NFL Free Agency Primer: Patrick Peterson

The regular season has come to a close, and most teams have already begun the complicated process of preparing for the 2023 season. In the coming months, we'll be covering the impending free agents most capable of shifting the balance of power in the NFL.

The Player: Patrick Peterson

Future Hall of Fame cornerback Patrick Peterson had a resurgent year with the Minnesota Vikings in 2022, nabbing his most interceptions (5) and passes defended (15) since 2012. More importantly, the eight-time Pro Bowler allowed a mere 79.6 passer rating on throws in his direction and earned an excellent 80.7 overall grade from Pro Football Focus. Whatever he has lost in physicality, he has gained in veteran smarts.

The Fit:

At 33 years old, Peterson is running out of time to achieve the one accolade missing in his legendary career: a Super Bowl ring. He should focus his attention on contending teams in need of a veteran presence in the secondary. A return with the Vikings would make sense, but he should also consider hooking up with any team with a shot at a top seed. The San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles, Cincinnati Bengals, and Kansas City Chiefs could all be fits.

The Cost:

Peterson played on a one-year, $4 million deal last season with the Vikings and has probably earned a pay bump. His age will keep him from breaking the bank, but he should be worth a contract similar to the ones landed by fellow ageing and flawed superstars. In 2022, wide receiver Julio Jones earned $6 million from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney earned $10 million from the Cleveland Browns on one-year deals. Something between the two would probably be fair for Peterson.

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