The 2022 NFL season has come to a close, and the Kansas City Chiefs are champions once again after defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35. Free agency is now underway as the race to overtake the Chiefs has already begun. Teams are building their free-agent boards, studying the draft and figuring out how they can close the gap between themselves and the league's elite.
With that in mind, we'll be taking a look at the top available players this offseason. We already began with the offensive side of the ball, and continue on with the defense. Already, we've seen a number of big names come off the board, including former Eagles defensive tackle Javon Hargrave inking a deal to add to an already loaded 49ers defense.
Below is our list of the top 25 defensive players available in free agency this offseason.
|8||Leighton Vander Esch||LB||Cowboys||27||UFA|
The interior defensive line market had major pieces already agree to deal with Hargrave landing in San Francisco, while Daron Payne agreed to re-sign with the Commanders. That said, Fletcher Cox could be a solid veteran piece to add to a contending team.
Speaking of Philadelphia, James Bradberry is available after being named a Second Team All-Pro this season, and fellow Eagles defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson has hit the market as well.
There's also a lot of talent available at off-ball linebacker. David has been one of the best players at the position for years now and Vander Esch has health issues, but has been a very important contributor to the Dallas defense. Even beyond those players, guys like Devin Bush, Anthony Walker, Azeez Al-Shaair, Denzel Perryman, Robert Spillane and Rashaan Evans will be available as well.
Meanwhile, the safety market is also deep and we've already seen Jessie Bates III and Vonn Bell ink deals to depart fro Cincinnati. Now, Bills safety Jordan Poyer sits as the top option at the position currently on the market. In addition to Poyer, there's also Adrian Amos, Duron Harmon, Nick Scott, Taylor Rapp, Kareem Jackson, Nasir Adderley, Terrell Edmunds, Mike Edwards and a whole lot more.