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Building A 2024 NFL Expansion Team, Part II: The Expansion Draft

The city, branding, and coaching staff is set, and our 2024 NFL expansion series continues with Part II: the 2024 NFL expansion draft. The foundation for the Toronto Stars franchise will be formed from a player pool of five players from each of the other 32 teams in the league.




We are mostly using the same rules from the 2002 NFL expansion draft:


  • Every team in the league must put up five players from their current roster into the player pool for the expansion draft.
  • Once a player is selected from an existing team, one player may be removed from the list. And if two players from one team are selected, all remaining players may be pulled.
  • Players cannot be entering free agency.
  • Players cannot be specialists (i.e., kicker, punter, long snapper)
  • Players cannot have been placed on injured reserve before the previous season (though we will waive that if they are activated during the season).


But while keeping in mind that things have changed with IR activations and expanded practice squads, we are going easier on the rule of not allowing two players that were placed on Injured Reserve during the season to be included (for example, the Jets placed Zach Wilson on IR at the end of the season). The rule of not allowing multiple players with ten-plus years of experience is also being made flexible.


The Toronto Stars must select either a) at least 30 players, or b) have the salaries take up at least 38% of the salary cap for the 2024 season.


Available Players


This was an interesting year with so many franchises making massive salary cuts (like the Bills). In some cases, teams will risk putting players they don’t want to lose out there to take up one of their five slots; some will do it if they don’t mind getting a salary off the books; in some cases, a player being included may be to give them a better chance at playing time; and in other cases, teams might have to put up guys they think they can simply sneak through the expansion draft.


Arizona Cardinals

OT D.J. Humphries

OLB Tyreke Smith

RB Emari Demercado

WR Zach Pascal

OT Kelvin Beachum


Atlanta Falcons

G Jovaughn Gwyn

DL Tommy Togiai

TE John FitzPatrick

DE Ta’Quon Graham

QB Taylor Heinicke


Baltimore Ravens

CB Damarion Williams

WR Tylan Wallace

QB/WR Malik Cunningham

RB Justice Hill

TE Charlie Kolar


Buffalo Bills

WR Stefon Diggs

CB Tre’Davious White

S Jordan Poyer

C Mitch Morse

DB Siran Neal


Carolina Panthers

C Bradley Bozeman

S Vonn Bell

TE Hayden Hurst

RB Miles Sanders

WR Terrace Marshall Jr.


Chicago Bears

S Eddie Jackson

C Cody Whitehair

S Quindell Johnson

FB Khair Blasingame

RB Travis Homer


Cincinnati Bengals

RB Joe Mixon

S Nick Scott

RB Chris Evans

LB Devin Harper

DT Jay Tufele


Cleveland Browns

QB Deshaun Watson

CB Kahlef Hailassie

RB Pierre Strong Jr.

QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson

OT James Hudson III


Dallas Cowboys

WR Michael Gallup

FB Hunter Luepke

TE Peyton Hendershot

QB Cooper Rush

RB Deuce Vaughn


Denver Broncos

QB Russell Wilson

S Justin Simmons

RB Samaje Perine

S JL Skinner

CB Tremon Smith


Detroit Lions

S Tracy Walker III

CB Cam Sutton

WR Antoine Green

CB Khalil Dorsey

TE James Mitchell


Green Bay Packers

RB Aaron Jones

LB De’Vondre Campbell

WR Samori Toure

QB Sean Clifford

S Zayne Anderson


Houston Texans

WR Robert Woods

FB Andrew Beck

QB Case Keenum

G Nick Broeker

TE Teagan Quitoriano


Indianapolis Colts

QB Sam Ehlinger

TE Mo Alie-Cox

CB Ameer Speed

RB Evan Hull

LB Grant Stuard


Jacksonville Jaguars

CB Christian Braswell

CB Gregory Junior

DE Tyler Lacy

WR Tim Jones

QB C.J. Beathard


Kansas City Chiefs

WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling

DE B.J. Thompson

DE Neil Farrell Jr.

WR Justyn Ross

WR Skyy Moore


Las Vegas Raiders

QB Jimmy Garoppolo

WR Hunter Renfrow

QB Brian Hoyer

DT Jerry Tillery

LB Amari Burney


Los Angeles Chargers

WR Mike Williams

LB Eric Kendricks

WR Keenan Allen

TE Stone Smartt

RB Isaiah Spiller


Los Angeles Rams

C Brian Allen

WR Ben Skowronek

LB Ochaun Mathis

RB Zach Evans

CB Tre Tomlinson


Miami Dolphins

CB Xavien Howard

DE Emmanuel Ogbah

RB Chris Brooks

RB Jeff Wilson Jr.

QB Skyler Thompson


Minnesota Vikings

RB Alexander Mattison

DE Dean Lowry

QB Nick Mullens

WR Jalen Nailor

FB C.J. Ham


New England Patriots

QB Mac Jones

DE Lawrence Guy

S Adrian Phillips

CB J.C. Jackson

WR Kayshon Boutte


New Orleans Saints

CB Marshon Lattimore

TE Taysom Hill

RB Jamaal Williams

LB Monty Rice

QB Jake Haener


New York Giants

G Mark Glowinski

RB Gary Brightwell

DT Timmy Horne

QB Tommy DeVito

WR Darius Slayton


New York Jets

QB Zach Wilson

TE C.J. Uzomah

WR Allen Lazard

S Jarrick Bernard-Converse

LB Zaire Barnes


Philadelphia Eagles

S Kevin Byard

CB Avonte Maddox

OLB Patrick Johnson

QB Tanner McKee

TE Grant Calcaterra


Pittsburgh Steelers

CB Patrick Peterson

OT Chukwuma Okorafor

WR Allen Robinson

QB Mitch Trubisky

C Mason Cole


San Francisco 49ers

DL Arik Armstead

CB Isaiah Oliver

LB Jalen Graham

TE Brayden Willis

RB Jordan Mason


Seattle Seahawks

S Jamal Adams

S Quandre Diggs

TE Will Dissly

LB/FB Nick Bellore

WR Dee Eskridge


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

OLB Shaquil Barrett

RB Sean Tucker

TE Payne Durham

TE Ko Kieft

DB Josh Hayes


Tennessee Titans

OT Andre Dillard

QB Malik Willis

RB Hassan Haskins

WR Colton Dowell

WR Kyle Philips


Washington Commanders

TE Logan Thomas

OT Charles Leno Jr.

C Nick Gates

DT Jonathan Allen

RB Chris Rodriguez Jr.


The Selections


An unprecedented increase to the 2024 NFL salary cap allows us to be aggressive in picking up contracts for the expansion draft. The player pool didn’t give a ton of options at edge pass rusher (Shaquil Barrett is someone I would have liked, but his 2025 cap hit gave me pause). Also, while I like several of the quarterbacks available here, we decide to wait and see what happens with the position during free agency.


Pick 1: CB Tre’Davious White ($16,443,000)

Injuries have been the lone concern for former All-Pro cornerback Tre’Davious White, who is one of the best defensive players in football when at full health. White is coming off a torn Achilles but is well worth adding as our first selection in the expansion draft.


Pick 2: WR Mike Williams ($32,460,000)

The flexibility of building this team from the ground up with no binding cap space allows us to spend big on a player like Mike Williams, who has just one year remaining on his contract. We could have hoped Williams is cut by the Chargers and hits free agency, where we can get him cheaper; but we’ll take the massive cap hit to ensure a premier outside target (when healthy). Our top two picks are both coming off season-ending injuries, but they both perform at a high level when on the field.


Pick 3: DL Jonathan Allen ($21,441,168)

The Commanders decided to put Jonathan Allen among their five in the player pool after the former first-round pick had previously indicated he would be open to a new start elsewhere during the frustrating 2023 campaign. This allows the Washington regime to clear a huge contract and continue to start fresh. The Stars secure a reliable player and leader up front on defense.


Pick 4: S Kevin Byard ($14,420,000)

Kevin Byard was understandably not as consistent as usual while joining a new Eagles team midseason in a trade from the Titans, but his one interception (though notably of Patrick Mahomes) might be considered somewhat flukey after nine interceptions the previous two seasons. Byard is smart and rangy on the backend while bringing stellar pedigree as a two-time All-Pro at 31 years old this summer. Philadelphia pulled back tight end Grant Calcaterra after this pick.


Pick 5: LB De’Vondre Campbell ($14,230,529)

Adding our third All-Pro (2021) in our first five picks—all on defense—De’Vondre Campbell has been underrated for years and is another former team captain that brings leadership as we set up a brand-new team and locker room dynamic. Green Bay pulled back safety Zayne Anderson after this pick.


Pick 6: RB Joe Mixon ($8,800,000)

It was four years ago, but Bill Belichick previously said that Joe Mixon is “probably the best back in the league” after he beat his defense for 156 total yards in a December matchup. Despite several years of production in the NFL, Mixon will turn just 28 in July and has a very palatable salary of nearly $9 million (compared to around $17 million for Aaron Jones, for instance). Also, Mixon will be an excellent fit in Chip Kelly’s offense. Cincinnati pulled back defensive tackle Jay Tufele after this pick


Pick 7: S Jordan Poyer ($7,720,000)

We’re getting another 2021 All-Pro on defense, with Jordan Poyer—though 33 and perhaps not at quite the same level he was for most of his time in Buffalo—being a very steady presence in the defensive backfield. Poyer’s interchangeability is a plus in our defense.


Pick 8: OT Chukwuma Okorafor ($9,000,000)

While Chukwuma Okorafor has primarily played right tackle for the Steelers, he played left tackle his final two seasons in college and brings 59 games of starting experience to the squad. We’ll see what happens in free agency and the 2024 NFL Draft, but we can’t afford the offensive line being a major weak spot.


Pick 9: C Mitch Morse ($8,500,000)

Continuing in the trenches, center Mitch Morse is someone else Buffalo had to get rid of for cap reasons, but he’s been among the best pivots in football throughout his career with the Chiefs and Bills.


Pick 10: G Bradley Bozeman ($6,000,000)

With Morse at center, Bradley Bozeman will fill in at left guard, where he played in 2019 and 2020 with the Ravens. Bozeman is yet another experienced, reliable interior lineman with 77 career starts under his belt.


Pick 11: CB Avonte Maddox ($9,600,000)

This salary might be slightly too high, but Avonte Maddox is one of the league’s top slot corners when he’s on the field. A ton of nickel defenses are played in today’s game, so it’s imperative that we are strong there.


Pick 12: CB Isaiah Oliver ($3,766,000)

Again, we do not want to be weak and easily attackable in a passing league, and Isaiah Oliver rounds out a solid cornerback trio that can potentially be reinforced as the offseason continues. It’s worth noting that Oliver is transitioning to safety for the Jets in real life, but for us he’ll just have added versatility.


Pick 13: WR Terrace Marshall Jr. ($1,823,019)

All the additions the Panthers have made to the receiving room in recent years have made it challenging for Terrace Marshall Jr. to break through, but he’s a talented player that comes at a sub-$2 million salary. Marshall averaged 17.5 yards per reception a couple of seasons ago.


Pick 14: DL Neil Farrell Jr. ($985,000)

Neil Farrell Jr. contributed for the defending Super Bowl champions in the Big Game last season, and he’s entering just his third NFL season after the Raiders took him in the fourth round in 2022. He has the size to play nose tackle and is another player with plus leadership qualities. Kansas City pulled back wide receiver Justyn Ross after this pick.


Pick 15: DL Dean Lowry ($4,482,345)

A pectoral injury ended a down first and only season for Dean Lowry with the Vikings. He’s a value selection after a good run of several years to begin his career with the Packers.


Pick 16: DL Lawrence Guy ($3,000,000)

Lawrence Guy has played at a high level since joining the Patriots in 2017, so the relationship is there as Coach Belichick gets his system implemented. I believe our interior defensive line rotation is already above average.


Pick 17: RB Isaiah Spiller ($1,169,238)

Isaiah Spiller has struggled to secure playing time with the Chargers, but he’s still just 22 years old (23 this August) with two years in the league. Spiller showed some shades of Joe Mixon at Texas A&M and will hopefully develop into an impact player behind him.


Pick 18: TE Charlie Kolar ($1,161,221)

The Ravens had some tough decisions to make with their five, and their depth at tight end helps make 2022 fourth-round pick Charlie Kolar available for us. Kolar has size and ability to do damage in the red zone.


Pick 19: S Adrian Phillips ($4,200,000)

Adrian Phillips is another former Patriot that’ll be a core special teamer while being able to rotate in at safety.


Pick 20: OT James Hudson III ($1,253,104)

With all the injuries to the offensive line, James Hudson III has started at least three games in each of his first three NFL seasons with the Browns. He can slide in at right tackle for us. Cleveland pulled back quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson after this pick.


Pick 21: WR Kyle Philips ($1,063,332)

Kyle Philips had a lot of success in Chip Kelly’s offense at UCLA, and he brings ability in the return game as well.


Pick 22: WR Ben Skowronek ($1,076,000)

Ben Skowronek is another guy that can contribute on special teams, and he had become a team captain for the Rams—so adding him is a perk for the new locker room.


Pick 23: CB Tremon Smith ($3,200,000)

In addition to adding depth in the secondary, the speedy Tremon Smith will be someone to experiment with for the NFL’s new kick return rules.


Pick 24: LB Grant Stuard ($1,055,000)

The Colts were forced to make a big special teams contributor in Grant Stuard available, and he’s a welcome addition to our third unit.


Pick 25: RB Sean Tucker ($916,666)

Sean Tucker has big-play burst and has a low salary after making the Bucs as an undrafted free agent (due to the medical) last year.


Pick 26: TE Taysom Hill ($15,789,000)

The Saints put up both Marshon Lattimore and Taysom Hill among their high-salaried guys that they might not mind getting off the books, and we’re ending the expansion draft by getting a Swiss Army knife like Hill. The hybrid quarterback/tight end can be utilized more as a weapon on offense and potentially as a kick returner.


Current Roster


After 26 selections, the roster has a couple of obvious holes at two of the most important positions in the sport—quarterback and edge rusher. However, I believe this is a solid roster foundation aside from that. The offensive line is in position where we don’t need to worry too much about it being a massive issue, and the defensive interior is in positive shape after adding four defensive linemen. The experienced secondary is in similar shape, with plenty of veteran experience.


We still project to have over $40 million in cap space to work with during free agency while considering we’ll need to set aside some space to sign our draft class.


Salary cap: $255,400,000

Total payroll: $193,554,622

Cap space: $61,845,378



RB: Joe Mixon // Isaiah Spiller // Sean Tucker

WR: Mike Williams

WR: Terrace Marshall Jr.

WR: Kyle Philips // Ben Skowronek

TE: Taysom Hill // Charlie Kolar

OT: Chukwuma Okorafor

OG: Bradley Bozeman

C: Mitch Morse


OT: James Hudson III



DL: Jonathan Allen // Neil Farrell Jr.

DL: Lawrence Guy // Dean Lowry


LB: De’Vondre Campbell

LB: Grant Stuard

CB: Tre’Davious White

S: Kevin Byard // Adrian Phillips

S: Jordan Poyer

CB: Isaiah Oliver

NB: Avonte Maddox // Tremon Smith


Check back tomorrow for Part III of the 2024 NFL expansion series, with free agency!