Former Cowboys first-round pick Taco Charlton has been freed, per his wish on Twitter, and, if he goes unclaimed on waivers, would be free to sign with whatever team he wants. Expect that to happen, because no one wants to pay the guaranteed part of his contract.
While his tenure in Dallas yielded minimum results, pass rushers are always a commodity in the NFL, as are former highly-touted prospect, and if nothing else, Charlton was that coming out of Michigan.
With many teams out there lacking at pass rush, and at least a few teams likely interested in seeing what he has in the tank, you can expect Charlton to be signed this year. Here are the most likely landing spots.
1. New York Giants
Name one defensive lineman or pass rusher on the Giants. I'll wait. While their past has been defined by great sackers of the quarterback, their present is marred by no-names who aren't exactly breaking out given the opportunity this year (the team has three sacks total). Why not give Taco a chance at redemption in the same division where he can rub it in Dallas' face twice a year. That's motivation. There's also nothing to lose for Big Blue in a season where all they'll do is lose.
2. Pittsburgh Steelers
Since losing Ryan Shazier, the Steelers haven't had a marquee pass rusher. While Charlton doesn't fit that bill, he might be good as part of their rotation. After trading for Minkah Fitzpatrick, it seems Pittsburgh is going all in on defense. This is a low-risk, potential-reward signing. In a low-expectation season following the loss of Ben Roethlisberger, why not take a chance?
3. Miami Dolphins
There's a fire sale going on in Miami, and I doubt many players would willingly want to go down there. But if Charlton wants a chance to get playing time and prove himself, this is probably his best opportunity. The Dolphins don't have anyone worth mentioning on the D-line and Charlton would be given every opportunity to showcase his skillset.