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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / 8 Predictions for the 2022 NFL Off Season

8 Predictions for the 2022 NFL Off Season

Predictions for the off season!
Publish Date: 01/20/2022
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
GLENDALE, ARIZONA - JANUARY 09: Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks prepares for a game against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on January 09, 2022 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

The regular season is over, and the Wildcard playoff games are in the books, so with the season winding down, let’s look ahead and try to answer some questions on what could lie ahead.

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1) What do the Colts do with Carson Wentz

Many questions surround the Colts headed into next season, and most of those questions are will Carson Wentz be back at quarterback for the Colts? GM Ballard and Head Coach Reich have been non-committal so far, which is surprising because Wentz is Reich’s guy. All of that kind of goes out the door because Reich has to make the playoffs next year to keep his job. On the bright side, Wentz finally made it through an entire season healthy, and he played well the first half of the season, but when teams started keying on Jonathan Taylor, Wentz was unable to come through and carry the Colts to the playoffs. The biggest issue is who can you get to replace him? Free-agency does not look promising unless you want to roll into next year with Jameis Winston or Andy Dalton. A trade is almost impossible with the number one pick in this draft already headed for the Eagles in exchange for Wentz. Wentz played good football, completing 322 of 516 passes (62.4%) for 3,563 yards, 27 touchdown passes and seven interceptions. But he couldn’t elevate Indianapolis in big moments, especially against the raiders at home and Jacksonville on the road.

Maybe if a quarterback like Derek Carr becomes available, you could make a play for him, but a lot of that depends on who becomes the new GM and who the Head Coach will be? My guess is the Colts will roll into the 2022 season with Wentz still the starter.

2) Jimmy G will be traded

San Francisco will be taking a considerable risk if they make this move. Still, the fact that they drafted Trey Lance so high tells me they will eventually trade Jimmy G. The big question is, do they do it this offseason or give Lance another year to develop before pulling the trigger? I think it would be a huge risk to go with Lance, but they will do it, and I think they will do it in this offseason barring a Super Bowl appearance. The most likely destination to me would be in Washington; other teams could come calling, but the Redskins are in a winnable division, and I could see them taking a shot at Jimmy G. The question will be, what will the Niners want in return? The best they could get is a second-round pick because everybody knows the situation with the Niners and how they think Lance is the guy moving forward. This will be a mistake, but it is a chance the Niners almost have to take after drafting Lance so high.

3) The Bengals will be all-in in free agency

The Bengals were all in last year in free agency, and almost every move they made worked out perfectly; after this season, you have to figure the Bengals will be a hot destination if you want to win. Look for the Bengals to attack free agency hard to improve a poor offensive line.

4) Will Russell Wilson wear a new jersey

Wilson and Carroll have philosophical differences, and Wilson wanted out last year. They seem to be getting along much better at the end of this season, but I don’t think that the Seahawks are as high on Wilson, which could lead to a separation. Where could he end up? New Orleans seemed a perfect fit last year, and it still seems that way. Wilson wants to go to a contender, which limits his choices. Washington is in the market for a quarterback, but they do not seem like a Super Bowl contender. A place like Chicago could be exciting, but they have Justin Fields, but if Seattle likes Fields, they could pull the trigger there; now I know the Bears are not precisely world-beaters at this moment, but it’s a place Wilson has said he was interested in going. The perfect fit is in New Orleans, and I think a high probability exists that he could end up there. But my surprise pick in all of this is the Denver Broncos. If Wilson joins the Broncos, they will be immediate Super Bowl contenders.

5) Sean Payton or Pete Carroll will leave for Television

All of this could affect what was said above about Russell Wilson, but I think one of these two coaches will end up in the TV booth as soon as the 2022 season. I would lean towards Payton being the one who makes the jump.

6) The Steelers will draft a quarterback

The Steelers are a team that historically tries to build through the draft. With that being said, this draft is where they try to find a quarterback. Unfortunately for the Steelers, this draft is not where you find a franchise quarterback. In the AFC North, you have Lamar Jackson, Joe Burrow, and Baker Mayfield, and with that being the case, the Steelers are looking at an uphill climb to compete against those teams, especially the Ravens and the Bengals.

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7) Aaron Rodgers is not leaving Green Bay

Rodgers has it made now in Green Bay, and the whisperings of him wanting to leave are no longer as loud as they were. Money talks and Rodgers’ $46 million cap hit in 2022 suggests the team is ready to move on. But a lot can happen from now until March. In the end, Rodgers is now getting his way in Green Bay, and the front office has given him everything he needs to win now. Rodgers stays.

8) Baker Mayfield will be traded

Mayfield is not a perfect fit for the Browns offense, and he struggled this past season. Those struggles were a receiving corps that dropped too many passes, and Baker was hurt the last half of the season. I predict he ends up replacing Russell Wilson in Seattle after Wilson becomes a Bronco. The Seahawks offense is not a perfect match, but they are a run-heavy team that could help unlock some of the up-tempo/shotgun stuff he might like.

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