NFL Power Rankings 2022: Post-free agency 1-32 poll, with offseason predictions

With the first waves of free agency reaching its peak and it’s time to get another installment of the NFL Power Rankings. It’s also the time to anticipate the next phase of the offseason.

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The offseason certainly has been full of things to talk about in terms of the quarterback’s trades (Russell Wilson Deshaun Watson, Russell Wilson, as well as Matt Ryan were major parts of a chaotic carousel for signal-callers) as well as trades of other top players (Davante Adams) and major free-agent signings (too numerous to list). There’s more work to be completed between now and the time that training camps begin in late July.

In that light We asked our team of NFL Nation reporters to pick which move the teams they cover have to make during the offseason. The answers below span all over the board to focusing on making their draft (or rebuilding in the same way, as it is in the case of the Ryanless Atlanta Falcons and the Watson-less Houston Texans), pulling off anticipated moves that are yet to be completed (where do Jimmy Garoppolo end up?) or utilizing the next round of free-agents to replenish their rosters.

How we rate Our panel of experts composed of more than 80 editors, writers and TV stars — assessed how teams perform throughout the season.

NFL Power Rankings 2022: Post-free agency 1-32 poll, with offseason predictions

Buffalo Bills

The Bills might be without two of the cornerbacks who started last season in the first week of the season as Tre’Davious White is recovering from an ACL tear as well as Levi Wallace leaving for the Steelers in free contract. The third season of his rookie season is upon us. Dane Jackson should have a chance to vie for the starting spot in place of White however, the depth of the position is not as strong and especially for what is expected to be the best defense of the NFL. The addition of a veteran corner in an open market and developing the corner prior to the draft would be a wise move for Buffalo.

Los Angeles Rams

The general Manager Les Snead said recently that Donald -who was non-committal following his team’s Rams’ Super Bowl victory about pursuing the Hall of Fame career -has informed the team that he would prefer to play for the team. Both sides have discussed an extension according to Snead who described the circumstance being “in progress.” While the Rams are still in their offseason in which to prolong Donald, however, the possibility of lowering his planned cap of $26.75 million is a good reason to sign him sooner rather than later. They’ve got about 10 million dollars in available cap space and they’re still looking to extend the contract of Odell Beckham Jr. but they’ll leave funds for other expenses during the offseason.

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs have retained Frank Clark on a reduced contract, but they’re still unable to offer more pass rush assistance to Chris Jones. Melvin Ingram III filled the job well in the past, but he’s an unrestricted free agent. The Chiefs might be able to re-sign him or else, they’ll have to make this position a top priority during the draft to boost an offensive line that ranked 29th place in NFL for sacks.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

One of the goals for the Bucs in the offseason was to develop a speedier, more explosive inside pass rush. They did extend Vita Vea at the end of the season however, who will he team with when Ndamukong Suff is not signed yet? They must decide whether to keep him or sign another free agent or buy a new draft choice.

Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati was the team that did the majority of the work during the first part in free agency. The Bengals changed the offensive line and added the tight-end Hayden Hurst and re-signed cornerback Eli Apple and defensive tackle B.J. Hill Two reasons why their defense was so great in 2021. Now, the focus is on finding an adequate depth. The top three positions for the Bengals’ requirements are WR CB, FS and SS. If Cincinnati is able to find these players and the team that is fresh off winning a Super Bowl appearance — will be in better condition than it was in 2021.

Green Bay Packers

So, there’s the chance that they’ll be able to take over the receiver from All Pro by anyone who is near to the kind of connection Adams did. Nobody will enter the gates at Lambeau Field and have the relationship that Adams was able to establish and Aaron Rodgers. They still require help that was highlighted because of the departure of Marquez Valdes-Scantling’s team for the Chiefs. Actually, with the presence of Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb, Amari Rodgers and others it could be put forward that the Packers do not even have a top No. 2.

Los Angeles Chargers

This Bryan Bulaga experiment didn’t work out since the veteran appeared in only 11 games in two seasons with injuries following signing the three-year, $30 million contract two years ago, and having his contract terminated this month. What do they count on? Storm Norton? Trey Pipkins III? Justin Herbert is one of the NFL’s most promising young quarterbacks However, he requires protection. Particularly in a division that is filled with top pass-rushers.

San Francisco 49ers

The Niners so far have not been able to get rid of Garoppolo for a variety of reasons, in part due to other, more powerful dominoes of the quarterback creating an array of events that garnered little interest. It is in addition, due to the right shoulder surgery which can make him a more risky possibility. But it’s still a must be done by all parties affected. The Niners might be able to use the $25.55 million capacity space that they’d gain through trading Garoppolo to sign their draft class and then work out extensions for both end Nick Bosa and receiver Deebo Samuel. This would also open the way in the case of Trey Lance. It could take a while however Garoppolo could benefit from the fresh start too.

Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys let right tackle La’el Collier sign with the Bengals. They failed to keep the left-handed guard Connor Williams, who joined the Dolphins. Although they are confident in Terence Steele as their right tackle, they do not have the same amount of confidence in McGovern. They’ll need experienced help for the inside of their offensive line (center and guard) and perhaps the swing tackle since the fourth-round pick of last year’s team, Josh Ball, did not participate in the rookie season due to an injury to his ankle. Without that help the Cowboys are putting themselves in the position of needing to draft two offensive linemen earlier and needing them to be ready for the first year of their careers.

Denver Broncos

The Broncos have signed cornerback K’Waun Williams, who will receive the first opportunity to play at the position of nickel cornerback however, they signed free the market with three cornerbacks that played in games last season the trio of Bryce Callahan, Kyle Fuller and Nate Hairston — who were all free agents with no restrictions as was the safety Kareem Jackson. Williams can help with some of the issues by the versatility he has as a defensive player on the field, as well as in the coverage area, as well as his role to play a position as an off-the-field pass-rusher. However, the Broncos have to make some progress to improve their depth. And in the event that Caden Sterns won’t be able to take over Jackson’s safety position it’s time to get back Jackson or someone who is similar to him.

Tennessee Titans

The offensive line was slashed by two players from the previous season. The Titans’ decision not to tender unrestricted free-agent David Quessenberry created a void at right tackle. There is a need for a right tackle. Titans additionally have a gap to fill in at left guard after the release of Rodger Saffold III to free up some cap space. The offensive lineman in second year Dillon Radunz figures to start at one of the positions. Beyond Radunz there aren’t many established alternatives. Aaron Brewer has filled in as a right guard before. Another option is the free-agent acquisition Jamarco Jones who is a veteran with seven career games. Tennessee is likely to address the offensive line by drafting the draft’s first pick.

Baltimore Ravens

Finding a pass-rusher who is proven remains an important need, especially since Za’Darius Smith pulled out of his contract for four years, which was worth $35 million on March 17 and later agreed to a deal with the Vikings. The Ravens are currently the top two outside linebackers -Tyus Bowser and Odafe Oweh as well as Tyus Bowser are recovering from off offseason surgeries and are able to accumulate 22.5 career sacks. There’s been a gap in Baltimore for a while, and Baltimore hasn’t seen players with two-digit sacks since Terrell Suggs in the 2017 season. The Ravens must find an edge rusher that is able to compete with the level of Deshaun Watson or Joe Burrow.

Las Vegas Raiders

It’s awesome with all the benefits that Las Vegas added the best receiver in the NFL (and Derek Carr’s best friend from college) as Davante Adam. However, if Carr does not have time to get him to the ball then what’s the purpose? Carr was repeatedly sacked in 2021. As the situation is now it appears that the Raiders under the new administration are willing to return it using an offensive line that is similar to the one they have. Although Denzelle Good is returning from a knee injury, the Raiders aren’t finished.

Indianapolis Colts

The cabinet in the receiver room isn’t well-stocked. Veteran T.Y. Hilton is an unsigned free agent. Zach Pascal is now in Philadelphia. Parris Campbell hasn’t shown that he’s well enough to be an important player. This means Michael Pittman Jr. looking for help from the receiver. The addition of receivers will not only ease getting to Indianapolis for the new starting quarterback Matt Ryan, but it’ll be a boon for the top offensive player of the NFL, Jonathan Taylor.

New England Patriots

There’s nothing more important than securing Mac Jones, and in creating spaces in the running game for Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson. Now , there’s a big need for left guards after Ted Karras signed with the Bengals in free agency. In 2016 the Patriots took Joe Thuney in the third round. He was a plug-and play starter right from the start. The prospect of finding the 2017 version of Thuney is ideal during a draft which seems to be stuffed with inside linemen.

Cleveland Browns

The only remaining problem in this Cleveland roster is the lack of a pass-rusher that isn’t Myles Garrett. Jadeveon Clowney played that role superbly last season, making his Browns an opportunity to be among the best pass-rushing teams within the NFL. Clowney is looking at options, in hopes of securing the big money deal. The Browns must convince Clowney that Cleveland is the right place for him to be following his success in 2021.

Miami Dolphins

Miami improved its offensive line, and totally overhauled its talent at the position of skill , which was highlighted by Tyreek Hill as a receiver, tackle Terron Armstead, and Running back Raheem Mostert. It’s likely to be among the teams that can run the fastest that play in the NFL. In addition to the depth at linebacker this team is as prepared as it’s going to be. The only thing left now is to create the chemistry and understand the playbook.

Arizona Cardinals

After having let Christian Kirk go in free agency, and with A.J. Green, who is still an unsigned free agent, The Cardinals do not have a real No. 2 receiver to go with DeAndre Hopkins. Rondale Moore is a capable player however he’s not a No. 2. Arizona let a variety of receivers slip through in free agency, but to allow Kliff Kingsbury’s offense to be successful it requires a No. 2 . He will cause defenses to play-plan around him and , at a minimum, can play when Hopkins receives coverage that is rolled towards him.

Philadelphia Eagles

In the wake of Rodney McLeod and Steven Nelson who are no longer on contract and Steven Nelson no longer under contract, the Eagles remain without a cornerback and a starting safety for 2022. They tried two of the best free-agent safety players but failed to sign one. Instead, they signed Anthony Harris on a one-year contract. While it helps to fill in the second picture, it’s not make it complete. CB Darius Slay still needs a partner. The Eagles are reportedly liking some of the younger CBs that are on the roster, such as Zech McPhearson Tay Gowan, and Kary Vincent Jr. But they must keep adding. They’ll be looking to the next round of free agency as well as the draft, where they have three first-rounders — to fill these demands.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Minkah Fitzpatrick is one of the best safety players within the NFL, however she needs a running partner. The Steelers have opted out of Terrell Edmunds’ five-year contract which made him an open-ended free agent. The player is still available after the first round of free agency, however the same is Tyrann Mathieu. However, Tyrann Mathieu is a Honey Badger and doesn’t fit the model of the typical Steelers open-agent. At 29 , Mathieu has a longer age than the majority of the Steelers free agent signings and is likely to have a contract that is more expensive.

Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings are down to three of their starters in 2021. The cornerback Patrick Peterson and nickelback Mackensie Alexander are both free agents as is security Xavier Woods signed with the Panthers in free agency. It’s possible that the Vikings are likely to promote their backup safety Camryn Bynum to an even bigger position, but they’ll be taking into consideration the fact that the safety Harrison Smith is 33. The team hasn’t found any significant additions to the secondary since free agency and will have to seek out additional help during the draft.

New Orleans Saints

Perhaps, you can even include two. The Saints fell to 32nd among the NFL in passing yards last year, mostly due to major injuries to quarterback Jameis Winston, receiver Michael Thomas and the offensive line. A return of Michael Thomas back from an ankle injury could be a huge boost. However, the Saints must include at least one additional high-end pass catcher during the draft or in free agency at the very least. They’ll likely have several excellent options when they select the 18th pick.

Washington Commanders

Washington plans to play Cole Holcomb and Jamin Davis, the first-round pick of last year’s draft, to the outside, and is in need of a player to fill in the middle. Holcomb could play there but the team wants someone who’s a more natural fit, leading to more decisiveness , while still allowing the two other players to play in positions where they are more suitable. The draft offers a variety of solid potential candidates. Washington is also looking to find a player who can fulfill the Buffalo nickel, an ambiguous linebacker/safety position -which Landon Collins played so well in the past. Both positions are crucial.

Chicago Bears

The Bears have taken a cautious approach to free agency in the case of Ryan Poles, as the new general manager hasn’t announced any major announcements. The patience might be rewarded in the end, as Chicago might sign a few veterans at a bargain price later in the season, however, the team must add at least one offensive tackle, a guardas well as a receiver, and the corner. The second year of Fields’ career is most important in his development and for proving Chicago the possibility of having the perfect franchise quarterback or has to think about making another attempt in 2023. Only way for Chicago to figure this out is to give Fields enough assistance to make it through this season.

New York Jets

Announcing Mark Glowinski to start at guard and the addition of Jon Feliciano at center isn’t nearly enough to repair an offensive line that may require four starters from scratch. The Jets are still looking for the best lineman. Of course, this is unlikely to be found via free agency. They didn’t have the funds this year to make it occur given their salary cap issues. It’s now time to go to the draft, in which the Jets are ranked No. 5 and No. 7 overall, and there are plenty of options.

Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks are better off with Lock than you’d think , and are willing to offer him a go to see if he’s his long-term substitute for Russell Wilson. But they’re not likely to give Lock the job of starting. They’d like to bring back Geno Smith to challenge Lock and may add another player to their draft in April, but likely not with a first-round selection. Baker Mayfield is available, however, the Seahawks aren’t keen to accept its $19 million-a-year salary. This is a huge amount for a player who is in the running for the QB position. In addition, they must save a large portion of their allowance to extend the rookie contract of DK Metcalf which is expensive.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars did not add a pass-rusher during free agency, therefore it’s prioritised when they draft. Josh Allen had his best year in his rookie year (10.5 tackles for 2019) when he played alongside Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue. Since the beginning of the season, he’s had 10 sacks in his last 24 games. Whether it’s Aidan Hutchinson or Kayvon Thibodeaux at No. 1 overall, or another rusher in the third or second round the Jaguars need to find Allen assistance.

Carolina Panthers

It’s the same since the offseason started. The Panthers tried trading Deshaun Watson for a trade, however, the Browns took him on. With a limited pool of quarterbacks who are free agents, the priority should be to draft the next quarterback, whether that’s Liberty’s Malik Willis, Pittsburgh’s Kenny Pickett or Ole Miss’ Matt Corral. If Carolina believes that any of them could be an option for the long term, then select a quarterback with the number. 6 pick and continue building by bringing in a new player with a low cap. Left tackle remains a worry however, the top two players will likely be gone when the Panthers select.

Atlanta Falcons

Since Matt Ryan now in Indianapolis and Atlanta paying $62 million in dead money to 2022, everything the Falcons must do should be done guided by a long-term strategy in the back of their minds. With the cash they’ve got left over from their current campaign, the team have to decide everything in the next two years and whether they will pursue an NFL quarterback during this draft or not. There are more questions regarding the pass-rusher and receiver which have huge holes.

New York Jets

Robert Saleh’s defense cannot perform without a strong pass rush, and it needs another threat at the edge. Carl Lawson will return from an Achilles injury, but it’s not enough. The Jets have signed Jacob Martin in free agency However, he’s only a rotational player. They threw a dart at Chandler Jones, but nothing was made of it. Their final hope is to draft. So search for an edge player in the 4th or 10th pick. The players to watch include Travon Walker, Jermaine Johnson II, and Kayvon Thibodeaux.

Detroit Lions

Yes there is a reason that the Lions have addressed their serious requirement in free agency when they signed the Pro Bowler DJ Chark Jr. to add Josh Reynolds and Amon-Ra St. Brown, but they’re still not thinking that Chark will be a success in this role. Detroit is still a good option to grab another top receiver in the draft as there are three selections within the 34th round. Lions receivers’ coach Antwaan Randle El enjoyed a great NFL playing career, and is keen to create an unproven prospect, just as he did in the case of St. Brown who was a fourth-round pick in 2021.

Houston Texans

The Texans signed Rex Burkhead to an extension at the close of the season, and also signed Dare Ogunbowale in free agency However, they’re in desperate need of a new impact player — something they haven’t had in the past few seasons. The Texans are the best option right now. will be to expand their backfield during the draft, though Houston has many requirements in their roster, it’s difficult to choose just one area to prioritize.


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