Browns Rumors

2023 NFL Cap Space, By Team

The start of June has served as a key NFL financial period for decades. While teams no longer have to wait until after June 1 to make that cost-splitting cut designation, teams pick up the savings from those transactions today. With a handful of teams making post-June 1 cuts this year, here is how each team’s cap space (courtesy of OverTheCap) looks as of Friday:

  1. Chicago Bears: $32.58MM
  2. Carolina Panthers: $27.25MM
  3. Arizona Cardinals: $26.68MM
  4. New York Jets: $24.79MM
  5. Detroit Lions: $23.72MM
  6. Indianapolis Colts: $23.39MM
  7. Dallas Cowboys: $20.48MM
  8. Houston Texans: $16.81MM
  9. Green Bay Packers: $16.57MM
  10. Pittsburgh Steelers: $15.73MM
  11. Cincinnati Bengals: $14.92MM
  12. New Orleans Saints: $14.27MM
  13. New England Patriots: $14.12MM
  14. Miami Dolphins: $13.9MM
  15. Cleveland Browns: $13.86MM
  16. Philadelphia Eagles: $13.85MM
  17. Los Angeles Chargers: $12.61MM
  18. Jacksonville Jaguars: $12MM
  19. Washington Commanders: $11.57MM
  20. Baltimore Ravens: $11.54MM
  21. San Francisco 49ers: $10.72MM
  22. Atlanta Falcons: $10.7MM
  23. Denver Broncos: $10.13MM
  24. Minnesota Vikings: $9.75MM
  25. Tennessee Titans: $7.99MM
  26. Seattle Seahawks: $7.94MM
  27. New York Giants: $3.82MM
  28. Las Vegas Raiders: $3.37MM
  29. Los Angeles Rams: $1.49MM
  30. Buffalo Bills: $1.4MM
  31. Kansas City Chiefs: $653K
  32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: $402K

The Dolphins gained the most from a post-June 1 cut (Byron Jones) this year, creating $13.6MM in cap space from a deal that will spread out the cornerback’s dead money through 2024. But the Browns (John Johnson, Jadeveon Clowney) and Cowboys (Ezekiel Elliott) created more than $10MM in space as well.

The Jets’ number is a bit deceiving. They are still working on a restructure with Aaron Rodgers, as the trade acquisition’s cap number — after a Packers restructure — sits at just $1.22MM. In 2024, that number skyrockets to $107.6MM. Rodgers’ cap hit will almost definitely will climb before Week 1, so viewing the Jets along with the other teams north of $20MM in space is not entirely accurate.

Minnesota is moving closer to separating from its $12.6MM-per-year Dalvin Cook contract. The team already created some space by trading Za’Darius Smith to the Browns. Cleveland, which is one of the teams connected to DeAndre Hopkins, added Smith and did so with help from its Deshaun Watson restructure. Watson was set to count $54.9MM against the Browns’ 2023 cap. That number is down to $19.1MM, though the Browns’ restructure both ballooned Watson’s mid-2020s cap figures to $63.9MM — which would shatter the NFL record — and added a 2027 void year.

Tampa Bay and Los Angeles sit atop the league in dead money, with the Bucs — largely from their April 2022 Tom Brady restructure — checking in at $75.3MM here. That total comprises nearly 33% of the Bucs’ 2023 cap sheet. The Rams, at more than $74MM, are not far behind. Despite the Bills and Chiefs — the teams most frequently tied to Hopkins — joining the Bucs and Rams near the bottom of the league in cap space, both AFC contenders also sit in the bottom five in dead money.

Six Teams To Gain Cap Space From Post-June 1 Cut Designations

With the annual June 1 date — a pivotal salary point on the NFL’s calendar for decades — looming, a handful of teams will see their cap-space figures rise this week. This year, six teams took advantage of the post-June 1 cut designation the league allows for cost-defraying purposes.

Teams are permitted to designate two players per offseason as post-June 1 cuts. This transaction allows a team to spread out a dead-money hit over a two-year period, as opposed to absorbing all the cost in one offseason. The Cardinals did not take this path with DeAndre Hopkins, finalized a standard release Tuesday. Arizona is one of the six teams to have used the post-June 1 cut tactic this offseason, however.

Here are the teams who will pick up cap room Friday, via’s Field Yates (on Twitter):

  • Miami Dolphins: $13.6MM
  • Cleveland Browns: $10.92MM
  • Dallas Cowboys: $10.9MM
  • Washington Commanders: $4MM
  • Denver Broncos: $3.75MM
  • Arizona Cardinals: $3.22MM

With $1.3MM in cap space, the Dolphins sit 30th as May winds down. They will rise to the league’s top half thanks to the funds from their Byron Jones cut emerging. Jones missed all of last season due to injury, seeing what was believed to be a routine surgery — one not expected to even force him to miss training camp time — leave his career in jeopardy. Three years after the Dolphins gave Jones a then-record-setting cornerback contract, the former Cowboys Pro Bowler expressed doubt about playing again.

The Browns’ John Johnson release will balloon their cap space to $15.9MM. Cleveland gave Johnson a three-year, $33MM deal in 2021 but cut bait with a year to go. The Browns were believed to be interested in Jessie Bates, but the Falcons’ monster offer (four years, $64MM) won out. Cleveland instead signed ex-Kansas City starter Juan Thornhill. The Browns used their second post-June 1 designation on Jadeveon Clowney, doing so despite signing the former No. 1 overall pick to a one-year deal in 2022. Released for procedural purposes after a tumultuous year, Clowney is no longer in the Browns’ plans. The team, which has been mentioned as a Hopkins dark horse, now sits in the top 10 for cap space.

Dallas’ Ezekiel Elliott cut will lead to a cap-space figure north of $21MM soon; that will place the team in the top eight. The team would have faced an $11.8MM dead-money charge had the post-June 1 designation not been used. Elliott remains in the mix to return to the Cowboys, but the two-time rushing champion would do so at a significantly reduced rate. The team had signed him to a six-year, $90MM extension ahead of the 2019 season, but the former No. 4 overall pick’s best work came on his rookie contract. The Cowboys still have Tony Pollard tied to a $10.1MM franchise tag.

Chase Roullier represents the source of the Commanders’ belated savings. Washington cut its former starting center earlier this month, doing so after signing veteran Nick Gates and drafting interior O-lineman Ricky Stromberg in Round 3. Roullier signed a Washington extension in January 2021 but missed 24 games over the past two seasons. The 2017 draftee, who played just two games last season due to a knee injury, remains unsigned. The Roullier-generated money will bump Washington’s cap-space total past $8MM.

Denver parting ways with longtime kicker Brandon McManus will lead to its slight funding increase, which will boost the team’s cap space past $10MM. McManus served as the Broncos’ kicker for nine seasons, taking over after Matt Prater‘s substance-abuse suspension in 2014. McManus signed two extensions to stay in Denver, the most recent in 2020. But the Broncos have another round of new special teams coaches. Sean Payton cited cost savings when addressing McManus’ release, and the veteran kicker already has a new gig — in Jacksonville.

The Cardinals will add a few million because of their Rodney Hudson release and J.J. Watt‘s retirement. Hudson, who has been closely tied to retirement, spent the past two seasons in Arizona. The Cards acquired the former Raiders and Chiefs center via 2021 trade. Hudson then signed a three-year, $30MM extension that ran through the 2024 season. Injuries doomed the former Pro Bowler in Arizona. After missing five games in 2021, Hudson missed 13 last season. Although Watt retired, the Cards created nearly $1.2MM in 2023 cap space by processing the move as a post-June 1 exit.

Because the Cardinals had used the post-June 1 designation on Hudson and Watt, they could not apply the cost-spreading measure to the Hopkins release. With the Hudson and Watt moves set to lift the Cardinals past the $27MM mark for cap space, only the Bears will reside ahead of them in available funds.

Traded NFL Draft Picks For 2024

As teams regroup on potential trade talks, 2024 draft picks represent the top non-player assets available. Although the usual run of draft-weekend trades featured teams moving up and down the 2023 board, a high number of 2024 picks have changed hands. The Cardinals resided at the center of such movement, but many other teams have already made changes to their 2024 draft arsenals. Three first-rounders have already been traded, and a fourth — barring an Aaron Rodgers injury — will be expected to transfer.

Here are the 2024 picks to have changed hands thus far:

Round 1

Round 2

Round 3

  • Lions obtained Vikings‘ pick in 2022 deadline deal that sent T.J. Hockenson to Minnesota
  • As part of Payton trade, Broncos collected Saints‘ third
  • As part of Anderson trade, Cardinals acquired Texans’ 2024 third
  • Cardinals picked up Titans‘ 2024 third in deal that allowed Tennessee to draft Will Levis at No. 33
  • Seahawks acquired third from Broncos in exchange for No. 83 overall pick (CB Riley Moss)
    • It is not yet known if Seattle will add Denver or New Orleans’ 2024 third
  • Texans landed third from Eagles in trade for No. 105 (CB Kelee Ringo)

Round 4

Round 5

Round 6

Round 7

  • Broncos acquired Rams‘ seventh in pick-swap deal for LB Kenny Young in October 2021
  • October 2021 Mark Ingram trade gave Texans seventh from Saints
  • Texans obtained seventh from Chiefs for DB Lonnie Johnson
    • Unknown conditions may keep pick from transferring
  • As part of Amadi swap, Eagles obtained seventh from Titans
  • Daley pick swap sent Titans seventh from Panthers
  • Jones pick swap sent Browns seventh from Falcons
  • In Johnathan Hankins pick-swap trade, Cowboys acquired Raiders‘ 2024 seventh
    • It is unknown which of Las Vegas’ 2024 sevenths will be sent to Dallas

Latest On DeAndre Hopkins: Agent, Bills, Browns, Chiefs, Ravens, Jets, Cowboys

DeAndre Hopkins said earlier this offseason he had hired an agent, but it does not appear the former Texans and Cardinals wide receiver made that official until Tuesday.

The veteran is now with Klutch Sports, per’s Ian Rapoport, who notes Hopkins will be repped by Kelton Crenshaw (Twitter link). DeVonta Smith, Kayvon Thibodeaux and Chase Young are also aligned with Klutch and Crenshaw. Hopkins had represented himself in the past — including when he signed the two-year, $54.5MM Cardinals extension in 2020 — but as the soon-to-be 31-year-old pass catcher transitions to free agency, he will have representation.

Hopkins had been using financial advisor Saint Omni as his de facto representative,’s Albert Breer notes, while Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio adds teams were shying away from email communication with the accomplished wideout due to concerns they would be emailing a non-certified agent. That issue will be in the past now, with Hopkins aligned with LeBron James’ Klutch.

As for Hopkins’ potential destination, familiar teams continue to circle. Bills and Chiefs interest remains, according to’s Jeremy Fowler. During a recent ESPN appearance with Harry Douglas and Jason Fitz, Fowler said he would bet on Hopkins ending up in Buffalo or Kansas City (video link).

Both AFC powerhouses sit at the bottom of the league in terms of cap space. Buffalo holds $1.47MM; Kansas City sits at barely $600K. Hopkins is not looking to take much of a discount, especially considering what Odell Beckham Jr. received from the Ravens. OBJ signed for $15MM guaranteed, and incentives can take the 30-year-old wideout’s payout to $18MM. Hopkins remains unlikely to secure Beckham-level cash at this offseason juncture, and the Chiefs and Bills — during trade talks with the Cardinals — balked at taking on his previous contract. With that contract in the past, more flexibility exists now.

Rumored to be interested in Hopkins back in March, the Chiefs had made progress on a trade with the Cardinals, per Breer. OBJ’s deal scuttled those talks. While Hopkins lobbied the Cardinals to eat some of his contract to facilitate a trade, but the lack of worthwhile trade compensation did not compel Arizona to do so.

Hopkins will probably have to reveal some wiggle room as well, if he wants to end up with either of the two teams he has frequently mentioned as appealing destinations. Other teams still view the Bills as a threat to add Hopkins, per Fowler, who also notes the Chiefs’ belief in Kadarius Toney, despite his concerning injury past, also could impede a Hopkins addition. Kansas City also chose SMU’s Rashee Rice in Round 2. The Bills did not draft a receiver until Round 5 (Florida’s Justin Shorter), but they are planning to use first-round tight end Dalton Kincaid as a slot player frequently.

Although the Ravens signed Beckham and now have Zay Flowers in the fold, Lamar Jackson approached team brass about the potential for adding Hopkins weeks ago. With Jackson’s cap hit dropping from $32.4MM to $22.15MM this year, thanks to his record-setting extension removing the franchise tag from the equation, Baltimore has more than $11MM in cap space. The Ravens did Hopkins homework earlier this year, per The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec (subscription required), and also discussed Courtland Sutton with the Broncos. But they are not believed to have entered serious trade talks with the Cardinals.

The Browns continue to be loosely connected to Hopkins, with Fowler noting the team will likely at least make a call on the 10-year veteran. Klutch is also a Cleveland-based agency that represents several Browns players. No other agency represents more Browns than Klutch, per the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Mary Kay Cabot.

Hopkins played three seasons with Deshaun Watson in Houston and remains close with the second-year Cleveland quarterback. Watson said Tuesday (via Cabot), “Of course, we’d love to have him.” Thanks to designating John Johnson as a post-June 1 cut, the Browns will hold more than $16MM in cap space later this week. That said, Kevin Stefanski has praised the Browns’ current receiving corps and expressed confidence in the group as is. The Browns have Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones, Elijah Moore and three recent third-round picks — Cedric Tillman, David Bell, Anthony Schwartz — on their roster.

The Jets pursued Beckham and had set up a visit, but they backed out of the race when the Ravens’ guarantee figure surfaced. The Cowboys also looked into the former All-Pro via trade. New York has since added Randall Cobb, while Dallas traded for Brandin Cooks. These two could loom on the fringes here as well, but Hopkins continues to be tied more closely to the Chiefs and Bills.

Each NFL Franchise’s Richest QB Contract

The quarterback market has moved again this offseason. A year after Aaron Rodgers raised the average annual value bar past $50MM, Jalen Hurts and Lamar Jackson did so on long-term extensions. Overall, four teams have authorized the most lucrative QB deal in their respective histories this offseason. Two more — the Bengals and Chargers — are in talks about record-setting extensions as well.

On that note, here is the richest quarterback contract each team has authorized. Although teams like the Jets and Lions have acquired big-ticket contracts via trade, only teams’ extensions or free agency agreements will qualify here.

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

  • Jay Cutler, January 2014. Seven years, $126.7MM. $38MM fully guaranteed

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Carson Palmer, December 2005. Six years, $97MM. $30.8MM fully guaranteed

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

In trading this contract to the Jets in April, the Packers restructured the deal. Rodgers’ exit will still tag the Pack with $40.3MM in 2023 dead money.

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Carr’s second Raiders deal — agreed to in April 2022 — was worth $40.5MM per year. The full guarantee, thanks to the February escape hatch the team built into the contract, checked in lower than Carr’s initial Raiders extension.

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

Cousins’ 2020 extension checked in with a higher AAV ($33MM) but did not approach his initial Minnesota pact for guarantees.

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

  • Mark Sanchez, June 2009. Five years, $50.5MM. $28MM guaranteed

This was the former No. 5 overall pick-turned-TV analyst’s rookie deal, made possible before the 2011 CBA reshaped the rookie salary structure. Chad Pennington‘s September 2004 extension (seven years, $64MM, $23MM guaranteed) marks the top contract the Jets have authorized for a veteran QB.

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Commanders

Browns On DeAndre Hopkins’ Radar?

Few players who have remained unsigned as of Memorial Day in recent years match DeAndre Hopkins‘ profile, making the former All-Pro wide receiver’s eventual landing spot a frequent discussion topic during OTA season. A few teams have been connected to the 11th-year veteran since his Cardinals release.

Most closely tied to the Bills and Chiefs, with each team having engaged in trade talks with the Cardinals, Hopkins also has a clear link to the Browns. He and Deshaun Watson remain close, and the Browns quarterback said earlier this offseason he was planning to discuss how the team stood regarding Hopkins interest. Nothing transpired on the trade front, but now that the three-year Watson target is in free agency, forging a path to Cleveland would be easier.

Hopkins is open to playing with Watson again, Jeremy Fowler said during a recent ESPN appearance (h/t’s Dov Kleiman), labeling the Browns a dark-horse team to monitor. The Chiefs and Bills may remain the more likely Hopkins suitors, but the Browns — despite their landmark Watson extension — do carry a cap-space advantage. Buffalo and Kansas City sit 30th and 31st in cap room presently.

The Browns will soon pick up more cap space as well, having used both their post-June cut designations this offseason (John Johnson, Jadeveon Clowney). Cleveland will pick up $9.75MM from the Johnson release later this week. That stands to bump the Browns’ cap-room number past $16MM. The Watson contract obviously sits as a historically onerous part of the Browns’ payroll, but the team restructured the five-year, $230MM guaranteed deal earlier this offseason. While Watson’s cap hits reside at record-shattering numbers from 2024-26, his 2023 cap figure checks in at $19.1MM.

Cleveland has, however, made multiple moves at receiver this offseason. They acquired Elijah Moore via trade and selected Tennessee’s Cedric Tillman Jr. in Round 3. These two will join 2022 trade acquisition Amari Cooper and contract-year sidekick Donovan Peoples-Jones atop the Browns’ receiving hierarchy. A Hopkins move would presumably bump Tillman to the developmental track, and the Browns also have two other recent third-round receivers — Anthony Schwartz, David Bell — on their roster. Conversely, the Chiefs and Bills are not as deep at the wideout spots and have been linked to Hopkins for much of the offseason.

As of Monday, the Bills, at plus-200, reside as slight Hopkins favorites, per Although the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Mary Kay Cabot advocates for the Browns pursuing Hopkins, she views a Watson-Hopkins reunion as a long-shot proposition. Hopkins resided as Watson’s top target from 2017-19, earning first-team All-Pro recognition in each season and helping Houston to back-to-back AFC South titles in that span. The Browns loomed as a suitor for ex-Watson target Brandin Cooks last year, but Cooks soon signed a Texans extension.

Hopkins, 31 next week, did not include Watson on the list of quarterbacks he would most like to play with, and Cabot posits that omission stemmed from the wideout viewing the Browns as an unrealistic destination. Then again, those comments came when Hopkins was still tied to a $27MM-per-year Cardinals contract. The landscape may be different with Hopkins now unattached. The Ravens’ $15MM Odell Beckham Jr. guarantee may affect Hopkins’ price point, but at this point in the offseason (and coming off suspension and injury issues in Arizona), Hopkins collecting that kind of guarantee will be difficult. Like the November 2021 Beckham sweepstakes, this will not be a top-dollar free agency pursuit. Fit will play a major role for the six-time 1,000-yard pass catcher.

Za’Darius Smith Addresses Vikings Contract, Recovery From Knee Injury

As expected, the Vikings moved on from Za’Darius Smith this offseason by trading him to the Browns. The veteran edge rusher recently spoke about his financial situation, which was the driving force behind his arrival with a new team for the third time in his career.

Smith signed a three-year Vikings contract last offseason, but guranteed money was a sticking point for the 30-year-old heading into this spring. He requested his release in March, something which would have allowed him to test the open market once again. Instead, Minnesota ended up trading him to Cleveland in a deal which saw Day 3 picks swapped and the Vikings elect to retain some of his compensation. Smith’s new contract still has him one year from free agency, however, something which is clearly a signficant factor for him.

It wasn’t set up right,” the former fourth-rounder said of his Vikings pact. “It was the guarantee part. The first year was only guaranteed. Now I’m basically in the same situation, but it’s OK now because I can get a chance to go into free agency next year” (h/t Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune).

All $6.45MM of the signing bonus Smith earned on his Minnesota agreement was indeed paid out in 2022, but after the re-working of his pact following the trade, he could still see up to $13MM in cashflow this season. Expectations will be high for him with the Browns, a team which will have one of the league’s better edge rushing groups if Smith is able to remain healthy in his new home.

The Kentucky product joins Myles Garrett and free agent addition Ogbonnia Okoronkwo in that department for Cleveland. Smith earned his third Pro Bowl nod in 2022 after notching 10 sacks in his lone Vikings campaign. That marked the third time in the least four years that he eclipsed double-digit sacks, with the lone exception being the 2021 season in which he was limited to just one game. Another injury – to his knee – slowed him down last last season, though.

Smith recorded only 0.5 sacks during the final eight games (regular and postseason combined) while he dealt with the ailment. He cited the weekly roster bonus he was paid out as the reason he continued suiting up despite being at less than 100%, and the resultant drop-off in production. Ahead of his Browns debut, however, he said he is much healthier.

“I couldn’t rest last year,” Smith said. “I was making like [$176K] just to dress up. So, you’d dress up, too, right? Exactly. That was different for me. I had a chance to rest my knee, get some rehab… I’m all healthy now and ready to go.”

This Date In Transactions History: Browns Extend TE David Njoku

It can always be a bit risky paying big money on tight ends, especially when the player hasn’t even shown Pro Bowl-worthy production. So, when the Browns signed David Njoku to an extension on this day in 2022, it certainly raised a few eyebrows. Fortunately for the Browns, they shouldn’t have any regrets with exactly one year to reflect on the move.

On May 27, 2022, the Browns announced that they inked their former first-round tight end to an extension. Njoku had already been slapped with the franchise tag, ensuring at least a hefty payday for the 2022 campaign. Instead, the organization ripped up that tender and signed Njoku to a four-year, $56.75MM deal with $28MM in guaranteed money. The extension put the player fifth at the position in terms of average annual value, and while he’s since been passed by Darren Waller‘s record-breaking deal, Njoku still represents one of the largest tight end contracts in the NFL.

Njoku had an inconsistent role during his rookie season but showed his potential during the 2018 campaign, finishing with 56 receptions for 639 yards and four touchdowns. The next two years didn’t go all that great for the tight end; his 2019 season was limited to only four games while he recovered from a broken wrist, and he started only five of his 13 appearances in 2020 while dealing with a knee injury.

He rebounded a bit in 2021, finishing with 36 catches for 475 yards and four touchdowns. While that production probably doesn’t warrant a $50MM+ contract, a pair of moves made it appear that Njoku was on the brink of a breakout season, perhaps justifying the organization’s investment. For starters, the Browns moved on from Austin Hooper, a transaction that finally made Njoku the undisputed starter. Second, the front office made the franchise-altering trade for Deshaun Watson, and considering Cleveland’s lack of experienced receiving options, Njoku would surely become one of the QB’s preferred targets.

Watson, of course, was limited to only six games while serving a suspension, but Njoku still managed to put together one of his most productive seasons since that aforementioned sophomore campaign. The 26-year-old ultimately finished his 2022 season having hauled in 58 catches for 628 yards and four touchdowns. Sure, those numbers are still a far cry from the numbers put up by the other highest-paid tight ends (a grouping that includes Travis Kelce, Mark Andrews, Dallas Goedert, George Kittle, and Waller). However, considering Njoku’s age and modest production, it makes sense that he’d be right below that grouping and above the likes of Dawson Knox, Jonnu Smith, Hunter Henry, Evan Engram, and Zach Ertz.

The Browns will surely be hoping for even more for Njoku in 2023. If the tight end is able to put together a career year during his seventh season in the NFL, his extension may end up looking like a bargain.

DeAndre Hopkins Rumors: Chiefs, Trade Talks, Patriots

The Chiefs were reportedly one of the most active teams looking into former Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins this year. According to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, Kansas City had received permission to talk with the now-free agent earlier in the offseason and spoke with him before the draft.

The biggest hurdle for the Chiefs, as it was for any team Arizona spoke to, was having to take on Hopkins’s existing contract. If a trade were going to take place, Kansas City wanted a much lower price, meaning the Cardinals would have to take on some of Hopkins’s contract in the trade.

The Chiefs were fairly big spenders this offseason after making big deals for tackle Jawaan Taylor and defensive end Charles Omenihu, resulting in the exhaustion of most of their salary cap. After their most recent $3MM deal for tackle Donovan Smith, the Chiefs are 31st in the league in available cap space, according to

While adding Hopkins is on anyone’s wish list, except perhaps Arizona’s, Kansas City also doesn’t seem desperate to add any more wide receivers. Despite losing JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mecole Hardman to free agency, the team has real confidence in Kadarius Toney‘s potential. They return Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Skyy Moore and drafted SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice in the second round to compete for snaps with the starters.

Here are a few more rumors surrounding the still young free agency of DHop:

  • The Chiefs were not the only team that the Cardinals struggled to find equal ground with on a trade. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, who spoke on the Pat McAfee Show, Arizona was working to trade the veteran wideout up until the day before the first round of the NFL draft. The Cardinals hit snags, though, as each discussion required handling of draft pick compensation and salary adjustments that would require Arizona to take on some of Hopkins’s salary. In the end, they opted to take the hit in the salary cap while ultimately saving cash.
  • ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler was one of the first to release a list of best fits for Hopkins in his newfound free agency. According to Fowler, the Bills, Chiefs, Jets, Cowboys, and Saints are the teams to watch out for in the initial race. A Stefon Diggs-Hopkins-Gabriel Davis trio could be just what’s needed to put the Bills in a Super Bowl, but the team only has around $2.4MM in cap space. The Jets are a bit better at $6.9MM of cap space (still far under the $19.45MM Hopkins was set to make in Arizona this year), but the team is working to create more cap room by restructuring large contracts like those of linebacker C.J. Mosley and wide receiver Corey Davis. They nearly had Odell Beckham Jr. before the Ravens swept in and nabbed him themselves. The Cowboys are set on defense and have some strong weapons on offense. Adding Hopkins to a receiving corps that contains CeeDee Lamb and Brandin Cooks could be deadly, and they’ve got $9MM of cap space to work with. The Saints have missed having a star wideout as they’ve dealt with the durability issues of Michael Thomas. Hopkins would be a nice veteran mentor for youngsters Chris Olave and Rashid Shaheed, and New Orleans has the most cap space of the above teams at $13.6MM. Fowler also lists the Browns, Giants, Falcons, and Patriots as wild-card teams to look out for.
  • Speaking of the Patriots, Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports that, now that the contract isn’t nearly as much of a hurdle, New England is more likely to pursue Hopkins. Hopkins reportedly had a bit of a rocky relationship with Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien when the two were in Houston together, but adding Hopkins would immediately provide quarterback Mac Jones with a WR1. Hopkins would be teaming up with Smith-Schuster, DeVante Parker, and last year’s second-round pick Tyquan Thornton to try and mount an upgraded New England passing attack.

Browns Sign OT Dawand Jones, Wrap Draft Class Deals

The Browns have officially signed their entire draft class. The team announced that they’ve inked fourth-round offensive tackle Dawand Jones to his four-year rookie pact.

Jones got into 41 games across four seasons at Ohio State, including a 2022 campaign where he earned All-Big Ten honors after starting 13 games at right tackle. The lineman started 13 games at right guard in 2021, so his versatility could lead to some snaps as a backup in 2023.

The rookie probably profiles as more of an offensive tackle long-term. In Cleveland, he’ll have an opportunity to play under (and potentially supplant) All-Pro veterans Jack Conklin and Joel Bitonio.

Jones was the seventh and final of the team’s draft picks to sign. The Browns entire draft class included:

Round 3, No. 74 (from Jets): Cedric Tillman, WR (Tennessee) (signed)
Round 3, No. 98: Siaki Ika, DT (Baylor) (signed)
Round 4, No. 111: Dawand Jones, OT (Ohio State)
Round 4, No. 126 (from Vikings): Isaiah McGuire, DE (Missouri) (signed)
Round 5, No. 140 (from Rams): Dorian Thompson-Robinson, QB (UCLA) (signed)
Round 5, No. 142: Cameron Mitchell, CB (Northwestern) (signed)
Round 6, No. 190: Luke Wypler, C (Ohio State) (signed)