Analysis

The 5 Most Underrated Signings of the 2022 NFL Offseason

Most Underrated Signings

The 2022 NFL offseason has been one of the most action-packed offseasons in league history and has been headlined by star WRs Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams, and A.J. Brown switching teams.

While these are certainly the most note-worthy acquisitions of the offseason, there are many signings that have gone under the radar but may prove to be impactful as the season progresses. Let’s look at five of the most underrated signings of the 2022 NFL offseason. 

1) Russell Gage (WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Gage has been a nice secondary option for Matt Ryan for several years now. He has posted over 770 yards and 65 receptions in 2020 and 2021 and has hauled in exactly 4 TDs in each of those two years.

The Bucs clearly believe that Gage can be a valuable piece of their offense after signing him to a 3-year $30 million contract with $20 million guaranteed.

Gage is likely to make an impact on this Bucs team early in the season due to the absence of Chris Godwin for the first few weeks of the season as he recovers from a torn ACL.

Russell Gage is the type of receiver that Tom Brady will want to rely on without Chris Godwin. Mike Evans will receive more responsibilities as well, but Gage is a wide receiver that can operate in the slot and on the outside. Gage caught 70.2% of his targets last season and had a PFF grade of 75.2.

Even when Godwin returns Gage will be utilized in a pass-heavy Bucs offense in which Tom Brady features weapons that he trusts. 

2) Jordan Whitehead (DS, New York Jets)

The former Tampa Bay Bucs safety has been a very reliable player throughout his NFL career. Whitehead has played 14+ games in each season since 2019.

Whitehead’s production has been consistent as well. He has recorded 2 interceptions in each of the last two seasons to go along with a total of 14 tackles for loss in those seasons.

Whitehead appears to be a perfect fit for Robert Saleh’s defense. He is a physical player who can run sideline to sideline. Whitehead is a major upgrade at safety for the Jets and his versatility as a run defender and in coverage make this a great signing.

Whitehead is only 25 years old and could turn into a cornerstone player for the Jets secondary going forward.

3) Ronald Jones II (RB, Kansas City Chiefs)

Ronald Jones never seemed to break out with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the way that some expected. Fumbles have been an issue for Jones, losing 7 of them throughout his 4-year career with the Bucs. Giving away the football affected the trust that the Bucs coaching staff had in Jones.

But Jones will get a fresh start with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2022. Jones is listed as the 2nd running back on the Chiefs depth chart behind Clyde Edwards-Helaire and ahead of Jerick McKinnon. CEH and McKinnon have both struggled to stay on the field during their career and on the contrary, Ronald Jones has been available for 14+ games in each of his last three seasons. 

Jones should get opportunities in this offense to prove himself, and he will only be 25 years old during the 2022 season with just 488 carries in 4 seasons.

Plus, the Chiefs signed Jones to a near-minimum contract that is heavily based on incentives. It made a lot of sense for the Chiefs to bring in a running back with upside for a bargain, especially after losing Darrel Williams who was their leading rusher last season.

4) James Daniels (OG, Pittsburgh Steelers)

James Daniels was signed by the Steelers to a 3-year $26.5 million deal. While this is no bargain for signing Daniels, the Steelers desperately needed help on the offensive line and Daniels has been a solid player for the Bears since entering the league in 2018.

In a full 17 games last season, Daniels allowed 3 sacks and recorded a PFF grade of 71.0.

The Steelers want to be a physical team that runs the football with Najee Harris, and James Daniels is a versatile lineman that can help them play to the identity that they want. Daniels has started 23 games at left guard, 17 at right guard, and 8 at center throughout his career. 

5) Bradley Bozeman (OC, Carolina Panthers)

The Panthers are another team that needed reinforcements on the offensive line, which is why Bradley Bozeman is a nice signing for them. The Panthers also signed Guard Austin Corbett, and drafted Ikem Ekwonu (OT, NC State) in the first round of this past draft.

Bozeman signed a 1-year contract worth $2.8 million with some incentives. Carolina seemingly got Bozeman for much cheaper than his recent play suggests he is worth.

Since establishing a role for himself with the Ravens in 2019, Bozeman has played in 16 games in each season making him a very durable center for the Panthers.

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