NFL Team Needs: Prioritizing Every Roster's Biggest Weaknesses After Week 2

BR NFL StaffSeptember 18, 2023

NFL Team Needs: Prioritizing Every Roster's Biggest Weaknesses After Week 2

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    EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 11: Quarterback Zach Wilson #2 of the New York Jets reacts during the third quarter of the NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium on September 11, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
    Elsa/Getty Images

    If Week 1 of the 2023 NFL season was shocking, Week 2 came through and provided some semblance of balance. AFC powers the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills got back to .500. The New York Giants and Seattle Seahawks, both playoff teams a year ago as well, left it late but found the win the column for the first time this season, too. And a few surprise upstarts and disappointments moved to 2-0 and 0-2 respectively.

    Every week of the season, we'll assess the state of each roster with a particular focus on its weaknesses. By the end of the campaign, we'll have built a big board for every team based on its biggest needs and wants. Everything from immediate holes to fill to the offseason player carousel of free agency and the 2024 NFL draft is taken into account.

    The weaknesses here are not just knee-jerk reactions to the weekend's games, but more an overarching assessment with both present and future roster-building in mind.

    All AFC teams are scouted by Alex Ballentine, and all NFC teams are scouted by Matt Holder.

    We will update the four Monday Night Football teams—this week's schedule boasts a double-header of New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers and Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers—after the games are complete.

    Some of these players have already been highlighted in more detail in our Week 2 Trade Block Big Board, and some of the 2024 draft prospects were featured in our weekly draft buzz update.

    Further analysis of every NFL roster will publish each Monday throughout the regular season.

Arizona Cardinals

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    Rondale Moore
    Rondale MooreJess Rapfogel/Getty Images

    Here's the best way to sum up the 2023 Arizona Cardinals: Bad teams find a way to lose.

    After dropping the season opener by four points to the Commanders, the Cardinals followed that up by squandering a 20-0 halftime lead and a 28-7 advantage in the third quarter to the Giants on Sunday. Maybe things will be different when Kyler Murray comes back, but it's looking like Arizona is going to be competing for the No. 1 overall pick again.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Defensive Line 
    3. Wide Receiver
    4. Interior Offensive Line
    5. Linebacker

    Add Now: WR Bryan Edwards

    The theme of players whom the Cardinals need to add now will be young guys who can fill an immediate need and potentially stick around for next year and beyond. Wide receiver was a need for Arizona heading into the season opener, and that remains the case after Rondale Moore led the team with 33 receiving yards in Week 1.

    The Cards have a lot of smaller wideouts and could use a big body on the outside like Edwards. At 6'3" and 215 pounds, he would give Josh Dobbs a weapon who can make contested catches. The South Carolina product had nearly 600 yards and three touchdowns with the Las Vegas Raiders in 2021, so he could be a productive second or thirdwideout in the desert.

    2024 Free Agency: CB L'Jarius Sneed, Kansas City Chiefs

    Cornerback projects to be one of the Cardinals' top offseason needs. If they end up targeting USC quarterback Caleb Williams and/or Ohio State wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. in the draft, free agency might be their best bet to fill that hole on their roster.

    Last season, Snead had 11 pass breakups and three interceptions as the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs' No. 1 corner. He'll likely be one of the top corners available on the open market and would be Arizona's best player at the position by a long shot.

    2024 NFL Draft: S Tyler Nubin, Minnesota

    Budda Baker's contract is about to expire and he asked for a trade in the offseason, so it seems like his days with the Cardinals are numbered. Nubin could be a good replacement for Baker, as the Golden Gopher has proven to be a ball hawk in college with 10 career interceptions, including two in Minnesota's season opener.

    Nubin could replace some of Baker's versatility, as B/R scout Cory Giddings described him as "a big, physical safety who has shown the ability to play at multiple levels but does his best work closer to the line of scrimmage. He's a strong player who makes quick run reads and does a good job taking on blocks and securing tackles."

Atlanta Falcons

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    Bijan Robinson
    Bijan RobinsonKevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    It hasn't been pretty, but the Atlanta Falcons have done exactly what they needed to do to begin the season 2-0 and keep pace in the NFC South.

    Atlanta is also turning back the clock offensively with 341 rushing yards and 4.8 yards per carry in its first two games, including 211 yards on the ground against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Quarterback
    2. Cornerback
    3. Linebacker
    4. Wide Receiver
    5. Guard

    Add now: G Gabe Jackson

    While the Falcons' offensive line as a whole played well so far—as evidenced by the numbers above—rookie left guard Matthew Bergeron struggled in his NFL debut. Bergeron allowed no sacks, per Pro Football Focus, but he earned a low score as a run-blocker.

    If we've learned anything about the Falcons in the first two weeks of the season, it's that they're going to lean heavily on their ground game offensively. Jackson has built a nine-year career as a road grader and could at least provide some leadership for the rookie even if he doesn't take over the job.

    Plus, the veteran offensive lineman can help make sure Desmond Ridder stays upright. Jackson allowed only two sacks for the Seattle Seahawks last year, per PFF.

    2024 Free Agency: WR Darnell Mooney, Chicago Bears

    Mack Hollins is only on a one-year deal, and the Falcons could use some speed out wide regardless of whether he returns. Mooney can be the deep threat they're looking for with his 4.38-second 40 time and could help open the field for Drake London, who was blanked in the season opener but did have six catches for 67 yards and a touchdown against Green Bay.

    Not having someone who can stretch the field was an issue for Atlanta in Week 1, as Ridder's intended air yards per attempt (IAY/PA) dropped from 7.8 in 2022 to 3.5 last week, per Pro Football Reference. Marcus Mariota led the league with 10.8 IAY/PA last year in Atlanta, so Mooney's presence could help the offense function as head coach Arthur Smith intends it to.

    2024 NFL Draft: LB Smael Mondon Jr., Georgia

    Troy Anderson struggled as a rookie, and both of the Falcons' backup inside linebackers are scheduled to hit free agency in the offseason, so they could use a project at the position to develop behind Kaden Elliss. Luckily, they won't have to look very far for a player who fits that profile in the draft.

    Mondon has the speed to carry running backs and tight ends down the field as a coverage backer. He has good technique as a run defender but could afford to add some extra strength to hold his ground against offensive linemen, making him an intriguing option for the future of Atlanta's linebacking corps.

Baltimore Ravens

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    Gus Edwards
    Gus EdwardsAP Photo/Nick Wass

    The Ravens dealt with key injuries on the offensive line this week with Tyler Linderbaum and Ronnie Stanley out. The fact that they still averaged 4.8 yards per carry in a 27-point performance is encouraging for the offense under new coordinator Todd Monken.

    Baltimore held Joe Burrow and Co. down in the first half, but the lack of depth in the secondary showed up in the second half. The Bengals found Tee Higgins in the end zone twice, but it was too little, too late to change the outcome of the game.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Running Back
    2. Cornerback
    3. Offensive Guard
    4. Right Tackle
    5. Interior Defender

    Add Now: CB Greedy Williams

    Cornerback was a weakness for the Ravens coming into the season, and that remains the case with Marlon Humphrey still recovering from foot surgery. In Week 1, Brandon Stephens gave up eight catches on nine targets for 74 yards.

    Greedy Williams has struggled with injuries throughout his NFL career, but the 2019 second-round pick has shown flashes of promise. The 25-year-old is at least worth a look.

    2024 Free Agency: CB Chidobe Awuzie, Cincinnati Bengals

    While Williams would be more of a developmental flier, Chidobe Awuzie would provide a proven veteran option at corner next season. The 28-year-old has played at a high level since signing with the Bengals in 2021, but Cincy's budget is shrinking quickly with Burrow's extension, Higgins and Tyler Boyd set to hit the market in 2024 and Ja'Marr Chase's extension on the horizon.

    2024 NFL Draft: RB Braelon Allen, Wisconsin

    J.K. Dobbins' torn Achilles should end the Ravens' hopes that he's ever going to be their lead back. That injury often saps explosiveness and carries a long recovery time.

    If the Ravens want to find a dominant ball-carrier in the draft, they don't need to look further than the 6'2", 245-pound Allen, who continues to look impressive at Wisconsin.

    "Allen is a smart, graceful runner for a player of his size, and there isn't going to be any worry that he can handle a full NFL workload," B/R's Derrik Klassen noted. "While Allen doesn't have dangerous breakaway speed, it's less of a concern in an offense where every other skill player can make up for it."

    The Ravens are looking to spread things out with speed under new offensive coordinator Todd Monken, which would make Allen a fit in their system.

Buffalo Bills

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    Stefon Diggs
    Stefon DiggsMichael Owens/Getty Images

    After a disappointing start to the season, the Buffalo Bills got the bounce-back performance they desperately needed with a 38-10 win over the Las Vegas Raiders. Josh Allen looked a lot more like himself, and the defense was stellar. They picked off Jimmy Garoppolo twice and held Josh Jacobs to negative yardage on nine carries.

    There aren't a lot of glaring holes on this roster, but there are a few areas where they could use an addition and some long-term needs to monitor.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Wide Receiver
    2. Right Tackle
    3. Edge Defender
    4. Linebacker
    5. Safety

    Add Now: WR T.Y. Hilton

    The Bills' receiving group continues to be heavily reliant on Stefon Diggs, with few plays coming from the supporting cast. Gabe Davis and Deonte Harty were the only other two receivers to catch a pass in Week 1.

    T.Y. Hilton is no longer the burner that he was in his younger days, but he chipped in on the Cowboys' playoff win last season and might be worth a look as a slot option.

    2024 Free Agency: Edge Darrell Taylor, Seattle Seahawks

    To continue to be considered a contender in the AFC, the Bills have to keep bolstering their pass rush. That means having a succession plan for Von Miller, who started the season on the PUP list with a knee injury and is 34 years old.

    Darrell Taylor had a breakout campaign with a career-high 9.5 sacks last season, but he finds himself in a crowded Seahawks rotation. The Seahawks just extended Uchenna Nwosu and used a second-round pick on Boye Mafe in the 2022 draft, so Taylor's time could be coming to an end in the Pacific Northwest.

    2024 NFL Draft: OT JC Latham, Alabama

    Spencer Brown has one more season to prove that he can be Buffalo's long-term solution at right tackle, but he isn't off to a great start. In Week 1, he earned a 55.7 grade from PFF, gave up a sack and drew a penalty.

    Alabama's JC Latham is the returning starter at right tackle for the Crimson Tide and hasn't given up a sack yet, according to PFF. B/R scout Brandon Thorn broke down what makes Latham a great prospect, including the attitude that would give the Bills a needed edge in the run game.

    "Latham is a massive, long-bodied tackle with very good power and a nasty demeanor," Thorn said. "This leads to major displacement and movement in the run game with thunderous finishes. Latham is also a patient pass-blocker with the independent hand usage, tact and timing needed to play on an island.

    "He is still learning how to maintain proper positioning and leverage against effective inside counters and speed-to-power moves. But his size, power, movement skills and demeanor suggest that he can stick at right tackle or move inside to guard in the NFL."

Carolina Panthers

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    Bryce Young
    Bryce YoungRich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    After the first two weeks of the season, the Carolina Panthers are pretty much exactly who everyone thought they'd be. They're a young team that's in the midst of a rebuilding process and are competing more toward building their roster for the future than wins and losses in 2023.

    Shaq Thompson's ankle injury will be something to monitor over the coming days as he's been a fixture of Carolina's defense for several years and is signed through 2024. Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, Frank Reich Thompson's injury is "significant" and he'll be out indefinitely.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Offensive Tackle
    2. Wide Receiver
    3. Interior Offensive line
    4. Cornerback
    5. Edge

    Add now: CB Casey Hayward

    Jaycee Horn suffered a hamstring injury in the season opener that landed him on injured reserve. That pushes C.J. Henderson into the starting lineup, who allowed a 69.0 completion percentage and nearly 700 yards when targeted last season, according to Pro Football Reference.

    If the Panthers are serious about making a run at the NFC South crown this season, they should consider bringing in a veteran like Hayward to fill in for Horn for the time being. The 11-year pro is just two seasons removed from recording one interception and nine pass breakups, and he should know the division well after playing for the Falcons in 2022.

    2024 Free Agency: Edge Chase Young, Washington Commanders

    Carolina's contract extension talks with Brian Burns have reportedly stalled, per Will Kunkel of Fox 26 Houston, and his deal is set to expire in March. The Panthers' defense will have a massive hole to fill if Burns walks in free agency, and even if they do reach an agreement, they should look into another pass-rusher to pair beside him.

    Justin Houston and Yetur Gross-Matos are also expected to hit the open market, so signing Young would give Carolina a ton of talent on the edge. While the 2020 No. 2 overall pick has battled injuries and hasn't lived up to expectations so far, that could also drive his price down, allowing the Panthers to address a need and continue to spend money in free agency.

    2024 NFL Draft: LB Tommy Eichenberg, Ohio State

    Frankie Luvu is in a contract year, and his departure would leave Carolina with a need for a run-stuffing linebacker. Eichenberg fits that profile, as he's an instinctual run defender who is physical at the point of attack to take on blocks against offensive linemen.

    He also has the grit that defensive coordinators are looking for at the position after playing with two broken hands at the end of last year.

Chicago Bears

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    Justin Fields
    Justin FieldsMichael Reaves/Getty Images

    It's safe to say this isn't the start the Chicago Bears were hoping for this season. Not only are they 0-2 after losing to the Buccaneers yesterday, but quarterback Justin Fields hasn't inspired much confidence with his play, either. Granted, the offensive line has a lot to do with that as well, and Chicago's defense isn't giving them much support.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Nickelback
    2. Edge
    3. Interior Offensive Line
    4. Cornerback
    5. Wide Receiver

    Add now: G Andrew Norwell

    Fields has been sacked 10 times in the Bears' first two games and has been under pressure far too much for any quarterback to be successful, let alone one who is still working to put it all together as a passer. The three interior offensive linemen have been the biggest culprits, especially with Nate Davis out in Week 2 for personal reasons.

    With Teven Jenkins on injured reserve, the Bears could afford to add someone in the trenches. Norwell would bring nine years of experience to Chicago and would boost Fields' pass protection after allowing only four sacks on 639 opportunities last season, per PFF.

    2024 Free Agency: WR Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals

    At this point, it's safe to say that the Chase Claypool experiment isn't working out. Claypool is a free agent at the end of the year, so the Bears can easily cut bait on him, but so is Darnell Mooney. Chicago thus figures to be a significant player in the wide receiver market this offseason, and it should go after the biggest fish in the pond.

    Higgins would provide Fields with a big target who can come down with contested catches, which is what the organization was hoping for with Claypool. While the Bengal will likely command top dollar in free agency, the Bears are currently projected to have $96.6 million in cap space, per Spotrac.

    2024 NFL Draft: Edge "Chop" Robinson, Penn State

    Yannick Ngakoue is only on a one-year deal, and Chicago has struggled to get much pressure during the first two weeks of the campaign even with him on the field. Robinson can help solve that problem, as he flies off the ball to win with speed around the edge and has the bend to turn tight corners at the top of the rush.

Cincinnati Bengals

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    CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 10: Joe Burrow #9 of the Cincinnati Bengals plays against the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on September 10, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
    Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

    The Bengals fell to 0-2 with a 27-24 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. The offense was stagnant in the first half but did find some life in the second half. Tee Higgins scored twice, and Joe Burrow seemed to shake off some of the rust after missing most of camp with a calf injury.

    The defense is cause for concern. Although the Browns and Ravens are two of the better rushing teams they will see, the run defense has been gashed two weeks in a row. They gave up 4.8 yards per carry to an offensive line that was missing two starters in Tyler Linderbaum and Ronnie Stanley.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Interior Defender
    2. Right Tackle
    3. Tight End
    4. Wide Receiver
    5. Edge Defender

    Add Now: Edge Carlos Dunlap

    Pass-rushing depth is a key component to playoff success, but the Bengals are a bit thin in that department. Joseph Ossai and Cameron Sample are both dealing with ankle injuries, and rookie Myles Murphy will need some seasoning throughout the year.

    A Carlos Dunlap homecoming might be in order. The former Bengal proved to still be a functional rotational pass-rusher with the Chiefs last season. He had four sacks while playing 50 percent of the snaps.

    2024 Free Agency: TE Noah Fant

    The Bengals have worked out a nice system in which they have a new starting tight end and then let some other team pay them. That's how they replaced C.J. Uzomah, who signed with the New York Jets in 2021. Then Hayden Hurst was a one-year starter before signing with the Carolina Panthers this offseason. Now, it's Irv Smith Jr.'s turn.

    If they utilize free agency to fill the role again, Noah Fant might be a good buy-low option. Fant saw a big dip in his role and stats when he was traded from Denver to Seattle last year. He could go to Cincy to rejuvenate his career, especially given the uncertainty surrounding the Bengals' 2024 receiving corps.

    2024 NFL Draft: WR Rome Odunze, Washington

    Bengals fans should enjoy the trio of Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd as long as they can. It's looking less and less likely that it's going to last beyond 2023, as Boyd and Higgins are set to become free agents in 2024.

    Even if they retain one of them, wide receiver is still going to be a need. Washington's Rome Odunze would make sense as a Higgins replacement, as B/R's Derrik Klassen proposed in the scouting department's first mock draft:

    "The 21-year-old underclassman can fill right in for Higgins and serve as the ball-winning X-receiver outside the numbers," Klassen wrote. "Odunze isn't the most explosive threat with the ball, but thankfully he'll be flanked by Chase."

Cleveland Browns

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    PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA - SEPTEMBER 18:  Deshaun Watson #4 of the Cleveland Browns looks to pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first quarter at Acrisure Stadium on September 18, 2023 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
    Joe Sargent/Getty Images

    The Cleveland Browns had a worst-case scenario kind of Monday night. Not only did they lose to a division rival, but Nick Chubb suffered an injury in the second quarter that head coach Kevin Stefanski described as "very significant".

    Jerome Ford took over running back duties with Chubb out and had 106 yards on 16 carries. However, he had 69 of those yards on one carry so he had 37 yards on the other 15. Deshaun Watson is now under even more pressure to live up to the massive contract he received last offseason.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Wide Receiver
    2. Running Back
    3. Interior Defensive Line
    4. Offensive Tackle
    5. Edge-Rusher

    Add Now: RB Leonard Fournette

    Losing Nick Chubb for the season is the kind of injury that is going to force a shift in the Brown offense. He isn't going to be outright replaced by anyone on the free agent market or via trade. Jerome Ford flashed the explosiveness the Browns saw when they drafted him on a 69-yard run, but they still need someone who can gain hard yards on the interior.

    Leonard Fournette can be that guy. He struggled in Tampa Bay last season, but this Browns offensive line is still a good run-blocking unit that could help him be a productive back in 2023.

    2024 Free Agency: DT Teair Tart, Tennessee Titans

    The Browns defensive line has looked much better this season, but it's reliant on multiple players who are set to become free agents in 2024. Za'Darius Smith, Maurice Hurst, Shelby Harris and Jordan Elliott will all be seeking new contracts next season.

    The Browns could keep going the short-term rental route, or they could add a long-term solution in Teair Tart. The Titans defensive tackle is a wrecking ball against the run and causes just enough disruption in the passing game to be an asset.

    2024 NFL Draft: WR Troy Franklin, Oregon

    Marquise Goodwin having a role in the offense right now is evidence of the Browns' need for a field-stretching wide receiver. The soon-to-be 33-year-old is still one of their fastest players in the receiving group, but he shouldn't be looked at as a 2024 option.

    Troy Franklin could fill that role as a second-round pick. The 6'3", 187-pound receiver has speed to get behind defenders with some good yards-after-the-catch ability as well. He's one of the scariest big-play threats in college football, and he used his speed to haul in three receptions of 50-plus yards as a sophomore, tied for the Pac-12 lead.

Dallas Cowboys

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    Zack Martin, Dak Prescott
    Zack Martin, Dak PrescottMitchell Leff/Getty Images

    It would take a serious pessimist to find many flaws in how the Dallas Cowboys have played so far this season. Dallas is 2-0 and has outscored its opponents by 60 points.

    The Cowboys were especially impressive in Week 2, outgaining the New York Jets by nearly 170 yards and winning the turnover battle 4-0.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Linebacker
    2. Offensive Line Depth
    3. Tight End
    4. Safety

    Add Now: TE Dan Arnold

    The Cowboys have few holes on their roster, but they could use another pass-catching tight end. Jake Ferguson was a good blocker in the season opener, but he had only two catches for 11 yards and a few drops, and rookie Luke Schoonmaker doesn't appear to be ready for a bigger role after getting limited playing time and drawing just one target so far.

    While Arnold had only nine catches for 135 yards with the Jacksonville Jaguars last season, he had over 400 yards between the Carolina Panthers and Jaguars in 2021. He'd also bring some veteran leadership to the position group, as all three of Dallas' tight ends are still on their rookie contracts.

    2024 Free Agency: CB Marcus Peters, Las Vegas Raiders

    If Stephon Gilmore is too expensive for the Cowboys to retain—they're currently estimated to be $10.4 million over the 2024 salary cap, per Spotrac—then adding a veteran ball hawk like Peters would be a good idea.

    Peters' 32 career interceptions combined with Trevon Diggs' 17 career picks on the other side would make opposing quarterbacks hesitant to let passes rip against Dallas.

    2024 NFL Draft: DB Cooper DeJean, Iowa

    The secondary will likely be a point of emphasis for the Cowboys this offseason, as safety Jayron Kearse is also scheduled to hit free agency. DeJean has played more cornerback at Iowa, but he has the potential to be a versatile defensive back, according to B/R's Cory Giddings.

    "DeJean is a physically gifted player with good size and straight-line speed," Giddings said. "He has loose hips and fluid movement skills. He also has positional versatility, but it's still unclear where he fits best at the next level."

Denver Broncos

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    Patrick Surtain II
    Patrick Surtain IIAP Photo/Bart Young

    The Denver Broncos were close to getting their first win under Sean Payton in Week 2. Russell Wilson and Brandon Johnson connected on a Hail Mary to bring them within two as time expired. Unfortunately, there were some shades of Super Bowl XLIX, as Wilson couldn't connect with Courtland Sutton on a play where there was some contact with Commanders defender Benjamin St. Juste.

    The 0-2 start is frustrating for Payton and Co. but Wilson showed promising signs of life. He threw for 308 yards and three touchdowns and added 56 yards on the ground. On the flip side, the defense couldn't stop Sam Howell and the Commanders.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Edge-Rusher
    2. Cornerback
    3. Center
    4. Interior Defensive Lineman
    5. Quarterback

    Add Now: CB Cameron Dantzler

    Cornerback looked like a weakness for the Broncos heading into the season, and it has come to fruition on the field. Against the Las Vegas Raiders in Week 1, Damarri Mathis gave up six catches for 71 yards and two touchdowns on six targets.

    Teams don't want to throw at Patrick Surtain II, but the Broncos won't get the full benefit of that until they find a serviceable No. 2 corner. Cameron Dantzler could wind up being that guy this season. He struggled in Minnesota last season, but is still 25 years old and put up some good film in his first two seasons with the Vikings.

    2024 Free Agency: CB Kendall Fuller, Washington Commanders

    A free-agent Band-Aid like Dantzler might end up working out, but the Broncos need to go into 2024 with at least one reliable veteran whom they could pair with Surtain. Kendall Fuller is a logical fit.

    He's going to be 29 next offseason, which means he isn't likely to command a huge contract, but he's been a solid starter for the Commanders over the last four seasons.

    2024 NFL Draft: DT Kris Jenkins, Michigan

    Sean Payton had some great defensive lines during his tenure in New Orleans. He understands just how much impact a strong front four can have on the rest of the defense.

    If the Broncos find their answer at corner outside of the draft, it would make sense to select another promising interior defender to go along with Zach Allen and D.J. Jones on the inside.

    Kris Jenkins is already dynamic against the run and has promising upside as a pass-rusher. He was No. 6 on Bruce Feldman's annual list of exceptional athletes thanks to his wild weight room numbers and agility testing.

Detroit Lions

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    Amon-Ra St. Brown
    Amon-Ra St. BrownScott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    After beating the reigning champions in Week 1, it's hard to call Sunday's performance by the Detroit Lions anything other than disappointing, as they dropped their home opener to the 0-1 Seattle Seahawks.

    The Lions were able to get the passing game going, as Jared Goff threw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns. However, turnovers and the defense let Detroit down.

    Biggest Weakness:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Linebacker
    3. Edge-Rusher
    4. Wide Receiver
    5. Tight End

    Add Now: LB Anthony Barr

    While Alex Anzalone is an established veteran, the Lions are otherwise young at linebacker. Second-year pro Malcolm Rodriguez and rookie Jack Campbell took a significant amount of snaps in the first two weeks.

    Both Rodriguez and Campbell struggled in the season opener as well, so Detroit would be wise to sign another vet for some help.

    Barr would not only bring nine years of experience to the Motor City, but he's also had 130 total tackles and six passes defended in his last 25 games. He would stabilize the second level of Detroit's defense and is the most complete player available at the position.

    2024 Free Agency: G Michael Onwenu, New England Patriots

    Starting guards Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Jonah Jackson are in contract years, so the Lions will likely be looking for at least one interior offensive lineman this offseason. Onwenu projects to be one of the top players available at the position after allowing only one sack and earning a good run-blocking grade from Pro Football Focus last season.

    He's from Detroit and went to Michigan, so he'd get to play for his hometown team.

    2024 NFL Draft: WR Rome Odunze, Washington

    Marvin Jones and Josh Reynolds are scheduled to hit free agency in March, and 2022 first-round pick Jameson Williams has proven to be unreliable so far due to injuries and a suspension.

    Odunze isn't a complete receiver, but he could complement Amon-Ra St. Brown as the deep threat whom Detroit hoped to get with Williams. In Washington's first three games of the season, the wideout averaged 19.0 yards per catch.

Green Bay Packers

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    Jordan Love
    Jordan LoveBrandon Sloter/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    Injuries were the story of Sunday's loss for the Green Bay Packers. Former Pro Bowl running back Aaron Jones (hamstring) and left tackle David Bakhtiari (knee) were ruled out before the game, and No. 1 wide receiver Christian Watson (hamstring) still hasn't made his season debut.

    On top of that, starting guard Elton Jenkins is expected to miss time with what is believed to be an MCL sprain, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.

    Biggest Weakness:

    1. Center
    2. Quarterback
    3. Nickelback
    4. Offensive Line Depth
    5. Tight End

    Add Now: C Ben Jones

    While the Packers' offensive line played well as a whole, center Josh Myers struggled in the run game, which has been a consistent theme for him during his three-year career. Meanwhile, Jones has made a career out of being a good run-blocker, and he earned a Pro Bowl nod last season with the Tennessee Titans.

    If Aaron Jones is going to miss more time, Green Bay would be wise to bring in the veteran center to make the backfield's job easier and simultaneously protect quarterback Jordan Love. With Jenkins likely to miss time, the Packers could afford to add another interior offensive lineman and at least use Jones at guard or slide Myers over.

    2024 Free Agency: S Ryan Neal, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    Darnell Savage is an impending free agent, and the Packers are projected to have a little less than $20 million in cap space available next offseason, according to Spotrac. They'd be wise to prioritize free-agent linebacker Rashan Gary, meaning Savage might get squeezed out.

    Neal would be a downgrade from Savage, but he'll also probably be cheaper and had 66 total tackles, eight passes defended, an interception and a forced fumble in 14 games with the Seattle Seahawks last season.

    2024 NFL Draft: S Andrew Mukuba, Clemson

    In addition to Savage, Dallin Leavitt and Johnathan Ford are set to be free agents next spring, so the Packers will need more depth at safety. Slot corner Keisean Nixon is also poised to hit the open market, so they'll need nickel depth as well.

    That's where Mukuba comes in, as he's shined as both a free safety and when covering the slot at Clemson.

Houston Texans

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    BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - SEPTEMBER 10: Quarterback C.J. Stroud #7 of the Houston Texans passes against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on September 10, 2023 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
    Rob Carr/Getty Images

    The best thing you could say for the Texans is that C.J. Stroud is getting a lot of reps and developing chemistry with Nico Collins. Houston fell behind early against the Indianapolis Colts and Stroud had 47 passing attempts, racking up 384 yards without throwing any interceptions. Collins shined with 146 yards and a touchdown.

    However, new head coach DeMeco Ryans has his work cut out for him on defense. The Texans were down 28-10 by halftime, and they'll see more talented offenses throughout the season than the Colts, who are still developing under Shane Steichen.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Wide Receiver
    2. Edge Defender
    3. Interior Defensive Lineman
    4. Linebacker
    5. Right Tackle

    Add Now: OG Andrew Norwell

    Keeping Stroud upright has to be one of the Texans' top priorities of this season. Constant pressure often leads to the formation of bad habits, which is no good for a rookie passer. The Texans have dealt with multiple injuries up front, and Josh Jones' debut at left guard led to a 43.7 grade from PFF and two penalties.

    Andrew Norwell is a veteran with 127 career starts. He could at least make the offensive line's floor a little higher until they get some of their injured starters back.

    2024 Free Agency: WR Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals

    Collins is off to a promising start. Stroud seems to have faith in the big-bodied receiver, but he still profiles best as a No. 2 option.

    The Texans have other, smaller receivers in Tank Dell and John Metchie III who will be able to grow into bigger roles. What they need is a true No. 1 threat who can bring the whole room together.

    Tee Higgins is the best option who could be available in free agency. The Bengals receiver has prototypical size at 6'4" and 219 pounds and is an upgraded version of Collins. Pairing Collins and Higgins as two big ball-winners on the outside with fast and athletic slot receivers in Dell and Metchie is a recipe for a dynamic offense for years to come.

    2024 NFL Draft: DT Maason Smith, LSU

    If DeMeco Ryans wants to build what he had as the defensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers, the Texans have to continue to invest in the defensive line. Ryans was blessed with a front that included Nick Bosa and Arik Armstead.

    He took a swing at getting his Bosa when the Texans traded up for Will Anderson Jr. last season. Drafting LSU's Maason Smith would be an attempt to get an Armstead.

    Smith is a little thicker than Armstead, but he has the same length that could make him difficult for interior linemen to get their hands on. The former 5-star prospect was a first-team Freshman All-American in 2021, he but missed all but one quarter of the season opener in 2022 when he suffered a season-ending knee injury against Florida State.

Indianapolis Colts

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    INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - SEPTEMBER 10: Anthony Richardson #5 of the Indianapolis Colts throws the ball during the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lucas Oil Stadium on September 10, 2023 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
    Michael Hickey/Getty Images

    The Texans might be the worst team in the league through two weeks, but the Colts should be thrilled with their results in Week 2. Indy got flashes from rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson, who had two rushing touchdowns before leaving the game with a concussion. Gardner Minshew came in to replace him and was an effective 19-of-23 for 171 yards and a touchdown.

    It's still early to be breaking out AFC South champion talk, but it was an encouraging sign of early progress in Shane Steichen's first year.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Safety
    3. Running Back
    4. Edge Defender
    5. Wide Receiver

    Add Now: RB Leonard Fournette

    Jonathan Taylor is on the PUP list for at least two more weeks, but his lingering contract issues cast doubt that he'll be back in Week 5. It would be wise for the Colts to add some new blood to the backfield unless they plan on figuring things out with their star back sometime soon.

    If that doesn't happen, it would make sense for them to sign Leonard Fournette. He's a big power back with receiving upside who could take some of the burden off rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson to carry the ground game. Zack Moss had a strong game with 88 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown, but that could be the result of playing this Texans defense.

    2024 Free Agency: RB Antonio Gibson, Washington Commanders

    Part of the argument against paying a talent like Taylor is the availability of serviceable running backs in the draft and in free agency. Antonio Gibson is poised to be in that latter category next offseason.

    He hasn't done enough in Washington to earn a huge contract, so he could be in line for a Samaje Perine-type deal (two years, $7.5 million). Gibson would be a good value on that kind of contract with his ability to work as both a runner and a receiver in a timeshare.

    2024 NFL Draft: CB Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

    The Colts have their future on offense in Richardson. The key is going to be building a defense that is capable of shutting down a team like the Jacksonville Jaguars, who look like the best team in the AFC South right now. That means finding a lockdown cornerback.

    Kool-Aid McKinstry looks like the best corner in college football right now. The Alabama defender is a physically gifted defensive back with the ability to get up in the grill of opposing receivers to play press-man. He's the kind of tone-setter whom the Colts need on defense.

Jacksonville Jaguars

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    Travis Etienne Jr.
    Travis Etienne Jr.AP Photo/Darron Cummings

    After putting up 31 points against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 1, the Jacksonville Jaguars' offense ground to a halt during a 17-9 loss to the Chiefs on Sunday. It's a disappointing blow for a team that has aspirations for breaking into the top tier of the AFC.

    While the Jags didn't do much against the Chiefs and struggled to protect quarterback Trevor Lawrence, the defense did hold Kansas City to only 17 points. There's not enough evidence yet that the defense can play like that from week to week, but it's a promising development for them if it's a sign of things to come.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Slot Corner
    2. Safety
    3. Interior Defensive Line
    4. Interior Offensive Line
    5. Edge Defender

    Add Now: OG Dalton Risner

    The Jaguars have all of the necessary elements to be a dangerous team in January. Keeping Lawrence upright has to be a top priority, though. Ben Bartch came into the season as a bit of a question mark at left guard, and he didn't assuage those fears in Week 1, giving up a sack and earning a PFF grade of 48.1.

    Dalton Risner is the best guard on the market right now and would be a clear upgrade. It's a worthwhile move to explore for a team with real playoff aspirations.

    2024 Free Agency: S Jordan Whitehead, New York Jets

    Success in the loaded AFC won't come without a secondary that can keep up. The safety duo of Andre Cisco and Rayshawn Jenkins is serviceable, but the Jaguars should be looking to upgrade it next offseason.

    Jordan Whitehead should be under consideration for that role. He was part of a Super Bowl-winning team in Tampa Bay and has been an important member of a stout secondary in New York.

    2024 NFL Draft: Edge Chop Robinson, Penn State

    The Jags' edge-rushing crew could look a lot different in 2024. Josh Allen, K'Lavon Chaisson and Dawuane Smoot are all poised to hit free agency and it's unclear if any of them have done enough to remain with the team. It's all about price points, but the Jags would do well to look to the draft to find running mates for Travon Walker.

    Chop Robinson is one of the best pass rushers in the upcoming draft class. B/R's Matt Holder has been impressed with his technique for a young pass-rusher when connecting him to the Jags in our first mock draft of the season.

    "He also sets up his moves well by getting to square on the offensive lineman to give himself a two-way go, which shows some nuance as a pass-rusher," Holder wrote.

Kansas City Chiefs

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    Rashee Rice and Skyy Moore
    Rashee Rice and Skyy MooreAP Photo/Reed Hoffmann

    The Chiefs picked up their first win of the season in a 17-9 defensive slugfest against the Jacksonville Jaguars. They aren't used to winning that way, but it's a good sign that they can win games when the offense isn't clicking.

    The offense is in good hands. Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes are going to get things figured out, even if they have to make a move for some wide receiver help. It isn't quite time to resort to that, but it's worth monitoring as the trade deadline draws closer.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Wide Receiver
    2. Offensive Tackle
    3. Interior Defender
    4. Edge Defender
    5. Safety

    Add Now: DT Ndamukong Suh

    The Chiefs were able to end Chris Jones' holdout by giving him a new contract, but his absence highlighted just how much they rely on him to create pressure on the interior. Adding another big body who can generate some pressure would allow the Chiefs to manage Jones' workload and make their pass rush better.

    Ndamukong Suh is now 36, but he showed a little bit of juice in Philadelphia last season. He made it clear that he wanted no part of attending training camp anywhere, but he has left open the possibility of playing this season.

    2024 Free Agency: WR Gabe Davis, Buffalo Bills

    The Chiefs are hoping that playing with Mahomes will help elevate young wide receivers Skyy Moore, Kadarius Toney and Rashee Rice. It might work for now with tight end Travis Kelce working as the de facto No. 1 receiver, but Kelce is 33 years old, so the Chiefs have to start looking for long-term answers.

    Gabe Davis isn't likely to develop into a legitimate alpha receiver, but he offers a decent baseline as a No. 2 option opposite a great receiver.

    2024 NFL Draft: LB Barrett Carter, Clemson

    The Chiefs have done a great job of drafting and developing, especially on defense. That's why it's hard to envision them overextending themselves on a contract extension for Willie Gay Jr.

    Barrett Carter is an uber-athletic 'backer with the fluid movement skills to go out and cover tight ends, running backs and slot receivers while still bringing enough physicality to the party to be a positive against the run. In other words, he'd be a great candidate to replace Gay.

Las Vegas Raiders

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    Josh Jacobs
    Josh JacobsJustin Edmonds/Getty Images

    The Raiders got the good version Jimmy Garoppolo in Week 1, but they saw the downside of having him at quarterback in Week 2. Jimmy G threw two picks, the Raiders played from behind almost the entire game, and he wasn't good enough to throw them back into it. Making matters even worse, Davante Adams left the game and was evaluated for a concussion.

    The defense mostly helped the Bills get their groove back after a rough start to the season. It's clear that defensive coordinator Patrick Graham still has some work to do.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Right Tackle
    3. Edge Defender
    4. Quarterback
    5. Safety

    Add Now: Edge Kyle Van Noy

    The Raiders already signed Jordan Willis to the practice squad last week to address their depth on the edges, but Kyle Van Noy could immediately help. The Raiders should be in the market for that, as Chandler Jones is currently inactive while dealing with a "private matter," per head coach Josh McDaniels.

    Van Noy is a familiar face for McDaniels going back to their days in New England.

    2024 Free Agency: OT Trent Brown, New England Patriots

    Speaking of McDaniels-connected players, the Raiders could look to solve the right tackle position through free agency. Jermaine Eluemunor has been serviceable at times, but he might be best suited as a guard and is a free agent in 2024.

    Trent Brown would be an upgrade, and he has experience with McDaniels as a Patriot and spent time in both Oakland and Vegas as a Raider. He's an excellent run-blocker with fine pass protection. He'll be one of the best tackle options available on the market and had his only Pro Bowl season as a Raider in 2019.

    2024 NFL Draft: CB/S Cooper DeJean, Iowa

    "Cooper DeJean is a physically gifted player with good size and straight-line speed," B/R defensive back scout Cory Giddings wrote. "He has loose hips and fluid movement skills. He also has positional versatility, but it's still unclear where he fits best at the next level."

    Regardless of where DeJean lines up, he's a menacing ballhawk. He had five interceptions and eight pass deflections with three defensive touchdowns last season. That's the kind of playmaking the Raiders need in the back half of their defense, regardless of position.

Los Angeles Chargers

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    Justin Herbert
    Justin HerbertRonald Martinez/Getty Images

    For the second week in a row, the Los Angeles Chargers' defense was outmatched. It was understandable when Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle torched them in a Week 1 shootout, but allowing Ryan Tannehill to go 20-of-24 for 246 yards and a touchdown with no picks is a red flag.

    The offense missed Austin Ekeler, but the defense has to find some answers soon if the Chargers are going to turn things around from an 0-2 start.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Interior Defender
    2. Linebacker
    3. Right Tackle
    4. Edge Defender
    5. Running Back

    Add Now: DT Linval Joseph

    It might be time for the Chargers to give a call to a familiar face. Linval Joseph spent the 2020 and 2021 seasons with the Chargers before signing with the Philadelphia Eagles last year and starting eight games.

    The Chargers' defensive front could use another run-stuffer on the interior. Joseph is 34, but he proved last season he can still be a contributor on a good defense.

    2024 Free Agency: LB Willie Gay Jr., Kansas City Chiefs

    The Kansas City Chiefs snagged a Chargers starter in Drue Tranquill on the free-agency market this past offseason. The Chargers could return the favor next offseason by going after Willie Gay Jr. to replace Kenneth Murray.

    Gay is a solid all-around linebacker who can do a little bit of everything. He's been a consistent starter for the Chiefs since his rookie year. If the Chargers can steal him away from their division rival, it would help them fortify the defense while forcing the Chiefs to account for the loss of a starter.

    2024 NFL Draft: RB Trey Benson, Florida State

    Austin Ekeler has been a key cog in the Chargers offense, but his time in Los Angeles could be dwindling. The 28-year-old is in the final season of his contract, and he missed the Chargers' loss to the Tennessee Titans with an ankle injury.

    The Chargers got Ekeler to back down on his trade request this offseason, but it's unclear whether they'll be able to make him happy in contract negotiations. Targeting one of the draft's top backs would allow them to continue to have a dynamic running threat who can take a load off Justin Herbert's shoulders.

    Benson has a more prototypical build (6'1", 223 pounds) than Ekeler, but he still offers big-play ability. He led the nation in forced missed tackles per attempt in 2022.

Los Angeles Rams

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    Puka Nacua
    Puka NacuaSteph Chambers/Getty Images

    The Los Angeles Rams appear to have found a pair of good, young receivers in Puka Nacua and Tutu Atwell. Those two followed up their impressive Week 1 performances with 15 catches and 147 yards for Nacua, while Atwell had seven grabs for 77 yards.

    The Rams dropped a crucial divisional matchup to the 49ers on Sunday, but the youth on their roster is shining through. In addition to the contributions from Nacua and Atwell, rookie pass-rusher Byron Young logged his first NFL sack.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Linebacker
    3. Edge-Rusher
    4. Safety
    5. Interior Offensive Line

    Add now: CB Bryce Callahan

    The Rams' cornerback room could use a face lift, and Callahan would give them another potential starter. Ahkello Witherspoon suffered a rib and hip contusion in Week 1, so he likely won't be 100 percent for a little while.

    While he's more of a nickelback, Callahan be an upgrade over Cobie Durant and would walk into Los Angeles with more career interceptions (nine) than any of their other corners. Callahan had three picks and six passes defended for the Chargers last season, so it's not as though he's washed up, either.

    2024 Free Agent: S Kamren Curl, Washington Commanders

    With Jordan Fuller and John Johnson scheduled to become free agents in the offseason, the Rams will likely be looking for at least one new safety in March. The 25-year-old Curl would bring some young talent to Los Angeles' defensive backfield, and he had a big game in Week 1 with 10 total tackles and one pass breakup.

    The four-year veteran also has shown the versatility to line up deep, in the box and over the slot during his career. That would allow defensive coordinator Raheem Morris to run a combination of one- and two-high coverages while filling a big need for the team.

    2024 NFL Draft: OT Amarius Mims, Georgia

    Rob Havenstein will turn 32 in May, and Alaric Jackson is in a contract year, so Los Angeles would be wise to consider taking an offensive tackle in the draft. Mims is more of a traits prospect than a finished product, but at 6'7" and 340 pounds, he has plenty of tools to work with.

    "Mims is young, raw and inexperienced with prototypical size (frame/build/length) and easy movement skills," B/R scout Brandon Thorn said. "He hasn't shown the polish needed to consistently hit his landmarks and aiming points in the run game or the nasty demeanor to finish defenders at a high level consistently, but his youth combined with raw ability form the foundation of a future NFL starter with high-end potential."

    If the Rams do bring back Jackson in 2024, L.A. could be a good destination for the Bulldog, as he'll have time to develop and learn from Havenstein.

Miami Dolphins

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    Tyreek Hill
    Tyreek HillAP Photo/Ashley Landis

    The New England Patriots found out the hard way how frustrating this Miami Dolphins offense is going to be to defend all season. They successfully limited Tyreek Hill to 40 yards, only to have Raheem Mostert break free for 121 yards on the ground and two touchdowns.

    The defense looked much better than it did in Week 1, too. The Dolphins got after quarterback Mac Jones and made a crucial stop when the Patriots had momentum and were looking to tie the game in the final minute.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Right Tackle
    2. Running Back
    3. Cornerback
    4. Edge-Rusher
    5. Tight End

    Add Now: CB Anthony Brown

    Injuries continue to pile up at cornerback for the Dolphins. Jalen Ramsey underwent meniscus surgery and is expected to be out until December, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, while Kelvin Joseph was ruled out this week for personal reasons.

    It certainly wouldn't hurt for the Dolphins to add another cornerback, especially one with starting experience.

    The Steelers recently released Anthony Brown, who made 30 starts for the Cowboys over the last three seasons, from their practice squad. It would make sense to bring him in for a workout and see if he's an improvement over their current options.

    2024 Free Agency: T/G Jack Driscoll, Philadelphia Eagles

    The Dolphins continue to give Austin Jackson the chance to prove he can be their right tackle, but time is ticking. If he doesn't make big strides this season, the Dolphins should do what they can to bring in some competition.

    Jack Driscoll, who has spent four years with Eagles offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland, would be a sensible target. He's served as a spot-starter at both guard and tackle for Philly since being selected in the fourth round of the 2020 draft.

    2024 NFL Draft: LB Jeremiah Trotter Jr., Clemson

    Jerome Baker is a leader on the defense, but it's still unclear how much the Dolphins like David Long Jr. playing beside him. He played only 17 defensive snaps in Week 1 and had just one tackle.

    Mike McDaniel has shown he knows how to design an offense. The Dolphins are going to have the firepower to be a threat in the AFC as long as they have McDaniel, Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. The defense might just determine the ceiling.

    Pairing Jeremiah Trotter Jr. with Baker in the middle of the defense would make it a scarier unit moving forward. His ability to cover ground and work in pass coverage would give defensive coordinator Vic Fangio another weapon to work with.

Minnesota Vikings

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    T.J. Hockenson
    T.J. HockensonMitchell Leff/Getty Images

    After suffering an upset loss in the season opener and dropping Thursday night's game, the Minnesota Vikings are quickly running out of time to make the playoffs in back-to-back years for the first time since the 2008 and 2009 seasons. If they lose to the Chargers this Sunday, it might be time to start looking toward the future in Minnesota.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Running Back
    3. Center
    4. Interior Pass Rush
    5. Right Guard

    Add now: C Billy Price

    Garrett Bradbury missed Thursday night's contest with a lower back injury, and he was sidelined last year with back issues as well. Bradbury's replacement, Austin Schlottmann, has been serviceable during the Vikings' first two games, but the team would be wise to at least bring in another veteran option if Bradbury is going to miss more time.

    Price isn't a game-changer by any means, but his 45 career starts would give Minnesota another experienced player and an insurance policy to turn to in case of an emergency.

    2024 Free Agency: Edge Yannick Ngakoue, Chicago Bears

    Danielle Hunter and Marcus Davenport are headed into free agency, leaving the Vikings with a need for an edge-rusher. Bringing in a proven veteran like Ngakoue, who has 66 career sacks, would be a great move since he'll likely command less money than Hunter on the open market, and maybe Davenport as well.

    While Ngakoue's first tenure in Minnesota lasted only six games, the organization has hired a new general manager and head coach since then, so there shouldn't be any bad blood. It can't hurt that he led the team in sacks that year despite only being there for six games.

    2024 NFL Draft: RB Blake Corum, Michigan

    Say what you want about the value of running backs in today's NFL, but the Vikings could use Dalvin Cook right now. That isn't to say Cook and Corum have the same skill set, but the team's offense could use a three-down back like the Wolverine.

    After averaging 5.9 yards per carry last season, he's up to 6.9 yards per tote so far in 2023.

New England Patriots

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    Josh Uche
    Josh UcheSilas Walker/Getty Images

    The Patriots became the only 0-2 team in the AFC East with a 24-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday Night Football. On the bright side, both of those losses came against teams who were in the top five of our power rankings heading into Week 2. The Pats made a good run at the Dolphins after falling behind 17-3 at halftime.

    The offensive line struggled to consistently open up run lanes or protect Mac Jones. The quarterback was sacked four times, and the Pats averaged only 3.5 yards per carry.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Offensive Tackle
    2. Wide Receiver
    3. Linebacker
    4. Running Back

    Add Now: OG Gabe Jackson

    The Patriots' offensive line situation is already scary two weeks into the season. Sidy Sow, Cole Strange, Trent Brown and Michael Onwenu were on the injury report this week, and the need for guard depth is already apparent.

    Gabe Jackson could help in that department. He started 15 games for the Seahawks last season but has yet to find a home for 2023.

    2024 Free Agency: OT Mekhi Becton, New York Jets

    Mekhi Becton has been on the receiving end of criticism for his work with the Jets, and some of it has been deserved. The 2020 first-round pick has not lived up to the hype, but injuries have played a large role in that, and offensive linemen can take a while to develop.

    Assuming Becton can make it through this season without an injury, he will have proved that he can stay healthy. That would make him worth a look in free agency.

    2024 NFL Draft: WR Keon Coleman, Florida State

    Last week, we proposed Tee Higgins as a 2024 free agent who could fill a huge need for the Patriots. If the Pats aren't interested in spending that kind of money or miss out on the chance to add Higgins, they should turn their attention to Keon Coleman.

    "At 6'4" and 215 pounds, Coleman shouldn't move the way he does," B/R's Derrik Klassen said in a draft feature this week. "The explosion and flexibility in everything he does would be impressive for someone with an average build, let alone someone built like Tee Higgins."

    (Previous Week's Selections: WR Kenny Golladay, WR Tee Higgins, OT Joe Alt)

New Orleans Saints

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    Cameron Jordan
    Cameron JordanCooper Neill/Getty Images

    It hasn't been pretty but the New Orleans Saints are 2-0 and keeping pace with the Falcons and Buccaneers at the top of the NFC North.

    New Orleans' defense has been strong with just 32 points allowed so far, but their offense continues to be a work in progress with new starting quarterback Derek Carr. The Saints' offensive line hasn't helped either as Carr has been sacked eight times already.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Left Tackle
    2. Defensive Tackle
    3. Cornerback
    4. Wide Receiver

    Add now: OT Dennis Kelly

    Quarterback Derek Carr needs good pass protection in front of him, as he can get a little skittish in the pocket when pressure comes. Trevor Penning struggling to stay in front of defenders and allowing two sacks in the season opener, per Pro Football Focus, isn't what the Saints need right now to make a run at the division title.

    Kelly could come in and provide some stability for Carr as well as be a mentor for Penning to help the latter develop for the long haul. While the veteran offensive lineman has battled injuries and hasn't been his best during the last few seasons, he surrendered only one sack on 84 pass-blocking snaps during the preseason with the Eagles, according to PFF.

    2024 Free Agency: DT D.J. Reader, Cincinnati Bengals

    New Orleans could use some help at defensive tackle after David Onyemata and Shy Tuttle left in free agency this past offseason. Reader can be a disruptive defender in the trenches and shouldn't take snaps away from Bryan Bresee, who needs more reps to develop.

    The latter is a 3-technique and the former is more a nose tackle to 2i-technique.

    2024 NFL Draft: CB Denzel Burke, Ohio State

    While cornerback Marshon Lattimore is a great player, the Saints need some depth behind him for the future, so why not look to draft another Buckeye corner? Burke has 22 passes defended and counting in his college career, and his ball skills have stood out to B/R scout Cory Giddings.

    "Burke has good length and overall size," Giddings said. "He plays with a very good burst and top-end speed to carry receivers deep. He also has the ball skills to read and react to the ball in the air."

New York Giants

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    Kayvon Thibodeaux, Dexter Lawrence
    Kayvon Thibodeaux, Dexter LawrenceMitchell Leff/Getty Images

    The New York Giants have played from ahead for all of 19 seconds so far this year, but they managed to pull off their biggest comeback since 1949 yesterday and improved to 1-1.

    The Giants still have plenty of issues to address, but they've at least managed to keep pace in the tough NFC East.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Offensive Tackle
    2. Wide Receiver
    3. Interior offensive line
    4. Cornerback
    5. Safety

    Add Now: OT La'el Collins

    Andrew Thomas didn't play in Week 2 because of a hamstring injury, and Evan Neal followed up his disappointing rookie season with an ugly performance against the Cowboys in Week 1. Daniel Jones can't be running for his life if the Giants want to go back to the playoffs this season.

    Collins would provide New York with an immediate upgrade over Neal and a potential fill-in for Thomas if his injury gets worse. The former Bengal and Cowboy also has experience playing guard, so he could help with the G-Men's interior offensive line issues as well, especially after Ben Bredeson suffered a concussion in Arizona.

    2024 Free Agency: S Jeremy Chinn, Carolina Panthers

    Xavier McKinney is in the final year of his contract, and the Giants probably could use another safety even if they bring McKinney back.

    Chinn can line up all over the field and has been productive in Carolina with 301 career tackles, 16 passes defended, two interceptions and three forced fumbles. He doesn't turn 26 until February, so he could be a staple of New York's defense for a long time.

    2024 NFL Draft: DL Leonard Taylor, Miami

    The Giants gave Dexter Lawrence a lucrative extension in the offseason, but Leonard Williams is in a contract year, and he made it known back in mid-June that the team hadn't spoken much to him about a new deal. A'Shawn Robinson's contract is also going to be up in March.

    New York will likely turn to the draft to find a new defensive tackle, and Taylor might have the highest ceiling of any player at the position in this year's draft class. The Hurricane has a good blend of strength and athleticism to be a disruptive player in the middle of the trenches when he keeps his pad level down.

New York Jets

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    Zach Wilson
    Zach WilsonMike Stobe/Getty Images

    A Week 1 win against the Buffalo Bills might have convinced the Jets faithful that the offense would be fine without Aaron Rodgers. Sunday's 30-10 loss to the Dallas Cowboys provided a rough fall back to reality.

    Zach Wilson struggled against a stout Cowboys defense en route to a three-interception game in which he completed less than half of his pass attempts. Unless Wilson makes drastic improvements or the Jets make a move for a replacement, the defense has to be elite at all times to give the Jets a chance.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Quarterback
    2. Left Tackle
    3. Right Tackle
    4. Linebacker
    5. Wide Receiver

    Add Now: WR Bryan Edwards

    The Jets have an unexpectedly dicey quarterback situation with Rodgers now out for the season (Achilles). That's going to make the supporting cast even more important as they move forward with Wilson.

    The Jets were taken by surprise when wide receiver Corey Davis retired before the season started. They haven't replaced him with another big-bodied outside receiver who can provide depth. That's exactly what Bryan Edwards is with a 6'3", 212-pound frame and the ability to go up and get the ball.

    2024 Free Agency: T/G Jermaine Eluemunor

    The Jets are quickly learning just how much offensive line depth means to a team that's trying to be a contender. Duane Brown is 37 years old, and Mekhi Becton has not been reliable to this point in his career.

    Making some wise signings on the offensive line has to be a priority next offseason. Eluemunor is an adequate tackle or guard with the positional flexibility to fill in wherever the Jets need him in 2024.

    2024 NFL Draft: QB Quinn Ewers, Texas

    Both Jets owner Woody Johnson and head coach Robert Saleh are moving forward as though Rodgers will not be retiring. Even if that's the case, the Jets need to have an eye toward the future at quarterback, and that could mean targeting one early in the draft.

    "If the Jets want to go the talented-but-raw route for a third time in a row, Quinn Ewers is their man," B/R scout Derrik Klassen wrote. "Ewers needs more time to iron out his decision making process and develop better touch, but the arm talent and toughness are easy to talk yourself into. If nothing else, Ewers wouldn't have any issues getting Garrett Wilson targets, hell or high water."

Philadelphia Eagles

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    Jalen Carter
    Jalen CarterMitchell Leff/Getty Images

    The Philadelphia Eagles have picked up pretty much right where they left off after winning their first two games of the 2023 campaign. Their roster is about as complete as it comes, but they have been bitten by the injury bug lately with linebacker Nakobe Dean going on injured reserve and cornerback Avonte Maddox tearing a pec.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Linebacker
    2. Nickelback
    3. Wide Receiver Depth
    4. Running Back Depth

    Add Now: CB Bryce Callahan

    It's looking like the Eagles will be without their slot corner for the rest of the season with Maddox's injury, so they'd be wise to bring in a veteran to take his place. Their cornerback depth chart is otherwise filled with rookies and second-year players.

    Callahan has a proven track record of being a solid nickel corner and is probably the Eagles' best option for replacing Maddox for the time being. The former Charger didn't have his best season last year, but he did still come down with three interceptions and six pass breakups in 15 games (11 starts).

    2024 Free Agency: DE Frank Clark, Denver Broncos

    With Brandon Graham and Derek Barnett set to become free agents in the offseason, the Eagles will be looking for another veteran defensive end to help keep their Super Bowl window open.

    Clark is past his prime, so he should be willing to sign a cheaper deal for a contending team, and his 58.5 career sacks would help soften the blow of losing Graham and Barnett.

    2024 NFL Draft: WR Johnny Wilson, Florida State

    The Eagles have a pair of elite wideouts in A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith, but they could more depth behind them, especially since Olamide Zaccheaus and Quez Watkins are on expiring contracts.

    Wilson has a unique blend of size and speed, as evidenced by his 18.7 career yards per catch in college so far. At 6'7", the Florida State product also would bring a large catch radius to the Birds' receiving corps.

Pittsburgh Steelers

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    T.J. Watt
    T.J. WattAP Photo/Matt Durisko, File

    The Pittsburgh Steelers washed out the taste of a bitter start to the season with a 26-22 win over the Cleveland Browns on Monday Night Football. There are still reasons to be concerned about the offense and the ground game in particular.

    But the Steelers pass rush got to Deshaun Watson six times and the defense was a key reason they found a way to win.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Cornerback
    2. Safety
    3. Linebacker
    4. Wide Receiver

    Add Now: WR T.Y. Hilton

    The Steelers started the season with decent receiver depth, but it didn't take long for that to get called into question. Diontae Johnson (hamstring) missed Week 2, and George Pickens was limited in practice with a hamstring injury.

    The Steelers are going to lean on Calvin Austin III to have a breakout campaign, but they could stand to add to their receiver room.

    T.Y. Hilton could also moonlight as a Johnson replacement if need be. He doesn't have the same juice that Austin does anymore, but he's an experienced veteran who could be serviceable.

    2024 Free Agency: LB Patrick Queen, Baltimore Ravens

    The Steelers went the free-agency route to fill their off-ball linebacker needs this season. Cole Holcomb, Kwon Alexander and Elandon Roberts are leading the way, and all three are new additions. Holcomb got a three-year deal, but Alexander is on a one-year contract and Roberts is signed on for two years.

    Patrick Queen is set to hit free agency, but it's hard to see the Ravens paying up for him after they acquired Roquan Smith last season and drafted Trenton Simpson. Queen hasn't quite lived up to his first-round pick status, but he's a fine blitzer and downhill run stopper who could be a fit in Pittsburgh's defense.

    2024 NFL Draft: CB Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

    The Steelers showed what they value in cornerbacks when they took Joey Porter Jr. in the second round of this year's draft. Porter is a long, physical cornerback who plays with an attitude. Kool-Aid McKinstry brings all of those things to the table and is arguably an even more talented player.

    Bleacher Report's Brent Sobleski made the Steelers-McKinstry connection last week after the Steelers secondary was burned with Patrick Peterson and Levi Wallace working as the two primary outside cornerbacks. Porter is going to take some seasoning, but pairing him with McKinstry would give them a young pair that could grow into a force together.

San Francisco 49ers

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    Christian McCaffery
    Christian McCafferyJustin K. Aller/Getty Images

    This Sunday was a closer contest than the season opener, but the San Francisco 49ers continue to roll along after getting a divisional win against the Rams. The 49ers have played quality football and look like one of the early favorites to win the NFC so far.

    Biggest weakness:

    1. Right tackle
    2. Cornerback
    3. Interior Offensive Line
    4. Running Back Depth

    Add now: OT La'el Collins

    While it was just one game and he was lined up across from T.J. Watt, right tackle Colton McKivitz had a rough day during San Francisco's season opener. According to Pro Football Focus, McKivitz allowed three sacks against the Steelers and received a poor grade as a run-blocker.

    The 49ers are in win-now mode and can't afford to have many more performances like that from an inexperienced player. Cincinnati released Collins off the PUP list last week, so San Francisco will need to make sure his medicals check out. But the former Bengal and Cowboy has experience playing right tackle at a high level and would be an upgrade for the 49ers if he's healthy.

    2024 Free Agent: G Connor Williams, Miami Dolphins

    San Francisco is currently rolling out Spencer Burford and Aaron Banks as its starting guards, but neither have a good track record of success nor did they play well in Pittsburgh. Meanwhile, Williams has had success playing both left guard and center.

    Kyle Shanahan's offense should be an easy transition for him, as Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel is a Shanahan protege.

    2024 NFL Draft: TE Brevyn Spann-Ford, Minnesota

    George Kittle is turning 30 in October, and Charlie Woerner is scheduled to hit free agency in the offseason, so the 49ers would be wise to start looking at other options at tight end.

    Brevyn Spann-Ford currently projects as a mid-round prospect and at 6'7" and 270 pounds, he has the potential to develop into a good run-blocker in Shanahan's system. It also doesn't hurt that he had 42 catches for 497 yards and two touchdowns for the Gophers last season.

Seattle Seahawks

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    Uchenna Nwosu
    Uchenna NwosuSteph Chambers/Getty Images

    The Seattle Seahawks needed a bounce-back performance Sunday after getting embarrassed by the Rams in Week 1. Seattle managed to get back on track as its offense returned to form with Geno Smith throwing for 328 yards and two touchdowns.


    1. Offensive Tackle
    2. Interior Offensive line
    3. Safety
    4. Tight End
    5. Quarterback

    Add now: OT Eric Fisher

    While the Seahawks did sign Jason Peters to their practice squad on Tuesday, starting tackles Charles Cross and Abe Lucas were injured during Week 1 and didn't play on Sunday. It would be in Seattle's best interests to at least kick the tires on bringing in another veteran tackle in case Cross and Lucas miss more time.

    While Fisher didn't play last season, he'd bring 128 games of starting experience to the Emerald City. The Seahawks are going to have to take a gamble on another proven veteran finding the fountain of youth if Cross and/or Lucas are out for an extended period of time.

    2024 Free Agent: LB Patrick Queen, Baltimore Ravens

    With Bobby Wagner, Jordyn Brooks and Devin Bush set to become free agents, linebacker projects as one of Seattle's top offseason needs.

    Queen might get squeezed out of Baltimore given how much the Ravens are paying Roquan Smith, and the LSU product's athleticism and 117 total tackles in 2022 would be a welcomed sight in the Northwest.

    2024 NFL Draft: QB Michael Penix Jr., Washington

    Geno Smith likely isn't Seattle's quarterback of the future, as last week's 112-yard, one-touchdown performance highlighted. While Smith was better in Week 2, the Seahawks still need to be at least looking at other options in the draft.

    Luckily, the Seahawks just have to look down the road to find Smith's eventual replacement. Penix has a big arm to complement their speedsters out wide and would be a good fit in their offensive scheme.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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    Mike Evans
    Mike EvansDavid Berding/Getty Images

    One could argue that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the most surprising team in the NFL after the first two weeks of the season. The Buccaneers sit at 2-0 and are tied with the Falcons atop the NFC South standings, although they're set to host the Eagles next week in what will be their biggest test of the year to date.


    1. Quarterback 
    2. Cornerback 
    3. Center
    4. Linebacker
    5. Strong Safety 

    Add Now: C Ben Jones

    Losing starting center Ryan Jensen at the end of training camp was a big blow for the Buccaneers' offensive line and offense as a whole. His replacement, Robert Hainsey, struggled in the season opener.

    Adding Jones would give Tampa Bay a veteran option to take command of the offensive line and help fill the leadership void that Jensen leaves behind. It doesn't hurt that the former Titan is coming off of a Pro Bowl campaign in which he allowed only one sack and fared well as a run-blocker, per Pro Football Focus.

    2024 Free Agency: LB Frankie Luvu, Carolina Panthers

    With Lavonte David and Devin White both scheduled to hit free agency in the offseason, the Bucs are likely going to need at least one linebacker. Luvu was a tackle machine in 2022, racking up 111 takedowns and 19 tackles for loss. The latter was the most among linebackers and second-most in the NFL regardless of position, according to StatMuse.

    Luvu also has 15.0 career sacks, so he could replace what David or White bring as pass-rushers. It wouldn't hurt to pluck him away from a division rival, too.

    2024 NFL Draft: S Kamren Kinchens, Miami

    Antonie Winfield Jr.'s contract is set to expire at the end of the season, so Tampa Bay might be looking for a safety in the draft. Kinchens is a fluid athlete who has excellent ball production with seven career interceptions and 10 passes defended. His speed and good open-field tackling form can make him a factor against perimeter runs, too.

Tennessee Titans

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    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 17: Ryan Tannehill #17 of the Tennessee Titans warms up before his game against the Los Angeles Chargers at Nissan Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Johnnie Izquierdo/Getty Images)
    Johnnie Izquierdo/Getty Images

    Derrick Henry was held to 3.2 yards per carry and Ryan Tannehill was sacked five times. The Titans still have their fair share of problems on the offensive line, but they still found a way to beat the Chargers to get to 1-1.

    The sweet taste of victory and an efficient performance from Tannehill are going to mask some of the deficiencies from the offense. Whether it was a result of playing the Chargers' porous defense or actual progress is up in the air. We'll find out more when the they travel to Cleveland in Week 3 to face a Browns defense that locked down the Bengals in Week 1.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Offensive Tackle
    2. Edge-Rusher
    3. Wide Receiver
    4. Cornerback
    5. Linebacker

    Add Now: WR Jarvis Landry

    Tannehill was efficient against the Chargers, but there's still a distinct possibility that either Malik Willis or Will Levis is starting for the Titans by the end of the season. Tannehill is 35 years old, and the version we saw of him Sunday makes fewer appearances every year.

    If the Titans do make a switch under center at some point, they need to surround their young quarterback with as much talent as possible. Jarvis Landry is a veteran slot option who isn't afraid to do the dirty work, and he would be a positive influence on young receivers Treylon Burks and Kyle Philips.

    2024 Free Agency: TE Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams

    Even if Derrick Henry is starting to show some wear and tear, the Titans' identity on offense is always going to be tied to a tough run game. They are at their most effective when they line up in 12 personnel because it gives them the ability to live in their power running game but also build off it with play action.

    To be effective at that, they need two tight ends who can threaten the defense. Chiogziem Okonkwo is a good athlete in space, but Tyler Higbee would work as a great running mate who can handle the in-line blocking.

    2024 NFL Draft: Edge Dallas Turner, Alabama

    Harold Landry III is a fine power-rusher on the outside, and Arden Key is a nice complementary speed rusher. What the Titans need is a difference-maker on the outside who can take full advantage of their dominant inside trio in Jeffrey Simmons, Teair Tart and Denico Autry.

    Alabama's Dallas Turner has the tools to become that kind of player, although he needs to start showing it, as B/R scout Matt Holder noted.

    "Turner has a good combination of athletic ability and strength to turn speed to power and has a nice dip-rip move with impressive bend to turn the corner," Holder wrote. "His potential as a pass-rusher is very intriguing and is why he's considered one of the best edge defenders in this year's draft class. With that being said, he's been underwhelming through Alabama's first two games of the season now that Will Anderson Jr. is gone and the spotlight is on Turner."

Washington Commanders

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    Sam Howell
    Sam HowellScott Taetsch/Getty Images

    Between falling into a 21-3 hole and allowing a Hail Mary to give the Broncos a chance to tie the game on a two-point conversion, the Washington Commanders certainly kept their fans on edge Sunday. But a win is a win, and Washington is sitting at 2-0 and tied with the Cowboys and Eagles for the NFC East lead.

    Biggest Weaknesses:

    1. Tight End
    2. Quarterback
    3. Guard
    4. Linebacker
    5. Cornerback

    Add Now: G Rodger Saffold

    The Commanders averaged only 3.3 yards per carry in their Week 1 win over the Cardinals, and Saahdiq Charles was a big reason why. The Commanders' left guard earned a poor run-blocking grade from Pro Football Focus.

    The 35-year-old Saffold wouldn't provide Washington with a long-term solution, but he's been good in the ground game in the past and was a Pro Bowler last year. Getting the rushing attack going will help make Sam Howell's life easier, and the veteran guard can also provide additional pass protection to help make sure Howell stays upright.

    2024 Free Agency: LB Devin White, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    Cody Barton is on a one-year deal, and Jamin Davis is only signed through 2024 unless Washington picks up his fifth-year option. Neither player should prevent the Commanders from bringing in a linebacker during the offseason.

    White is an athletic 'backer who could be a staple of the Commanders' defense for years to come. He's been a tackle machine with nearly 500 takedowns in his career, would supplement the team's pass rush with his 20.5 career sacks, and he won't turn 26 years old until February.

    2024 NFL Draft: TE Brock Bowers, Georgia

    Led by Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson, Washington has a solid crop of young receivers for the future. But the Commanders' tight end group is underwhelming, and they could use another dynamic pass-catcher for Howell or whomever their long-term quarterback ends up being.

    Bowers is an elite athlete who can make plays with the ball in his hands, and he racked up over 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns from scrimmage last year. The Bulldog is also a good blocker who would be the Commanders' most complete player at the position from the moment he walks in the door.