NFL Free Agency: One player each NFC team should still sign for 2022

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) celebrates after catching the ball for a touchdown after it's juggled by Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Ashton Dulin (16), Las Vegas Raiders free safety Tre'von Moehrig (25) and Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Casey Hayward Jr. (29) on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, during a game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) celebrates after catching the ball for a touchdown after it's juggled by Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Ashton Dulin (16), Las Vegas Raiders free safety Tre'von Moehrig (25) and Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Casey Hayward Jr. (29) on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, during a game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. /
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NFL Free Agency
NFL Free Agency: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /

NFL Free Agency: One more free agent for each NFC South team

Carolina Panthers – Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB

I think the Panthers have had a very solid offseason.  They invested heavily in their offensive line, signing Austin Corbett, Bradley Bozeman, and drafted Ikem Ekwonu.

They also re-signed a ton of their own guys.

This roster is solid, I think.  However, there’s been no indication the Panthers are prepared to trade for either Jimmy Garoppolo or Baker Mayfield.

If they don’t want to trade for either, why not sign Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is perhaps the most experienced veteran left on the market.

Fitzpatrick is better than any option they have left on their roster and could give the team a boost on the offensive side.

New Orleans Saints – Will Fuller, WR

The Saints need another pass catcher.  Who knows what Michael Thomas plans to do?  There hasn’t been a lot of noise from New Orleans about Thomas, but even if he does play for them in 2022, they’re still without another quality receiver.

Will Fuller could be a perfect fit for this offense with Jameis Winston.  He can stretch the field a ton and would open up more space for Michael Thomas and others underneath.

The Saints have a shot in 2022 to make the playoffs.  The NFC is very weak, and Fuller could help the offense greatly.

Atlanta Falcons – Akiem Hicks, DT

What do you give this NFC team that doesn’t have much of anything?  The Falcons’ rebuild has officially started, as they recently traded away Matt Ryan, signed Marcus Mariota, and drafted Desmond Ridder.

This team is several years away from being relevant again.

I struggled with who the Falcons should sign.  I landed on Akiem Hicks because their defense has been bad for years.  Hicks is an all-around strong player on the interior, just four years removed from an All-Pro season.

You could put literally any free agent here for Atlanta.  But I would stick on the defensive side since that’s where they need the most help right now.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jared Cook, TE

It’s unknown whether Rob Gronkowski will play another year.  If he does, you can bet he’ll return to Tampa.

If not, Jared Cook makes a ton of sense as a guy who can still catch a ton of passes.  We know Tom Brady can get the ball to whoever is open, and Cook presents one of the better receiving tight end options in the NFL, even at his advanced age.

Cook has had at least 500 receiving yards in all but four seasons of his career.

He’s wildly consistent and largely stays on the field.