1. Dak Prescott
Prescott is the top free agent for the second straight year. But like last offseason, it's highly unlikely the Dallas Cowboys allow the quarterback to hit the market. If Prescott and the Cowboys keep struggling to reach a deal, another franchise tag is reportedlycoming. This time it will cost Dallas $37.7 million, which isn't an unworkable figure, but it's one that Jerry Jones knows gives the signal-caller leverage in extension talks. At least half the league will be chasing Prescott's signature if he somehow reaches free agency. He was on pace to break Peyton Manning's single-season passing record before suffering an ankle injury in Week 5
2. Allen Robinson
Robinson tops an insanely loaded receiver class, and the veteran looks intent on leaving the Chicago Bears after extension talks didn't progress throughout the season. The franchise tag is possible, but Chicago is already facing a tight cap situation. Despite dealing with erratic quarterback play, Robinson - who'll turn 28 in August - has racked up 200 catches for 2,397 yards and 13 touchdowns over the last two seasons. His ceiling with a better supporting cast is mouth-watering.
3. Chris Godwin
Godwin sacrificed a lot in 2020. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers receiver's stats went way down after his 1,333-yard season in 2019. With additional playmakers surrounding him, Godwin's targets were cut by 30%, and his receptions dropped by 25%. The wideout's drops also increased after breaking his finger in December, and he recorded just nine yards in the Super Bowl. Nonetheless, he'll be a marquee free agent, and one the Bucs hope to ink to a long-term deal, but they're prepared to utilize the franchise tag to keep him.
4. Trent Williams
After sitting out the 2019 season, Williams didn't miss a beat in his return with the San Francisco 49ers, re-establishing himself among the league's best left tackles. The eight-time Pro Bowler ended the year as PFF's top-rated offensive tackle, and he was particularly dominant as a run-blocker. The 49ers will prioritize re-signing the 32-year-old, knowing a host of teams will jump at the chance to add an elite blindside protector.
5. Shaq Barrett
The two-time Super Bowl champion tops the list of available pass-rushers. Barrett's price tag likely went up after he harassed Patrick Mahomes relentlessly during the championship game. He led the league in sacks in 2019 with 19.5, and although that total dropped to eight in 2020, the veteran was still very disruptive despite getting much more attention from opposing offensive linemen. Barrett's hope is to re-up with the Buccaneers, and head coach Bruce Arians said post-Super Bowl the team shares that goal.
6. Kenny Golladay
Golladay is hitting the market after an injury-plagued season when he was limited to just five appearances. But the Detroit Lions wideout is one of the league's most imposing deep threats when healthy, averaging 16.8 yards per reception during his career. The Lions will likely consider using the franchise tag on Golladay to avoid robbing new quarterback Jared Goff of his top weapon.
7. Aaron Jones
Running backs often find disappointment on the free-agent market, but there's a strong case for Jones to land a top-tier deal. His 5.5 yards-per-carry average was third among running backs in 2020, while the ball carrier's 3,017 scrimmage yards over the last two years ranks him fifth at his position. Jones would be a major loss for Green Bay, but the NFC North club will probably struggle to match his best offers.
8. Leonard Williams
Williams put together his long-awaited breakout season in 2020 while playing on the franchise tag, racking up a career-high 11.5 sacks. The New York Giants won't want to lose the defensive tackle after trading two draft picks to the New York Jets to acquire him in 2019, so tagging Williams again for around $19 million is an option. Williams could break the bank amid a weak defensive tackle free-agent class.
9. Lavonte David
David is the third Buccaneer on this list. He's been perennially underrated, with just one Pro Bowl and All-Pro nod over his first eight losing seasons in Tampa Bay. He recorded 100-plus tackles for the eighth time in his career in 2020, and David hasn't shown any signs of slowing at the age of 31. The Buccaneers likely won't let him out of the building. If they do, David would fill both a defensive and leadership void for any prospective team.
10. Justin Simmons
Simmons is also coming off a strong season while playing on the franchise tag. The Denver Broncos safety was named to his first Pro Bowl a year after making his first All-Pro team, and he'll surely want to top Budda Baker's position-leading $14.75-million per year. Simmons, who only just turned 27 years old, racked up five interceptions and 96 tackles in 2020.