver group led by Allen and Williams is intriguing for a team that wants to be a Super Bowl contender in the AFC.
The Chargers have the cap space to add Hopkins, but addressed the No. 3 wide receiver spot by adding Quentin Johnston in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft. There's only one ball to go around with the Chargers -- and Austin Ekeler is
While the possibilities would be endless with Hopkins on the Chargers, Los Angeles may have to pass on the opportunity. If the Chargers do add Hopkins, the injury history with Allen and Williams would play a major role in that decision.
4. Philadelphia Eagles
This is a weird situation for the Eagles -- in a good way. Philadelphia has Brown signed through the 2026 season and Smith has two years remaining on his rookie deal, so those two will be in the fold for multiple seasons. The Eagles also have Dallas Goedert under contract until 2025, meaning their set at pass-catcher for the next three seasons (Smith has a fifth-year option).
Hopkins mentioned Jalen Hurts second on the list of quarterbacks he wants to play with, and the Eagles check all the boxes he's looking for in a team. They also have the cap space to sign Hopkins, even though general manager Howie Roseman likes to have some cap space available in case he needs it during the season.
Philadelphia will certainly entertain Hopkins, but like the Chargers, there's only one ball to go around -- and plenty of pass-catchers to throw the ball to already. Would Brown, Smith, and Goedert sacrifice targets to add a No. 1 wideout in Hopkins? Would Hopkins be OK taking a No. 3 role in Philadelphia?
The Eagles have other areas on the roster to address. Don't rule out Hopkins, but he is a luxury.
3. Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs won the Super Bowl without a No. 1 wide receiver last season (keep in mind they also have Travis Kelce on their roster). Hopkins would be the No. 1 wideout in a young receiver group that includes Toney and Skyy Moore, who is primed for a bigger role in the offense in 2023. Second-round draft pick Rashee Rice is also expected to immediately contribute this year.
Having Hopkins with Kelce would be reminiscent of the Kelce and Tyreek Hill days, making Kansas City's offense a contender to score 30 points every week (the Chiefs averaged 29.2 points per game last year). General manager Brett Veach is creative enough to maneuver cap space and get Hopkins on the Super Bowl champions.
If Patrick Mahomes wants Hopkins and gives his input to the Chiefs front office, Kansas City will make it work. The Chiefs don't need much, but they certainly can use Hopkins for a Super Bowl repeat.
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2. Buffalo Bills
Does Buffalo need Hopkins the most? No, but pairing him with Diggs arguably gives the Bills the best wide receiver duo in the league. Signing Hopkins may be the move that puts the Bills over the Kansas City Chiefs and Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC -- the missing piece that could give Buffalo its first Super Bowl title.
Hopkins did list Josh Allen first when going through the list of quarterbacks he'd like to play for, so there's incentive from him to go to Buffalo. The Bills would have to do some maneuvering to make sure they can afford Hopkins, but certainly could make it work.
1. Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens have been committed to adding wide receivers for Lamar Jackson this offseason, starting with signing Beckham to a one-year, $15 million deal and then drafting Zay Flowers in the first round. Having a wide receiver group of Beckham, Flowers and Bateman is clearly the best trio Jackson has thrown to in his career.
What if the Ravens can actually improve that trio and take some pressure off Beckham as a No. 1 wide receiver? Hopkins would be the go-to wideout in Baltimore and the game-changing playmaker on the outside who would make the Ravens one of the top Super Bowl contenders in the AFC.
The Ravens have enough cap space to make room for Hopkins, although general manager Eric DeCosta likes to have some spare room for potential moves during the season. Hopkins may be the exception, especially since the Ravens have a history of signing great wide receivers in their 30s.