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NFL Free Agent Rankings: Defensive Lineman
By Matt Horkman

1. Ndamukong Suh, Detroit LionsNdamukong Suh
ESPN is reporting that Suh will sign with Miami on Tuesday. The deal is worth $114 million over six years, with $60 million of it guaranteed. The deal makes Suh the league’s highest paid defensive player, and gives the Dolphins somebody to build their defense around.

Possible Destination: Miami

2. Terrance Knighton, Denver Broncos
The Broncos aren’t going to re-sign Knighton, who is an outstanding run defender. He’s scheme versatile, so both 3-4 and 4-3 teams will look at him. A reunion with former coach Jack Del Rio in Oakland could be in the cards.

Possible Destinations: Chicago, Indianapolis, Oakland, & Washington

3. Nick Fairley, Detroit Lions
After losing Suh to Miami, the Lions are now turning their attention to keeping Fairley. The former first round pick is an inconsistent player, who showed up to last year's training camp out of shape. He did eventually win over coaches in Detroit, but the risk of him shutting it down after receiving a boatload of guaranteed money is certainly real.

Possible Destinations: Atlanta, Detroit, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, & Oakland

4. Dan Williams, Arizona Cardinals
Williams is the best prototype 3-4 nose tackle on the market. He takes up blockers and plugs holes against the run. The Cardinals are trying to re-sign him before the start of free agency. If they fail to do so, then he’ll generate plenty of interest on the open market. The Packers would be a logical fit, though general manager Ted Thompson is reluctant to dabble in free agency.

Possible Destinations: Arizona, Chicago, Green Bay, Indianapolis, & Washington

5. Jared Odrick, Miami Dolphins
While Odrick can play in a 4-3, he’s at his best in a 3-4 where he can play the 5-technique (defensive end) in base and kick inside in sub packages. The Bears could use a player like that as their defense transitions to a 3-4. The Titans, who are in year two of a similar transition, could also use him.

Possible Destinations: Chicago, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, & Tennessee

6. Henry Melton, Dallas Cowboys
Despite being a good fit for Dallas’ defense, Melton simply didn’t mesh well with the coaching staff. They declined a three-year option last month, making him an unrestricted free agent.

Possible Destinations: Detroit, N.Y. Giants, Seattle, & Tampa Bay

7. Adrian Clayborn, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Clayborn needs a fresh start. He has missed 28 games in his four-year career, including 15 in 2014. He also doesn’t fit Lovie Smith’s defense. He's best suited as a 5-technique, where he can take up blockers and stop the run.

Possible Destinations: Indianapolis, Minnesota, N.Y. Giants, Seattle, & Tennessee

8. Stephen Paea, Chicago Bears
Paea is looking to cash in after notching a career-high six sacks in 2014. He’s young enough (26) that his best football is probably in front of him. I’m not sure he has the length to play in Chicago’s new 3-4 defense, though. The two sides might benefit from going  their separate ways.

Possible Destinations: Dallas, Detroit, N.Y. Giants, Tampa Bay, & Washington

9. Corey Redding, Indianapolis Colts
If Redding doesn’t return to the Colts, then I suspect he’ll retire. He’s been the team’s most consistent defensive lineman, starting 45 games since signing with the organization in 2012.

Possible Destination: Indianapolis

10. Vince Wilfork, New England Patriots
The Patriots saved over $8 million by declining Wilfork’s 2015-contract option. He’s coming off a good season for a 33-year-old nose tackle. Somebody will bite late in the frenzy.

Possible Destinations: Arizona, Chicago, Green Bay, Indianapolis, & Washington

Best of the Rest
Letroy Guion, Green Bay Packers
Jarvis Jenkins, Washington
C.J. Mosley, Detroit Lions
Corey Peters, Atlanta Falcons
B.J. Raji, Green Bay Packers

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