Broncos coach Sean Payton said recently Denver isn't "looking" to trade any of its players ahead of the Oct. 31 in-season deadline. But a week after dealing Randy Gregory to the 49ers, the team officially said goodbye to another big-name pass rusher, releasing Frank Clark on Saturday.
The former Pro Bowler, signed this summer to a fully guaranteed $5.45 million deal, recently restructured his contract in an effort to facilitate a trade or release, according to ESPN and NFL Media. He was inactive for Denver's Thursday night loss to the Chiefs to kick off Week 6, suggesting his exit from the Broncos was imminent.
Where could Clark end up next? Here are logical landing spots:
|It makes too much sense. Clark helped the Chiefs win two Super Bowls during his four-year run with the team from 2019-22, and K.C. star Chris Jones recently teased on social media that he's been lobbying for the pass rusher's return. While he's better suited in a rotation these days, Clark knows Steve Spagnuolo's system well and would surely embrace a return.
|If you can count on one thing, it's the Falcons needing help off the edge. The Falcons are scraping by to stay in the NFC South mix, but it'd help if they had someone who could consistently get after opposing QBs. With Bud Dupree banged up, Clark could be doubly important as immediate relief in the lineup.
|They may be done spending premium picks on star power, but Clark figures to be a cheaper addition at this point in his career. And L.A. has proven feistier than expected in the NFC West. With Leonard Floyd departing in the offseason, their "D" could use more experienced help off the edge, even if just for the rest of 2023.
|Baltimore has never been shy about taking swings on veteran pass rushers to aid the rotation, and both Jadeveon Clowney and Odafe Oweh are banged up, with Tyus Bowser and David Ojabo also sidelined. In other words, the Ravens could use just about any edge reinforcements they can get. And they still project as a contender in the AFC.
|Seattle experienced a defensive surge thanks to its matchup with the Giants before the bye, but Pete Carroll might welcome a midyear boost up front. It helps he has familiarity with Clark, who got his start with the Seahawks and racked up 35 sacks in four years with the club.