The primary spherical of the 2017 NFL playoffs is within the books.
With that in thoughts, it is time to assess the No. 1 activity on every dropping staff’s offseason to-do record.
Chiefs – Discover a reputable No. 1 WR
The Chiefs drafted Tyreek Hill to be a stable kick returner, and every little thing else was alleged to be a bonus. However now two seasons into his profession, Hill’s on the prime of Kansas Metropolis’s broad receiver depth chart and is requested to offer so much.
The second-year professional began off Saturday’s matchup towards Tennessee by dropping his first two targets. It was additional proof that the Chiefs must improve their passing assault with rookie Patrick Mahomes reportedly anticipated to develop into the beginning quarterback subsequent season.
Kansas Metropolis ran a short-pass offense for a lot of Alex Smith‘s tenure, however Mahomes’ arm power and gunslinger mentality would require extra downfield threats than what the roster presently has to supply.
Rams – Assist Gurley with one other star
The Rams seemingly added a big-time receiving menace in Sammy Watkins final offseason, however issues did not fairly pan out.
Watkins – who’s set to be a free agent in March – completed fourth on the staff in each catches and receiving yards regardless of lacking just one recreation. The Rams are unlikely to supply him a profitable long-term contract, so there is a good probability the previous first-round decide will check free company.
In the meantime, Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp proved to be productive items of the Rams’ offense, largely as a result of defenses often had their eyes on Todd Gurley – and rightfully so. The third-year operating again was an MVP candidate this season, however doing all of it once more shall be a tricky activity, particularly with defenses keying on him much more.
If it is not Watkins, the Rams want to seek out another person to assist Gurley – by giving him extra space to function, and by making the most of their very own alternatives whereas defenses are preoccupied with the proficient runner. Pending free brokers Terrelle Pryor, Marqise Lee, Allen Robinson, and Jarvis Landry may all be candidates for this position.
Payments – Make a transparent choice on Taylor’s future
Is Tyrod Taylor the Payments’ quarterback or not? He was benched earlier this season whereas the staff was in playoff place (in favor of a vastly underdeveloped rookie), after which led Buffalo to a wild-card spot, solely to disappoint on Sunday in Jacksonville.
Taylor was removed from the one passer to battle towards the Jaguars‘ stout protection this season, however a three-point output with two interceptions within the franchise’s first playoff recreation since 1999 wasn’t significantly inspiring.
The seventh-year professional is in the same predicament to final yr, because the Payments have till March 16 to maintain him or ditch him earlier than his $6-million roster bonus kicks in. For the Payments to correctly construct their franchise up or just recruit free brokers, all events have to be clear about whether or not Taylor – or another person – is the quarterback shifting ahead.
Panthers – De-age the go rush
The highest story this offseason surrounding the Panthers will undoubtedly be the sale of the franchise, however since that is not being managed by the entrance workplace, we’ll deal with enhancing the roster.
The Panthers’ main go rushers in 2017 have been 30-year-old Mario Addison and 37-year-old Julius Peppers, who each recorded 11 sacks. And the protection struggled to get strain on Drew Brees all through the loss Sunday, recording just one sack and recurrently needing to hurry greater than 4 gamers – which barely helped.
In reality, Brees went 11-of-17 for 259 yards with two touchdowns and a 122.eight passer ranking towards the blitz on Sunday, in response to Professional Soccer Focus.
Since 2010, the Panthers have chosen just one edge-rushing participant (Kony Ealy in 2014) within the first two rounds of the draft. Altering that pattern must be a precedence this offseason, and it would not damage to pursue 25-year-old Demarcus Lawrence or 24-year-old Aaron Lynch in free company as properly.
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