Potential Landing Spots For Haason Reddick

The Philadelphia Eagles granted edge rusher Haason Reddick permission to seek a trade, possibly signaling the end of his time in Philadelphia. Reddick has been productive since joining the Eagles in the 2022 offseason, totaling 87 tackles, 27 sacks, and 6 forced fumbles in his two seasons with the team.

Haason Reddick

It’s worth noting Reddick didn’t ask for a trade. Philadelphia did something similar last offseason with CB Darius Slay, allowing his camp to explore his options with other teams before the Eagles ultimately extended him. It looks like the Eagles are handling Reddick in the same way, as this is a tricky contract situation. Reddick is from the area and would want to stay in Philadelphia all things equal, but he has made it clear he will seek to maximize his value. At 29 years old, this might be his last chance for a significant contract.

Reddick’s age is also part of what makes this situation complicated for the Eagles, and different from the negotiations with Slay. Last year, the Eagles were thin at corner and could hardly afford to lose Slay. Conversely, Philadelphia has been investing heavily in edge rusher depth recently and has some younger players who could thrive in larger roles. Nolan Smith, one of their 2023 first-round picks, could be ready for a breakout season, and the Eagles have indicated an extension for Josh Sweat is also a priority as he enters a contract year. 14-year veteran Brandon Graham said he wants to play another year as well. 

There’s a needle to thread here from the Eagles’ perspective. If they don’t feel comfortable extending Reddick, they have an opportunity to exchange him for a cost-controlled draft pick and still be in good shape at edge rusher. They have to weigh if that’s worth giving up arguably their best pass rusher. 

There’s little cap relief from a trade. According to Over The Cap, Reddick will count $21.8 million against the cap in 2024, the final year of his deal, with $14.3 million of that a non-guaranteed base salary. If traded, Reddick would count for $20.7 million in dead money due to his prorated signing bonus accelerating to 2024. That would mean only $1.2 million in cap savings.

A post-June 1 trade would lessen the dead money hit to just $5.9 million in 2024 and save the Eagles dramatically more on the cap. Few teams would have the space to handle Reddick’s $14 million salary that late in the offseason. From a cap perspective, an extension for Reddick would actually create the most flexibility — at least in 2024.

Any team looking to trade for Reddick would need to part with some high-value Day 2 draft capital to make it happen. While the high second-round pick Washington got for edge rusher Montez Sweat is likely off the table, as Reddick is older than Sweat and plays a more specialized role, a late second-rounder could be in play. At minimum, a third-round pick combined with a Day 3 pick would seem to be the floor for a potential deal. The Eagles could also try and recoup a better pick by packaging Reddick with a mid-round pick of their own. 

Additionally, any team trading for Reddick would immediately sign him to an extension as his contract is the catalyst for this whole situation. No exact demands have been articulated, but it’s reasonable to think Reddick wants a bump from his $15 million average annual salary — perhaps more than $20 million a year, in line with players with similar pedigrees at his position. An extension would lower his cap hit for this upcoming season, lessening the burden for an acquiring team.

Keeping all this in mind, let’s look at Reddick’s potential destinations, the teams with the cap space, draft capital and a big enough need for a pass rusher to pay up:

Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta is in a unique position this offseason. They have a new head coach in Raheem Morris and a massive question mark at the quarterback position. They also have a strong roster, with a core of elite young skill players, a great offensive line and an up-and-coming defense. As exciting as many of their defensive playmakers are, this is probably the weakest edge group in the NFL.

Arnold Ebiketie is the only decent rotational player currently on the roster for next year. Last season, OLB Bud Dupree was one of the Falcons’ marquee free agent signings, but he did not have a great season. Even if they decide to resign him, they’ll want to bring in additional help at the position. This group lacks a star or even a quality starter to anchor the unit. 

The Falcons enter the offseason with $25.1 million in cap space and few pending free agents. Cutting TE Jonnu Smith, QB Taylor Heinicke and perhaps even DT Grady Jarrett would clear $20 million in additional cap space. Some of that could go to DT Calais Campbell, who indicated he wants to keep playing and is someone Atlanta would presumably want back to help fortify the interior of their defensive line. Everyone else is a rotational player who they’ll let walk or bring back on the cheap. 

Reddick is the kind of star the Falcons desperately need on their defensive line. Their new defensive coordinator, Jimmy Lake, runs a 3-4 defense that would fit Reddick perfectly. They have two third-round picks — their own at No. 74 overall and Jacksonville’s at No. 79 — that are in the perfect range to pair with a fifth- or sixth-round pick for Reddick. Reddick is a far better player than Atlanta is likely to draft with those picks, and they can easily afford to give him the contract he wants.

The only potential hangup here from Atlanta’s perspective is what kind of resources will need to be spent to solve their hole at quarterback. That’s the team’s No. 1 priority this offseason. Picking at No. 8 overall is likely too low to be in range for one of the draft’s consensus top three prospects — USC’s Caleb Williams, North Carolina’s Drake Maye or LSU’s Jayden Daniels — so the Falcons could need to trade up. Perhaps they want to make a run at Vikings QB Kirk Cousins in free agency, which could eat up a huge chunk of their available cap space. Either course of action may hurt their ability to put assets toward Reddick.

Still, Reddick is exactly the kind of player Atlanta needs, if they can fit him in their 2024 budget.

Detroit Lions

The Lions stand out as one of Reddick’s most likely landing spots, should he actually leave Philadelphia. They’ve been lacking production from the edge position opposite 2022 No. 2 pick Aidan Hutchinson. Reddick would provide a strong counterpunch to their homegrown star.

Detroit is set to have over $44 million in cap space this offseason, and can create even more depending on how they structure their extension for veteran QB Jared Goff. The Lions’ second-round pick, No. 61 overall, falls right in the perfect range for this deal, if they’re interested. They also have two third round picks at No. 73 and No. 92 to work with. 

That said, a decent amount of that cap space will need to be allocated for their impending free agents or bringing in new players to fill roster holes those departures will create. Guards Jonah Jackson, Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Graham Glasgow, all of whom have started for Detroit, are impending free agents. Key members of Detroit’s secondary, including S Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, CB Kindle Vildor, CB Jerry Jacobs and CB Emmanuel Moseley (who missed most of 2023 with an ACL injury) are all set to hit free agency, as well as starting WR Josh Reynolds.

Sports franchises love to throw around the word “culture” all the time, but the Lions live it out in a way few teams do. Lions HC Dan Campbell and GM Brad Holmes prioritize personality and culture fit as much as physical talent and scheme fit when evaluating players to add to their roster. If Detroit decides to pursue this trade, Reddick would need to be viewed as a culture fit in their locker room.

However, if he checks that box Reddick is a highly productive veteran who would help address one of the Lions’ biggest needs this offseason. Detroit made the NFC Championship game this past season, where they held a significant lead over the 49ers before ultimately falling short. This is a team built around a young core, believing they will be a mainstay in the NFC race for years to come.

The Lions certainly have a lot of priorities demanding their cap space, but a trade for Reddick would provide an immediate and significant boost to a young defense. 

San Francisco 49ers

Detroit’s aforementioned opponent in the NFC Championship game also stands out as a possible suitor for Reddick’s services. San Francisco already boasts arguably the most loaded roster in the entire NFL, and they haven’t been shy about adding to it over the years. Reddick would pair nicely across from perennial Defensive Player of the Year contender Nick Bosa.

Reddick is of course infamous in San Francisco for ending their 2022 season, injuring QB Brock Purdy‘s throwing arm on a sack in the NFC Championship game. Teams remember impact plays and players, and moments like that can influence their offseason decisions.

Chase Young, Clelin Ferrell and Randy Gregory are looking like one-year rentals. San Francisco acquired Young from Washington at the trade deadline, though he didn’t make much of an impact down the stretch and could fetch a good compensatory pick when he signs with another team. This leaves a hole at starting EDGE across from Bosa.

While they could sign a mid-tier free agent or use a draft pick to fill that spot (and have former second-rounder Drake Jackson on the roster), this is a contending team that wants to maximize the window they’ve created with all of their expensive stars. Reddick would slide neatly into that window. San Francisco has a late second-round pick to work with at No. 63 overall, as well as multiple third-round compensatory picks. 

However, the 49ers find themselves in a difficult financial position heading into this offseason. They’re currently $12.4 million over the cap in 2024, with some tough personnel decisions possibly ahead. Last time the 49ers made the Super Bowl and faced a similar roster crunch, they traded star DT DeForest Buckner, rather than signing him a massive extension, and used the cap savings to retool elsewhere. It remains to be seen how the 49ers will handle things this time. Any attempt to trade for and sign Reddick would require some cap maneuvering.

Piecing together the trade package and cap balancing is tricky for San Francisco, but this feels like the kind of move they will find a way to make work if they believe it’s the best way to maximize the talent on their roster.

Houston Texans

The Houston Texans hit draft gold with QB C.J. Stroud and DE Will Anderson Jr., the reigning offensive and defensive rookies of the year in 2023. Suddenly, a team that won 11 games combined from 2020-2022 is the defending AFC South champs with a playoff win under their belts. With a strong young core ready to take the next step, Reddick is the kind of impact defender who could continue to vault this team up the AFC ladder.

Outside of Anderson who looks like a future star, Jonathan Greenard, Derek Barnett, and Jerry Hughes comprised the bulk of the edge rotation in Houston. All three will be unrestricted free agents, so Houston clearly needs reinforcements at the position this offseason.

The Texans have $54.6 million in cap space for 2024, among the most in the NFL. Houston has taken a unique approach in free agency the last few seasons, signing large numbers of middling or bargain free agents to one or two-year deals to fill out their roster. As a result, they have a long list of pending free agents.

Most have likely played their last down in Houston, but there are a few that could be worth retaining. Texans CB Steven Nelson and OT George Fant were key starters last season and could probably be re-signed cheaply given their ages. Running back Devin Singletary, LB Blake Cashman, LB Denzel Perryman, TE Dalton Schultz and LG Michael Deiter are all candidates to be brought back, though none should break the bank or affect the Texans’ potential interest in Reddick.

However, it’ll be interesting to see what Texans GM Nick Caserio does. Caserio is entering his fourth season at the helm and comes from New England’s front office. The Patriots were famous for rarely spending big in free agency, preferring instead to make smaller moves and primarily build through the draft. Caserio has carried over this approach to his time in Houston, focusing on acquiring draft assets and using them to rebuild this roster from the ground up.

Houston is well-positioned for the future, with plenty of cap space and draft capital, ready to continue surrounding their young core with talent. But will Caserio radically alter his approach? At his age and acquisition cost, Reddick doesn’t fit this model, and the front office and coaching staff in Houston has been very disciplined in their rebuild thus far.

Perhaps Stroud’s arrival changes their approach to the offseason, but if the Texans stick to their previous methods, the assets used to acquire Reddick would better go towards young talent and mid-level free agent signings. It’s also worth noting Anderson Jr. and Reddick would be on the smaller side for a starting edge duo.

Houston could absolutely benefit from adding Reddick — it’s simply unclear how strong their interest would be at this stage.

Baltimore Ravens

Though their season ended in disappointing fashion against Kansas City in the AFC Championship game, Baltimore is looking to reload quickly and make another run at a Super Bowl in 2024. Lamar Jackson, the 2023 NFL MVP, isn’t going anywhere, though the front office faces some challenges in piecing together the rest of the roster. For a team considered among the AFC’s elite, Reddick would be a valuable presence at edge, the likes of which they haven’t had in a few seasons.

At edge, 2023 free agent-signing Jadeveon Clowney had arguably his best season as a pro, lining up opposite Odafe Oweh and wreaking havoc on a weekly basis. He’ll be looking for a raise and it’s unclear if Baltimore would be interested or can afford to bring him back. Rotational rushers Kyle Van Noy and Tyus Bowser are unlikely to return in 2024, with Van Noy on an expiring contract and Bowser a strong cut candidate. Oweh returns to man one side of the line and 2022 second-round pick David Ojabo figures to factor into the rotation, but help is clearly needed. 

Perhaps Baltimore is comfortable with Oweh and Ojabo as their starting EDGEs next season, but it seems more likely they seek out another starter in free agency. They’ve sniffed around other high-profile edge rushers in the past, such as the Panthers’ Brian Burns.

However, Baltimore will be working with a tight budget. The Ravens have roughly $5.1 million in cap space entering the offseason. Some basic restructures for their stars would free up additional room for them to conduct business, while WR Odell Beckham Jr. is a likely cut or restructure candidate after a disappointing debut season in Baltimore. But they have a long list of pending free agents, including RG Kevin Zeitler, LG John Simpson, LB Patrick Queen, S Geno Stone, DT Justin Madubuike and CB Arthur Maulet. All of these players were key starters for the Ravens in 2023.

Stone and Queen feel like longshots to return, having likely priced their way out of Baltimore, while there’s persistent buzz that Baltimore will tag Madubuike. Replacing their production will be a priority for the Ravens, either through internal candidates or offseason additions.

The Ravens typically prioritize bigger athletes at the edge rusher position; it’s possible Reddick wouldn’t meet their size thresholds. Still, he would be an immediate impact player for a team with Super Bowl aspirations, the likes of which they couldn’t get shopping in the free agent bargain bin.

Other potential landing spots

While the Falcons, Lions, 49ers and Ravens are Reddick’s most likely suitors, several other teams could get involved under the right circumstances:

  • The Los Angeles Rams are a team caught between two worlds right now. Their star core of QB Matthew Stafford, DT Aaron Donald, and WR Cooper Kupp is getting older and probably doesn’t have many seasons left. The Rams have embraced the youth movement elsewhere on their roster, replenishing it with a very successful draft class, and likely want to continue to primarily bring in rookies and young players. Reddick could be the exception, as they have a major need at edge rusher and want to maximize their core’s final Super Bowl window.
  • The Indianapolis Colts under GM Chris Ballard rarely make big splashes in free agency, but Ballard hinted he might be more aggressive this year with a promising quarterback on a rookie contract in Anthony Richardson. He’s also been known to take big swings on trades in the past. The Colts boast a quality starting edge rotation with Kwity Paye, Samson Ebukam and Dayo Odeyingbo, but there’s certainly room for a player of Reddick’s caliber to claim a starting spot. Indianapolis has its sights set on a division title and Reddick could be a key piece in their push.
  • The Miami Dolphins need help with the rash of injuries they’ve suffered at outside linebacker. Bradley Chubb and Jaelan Phillips are a terrific duo, but Chubb tore his ACL and Phillips tore his Achilles. Miami is $51.9 million over the cap for 2024, but they’ve never been shy about adding star talent to this team. If they can figure out a way to make the money work, they could get involved.
  • The New Orleans Saints need pass rush reinforcements as well. They’re currently projected to be a whopping $83.7 million over the cap for next season, but can actually get up to $30 million in the green with restructures, freeing them up to make some significant additions. If GM Mickey Loomis wants to pull some more cap magic out of his hat, the Saints are in a never-ending cycle of reloading rather than committing to a rebuild, and Reddick would certainly fit well in this defense.
  • The Jacksonville Jaguars already have a star in Josh Allen and recently spent the first overall pick on Travon Walker. Allen needs a new contract and the Jaguars have other roster needs, but they could use an increase in production off the edge. Walker hasn’t developed as quickly as Jacksonville hoped and they’ve inquired about the availability of other star EDGEs in the past. Perhaps Reddick piques their interest.

Staying in Philadelphia

Finding trade destinations for Reddick isn’t the easiest task — his contract expectations are a lot for acquiring teams to manage, especially when combined with the draft capital necessary to trade for him in the first place. Philadelphia doesn’t save much on the cap with a trade either, bringing the Eagles’ motivation to get a deal done into question unless they are committed to getting Reddick’s contract off their books or simply can’t afford to pay both him and Josh Sweat.

That’s why Reddick’s most likely destination is Philadelphia. It makes too much sense — it’s his preferred NFL city, he seemingly has a good relationship with the coaching staff and his teammates, and he’s been their most productive edge rusher since joining the team.

That’s not to say it’s a foregone conclusion. Certainly, there will be teams interested in Reddick’s services, and the Eagles will listen to those offers. Perhaps Reddick will be playing elsewhere in 2024 after all.

Looking for the latest NFL Insider News & Rumors?

Be sure to follow NFL Trade Rumors on TWITTER and FACEBOOK for breaking NFL News and Rumors for all 32 teams!

Leave a Reply