Sep 8, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; American football player Odell Beckham Jr before the game between the Los Angeles Rams and the Buffalo Bills at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Free agent WR Odell Beckham Jr. reports Odell Beckham Jr. not a Rams’ priority

Free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. is not a priority for the Los Angeles Rams. That’s according to Odell Beckham Jr.

Amid reports the Rams are leaving the light on for Beckham Jr. to return to the team when he’s recovered from a torn left ACL– sustained in the Super Bowl win with Los Angeles — Beckham said Wednesday on Twitter that reunion is being overblown.

“LA knows where I wanted to be… but they didn’t offer me…. ANYthing! So idk what people want me to do, I def kno my worth and what the offer was isn’t reflective of that. So it’s tough to say that I can come on back even tho I thought I finally found that home !,” he wrote.

Beckham joined the world champion Los Angeles Rams from the Cleveland Browns midway through the 2021 season.

He caught a touchdown in the first quarter for the first score of Super Bowl LVI and finished with two catches for 52 yards.

The three-time Pro Bowl selection had 305 receiving yards and five touchdowns for the Rams in eight regular-season games.

Los Angeles signed wide receiver Cooper Kupp to a three-year, $80 million contract extension and brought in Allen Robinson II in free agency on a three-year, $46.5 million deal with $30.7 million guaranteed.

He has 531 receptions for 7,367 yards and 56 touchdowns in 96 games (91 starts) with the New York Giants (2014-18), Browns (2019-21) and Rams.

Rams chief operating officer Kevin Demoff previously told The Athletic that the Rams and Beckham would like to work out a deal for him to return in 2022.

Beckham tore the ACL in the same knee in October 2020 with the Browns, had surgery and returned for the 2021 season. On Nov. 12, the Rams signed him to a one-year deal, a week after he was released by Cleveland amid a deteriorating relationship with quarterback Baker Mayfield.

–Field Level Media

Oct 24, 2021; Nashville, Tennessee, USA;  Tennessee Titans wide receiver Julio Jones (2) splits Kansas City Chiefs free safety Tyrann Mathieu (32) and defensive end Michael Danna (51) during the first half at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

10 sign-now free agents still available

Only a few shopping days remain for teams scrambling to fill needs ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft.

But the cupboard isn’t bare, especially for those with the budget to sweeten the pot for some of the best available veterans on the market.

Here are the top 10 free agents still standing six weeks into the 2022 league year:

10. WR Julio Jones
Age: 33
Credentials: Two-time All-Pro, 2010s All-Decade Team
Best Fit: New England Patriots

We’re not here to suggest the old Julio Jones might return. He’s a 220-pounder who could flash as a second or third option and deliver a game-changing play on occasion. Teams that aren’t confident there is a solution in the 2022 draft could come knocking.

The light barely flickered in Tennessee with 31 catches in his only season with the Titans.

Bill Belichick has turned aging receivers into valuable pieces before, and the Patriots are a team with WR concerns.

9. DT Larry Ogunjobi
Age: 27
Credentials: 21.5 career sacks
Best Fit: Jacksonville Jaguars

A priority for the Chicago Bears in the 2022 free agent class, their deal with Ogunjobi didn’t stick because of a failed physical. He started 16 games last season and has been a starter for the Browns and Bengals with the skill set to play all three downs.

If the price is right, there are a dozen teams Ogunjobi can help. He turns 28 in June.

8. RB Melvin Gordon
Age: 29
Credentials: Two-time Pro Bowler
Best Fit: Buffalo Bills

If there’s one thing the Bills can improve on the offensive side by adding another veteran, running back depth is a consideration. With no bell-cow back, Gordon could be part of the existing rotation and relative Old Reliable in a backfield still reliant on quarterback Josh Allen to move the sticks.

7. Edge Jadeveon Clowney
Age: 29
Credentials: Former No. 1 overall pick, three-time Pro Bowler
Best Fit: Dallas Cowboys

Nine sacks last season showed Clowney can get to the QB when blockers are focused elsewhere — Myles Garrett — and Dallas can create pressure on the other side. The Cowboys subtracted Randy Gregory and might be able to score Clowney on a shorter deal and relative discount. But there’s also a point at which Clowney might not be an upgrade over a cheaper, healthier developmental-type prospect.

6. OT Duane Brown
Age: 37
Credentials: One-time All-Pro, Five-time Pro Bowler
Best Fit: Denver Broncos

Following Russell Wilson isn’t the worst plan for Brown, who fits the scheme and could play on the right side, where the Broncos don’t have a proven veteran. Or he could be called into rescue duty on the left side, where Garett Bolles was an All-Pro in 2021 but has to show it in a new scheme after a rocky four seasons prior.

5. TE Rob Gronkowski
Age: 33
Credentials: Four-time All-Pro, 92 career TDs
Best Fit: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Gronk is no guarantee for even half the regular season. But he’s reliable, proven as Tom Brady’s go-to in big games and undeniably carries the clutch gene TB12 wants on his side.

The questions are whether the Bucs want to invest elsewhere or wait until September to assess Gronkowski’s desire to play.

4. WR Jarvis Landry
Age: 29
Credentials: Five-time Pro Bowler, two 100-catch seasons
Best Fit: Indianapolis Colts

Dumped by the Browns, Landry was essentially replaced (again) when Cleveland traded for Amari Cooper. The previous regime brought in Odell Beckham to be the Batman to Landry’s Robin.

Gander at the depth chart of the Colts and even the most grandiose projections for Michael Pittman Jr. as the lead receiver for Matt Ryan don’t cover the lack of talent at the position. Landry could be a security blanket for Ryan, who also could use a true No. 1 tight end.

If not the Colts, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers wouldn’t mind having another reliable set of hands with Davante Adams gone to Vegas.

3. DT Akiem Hicks
Age: 32
Credentials: Size-strength combo to play multiple roles
Best Fit: Los Angeles Chargers

Hicks hogs blockers and is best in a rotation. His size and strength allow him to be used in a 3-4 or 4-3 front and a team with consistent edge rushers could get a steal considering Hicks devours single blocking against interior offensive linemen.

Reality might have set in with just seven games played last season and durability can’t be ignored, but for an almost-there defense like the Chargers, Rams or Bengals, Hicks’ energy and impact is potentially profound.

2. WR Odell Beckham Jr.
Age: 29
Credentials: Two-time All-Pro
Best Fit: Green Bay Packers

A swing-and-miss last season by the Packers in a bid to sign Beckham Jr. shouldn’t shift the team’s interest, especially given the predicament of the depth chart. Beckham Jr. tore his ACL in the Super Bowl and his previous return was slower than expected, so factoring in a late-season return is part of the bigger picture.

There’s also the benefit of getting multiple seasons on a three-year deal that could be backloaded for health and performance.

1. S Tyrann Mathieu
Age: 29
Credentials: Three-time All-Pro
Best Fit: New York Giants

Mathieu remains a heart-and-soul chess piece and Wink Martindale could employ him in a dozen ways if the Giants can hit on other needs in the draft.

His price was an issue in a split with the Chiefs. If Mathieu agrees to a shorter deal with less guaranteed money, he could be a steal.

–By Jeff Reynolds, Field Level Media

Dec 19, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Carolina Panthers cornerback Stephon Gilmore (9) following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Colts sign CB Stephon Gilmore to 2-year deal

Cornerback Stephon Gilmore is signing a two-year contract with the Indianapolis Colts, multiple outlets reported Friday.

ESPN said the deal with worth $23 million, with $14 million guaranteed.

The Colts announced the signing of another veteran defensive back, safety Rodney McLeod, on Thursday.

Gilmore, 31, played eight games last season for the Carolina Panthers, who acquired him from the New England Patriots in October. He was limited by a hamstring injury in his brief time with Carolina after head coach Matt Rhule disclosed that the team made the move — parting with only a sixth-round pick — in hopes of playing more aggressive man coverage.

The NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2019, Gilmore tore his quad in Week 15 of the 2020 season and didn’t return to the field until Week 8 last season.

Drafted 10th overall by the Buffalo Bills in 2012, Gilmore signed a five-year, $65 million contract with the Patriots in free agency in 2017 and was a two-time All-Pro in New England.

He entered 2021 on the physically unable to perform list and wanted the Patriots to address his contract. In his first media availability with the Panthers last season, Gilmore said he “didn’t like how (the Patriots) handled my situation with my injury.”

He joins a veteran group on the Indianapolis defense that includes DeForest Buckner, Kenny Moore and Darius Leonard. The latter two have been active in recruiting free agents to the Colts this offseason.

A five-time Pro Bowl selection, Gilmore has 27 interceptions in 132 games (125 starts) with the Bills (2012-16), Patriots (2017-20) and Panthers.

–Field Level Media

Nov 21, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Tre'Quan Smith (10) during pregame warmups against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

NFL transactions roundup: Saints keep WR Tre’Quan Smith

The New Orleans Saints are bringing back wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith on a two-year contract, multiple outlets reported Monday.

The base deal is worth $6 million — $2 million guaranteed — and up to $10.5 million with incentives, per the reports.

Smith, 26, caught 32 passes for 377 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games (six starts) in 2021. He has 17 career TDs in 51 games (29 starts) for the Saints, who selected him in the third round of the 2018 draft.

–The Arizona Cardinals signed offensive lineman Will Hernandez to a one-year deal. The team didn’t release contract details.

Hernandez, 26, played in 62 career games (56 starts) for the New York Giants, who selected him in the second round of the 2018 draft.

Hernandez is expected to fill the Cardinals’ opening at right guard in 2022.

–The Giants signed former Cardinals guard Max Garcia.

Terms were not released by the team.

Garcia, 30, played the past three seasons in Arizona. He has played in 93 games (52 starts) with the Denver Broncos (2015-18) and Cardinals. Garcia has played every interior position but mostly left guard (39 starts).

He was selected in the fourth round of the 2015 draft by the Broncos.

–Guard Ike Boettger is returning to Buffalo on a one-year deal with the Bills.

Boettger signed with the Bills as an undrafted free agent out of Iowa in 2018. Since then, he’s appeared in 33 games (17 starts) with Buffalo.

Ten of those starts came last season at left guard before he sustained an Achilles injury against the New England Patriots in Week 16. He had surgery in late December.

–Field Level Media

Nov 21, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; San Francisco 49ers defensive back K'Waun Williams (24) attempts to tackle Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Jamal Agnew (39) during the first half at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

NFL transaction roundup: Broncos ink CB K’Waun Williams

The Denver Broncos signed free agent cornerback K’Waun Williams to a two-year deal worth $7 million, multiple outlets reported Tuesday.

Williams, 30, had 52 tackles, an interception, a sack, a forced fumble and four passes defensed in 14 games (eight starts) with the San Francisco 49ers last season. He played 72 percent of the team’s defensive snaps in 2021. Williams spent five seasons with 49ers.

Williams has seven sacks, four interceptions and 11 forced fumbles in 91 career games (46 starts) with the Cleveland Browns (2014-15) and Niners. He signed as an undrafted free agent with the Browns in May 2014.

–The Dallas Cowboys re-signed Pro Bowl punter Bryan Anger to a three-year deal worth $9 million, NFL Network reported.

Anger’s 44.6-yard net average in 2021 set a franchise record. He was also a Pro Bowler and second team All-Pro after his first season in Dallas.

Anger was selected in the third round of the 2012 draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars, five spots ahead of Russell Wilson. The Cowboys are Anger’s fourth team.

–The Las Vegas Raiders are signing defensive tackle Vernon Butler on a one-year deal, according to NFL Network.

Butler, 27, had 11 tackles in 10 games (one start) for the Buffalo Bills in 2021.

Butler was a first-round pick of the Carolina Panthers in 2016, going No. 30 overall. He has eight career sacks and four forced fumbles.

–The San Francisco 49ers officially announced the signing of wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud to a two-year deal.

McCloud caught 39 passes for 277 yards last season for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He also returned 38 punts for 367 yards.

McCloud was asked what drew him to the 49ers.

“Well, it certainly wasn’t the taxes that brought me here,” McCloud said, adding that he’s been close with current Niners WR Deebo Samuel since before the NFL.

–The Kansas City Chiefs are signing former first-round pick Corey Coleman, who hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2018, NFL Network reported.

Coleman, 27, has 61 catches for 789 yards and five touchdowns in 27 career games (19 starts) for the Cleveland Browns and New York Giants. The Browns selected him No. 15 overall in the 2016 draft.

–The Cincinnati Bengals waived offensive lineman Fred Johnson less than an hour after announcing they signed him to a one-year deal, ESPN reported.

Johnson signed a tender of $2.4 million, meaning any team that claims him will incur that amount against their salary cap. If he goes unclaimed, he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Johnson has played in 23 games (eight starts) for the Bengals since signing as an undrafted free agent in 2019.

–Field Level Media

Jan 9, 2022; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Arizona Cardinals outside linebacker Chandler Jones (55) pressures the pass by Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) in the first half at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-Arizona Republic

Nfl Seattle Seahawks At Arizona Cardinals

Report: Raiders land DE Chandler Jones, CB Rock Ya-Sin

The Las Vegas Raiders have agreed to a three-year deal with free agent All-Pro pass rusher Chandler Jones and acquired cornerback Rock Ya-Sin via trade with the Indianapolis Colts, NFL Network reported Wednesday.

With a deal in place with Jones, the Raiders traded defensive end Yannick Ngakoue to the Colts for Ya-Sin, per the report.

The deal for Jones is worth about $17 million per year, NFL Network reported.

Jones, 32, racked up 71.5 sacks in six seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, who acquired him in a trade with New England in March 2016.

Jones is coming off his fourth Pro Bowl after recording 10.5 sacks in 15 starts in 2021. He has 107.5 career sacks in 139 games (136 starts) with the Pats and Cards. He was selected No. 21 overall by the Pats in the 2012 draft.

Ngakoue, 26, racked up 10 sacks with the Raiders in 2021, his first season in Las Vegas. He had 71 quarterback pressures in 2021, good for third in the NFL, according to Next Gen Stats.

The Colts will be Ngakoue’s fifth team in seven seasons despite 55.5 career sacks. He was selected in the third round of the 2016 draft by Jacksonville and played four seasons for the Jaguars, earning a Pro Bowl nod in 2017.

Ya-Sin, 25, has two interceptions and 20 passes defensed in 41 career games (29 starts) for the Colts, who selected him in the second round of the 2019 draft.

The Raiders also reportedly released DE Carl Nassib earlier Wednesday.

–Field Level Media

Jan 17, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Christian Kirk (13) runs the ball against the Los Angeles Rams during the second half in the NFC Wild Card playoff football game at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars $150M spree brings WR Christian Kirk, OL Brandon Scherff

A free agent shopping spree underway in Jacksonville has netted wide receiver Christian Kirk, offensive guard Brandon Scherff, linebacker Foye Oluokun and defensive tackle Folorunso Fatukasi at a potential cost of more than $150 million.

Kirk moved to the slot in Arizona last season and had his most productive season, leading to a deal that will pay him like a No. 1 receiver, reportedly averaging $17 million per season. Kirk’s contract covers four years and is valued at $68 million, ESPN reported.

Scherff moves south from the Washington franchise, where he spent seven seasons and made five Pro Bowls. Scherff has started all 89 games in which he has played since being selected by Washington with the fifth overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Kirk caught 77 passes for 982 yards and five touchdowns with the Cardinals during the 2021 season and is line to replace free agent D.J. Chark if he doesn’t return.

Oluokun was the top free agent of the Atlanta Falcons and is reportedly set to receive a three-year, $45 million deal when contracts can be signed Wednesday.

Fatukasi’s contract is a three-year, $30 million agreement, per multiple reports. He had 115 total tackles with the New York Jets, who drafted the UConn product in the sixth round in 2018.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller (58) in the fourth quarter against the New York Jets at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Von Miller Instagram hints point to Broncos return

A series of social media posts Monday has energized Denver Broncos fans with the possibility that linebacker Von Miller wants to return to his longtime team.

Miller spent his first nine-plus NFL seasons in Denver before the Broncos dealt his expiring contract to the win-now Los Angeles Rams at the 2021 trade deadline. The Broncos received the Rams’ second- and third-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Now a free agent, Miller is hinting that a return to the Broncos is in the works.

“I kinda want that old thing back.. 5280,” Miller tweeted Monday — with the number of feet in a mile, 5,280, a reference to the Mile High City.

In his Instagram story, he also posted photos of him from his Broncos days. In one caption, he asked if he should wear jersey No. 58 or 40 in blue and orange. In another, he illustrates himself wondering, “I wonder if they will give me my old locker back?”

But at the end of his Instagram story, the 32-year-old shot video of himself addressing his followers from a beach.

“I wouldn’t tease y’all like that man. First time I’ve ever been a free agent, man. I’m just sitting back on the beach, man, waiting on it,” Miller said before concluding with a shoutout to Broncos fans.

Miller joined the Rams at an auspicious time and helped them win Super Bowl LVI, recording four sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery in their four playoff games. It marked Miller’s second Super Bowl ring after he led a formidable Broncos defense against the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

The eight-time Pro Bowler missed the 2020 season with a dislocated peroneal tendon, returned and played seven games for Denver in 2021 before the trade. In 150 career games (all starts), Miller has compiled 540 tackles, 115.5 sacks, 27 forced fumbles, nine fumble recoveries and two interceptions.

He ranks 22nd in NFL history in career sacks, a stat that has been kept since 1982.

–Field Level Media

Nov 21, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10) leads teammates to the field prior to the game against the Indianapolis Colts at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Bills don’t expect QB Mitchell Trubisky to re-sign

The Buffalo Bills don’t anticipate Mitchell Trubisky to return in 2022 to back up starting quarterback Josh Allen.

Trubisky will be a free agent on March 16, and head coach Sean McDermott said he expects Trubisky, 27, will have the chance to compete for a starting job somewhere else.

“It’s unrealistic to think we could have him back, but I want him to go on and do great things for him and his family,” McDermott said at a news conference at the scouting combine in Indianapolis on Tuesday.

It’s clear the Bills’ brass will send Trubisky off with their highest recommendation after his one season in Buffalo. McDermott called him a “class act” and general manager Brandon Beane said this: “He’s a marry-your-daughter type of guy.”

The Chicago Bears selected Trubisky with the second overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft but didn’t pick up his fifth-year option. Instead, he wound up in Buffalo in 2021 and appeared in six games in mop-up time, completing six of eight passes for 43 yards and an interception. He ran for 24 yards and a touchdown.

With the Bears, he completed 64.1 percent of his pass attempts for 10,609 yards with 64 touchdowns and 37 interceptions. He added eight rushing touchdowns and 1,057 yards, and he posted a 29-21 record as a starter.

–Field Level Media

Jan 22, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) during a NFC Divisional playoff football game against the San Francisco 49ers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Tag theme: NFL franchise tag primer

Tuesday marked the opening of tag season in the NFL.

Franchise tags can now be applied to pending free agents through March 8 at 4 p.m. ET, with the contract negotiating period for unrestricted free agents set to begin March 14.

Ten players received franchise tags in 2021, and with the salary cap projected at just over $208.2 million in 2022, a number of prized players can expect to be wearing the restrictive marker before the new league year begins.

The highest franchise tag value for any position is quarterbacks at $29.703 million. Wide receiver has a projected franchise value of $18.419 million, just below linebacker — $18.702 million — but ahead of defensive end, defensive tackle and cornerback.

“Tagged” players are able to negotiate with other teams in free agency, unless a team applies the “exclusive” franchise tag. The Cowboys used the “exclusive” franchise tag to retain QB Dak Prescott in 2020, preventing him from entering contract talks with any other team.

However, the non-exclusive tag preserves refusal rights — the opportunity to match a contract offer — for the team applying the tag.

Trades can be negotiated for franchise-tagged players and the most recent examples reveal the return might not be as steep for suitors as it once was. Pass rushers Yannick Ngakoue (Jaguars, 2020), Jadeveon Clowney (Texans, 2019) and Frank Clark (Seahawks, 2019) are recent examples of players tagged only to be traded.

PROJECTED FRANCHISE TAG VALUES FOR 2022

Position-specific franchise tag values are determined by the NFL using the average of the top five individual salaries each year. The equation also requires adding the last five franchise tag amounts, then dividing that number by the previous five total salary-cap amounts.

QB: $29,703,000
LB: $18,702,000
WR: $18,419,000
DT: $17,896,000
DE: $17,859,000
CB: $17,825,000
OL: $16,662,000
S: $12,911,000
TE: $11,931,000
RB: $9,570,000
K/P: $5,250,000

FIVE PLAYERS LIKELY TO BE TAGGED

Packers wide receiver Davante Adams — Nearly assured of being tagged with Green Bay in a state of flux — and $50.8 million over the projected cap. A long-term agreement is in the best interest of both sides. An All-Pro with undisputed credentials, Adams might want to walk if Aaron Rodgers exits. If a rapid reload were planned by the Packers, trading Adams for draft capital and/or another receiver could be in the cards.

Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu — The rare glue guy with off-the-charts production, Mathieu is a player the Chiefs don’t want to lose. Keeping him at a $12.911 million cap charge on a franchise tender sounds more than palatable, but don’t rule out the risk of acrimony and a holdout given the desire for a long-term agreement. Using the tag on Mathieu would mean the Chiefs reached a long-term pact with offensive tackle Orlando Brown.

Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson — He’s the player who made it palatable to lose Stephon Gilmore to the Carolina Panthers in October. Worth the franchise marker and then some, the Patriots can use the tag now and negotiate with Jackson toward a long-term deal until mid-July. He’s one of the top cover cornerbacks in the league with an NFL-best 25 interceptions since 2018.

Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki — As yet another offensive system arrives, Gesicki won’t be granted a ticket out of Miami just yet. After posting career numbers with 73 catches for 780 yards despite a revolving door at quarterback, Gesicki gets tagged for an on-the-cheap $11 million. That deal could work well for him, too, considering new head coach Mike McDaniel was brought up in a system dependent on the tight end position.

Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny — A former first-round pick with a blip of success late in the season, why use the tag to pinch Penny? Because at $9.5 million, it’s worth it for GM John Schneider to find out if his initial hunch on the running back was right. Penny rushed for 671 yards and six TDs in the final five games of the 2021 season, which appears to be a healthy indication Penny’s stock is on the rise.

–Field Level Media