23. Kevin Dotson
Previous Team: Los Angeles Rams
Future Team: Los Angeles Rams
This is another return, but we see a different route to get there. The Los Angeles Rams actually have money to spend after years of dead cap and star contracts. With $27 million in cap space and a few ways to make even more money available (mostly a Matthew Stafford renegotiation, who is owed just under $50 million this season), a franchise tag makes sense for guard Kevin Dotson.
The issue with the franchise tag is there is no distinction for guard and tackle, so it’s predicted to cost $21 million. The Rams will use this as a negotiating tool to grab themselves a long-term deal. It’s worth noting no guard is making more than $21 million per season (although Chris Lindstrom and Quenton Nelson are close). Dotson is important if the Rams want to make the playoffs again, and after a fun season, that seems important to this franchise.
Dotson is expected to sign elsewhere as the Rams don’t usually make this type of move, which if it is the case we see the Raiders and Jaguars jumping in, but this seems like a return. Dotson was such a great move by the Rams, trading for him last offseason. They could also franchise him and trade him, however, it’s probably just as valuable to let him walk and take the compensatory pick at that point.