Maybe the best offensive lineman hitting free agency is Kelechi Osemele, a Super Bowl champion with the Baltimore Ravens who isn’t happy with the offers being made to him, and might end up playing for the Oakland Raiders or Minnesota Vikings instead.
Osemele is looking for more money, and becoming a left tackle last season (has basically played all four positions at tackle and guard since entering the NFL) is going to help him make it. There are eight players who are left tackles that make on average $10 million a season or more, and Osemele is looking for that kind of money. He might end up going back to the Ravens who used their franchise tag on Justin Tucker instead, but the problem for them is having just $8.7 million in cap space, unless they make some moves, especially the Joe Flacco contract being changed.
Both the Vikings and especially the Raiders don’t have that kind of problem. The Vikings have over $23 million at the moment to spend on free agents, while the Raiders are third in cap space for the 2016 offseason with over $60 million available. And the Raiders might have more of a reason than anyone to try and sign Osemele. Donald Penn, their left tackle, seems to be heading towards free agency. However, with Osemele being quite movable in terms of positions and the money the Raiders have to spend, it’s not going to be a choice between the two players, but rather an opportunity to create a very strong offensive line with the both of them.
Osemele was a second round pick in 2012 by the Ravens coming out of Iowa State, starting at right tackle right away. He played just 7 games (left guard) in 2013, and has 28 appearances over the last two seasons, including starting out 2015 at left guard before moving to left tackle, which just might be his best position. Overall, he has 51 appearances in the NFL at the age of 26, all of them as a starting player.