Chase Edmonds Landing Spots: Dolphins, Bills, and Falcons could all be in the market for a RB

What are the potential landing spots for Chase Edmonds as the Arizona Cardinals RB looks set to become a free agent in the 2022 offseason?

After a somewhat mixed year, Arizona Cardinals RB Chase Edmonds is set to be a free agent in 2022, but what are his potential landing spots this offseason? Let’s take a look at Edmonds’ production on his rookie contract, what the market might look like for him, and which teams might be looking to add him in the offseason.

Chase Edmonds landing spots

The 2021 season has demonstrated the potential that Edmonds possesses. He has turned just 82 rush attempts in 483 yards at 5.9 yards per attempt. Additionally, he has added 211 receiving yards on 30 receptions through 10 games this season.

The numbers are not extraordinary, but they do demonstrate Edmonds can be a dual-threat back that teams might covet this offseason. In fact, if you discount the Week 9 game when he got injured, the numbers look slightly better at 53.7 yards per game on the ground and 23.4 through the air. Those are significant increases on his career averages through the first three years of his career.

It is tough to know what a market for Edmonds will look like this offseason. The hype surrounding the Cardinals’ backfield has been for Conner, who has 1,034 scrimmage yards and 16 touchdowns. However, on a per-game basis (excluding Week 9 for Edmonds), Edmonds has the better numbers. He also averages over 2 yards more per rush attempt than Conner (3.9).

Given we have seen him carry the ball just 299 times in his career entering Week 16, Edmonds likely will not get paid as a bell-cow back. An intriguing comparison is Austin Ekeler, who signed a four-year, $6.125 million contract. Ekeler had better numbers, putting Edmonds likely in the category of a two or three-year deal worth around $5-5.5 million per year. The question is, which teams might be potential landings spots for Edmonds?

Could Edmonds rejuvenate the Buffalo Bills run game?

The Bills run game has been frustrating for a couple of years now. They simply do not seem to trust either Devin Singletary or Zack Moss to lead the offense, and it has been a detriment. Therefore, it seems likely the Bills will go looking for a more permanent solution at RB in 2022. They may decide the draft is the right way, but that has not worked so far.

Therefore, this becomes a fascinating potential landing spot for Edmonds. Edmonds can be a dual-threat option that will allow the Bills to disguise their offense with him on the field. The question marks come as to whether Edmonds would be a significant upgrade on either Singletary or Moss. So far, Edmonds has not proven that he can be an every-down back. But, in fairness, he’s yet to have the opportunity to prove it.

The Miami Dolphins need to add something at RB this offseason

Consistency at the RB position has been a major issue for the Dolphins in 2021. Myles Gaskin impresses one week and then struggles the next. They’ve at times used a three-headed committee, including Salvon Ahmed and Malcolm Brown. They recently added Duke Johnson, who had immediate success in Week 15.

Johnson is actually an intriguing comparable for Edmonds. It feels as though the Cardinals have pushed Edmonds into more of a pass-catching role, and that is what Johnson has been typecast as for almost his entire career. A strong finish to this season for Johnson could actually be beneficial for Edmonds in demonstrating that even backs not considered conventional bell-cow options can have success.

Realistically, the Dolphins are able to go out and overpay for mid-level players. With a projected $75.8 million in salary cap space in 2022, the Dolphins have more cap space than anyone else right now. That will allow them to go out and add luxury options such as Edmonds.

What will be interesting is if the Dolphins also commit to upgrading their offensive line. Putting an explosive option like Edmonds behind an upgraded OL could be a fantastic combination for Miami. If they can get a dual-threat back working alongside Tua Tagovailoa, it will take a lot of pressure off their potential franchise QB.

Could the Atlanta Falcons be an ideal landing spot for Edmonds?

The Falcons will have some serious question marks at running back this offseason. Mike Davis has proven not to be the answer. Meanwhile, Cordarrelle Patterson is likely to command a high price as a free agent after his breakout year. That leaves them looking for an RB option, but with limited cap space, that option needs to be someone with enough question marks to depress their market value a touch.

That is why the Falcons are almost the perfect landing spot for Edmonds. Assuming Patterson leaves, Edmonds would instantly be the best option in the backfield. However, with his limited career workload, he could come at a relative discount at $5 million a year. Edmonds’ ability to carry the ball conventionally, while also working as a pass catcher would make him an intriguing replacement for Patterson.

The Denver Broncos might be looking for a secondary option to Javonte Williams

Of the four landing spots so far, this one feels the least likely. The Broncos already have Javonte Williams as their lead back for 2022, and Edmonds would have to be willing to accept a secondary role. The Broncos have split opportunities this year between Williams and Melvin Gordon, but they likely move that balance to 70-30 in Williams’ favor with whoever is the secondary back.

However, why this could work is that the Broncos have had success with the dual backfield. They also have the cap space to pay for a somewhat luxury back in Edmonds. Entering 2022, they have nearly $50 million in availability. Therefore, while there are other areas they need to address on the roster, there is the ability to work in a potential game-breaking change of pace back in Edmonds.

The Cardinals may decide to bring Edmonds back

There is a lot to unpack with whether Edmonds might return to the Cardinals. First, both Edmonds and Conner are set to be free agents this year. Thus, the Cardinals will need to either dip into the RB market or invest in the draft. They might decide that the simplest option is to bring back Edmonds on a multi-year deal.

The problem is that they have demonstrated an unwillingness to commit to Edmonds as a lead back. That could potentially lead to him wanting to look elsewhere as a free agent before committing a return to Arizona. Equally, he may look for Arizona to overpay relative to the market if he cannot be assured of an RB1 role in 2022 and beyond. With just a projected $20 million in salary cap space, that might be a luxury the Cardinals can ill afford.

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