Fortify the Edge
With Haason Reddick as an upcoming free agent and Chandler Jones coming off a torn bicep, the Cardinals need to focus on pass rush. If Kwity Paye or Gregory Rouseau would be available to them at 16 given a possible run on quarterbacks and tackles, they would jump at the chance. Another good decision would be to chase after Bud Dupree or Yannnick Ngakoe in free agency.
Quarterback of the Future
It is no secret that Matt Ryan has not been able to produce as much as he had with Kyle Shanahan leading his offense. As an aging MVP on a team that does not seem to have a lot to look forward to, he is on his way out almost certainly. With the number four pick in the draft, they must address the most important position. Trevor Lawrence is a lost cause for them, however Zach Wilson and Justin Fields are well within reach. Either of these prospects can be great for the Falcons for years to come.
With Yannick Ngokoue and Matt Judon both free agents, the Ravens need help desperately on the edge. They should look into resigning one if not both of these players. If they decide not to do this, however, they should focus all their efforts on bringing Bud Dupree into Baltimore. In the draft, they can also look into a player like Azeez Ojulari who would fit in with the Ravens seamlessly.
Anywhere on the O-Line
The Bills’ offensive line has been good this season, however upgrades can be had almost all over the line. Getting a solid tackle on the right side or an interior lineman is a must this offseason. They should target Brandon Scherff, Joe Thuney, or Corey Linsley if they all do make it to free agency. They may to have a shot at some of the premier tackles in the draft, but someone like Alex Leatherwood or Dillon Radunz could be available to them late in the draft.
Find the Other End of the Bridge
Teddy Bridgewater has shown over the course of this season that he is not the answer for the Panthers. The Panthers should focus all their efforts to trade up in the draft and get Zach Wilson or hope that Trey Lance falls into their laps with the 8th overall pick. The only other hope they have would be to bring in Dak Prescott in free agency if he does not get another franchise tag.
Quarterback or bust
The Bears have multiple holes on their team, the quarterback position chief among them. Given their draft position, they are not going to be able to get one of the top four quarterbacks this year. With Trubisky an impending free agent, the Bears may be forced to reach with their 20th overall pick and draft Mac Jones. They may have to give Trubisky or even Jameis Winston a one year prove it deal. Another possibility (although farfetched) would be to trade as much draft capital as you need to get Deshaun Watson.
PROTECT JOE BURROW
I cannot stress this enough. The Bengals must pick up quality offensive linemen in the draft AND free agency. Give an offer to Trent Williams, Taylor Moton, Daryl Williams, Brandon Scherff, Joe Thuney, Corey Linsley, Alex Mack, David Andrews, and anyone else who can make sure that Joe Burrow stays upright. It is possible they end up with Penei Sewell in the draft as well. It does not matter in what way they address this problem at the moment, but it must be addressed.
Linebacker, Linebackers, Linebackers
The Browns have a great piece to build around in Mack Wilson, but he needs help at the second level. The free agent market for linebackers, outside of Lavonte David, is dry, but the Browns could do great in the first round of the draft with Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah or Zaven Collins. JOK has potential to be a great coverage linebacker and can even swing out to the slot. Collins has the ability to be a great three down backer. Either player could be a great tag team with Wilson.
Dak has been at the center of offseason talks for the past two years. The Cowboys need to hammer out a long-term extension for him now. It may be scary to do so given how gruesome his ankle injury was, but he has earned the stability of an extension.
Is Drew Lock “the guy”?
Lock has shown flashes of greatness, however, he has also shown mind-numbing mistakes are a part of his game. The Broncos new general manager must figure out if he is going to ride out Drew Lock for the next year and address other needs, such as cornerback, or if he is going to grab another quarterback.
Load up on Weapons
The Lions have a difficult offseason ahead. It does not sound like a deal with Marvin Jones or Kenny Golladay is in sight. Detroit must give Matthew Stafford receivers. They have the draft position to be able to grab one of the three top receivers. Ja’Marr Chase, Devonte Smith, or Jaylen Waddle would all be great additions and would give Stafford a competent weapon compete with.
Green Bay Packers
Partner-in-Crime for Jaire
The Packers have many holes opening up this offseason. Between losing their top two running backs, their starting center, and their #2 corner, they have a lot of work to do this offseason. The Packers are projected to be over the cap by roughly $25 million. They will obviously not be very active in free agency, but the draft will be a good place to hit. Two names to watch are Jaycee Horn and Eric Stokes. Both have great ability on the outside and could be a great pairing for Jaire Alexander and the rest of the Packers defense.
Mend the Fences
There is nothing the Texans can do that is more important than fixing the fractured relationship with Deshaun Watson. Do whatever you can to appease Watson and make sure that he is a Texans for the rest of his career.
The more you look around the NFL, the more teams you see that need a quarterback. Given the retirement of Philip Rivers and the fact that Jacob Eason is the only quarterback on the roster as of right now in 2021, you need to address the quarterback position. Two quarterbacks that would be able to accel in the Colts organization would Mac Jones and Jameis Winston. Both quarterbacks have good arms and can win games with an above average supporting cast. The Colts offensive line and their run game can take pressure off whichever quarterback is leading the team.
Just Don’t Mess Up
The Jaguars have the most sought after quarterback in the draft since Andrew Luck waiting for them at the 2021 NFL Draft. They just need to have “Trevor Lawrence” already written and given to Rodger Goodell before the draft starts.
Kansas City Chiefs
Protect your Investment
Patrick Mahomes wasn’t given half a billion dollars for nothing. You cannot let that money go down the toilet by letting Mahomes be pressured all the time. They need to invest, now, in the offensive line. With a projected 32nd pick, they cannot go for a top talent in Wyatt Davis or Alijah Vera-Tucker, but they can possibly target Liam Eichenberg, Christian Darrisaw, or Jalen Mayfield. This may involve trading up, but nothing is more important in Kansas City than protecting Mahomes.
Las Vegas Raiders
The Raiders have a huge hole on the edge. They whiffed on Clelin Ferrell big time. Maxx Crosby has put up some decent sack numbers, but is not a pressure machine. Maurice Hurst is the only defensive tackle on the roster in 2021. They need depth and talent on the front. The Raiders need to find a way to get pressure and quick. A few players that can change this is Christian Barmore. He would be a great presence in the middle with Maurice Hurst. If they decide to go with edge and move Clelin Ferrell inside, which would be a good fit, they could shoot for Jaelan Philips. It does not matter how they decide to address the front so long as they upgrade.
Los Angeles Chargers
Linemen No Matter What
Herbert made a huge splash in his rookie season. He sensed pressure great unlike he did in college. The goal for the Chargers is to make sure he doesn’t have pressure to sense. They need to address the line in a big way. Anywhere along the line is almost a necessity at this point. Wyatt Davis or Samuel Cosmi should be the main targets in the draft. If they can also tempt Brandon Scherff to Los Angeles that would be a huge win.
Los Angeles Rams
Restructure Everyone and Resign Anyone
The Rams are going into another year strapped for cap. They are projected to be in the negative by $27 million. They also have key players such a Gerald Everett, John Johnson III, and Darious Williams headed to free agency. They need to restructure some of these contracts or trade away some big names if they are going to field a competitive team next year.
Give Tua Someone to Throw To
There have been rumblings recently that Tua is already out as the Dolphins QB just one year after being drafted 5th overall. If Flores really does not trust Tua to be the future, then the Dolphins have a big hole to fill. If not, Tua needs someone to throw the ball to badly. The 3rd overall pick could very well be where we see the first receiver go if Miami cannot trade down. Ja’Marr Chase is ripe for the picking at that spot. They should also go after Chris Godwin in free agency. He can get open on a consistent basis and give Tua an easy target.
The Vikings are another team that projects to be in the negative for cap space. Free agency is not going to be a big help for this team. Looking to the draft, however, the Vikings have to fix the offensive line. They are a very good run blocking team but when it comes to protecting the quarterback, the line needs help. With the 14th overall pick the Vikings should go with a tackle like Rashawn Slater. He will be a staple on the outside that is able to erase an edge rusher.
New England Patriots
The Patriots have one of the bleakest rosters in the NFL. They do not have a quarterback or weapons on offense. On defense, safety and edge are big needs as well. The Patriots have quite a few players coming back after opting out this year, however they are going to need a lot more help than that. With the 4th most projected cap space, the Patriots will be able to dip into the free agency pool. One of the biggest tasks the Patriots need to work on is getting their offensive line back. Both David Andrews and Joe Thuney are free agents who absolutely need to return. They should also get weapons such as Allen Robinson and Kenny Golladay. In the draft, the Patriots need to address the quarterback spot. Whether this is in the first round with Mac Jones or in the second round with Kyle Trask does not matter, but they need to get someone at the helm. This can also be done by paying a vet like Jameis Winston or Andy Dalton to come in for a couple years.
New Orleans Saints
Find a Way Out of Cap Purgatory
The Saints win-now mentality is piling up on them. Projected to be over $100 million over the cap, they need to trim the roster down to the essentials. With the amount of cap they need to cut down, many big time players may be traded or cut. This team is also in need of a quarterback. With Drew Brees more than likely retiring, the Saints need to get a signal caller. The best way to do this is going to be bring back Jameis Winston to start full time.
New York Giants
Resign Leonard Williams and Get Him Help
Leonard Williams should be the highest priority for the Giants. He is a great lineman who can push the pocket and stop the run at a very high level. Although he should be the main goal, he needs help to pressure the opposing quarterback. Bringing in an edge threat such as Von Miller (IF the Broncos decide to take the team option) or Yannick Ngakoue would be a great help. The Giants also need help with weapons which should be focused on the draft if they plan on sticking it out with Daniel Jones.
New York Jets
PICK ZACH WILSON
There is no other way to say this. Zach Wilson is going to be an all star in the NFL. He has everything you want in a modern quarterback. He is better right now than Sam Darnold. That is not to say Sam Darnold does not have potential still, but the previous regime in New York ruined him. A change of scenery would be the best for Darnold. They Jets may be able to trade him for a late first and get a new receiver for Wilson to grow with.
Find a Culture
The Eagles are lost. They have not drafted well. They have not been coached well. This is by far the worst Super Bowl hangover that we have ever seen. The Eagles need to bring in players, coaches, and front office workers who are going to build a winning culture. They also need to cut down cap as they are $50 million over the cap as of right now.
Many teams need to build, or rather rebuild, their offensive line. The Steelers are no different. With Alejandro Villanueva an impending free agent and Maurkice Pouncey mulling over retirement, the team must build up a once great line to protect Big Ben or Dwayne Haskins. Projected at this point over the cap by $30 million plus, the Steelers must build through the draft. With the 24th overall pick, the Steelers could take a surefire difference maker in Alex Leatherwood. He would be a solid bookend that is projected to go late in the first.
San Fransisco 49ers
Trade up for Trey Lance
The 49ers were hit hard by injury this season. If the 49ers stay healthy, they are one of the best teams in the league and certainly one of the best coached. With these positives, however, one of the worst negatives is the most important position, the quarterback. Jimmy G is not the answer at quarterback and that will not change. Trey Lance under Kyle Shanahan will be a perfect scheme fit that will play to every strength that Lance has.
Line Help Anywhere
The Seahawks are in desperate need of line help. The offensive line has played better this year than in years past, but still has a lot of work to be done. The defense has not been getting pressure from anyone other than Jamal Adams. Both lines need assistance, however, with no first round pick due to the trade for Adams, the team may need to find some cheap veteran free agents. Some names to look out for on either side of the line would be Takkarist McKinley, Vinny Curry, Germain Ifedi, and Dan Feeney. They may not be the best in the business, but they would serve the purpose of plugging holes at a low price.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Resign, Resign, Resign
The Bucs have been built up for a “win-now” run for the next few seasons. If Tom Brady returns, that window is still open, but the team must be replenished with talent. Chris Godwin, Shaquil Barrett, Lavonte David, Ndamukong Suh and Rob Gronkowski are all impending free agents who are cornerstones of this team. The Bucs can make another run at the Super Bowl next year with the right pieces in place. Letting go of any of these players may prove costly to that effort.
The Titans were second to last in the league in team pressure rate at 17.3%, per pro-football-reference.com. The Titans need to bring in someone who can press the pocket and free Jeffery Simmons and Harold Landry up. They thought that is what Jadeveon Clowney would do, however in 8 games he only got 11 pressures and zero sacks. More than likely Clowney will be with a new team next year. The Titans can alleviate this lose by drafting Azeez Ojulari or Joseph Ossai, if still available. Both players will be able to play a hybrid 3-4 edge player that these Belichick-ian defenses love.
Washington Football Team
Anything on Offense
The Washington Football Team has an above average defense. They are getting to the quarterback and getting pressure at an impressive rate. The offense has issues all over. They do not have a franchise quarterback, a questionable offensive line, and no consistent weapons outside of Terry McLaurin. This team should first resign Brandon Scherff and solidify the right side of the offensive line. With the remaining money they have in free agency, they should go after a weapon, like Chris Godwin, to pair with McLaurin. After this, the team should target a guard or tackle in the draft such as Liam Eichenberg or Wyatt Davis. Washington has done a great job building the defensive line, now they need to do so with the offensive line.