In a league with salary limitations that force teams to make tough financial decisions each offseason, the league-wide push seems to be for younger, cheaper players who have the ability to do everything from rounding out depth charts to competing at a Pro-Bowl level. With personnel decisions leaving talented but overpriced veterans jobless more than ever before, the bulk of teams are counting on youth to carry them to the promised land.
A youthful roster is no longer synonymous with a rebuilding one. Rookies are now expected to step into starting roles more and more each year so the core veterans can consume the lion’s share of the salary cap.
So, in order to determine which rosters have the most talent, a cutoff needed to be established. Players who entered the NFL in 2012 or later define a "young player" for the purpose of this exercise.
After all, in today’s NFL, a player in his fourth year is considered an experienced veteran entering the prime years of his career.
In order to find out which teams are stacked with the best young talent, it required a rather extensive basis for comparison.
Using the research from my scouting database built up over the years, I was able to establish a familiarity with these younger players from their tape in college—such as rookies who have yet to accumulate any NFL playing time.
NFL production was also factored in along with predraft scouting analysis using the positional grades per Pro Football Focus (subscription required). Even a player's overall physical potential was considered thanks to a database ranking three years worth of draft classes. All of these elements were then combined to generate a point system to rank the young talent of all 32 NFL teams.
In the end, the teams that made this slideshow stood out as having the best young talent in the league.