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Over the next few months, NFL teams will go through minicamps, training camp and the preseason as rosters take shape before Week 1 of the 2022 campaign.
Across the league, in-house position battles will include rookies, experienced veterans and backups in competition for starting jobs.
In an early look at the new rosters, we’ve projected the season-opening starters for every team’s offense and defense with a focus on new acquisitions and key positions up for grabs.
All of our projections list three starting wide receivers, one running back, one tight end, five linemen and obviously one quarterback on offense. For uniformity, we’ve listed base defenses with seven-man fronts (3-4 or 4-3) and four defensive backs. Because of the high use of nickel alignments (five defensive backs), you’ll also see a designation (NB) for nickelbacks, also referred to as slot defenders.
Due to suspensions and injuries, players such as DeAndre Hopkins and Michael Gallup won’t appear in starting lineups because they’re projected to miss Week 1 of the upcoming season.
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Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press
Offense: QB Kyler Murray, RB James Conner, WR Marquise Brown, WR A.J. Green, WR Rondale Moore, TE Zach Ertz, LT D.J. Humphries, LG Justin Pugh, C Rodney Hudson, RG Will Hernandez, RT Kelvin Beachum
Defense: DL J.J. Watt, DL Leki Fotu, DL Zach Allen, Edge Cameron Thomas, ILB Zaven Collins, ILB Isaiah Simmons, Edge Markus Golden, CB Marco Wilson, CB Jeff Gladney, FS Budda Baker, SS Jalen Thompson, NB Byron Murphy
Wideout DeAndre Hopkins isn’t listed in the initial starting lineup because he’s going to serve a six-game suspension for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy. Once he’s back, the three-time All-Pro will reclaim his spot in three-wide receiver sets with Brown, whom the Arizona Cardinals acquired via trade from the Baltimore Ravens, and Moore in the slot.
The Cardinals may have a rookie starter on the defensive side of the ball. Thomas, who’s a third-rounder, has a chance to leapfrog outside linebacker Devon Kennard for a lead role following two-time All-Pro edge-rusher Chandler Jones’ departure to the Las Vegas Raiders. The San Diego State product had a breakout 2021 campaign with 20.5 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks.
Gladney, a 2020 first-round pick of the Minnesota Vikings, signed with the Cardinals after a Dallas jury found him not guilty of felony assault.
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Offense: QB Marcus Mariota, RB Tyler Allgeier, WR Drake London, WR Cordarrelle Patterson, WR Olamide Zaccheaus, TE Kyle Pitts, LT Jake Matthews, LG Jalen Mayfield, C Matt Hennessy, RG Chris Lindstrom, RT Kaleb McGary
Defense: DL Grady Jarrett, DL Ta’Quon Graham, DL Marlon Davidson, Edge Lorenzo Carter, ILB Deion Jones, ILB Rashaan Evans, Edge Arnold Ebiketie, CB A.J. Terrell, CB Casey Hayward, FS Richie Grant, SS Jaylinn Hawkins, NB Isaiah Oliver
Mariota will start the season under center, but his durability issues may not allow him to keep rookie third-rounder Desmond Ridder at bay. Though the Atlanta Falcons selected Allgeier in the fifth round, he beats out Patterson, who, according to ESPN’s Michael Rothstein, could see more snaps at wideout, and a career backup in Damien Williams for the lead role. Over the last two years, the BYU product racked up 2,736 yards and 36 touchdowns.
Atlanta starts a pair of new edge-rushers in Lorenzo Carter and rookie second-rounder Arnold Ebiketie. They’ll replace Dante Fowler Jr., whom the team released, and free agent Steven Means. Rashaan Evans starts at inside linebacker over FCS Montana State product Troy Andersen following Foyesade Oluokun’s departure to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
At safety, 2021 second-rounder Richie Grant moves into a starting role alongside Jaylinn Hawkins, who allowed a 57.9 percent completion rate in coverage and recorded three pass breakups with two interceptions while on the field for 49 percent of the defensive snaps in 2021.
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Offense: QB Lamar Jackson, RB J.K. Dobbins, WR Rashod Bateman, WR Tylan Wallace, WR Devin Duvernay, TE Mark Andrews, LT Ronnie Stanley, LG Ben Powers, C Tyler Linderbaum, RG Kevin Zeitler, RT Morgan Moses
Defense: DL Calais Campbell, DL Michael Pierce, DL Justin Madubuike, Edge Odafe Oweh, ILB Josh Bynes, ILB Patrick Queen, Edge Tyus Bowser, CB Marlon Humphrey, CB Marcus Peters, FS Marcus Williams, SS Chuck Clark, NB Kyle Hamilton
Marquise Brown requested a trade, and the team dealt him to the Arizona Cardinals during the draft. Barring veteran additions to the wide receiver room, the Ravens will have a wide-open competition for two spots alongside Bateman. Duvernay, a 2020 third-rounder, and Wallace, a 2021 fourth-rounder, get the nod over James Roche II, who’s a sixth-round pick from the 2020 class.
Newcomers Linderbaum and Moses should start at center and right tackle, respectively. The former is a first-round pick, and the latter has 113 starts on his resume. In 2021, Powers logged a majority of the team’s snaps at left guard, and he’ll remain in that spot unless Tyre Phillips can stay healthy and make strides through the offseason.
Rookie second-round edge-rusher David Ojabo will need time to recover from a torn Achilles, and head coach John Harbaugh thinks Bowser bounces back from the same injury to participate in training camp. On the back end, the Ravens tap into Hamilton’s versatility and use him in the slot while they keep Clark at safety.
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Offense: QB Josh Allen, RB Devin Singletary, WR Stefon Diggs, WR Gabriel Davis, WR Jamison Crowder, TE Dawson Knox, LT Dion Dawkins, LG Rodger Saffold, C Mitch Morse, RG Ryan Bates, RT Spencer Brown
Defense: DE Von Miller, DL Ed Oliver, DL DaQuan Jones, DE Greg Rousseau, LB Matt Milano, LB Tremaine Edmunds, LB Terrel Bernard, CB Tre’Davious White, CB Kaiir Elam, FS Micah Hyder, SS Jordan Poyer, NB Taron Johnson
The Buffalo Bills haven’t re-signed Emmanuel Sanders or Cole Beasley, though they have an in-house receiver due for a bigger role in Davis, who had a memorable 2021 playoff performance against the Kansas City Chiefs in an AFC divisional game, recording eight catches for 201 yards and four touchdowns. Crowder will replace Beasley in the slot. Coming off his first Pro Bowl season, Saffold comes over from the Tennessee Titans to play left guard.
The Bills made a big splash in free agency, signing Miller to upgrade the pass rush. They also brought in Jones and Tim Settle. The former has more starting experience, so he gets the nod for the spot alongside Oliver. Bernard could see the field when the team uses its base defense.
Buffalo selected Elam in the first round of this year’s draft. He’ll start on the boundary in place of Levi Wallace, who signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
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Offense: QB Sam Darnold, RB Christian McCaffrey, WR DJ Moore, WR Robbie Anderson, WR Terrace Marshall Jr., TE Ian Thomas, LT Ikem Ekwonu, LG Brady Christensen, C Bradley Bozeman, RG Austin Corbett, RT Taylor Moton
Defense: DE Brian Burns, DL Derrick Brown, DL Matt Ioannidis, DE Yetur Gross-Matos, LB Shaq Thompson, LB Damien Wilson, LB Cory Littleton, CB Donte Jackson, CB Jaycee Horn, FS Xavier Woods, SS Jeremy Chinn, NB Myles Hartsfield
Head coach Matt Rhule isn’t afraid to shuffle the deck at quarterback, so we shouldn’t be surprised to see rookie third-rounder Matt Corral if Darnold continues to struggle under center. As a 2021 second-rounder, Marshall gets the nod over Rashard Higgins in three-wide receiver sets.
The Panthers will likely roll out four new starters across the offensive line. As the No. 6 overall pick in the 2022 draft, Ekwonu is a lock to play left tackle. Bozeman should start at the pivot over Pat Elflein, who has struggled at center and guard through five seasons. Corbett comes over from the Los Angeles Rams to fill the right guard spot. In 2021, Christensen played four positions across the line, though he could find a home at left guard.
Through free agency, the Panthers added starting-caliber players for all three levels of their defense, signing Ioannidis, Wilson and Woods.
Wilson faces a charge of assault with bodily injury of a family member following an arrest in April. If the league suspends him, Littleton, who had a 2018 Pro Bowl campaign with the Rams but lost his starting spot with the Las Vegas Raiders last season, may play in the nickel formation with Thompson.
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Offense: QB Justin Fields, RB David Montgomery, WR Darnell Mooney, WR Byron Pringle, WR Velus Jones Jr., TE Cole Kmet, LT Larry Borom, LG Cody Whitehair, C Lucas Patrick, RG Sam Mustipher, RT Teven Jenkins
Defense: DE Trevis Gipson, DL Justin Jones, DL Khyiris Tonga, DE Robert Quinn, LB Nicholas Morrow, LB Roquan Smith, LB Matthew Adams, CB Jaylon Johnson, CB Kyler Gordon, FS Eddie Jackson, SS Jaquan Brisker, NB Tavon Young
As of right now, the Chicago Bears would head into the 2022 season with an underwhelming group of wide receivers. If they don’t add a notable veteran, Jones, their rookie third-rounder, can edge Equanimeous St. Brown, Tajae Sharpe and Dante Pettis for one of the top three spots.
Jenkins and Borom flipped sides from their positions last year. They lined up at right tackle and left tackle, respectively, during voluntary minicamp. After five seasons with the Green Bay Packers, Patrick fills a void at center where the Bears could appreciate his veteran experience. Mustipher slides from center to right guard where he took snaps at minicamp.
In the trenches on defense, Tonga moves into a starting spot to replace Eddie Goldman, who’s currently a free agent, alongside Jones, who signed a two-year, $12 million deal. On the second level, Morrow’s ability to play on all three downs helps him earn a first-string role. In the secondary, the Bears’ top two draft picks, Gordon and Brisker, should become early contributors. Young has experience in the slot from his time with the Baltimore Ravens.
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Offense: QB Joe Burrow, RB Joe Mixon, WR Ja’Marr Chase, WR Tee Higgins, WR Tyler Boyd, TE Hayden Hurst, LT Jonah Williams, LG Jackson Carman, C Ted Karras, RG Alex Cappa, RT La’el Collins
Defense: DE Trey Hendrickson, DL B.J. Hill, DL DJ Reader, DE Sam Hubbard, LB Logan Wilson, LB Germaine Pratt, LB Akeem Davis-Gaither, CB Chidobe Awuzie, CB Eli Apple, FS Jessie Bates III, SS Vonn Bell, NB Mike Hilton
The Cincinnati Bengals signed Hurst after they lost tight end C.J. Uzomah to the New York Jets in free agency. The team upgraded its offensive line with three starting-caliber additions in Karras, Cappa and Collins. At left guard, Carman takes over for Quinton Spain, who’s still a free agent.
The Bengals may not make major changes on defense, though we should keep an eye on Bates’ contract situation while he’s on the franchise tag. Keep in mind that the club selected Dax Hill in the first round of this year’s draft. Rookie second-rounder Cam Taylor-Britt could push Apple for a role on the boundary through training camp.
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Offense: QB Deshaun Watson, RB Nick Chubb, WR Amari Cooper, WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, WR David Bell, TE David Njoku, LT Jedrick Wills Jr., LG Joel Bitonio, C Nick Harris, RG Wyatt Teller, RT Jack Conklin
Defense: DE Myles Garrett, DL Jordan Elliott, DL Tommy Togiai, DE Chase Winovich, LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB Anthony Walker, LB Jacob Phillips, CB Denzel Ward, CB Greedy Williams, FS John Johnson III, SS Grant Delpit, NB Greg Newsome II
Watson faces 22 civil lawsuits from women who have accused him of sexual assault and misconduct, though for now, he’s on the active roster.
At wide receiver, Cooper stands out as the only lock to start. Peoples-Jones has shown enough flashes to get the early nod, and Bleacher Report NFL scout Nate Tice believes Bell has a chance to play “power slot” at 6’1″, 212 pounds. The rookie third-rounder caught 232 passes for 2,946 yards and 21 touchdowns through three terms at Purdue. The Browns cut JC Tretter weeks before they signed Ethan Pocic, which may suggest they have confidence in Harris to start at center.
Cleveland hasn’t re-signed Jadeveon Clowney, Malik Jackson or Malik McDowell, who faces charges of aggravated battery on a police officer, resisting arrest and exposing sex organs in public. The Browns added Taven Bryan, but their homegrown defensive tackles, Elliott and Togiai, claim first-string roles. The club acquired Winovich from the Patriots. He’s the starter unless Clowney returns on a new deal.
After trading Troy Hill to the Los Angeles Rams, the Browns can move Newsome into the slot in nickel coverage with Williams on the boundary.
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Offense: QB Dak Prescott, RB Ezekiel Elliott, WR CeeDee Lamb, WR Jalen Tolbert, WR James Washington, TE Dalton Schultz, LT Tyron Smith, LG Tyler Smith, C Tyler Biadasz, RG Zack Martin, RT Terence Steele
Defense: DE DeMarcus Lawrence, DL Neville Gallimore, DL Osa Odighizuwa, DE Dorance Armstrong, LB Leighton Vander Esch, LB Micah Parsons, LB Jabril Cox, CB Trevon Diggs, CB Anthony Brown, FS Malik Hooker, SS Jayron Kearse, NB Jourdan Lewis
Dallas Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones thinks Michael Gallup could miss multiple games. The team selected Tolbert in the third round of the 2022 draft, so we may see the rookie in three-wide receiver sets for the first few weeks.
Along the offensive line, the Cowboys’ first draft pick surpasses Connor McGovern for the left guard spot. Jones said Smith would compete for that position (h/t NFL.com’s Nick Shook). Steele has extensive starting experience in two seasons (27 starts). He replaces La’el Collins at right tackle.
On the opposite side of the line, Armstrong replaces edge-rusher Randy Gregory, who signed with the Denver Broncos. Dallas retained Armstrong on a two-year deal after his five-sack 2021 campaign. He gets the nod over Dante Fowler Jr., who played under defensive coordinator Dan Quinn with the Atlanta Falcons in 2020 but posted modest pass-rushing numbers that year (three sacks and 23 pressures).
On the back end of the defense, the Cowboys maintain the status quo with 2021 second-round cornerback Kelvin Joseph’s early availability in question because of an investigation into a fatal shooting connected to a vehicle in which he was a passenger. If the league doesn’t suspend him, the Kentucky product could push Brown for a spot on the boundary.
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Offense: QB Russell Wilson, RB Javonte Williams, WR Courtland Sutton, WR Tim Patrick, WR Jerry Jeudy, TE Albert Okwuegbunam, LT Garett Bolles, LG Dalton Risner, C Lloyd Cushenberry III, RG Graham Glasgow, RT Billy Turner
Defense: DL D.J. Jones, DL Mike Purcell, DL Dre’Mont Jones, Edge Bradley Chubb, ILB Josey Jewell, ILB Alex Singleton, Edge Randy Gregory, CB Pat Surtain II, CB Ronald Darby, FS Justin Simmons, SS Kareem Jackson, NB K’Waun Williams
Of course, Wilson will start under center after the Denver Broncos acquired him from the Seattle Seahawks in a blockbuster trade.
Denver has a potential battle at tight end between Okwuegbunam and rookie third-rounder Greg Dulcich. Because the former is a more complete player at the position, he wins the battle, but the latter could finish the 2022 season with more receiving yards. Turner comes over from the Green Bay Packers to play right tackle.
The Broncos used free agency to fill holes on defense. D.J. Jones and Gregory signed sizeable contracts each worth $10 million-plus annually. They’ll start at defensive tackle and outside linebacker (edge-rusher), respectively. As an experienced slot defender, Williams will take the field in nickel formation. At inside linebacker, Singleton isn’t a surefire starter, but he’s a tackle machine with at least 120 takedowns in each of the last two seasons. Keep an eye on Jonas Griffith, though. He had 46 tackles, four for loss, in a limited role last year.
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Offense: QB Jared Goff, RB D’Andre Swift, WR Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR Josh Reynolds, WR DJ Chark, TE T.J. Hockenson, LT Taylor Decker, LG Jonah Jackson, C Frank Ragnow, RG Halapoulivaati Vaitai, RT Penei Sewell
Defense: DE Aidan Hutchinson, DL Michael Brockers, DL Alim McNeill, DE Charles Harris, LB Alex Anzalone, LB Derrick Barnes, LB Malcolm Rodriguez, CB Amani Oruwariye, CB Jeff Okudah, FS Kerby Joseph, SS Tracy Walker II, NB Mike Hughes
Rookie first-round wideout Jameson Williams isn’t listed as a starter because the Detroit Lions may bring him along slowly even though he plans to go through training camp practices. With St. Brown, Chark and Reynolds, they don’t have to rush him back from a torn ACL. The Alabama standout will start by the end of the season, though.
As the Lions transition to a four-man front, they have multiple defensive linemen who can play on either side, though Hutchinson likely takes a starting role because of his 2022 draft status (No. 2 overall pick). Harris gets the other end position after his breakout 2021 campaign (7.5 sacks and 10 tackles for loss) with Romeo Okwara in contention for the spot. Rodriguez, whom the Lions picked in the sixth round of this year’s draft, wins a camp battle at linebacker with his speed, quickness and coverage skills.
In the secondary, Okudah will have another chance to play up to his draft pedigree as the No. 3 overall pick from 2020. He’ll line up opposite Oruwariye, who broke out with six interceptions and 11 pass breakups last year. Hughes has the experience in the slot to handle nickelback duties. Joseph, a rookie third-rounder, will play the deep safety role after he recorded five interceptions at Illinois in 2021.
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Defense: DL Kenny Clark, DL Devonte Wyatt, DL Dean Lowry, Edge Rashan Gary, ILB De’Vondre Campbell, ILB Quay Walker, Edge Preston Smith, CB Eric Stokes, CB Rasul Douglas, FS Darnell Savage, SS Adrian Amos, NB Jaire Alexander
The Green Bay Packers selected Christian Watson in the second round, but he’ll serve as a backup behind three veterans. Cobb and Lazard have a rapport with Rodgers, and Watkins has eight years of pro experience.
On the offensive line, Elgton Jenkins will likely start at right tackle once he fully heals from a torn ACL. In the meantime, the Packers plug their rookie third-rounder, Rhyan, in the spot with fellow rookie offensive lineman Zach Tom in competition for the temporary vacancy.
Wyatt and Walker take starting snaps on the defensive line and at inside linebacker, respectively, which would be a good sign for two rookie first-rounders. Douglas re-signed with the club and holds on to a boundary spot after a standout year with 13 pass breakups and five interceptions.
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Offense: QB Davis Mills, RB Dameon Pierce, WR Brandin Cooks, WR Nico Collins, WR Chris Conley, TE Brevin Jordan, LT Laremy Tunsil, LG Kenyon Green, C Justin Britt, RG A.J. Cann, RT Tytus Howard
Defense: DE Jonathan Greenard, DL Maliek Collins, DL Ross Blacklock, DE Rasheem Green, LB Kamu Grugier-Hill, LB Christian Kirksey LB Christian Harris, CB Derek Stingley Jr., CB Steven Nelson, FS Jalen Pitre, SS Eric Murray, NB Desmond King II
Mills has a golden opportunity to prove he’s a starting-caliber quarterback on the pro level. In 2021, he showed flashes, throwing for 2,664 yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions with a 66.8 percent completion rate.
Pierce, Marlon Mack and Rex Burkhead will compete for the lead role out of the backfield. The rookie fourth-rounder has a legitimate chance to emerge in this battle because of Burkhead’s age (31), and Mack’s limited work over the past two years (32 carries for 127 yards). At wideout, Conley holds the third receiver spot until rookie second-round wideout John Metchie III fully recovers from a torn ACL.
The Texans selected Green in the first round. He’s a Week 1 starter at left guard, which allows Howard to move back to right tackle. The team signed a seven-year right guard in Cann.
On the defensive line, Green replaces Jacob Martin, who signed with the New York Jets. In 2021, Green logged career highs in pressures (24), sacks (6.5) and tackles for loss (six) with the Seattle Seahawks. As a rookie third-rounder, Harris beats out Jalen Reeves-Maybin, who served as a backup for most of his five years with the Detroit Lions. Stingley and Nelson will line up on the outside. After a year on the boundary, King shifts back to his natural nickelback spot. Pitre, a rookie second-rounder, starts at safety.
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Offense: QB Matt Ryan, RB Jonathan Taylor, WR Michael Pittman Jr., WR Alec Pierce, WR Keke Coutee, TE Mo Alie-Cox, LT Bernhard Raimann, LG Quenton Nelson, C Ryan Kelly, RG Danny Pinter, RT Braden Smith
Defense: DE Yannick Ngakoue, DL DeForest Buckner, DL Grover Stewart, DE Kwity Paye, LB Darius Leonard, LB Bobby Okereke, LB Zaire Franklin, CB Stephon Gilmore, CB Isaiah Rodgers, FS Julian Blackmon, SS Khari Willis, NB Kenny Moore II
The Indianapolis Colts acquired Ryan from the Atlanta Falcons in exchange for a third-round pick. He’ll have an intriguing rookie second-round wideout in Pierce, who can complement Pittman on the perimeter. Coutee wins the slot receiver battle over oft-injured wideout Parris Campbell.
The Colts have question marks along the offensive line. Though Raimann lacks experience, the rookie third-rounder beats out veterans Matt Pryor and Dennis Kelly for the starting left tackle position. The Central Michigan product’s athleticism and upside work in his favor. Pinter has played at center, but the coaching staff can plug him into an open right guard spot.
Indianapolis acquired Ngakoue in a trade with the Las Vegas Raiders. He’s played under defensive coordinator Gus Bradley in Jacksonville and with the Silver and Black. The Colts signed Gilmore, who’s a clear upgrade over Rock Ya-Sin, whom the team dealt to the Raiders in the Ngakoue deal. Assuming Blackmon makes a full recovery from a torn Achilles, he holds off Rodney McLeod for a starting safety spot.
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Offense: QB Trevor Lawrence, RB James Robinson, WR Christian Kirk, WR Marvin Jones Jr., WR Laviska Shenault Jr., TE Evan Engram, LT Cam Robinson, LG Ben Bartch, C Tyler Shatley, RG Brandon Scherff, RT Jawaan Taylor
Defense: DL Roy Robertson-Harris, DL Foley Fatukasi, DL Malcom Brown, Edge Travon Walker, ILB Foye Oluokun, ILB Devin Lloyd, Edge Josh Allen, CB Shaquill Griffin, CB Darious Williams, FS Andre Cisco, SS Rayshawn Jenkins, NB Tyson Campbell
Through free agency, the Jacksonville Jaguars added offensive firepower, signing Kirk to a four-year, $72 million deal and Engram to a one-year, $9 million contract. Both will likely start Week 1.
Jacksonville also bolstered Lawrence’s interior pass protection with a five-time Pro Bowler and All-Pro in Scherff. The club re-signed Shatley, which suggests he’ll move into a full-time starting role to replace retired center Brandon Linder. The ninth-year veteran likely beats rookie third-round interior lineman Luke Fortner in a training camp battle.
The Jaguars made big investments in Fatukasi, who inked a three-year, $30 million deal, and Walker, this year’s No. 1 overall draft pick. They’ll probably start in the season opener. The same principles apply to Oluokun and Lloyd. The former signed a three-year contract worth up to $46.5 million, and the team selected the latter in the first round of the 2022 draft.
Williams played primarily on the boundary with the Los Angeles Rams. With him in the fold, the Jaguars may shift Campbell to the slot position.
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Offense: QB Patrick Mahomes, RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire, WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR Mecole Hardman, WR JuJu Smith-Schuster, TE Travis Kelce, LT Orlando Brown Jr., LG Joe Thuney, C Creed Humphrey, RG Trey Smith, RT Andrew Wylie
Defense: DE Frank Clark, DL Chris Jones, DL Derrick Nnadi, DE George Karlaftis, LB Nick Bolton, LB Willie Gay, LB Leo Chenal, CB Trent McDuffie, CB Rashad Fenton, FS Justin Reid, SS Juan Thornhill, NB L’Jarius Sneed
The Kansas City Chiefs have a new-look wide receiver group without Tyreek Hill, whom they traded to the Miami Dolphins. Valdes-Scantling can threaten defenses over the top on the perimeter, and Smith-Schuster can win one-on-one matchups on the inside as a big (6’1″, 215 lbs) slot target.
The Chiefs defense will probably undergo multiple changes. As a first-rounder, Karlaftis should claim the starting job at defensive end. On the second level of the unit, rookie third-rounder Leo Chenal can round out the linebacker group.
In the secondary, Kansas City lost cornerback Charvarius Ward to the San Francisco 49ers in free agency. McDuffie can play on the boundary or in the slot. He’s a 5’11”, 193-pound cover man who may be interchangeable between the two spots similar to Green Bay Packers cornerback Jaire Alexander. Sneed handled most of the team’s slot responsibilities last season. As a fifth-year veteran, Reid starts over rookie second-rounder Bryan Cook as a replacement for Tyrann Mathieu, who signed with the New Orleans Saints.
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Offense: QB Derek Carr, RB Josh Jacobs, WR Davante Adams, WR Hunter Renfrow, WR Keelan Cole, TE Darren Waller, LT Kolton Miller, LG John Simpson, C Andre James, RG Alex Leatherwood, RT Jermaine Eluemunor
Defense: DL Bilal Nichols, DL Johnathan Hankins, DL Matthew Butler, Edge Chandler Jones, ILB Denzel Perryman, ILB Divine Deablo, Edge Maxx Crosby, CB Trayvon Mullen Jr., CB Rock Ya-Sin, FS Tre’von Moehrig, SS Johnathan Abram, NB Nate Hobbs
The Las Vegas Raiders acquired Adams from the Green Bay Packers, and he’ll look to rekindle his rapport with Carr from their collegiate years at Fresno State. With that said, the Silver and Black must sort out their offensive line to give the new quarterback-receiver duo time to connect in the passing game.
Aside from the left tackle position, the Raiders have open battles at the other four spots across the front line on offense. In the recent past with the New England Patriots, head coach Josh McDaniels (as an offensive coordinator) and offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo have preferred bigger right tackles. They used Trent Brown (6’8″, 380 lbs), Mike Onwenu (6’5″, 350 lbs) and Eluemunor (6’4″, 345 lbs) for that role.
Leatherwood could continue where he left off at right guard from the 2021 season. Rookie third-rounder Dylan Parham may be the team’s future center, but he primarily played guard at Memphis and may need time to transition at the pro level.
On the defensive side, Jones replaces edge-rusher Yannick Ngakoue, whom the Raiders traded to the Indianapolis Colts. The team acquired Ya-Sin in the Ngakoue trade, and he’ll start in place of Casey Hayward, who signed with the Atlanta Falcons.
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Offense: QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler, WR Keenan Allen, WR Mike Williams, WR Joshua Palmer, TE Gerald Everett, LT Rashawn Slater, LG Matt Feiler, C Corey Linsley, RG Zion Johnson, RT Trey Pipkins III
Defense: DL Sebastian Joseph-Day, DL Austin Johnson, DL Jerry Tillery, Edge Khalil Mack, ILB Drue Tranquill, ILB Kyle Van Noy, Edge Joey Bosa, CB J.C. Jackson, CB Michael Davis, FS Nasir Adderley, SS Derwin James Jr., NB Asante Samuel Jr.
Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley had a good look at Everett during their time together with the Los Angeles Rams in 2020. Even though Staley served as the defensive coordinator that year, the familiarity between the two bodes well for the sixth-year tight end. He’ll replace Jared Cook.
Los Angeles has a probable plug-and-play rookie first-round guard in Johnson. At right tackle, Pipkins may be able to supplant Storm Norton, who allowed nine sacks through 1,078 snaps last year, per Pro Football Focus.
The Chargers significantly bolstered their defense after it allowed the fourth-most points in 2021. Joseph-Day and Johnson will play alongside Tillery in a new-look defensive front. In a trade with the Chicago Bears, Los Angeles acquired Mack, who will pair with Bosa to form one of the league’s best pass-rushing duos.
Van Noy could start over inside linebacker Kenneth Murray, who’s struggled through his first two seasons. As one of the top additions in free agency, Jackson can match up against lead wideouts. He recorded 25 interceptions and 53 pass breakups in four seasons with the New England Patriots.
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Offense: QB Matthew Stafford, RB Cam Akers, WR Allen Robinson, WR Cooper Kupp, WR Van Jefferson, TE Tyler Higbee, LT Joe Noteboom, LG David Edwards, C Brian Allen, RG Logan Bruss, RT Rob Havenstein
Defense: DL Aaron Donald, DL Greg Gaines, DL A’Shawn Robinson, Edge Leonard Floyd, ILB Bobby Wagner, ILB Ernest Jones, Edge Terrell Lewis, CB Jalen Ramsey, CB Robert Rochell, FS Jordan Fuller, SS Taylor Rapp, NB Troy Hill
The Los Angeles Rams will make notable changes to their offensive line because of left tackle Andrew Whitworth’s decision to retire and right guard Austin Corbett’s departure to the Carolina Panthers.
The Rams re-signed Joe Noteboom on a three-year, $40 million deal, so expect him to play left tackle where he filled in during the 2021 playoffs. Rookie third-rounder Logan Bruss seems like the front-runner for the right guard spot. According to The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue, general manager Les Snead and head coach Sean McVay think he’s a “plug-and-play” option.
Los Angeles signed Bobby Wagner, and he’ll play the inside linebacker spot. Even though Justin Hollins played in a backup role over Lewis late in the 2021 season, the latter, who is a 2020 third-rounder, showcases his potential to claim the starting role. Last year, Rochell played well before the team placed him on injured reserve because of a chest injury. He’ll take over for Darious Williams, who signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Despite Nick Scott’s surprisingly good postseason performances, Rapp regains his starting spot after struggling with lingering symptoms from a concussion through most of the 2021 playoffs.
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Offense: QB Tua Tagovailoa, RB Chase Edmonds, WR Tyreek Hill, WR Jaylen Waddle, WR Cedrick Wilson Jr., TE Mike Gesicki, LT Terron Armstead, LG Connor Williams, C Michael Deiter, RG Robert Hunt, RT Liam Eichenberg
Defense: DL Emmanuel Ogbah, DL Raekwon Davis, DL Christian Wilkins, Edge Jaelan Phillips, ILB Jerome Baker, ILB Elandon Roberts, Edge Andrew Van Ginkel, CB Xavien Howard, CB Byron Jones, FS Jevon Holland, SS Brandon Jones, NB Nik Needham
Aside from the quarterback and tight end spots, the Miami Dolphins offense will feature new starters at every position. The team signed Edmonds to a two-year deal worth $12.1 million, which indicates he could finish the 2022 season with the most touches among the team’s running backs. Myles Gaskin, Raheem Mostert and Sony Michel could handle a decent number of touches as well. Hill and Wilson join Waddle to form a highly talented wide receiver group.
The Dolphins may experiment with their offensive line through camp. Other than Armstead at left tackle, every player will carve out roles through the summer. Per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, Connor Williams, who primarily played left guard with the Dallas Cowboys, took minicamp practice reps at center.
With that said, Williams fits best in his previous position. Plus, Deiter has experience at the pivot. Hunt played most of the 2021 season at right guard. Eichenberg has played at right tackle, so Austin Jackson comes off the bench with experience strictly on the left side of the line.
The Dolphins defense remains intact from the previous season.
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Offense: QB Kirk Cousins, RB Dalvin Cook, WR Justin Jefferson, WR Adam Thielen, WR K.J. Osborn, TE Irv Smith Jr., LT Christian Darrisaw, LG Ezra Cleveland, C Garrett Bradbury, RG Ed Ingram, RT Brian O’Neill
Defense: DL Harrison Phillips, DL Dalvin Tomlinson, DL Armon Watts, Edge Danielle Hunter, ILB Eric Kendricks, ILB Jordan Hicks, Edge Za’Darius Smith, CB Patrick Peterson, CB Cameron Dantzler, FS Harrison Smith, SS Lewis Cine, NB Chandon Sullivan
The Minnesota Vikings will carry over most of last year’s offensive personnel. They selected Ingram in the second round, which probably means he’ll have a clear pathway to starting snaps at guard. Bradbury has struggled at center, but the 2019 first-rounder will have a shot to show vast improvement before he hits the free-agent market in 2023.
Minnesota added several defenders to improve a unit that ranked 24th in scoring and allowed the third-most yards. Phillips will start on the interior of the front line, while Smith joins Hunter on the edge. Hicks fills former Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr’s old spot.
Newcomers Sullivan and Cine don’t have much competition at their respective positions. The former has valuable slot experience, and the Vikings picked the latter in the first round of the 2022 draft. Minnesota will have a battle for the boundary cornerback spots. The coaching staff may take it slow with rookie second-round cover man Andrew Booth Jr., who recently underwent core-muscle surgery and battled a quad injury. He may see his role expand in the second half of the season.
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Michael Dwyer/Associated Press
Offense: QB Mac Jones, RB Damien Harris, WR DeVante Parker, WR Kendrick Bourne, WR Jakobi Meyers, TE Hunter Henry, LT Isaiah Wynn, LG Mike Onwenu, C David Andrews, RG Cole Strange, RT Trent Brown
Defense: DL Christian Barmore, DL Carl Davis, DL Davon Godchaux, Edge Matthew Judon, ILB Ja’Whaun Bentley, ILB Mack Wilson, Edge Josh Uche, CB Malcolm Butler, CB Jack Jones, FS Devin McCourty, SS Kyle Dugger, NB Jonathan Jones
In 2020 with the Las Vegas Raiders, wide receiver Nelson Agholor averaged 18.7 yards per reception, but he didn’t provide big-play production with the New England Patriots last year. The team may trade him following the addition of Parker and rookie second-rounder Tyquan Thornton.
New England’s first-round pick raised eyebrows, but Strange should replace Shaq Mason, whom the Patriots traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
New England could look for two former second-rounders in Barmore (2021) and Uche (2020) to blossom into key starters within the front seven. Barring any notable signings at edge-rusher, the latter could benefit from Chase Winovich’s departure (via trade) to the Cleveland Browns.
After one year away from the game, Butler returns to the Patriots for a second stint. Jack Jones recorded 28 pass breakups and 10 interceptions as a collegian. He gets the nod over cornerback Jalen Mills, who allowed a 111.4 passer rating in coverage last season.
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John Locher/Associated Press
Offense: QB Jameis Winston, RB Alvin Kamara, WR Michael Thomas, WR Chris Olave, WR Jarvis Landry, TE Adam Trautman, LT Trevor Penning, LG Andrus Peat, C Erik McCoy, RG Cesar Ruiz, RT Ryan Ramczyk
Defense: DE Cameron Jordan DL David Onyemata, DL Shy Tuttle, DE Marcus Davenport, LB Pete Werner, LB Demario Davis, LB Zack Baun, CB Marshon Lattimore, CB Paulson Adebo, FS Marcus Maye, SS Tyrann Mathieu, NB C.J. Gardner-Johnson
Kamara faces a felony charge for assault resulting in substantial bodily harm. He could serve a suspension, but the 26-year-old remains on the active roster for now.
On Friday, Landry confirmed on Twitter that he’s signing with the New Orleans Saints. As a rookie first-rounder, Olave should become an immediate contributor. New head coach Dennis Allen said that Michael Thomas—like all injured players—has a “few hurdles” in his recovery, but he hasn’t suggested that the two-time All-Pro will miss any games yet. Penning, another rookie first-rounder, takes over at left tackle following Terron Armstead’s departure to the Miami Dolphins.
The Saints lost their starting safeties from the previous campaign in Marcus Williams, who signed with the Baltimore Ravens, and Malcolm Jenkins (retired). However, they filled those spots with Marcus Maye and three-time All-Pro (and New Orleans native) Tyrann Mathieu.
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Noah K. Murray/Associated Press
Offense: QB Daniel Jones, RB Saquon Barkley, WR Kenny Golladay, WR Kadarius Toney, WR Sterling Shepard, TE Ricky Seals-Jones, LT Andrew Thomas, LG Max Garcia, C Jon Feliciano, RG Mark Glowinski, RT Evan Neal
Defense: DL Leonard Williams, DL Justin Ellis, DL Dexter Lawrence, Edge Azeez Ojulari, ILB Blake Martinez, ILB Tae Crowder, Edge Kayvon Thibodeaux, CB Adoree’ Jackson, CB Aaron Robinson, FS Julian Love, SS Xavier McKinney, NB Darnay Holmes
Under a new coaching staff, Jones will likely have one more season—a contract year—to prove he’s the starting quarterback for the New York Giants. They allowed tight end Evan Engram to walk in free agency and signed Seals-Jones as a probable replacement.
Big Blue could reshape most of their offensive line. As a first-round pick, Neal will start at right tackle. Garcia has a lot more experience at left guard than Shane Lemieux, which makes him a favorite to earn the starting position. Feliciano seems excited to play center and wins the job as Nick Gates recovers from a serious leg fracture.
Within the front seven, Ellis replaces Austin Johnson, who signed with the Los Angeles Chargers, and Thibodeaux, a rookie first-rounder, lines up opposite Ojulari. In the secondary, Robinson has a good shot to replace James Bradberry, whom the Giants released Monday. He started in two games last year. Love moves into a full-time starting role following safety Logan Ryan’s departure to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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John Locher/Associated Press
Offense: QB Zach Wilson, RB Breece Hall, WR Corey Davis, WR Garrett Wilson, WR Elijah Moore, TE C.J. Uzomah, LT George Fant, LG Laken Tomlinson, C Connor McGovern, RG Alijah Vera-Tucker, RT Mekhi Becton
Defense: DE Carl Lawson, DT Quinnen Williams, DT Sheldon Rankins, DE John Franklin-Myers, LB Quincy Williams, LB C.J. Mosley, LB Hamsah Nasirildeen, CB Sauce Gardner, CB D.J. Reed, FS Lamarcus Joyner, SS Jordan Whitehead, NB Michael Carter II
As rookies, Hall and Wilson should have hefty workloads for an offense that ranked 28th in scoring last year. The former will likely share a good portion of the touches at running back with Michael Carter, though.
Tomlinson comes over from the San Francisco 49ers to start at left guard. Becton flips to the right side following Fant’s solid 2021 campaign at left tackle. Because of his experience as a starter, Uzomah beats out Tyler Conklin at tight end. Nonetheless, the latter may finish the season with more production as a pass-catcher.
Last October, the Jets signed Franklin-Myers to a four-year extension that includes $30.2 million in guarantees. He’ll hold off rookie first-rounder Jermaine Johnson II for a starting role this year.
Between free agency and the draft, the Jets added three starting-caliber defensive backs in Gardner, who’s a rookie first-rounder, Reed and Whitehead.
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Christopher Szagola/Associated Press
Offense: QB Jalen Hurts, RB Miles Sanders, WR A.J. Brown, WR DeVonta Smith, WR Quez Watkins, TE Dallas Goedert, LT Jordan Mailata, LG Landon Dickerson, C Jason Kelce, RG Isaac Seumalo, RT Lane Johnson
Defense: DE Brandon Graham, DL Fletcher Cox, DL Javon Hargrave, DE Josh Sweat, LB Haason Reddick, LB Kyzir White, LB Nakobe Dean, CB Darius Slay, CB Zech McPhearson, FS Anthony Harris, SS Marcus Epps, NB Avonte Maddox
The Philadelphia Eagles made a blockbuster trade with the Tennessee Titans to acquire Brown, and he’ll bump Jalen Reagor out of the lineup with Watkins in the slot. Up front, Seumalo replaces retired right guard Brandon Brooks.
Reddick could play defensive end as he did with the Carolina Panthers last year, but the versatile defender can also rush from the strong-side linebacker spot, which allows the Eagles to insert another pass-rusher on the front line. Dean seems healthy enough to practice, so he’s a surefire starter and possible third-round steal from this year’s draft.
The Eagles have two glaring voids at cornerback and safety. Unless the team signs a veteran cover man, McPherson, who’s a 2021 fourth-rounder, wins the boundary job. The coaching staff expands Epps’ role after he started in three games during the 2021 term, logging five pass breakups and an interception through 16 games.
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Icon Sportswire/Getty Images
Offense: QB Mitch Trubisky, RB Najee Harris, WR Diontae Johnson, WR Chase Claypool, WR George Pickens, TE Pat Freiermuth, LT Dan Moore Jr., LG Kevin Dotson, C Mason Cole, RG James Daniels, RT Chukwuma Okorafor
Defense: DL Cameron Heyward, DL Tyson Alualu, DL Stephon Tuitt, Edge T.J. Watt, ILB Myles Jack, ILB Devin Bush, Edge Alex Highsmith, CB Levi Wallace, CB Ahkello Witherspoon, FS Minkah Fitzpatrick, SS Terrell Edmunds, NB Cameron Sutton
The Pittsburgh Steelers signed Trubisky, who’s a bridge-gap quarterback on a two-year deal. He’ll start until the passing attack sputters or the team falls out of the playoff picture with rookie first-round quarterback Kenny Pickett in the primary backup spot.
Pickens, whom the team selected in the second round of the 2022 draft, gets the first crack at a position in three-wide receiver sets over rookie fourth-rounder Calvin Austin III. The Steelers signed Cole and Daniels in free agency. Both have a fair number of career starts.
Tuitt isn’t a lock to make the initial 53-man roster because his status remains unclear after he missed the 2021 season while on injured reserve with a knee injury. Nevertheless, on The Mark Madden Show on 105.9 The X, former general manager Kevin Colbert said he was encouraged by discussions with the defensive lineman.
In the secondary, Wallace will likely start on the boundary opposite Witherspoon. Last season, the latter recorded nine pass breakups and three interceptions while allowing a 35.1 passer rating in coverage with the Steelers.
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Icon Sportswire/Getty Images
Offense: QB Trey Lance, RB Elijah Mitchell, WR Deebo Samuel, WR Brandon Aiyuk, WR Jauan Jennings, TE George Kittle, LT Trent Williams, LG Aaron Banks, C Alex Mack, RG Daniel Brunskill, RT Mike McGlinchey
Defense: DE Nick Bosa, DL Arik Armstead, DL Javon Kinlaw, DE Samson Ebukam, LB Azeez Al-Shaair, LB Fred Warner, LB Dre Greenlaw, CB Charvarius Ward, CB Jason Verrett, FS Tarvarius Moore, SS Jimmie Ward, NB Emmanuel Moseley
The San Francisco 49ers haven’t traded Jimmy Garoppolo, but general manager John Lynch said he believes Lance is ready to take over the offense. If the second-year signal-caller proves him right through the offseason, the team doesn’t have a quarterback controversy.
However, the 49ers have multiple questions along the offensive line. Mack may retire, but if the 36-year-old decides to play another season, he’s definitely the starter. Banks, a 2021 second-rounder, should be able to show his potential and claim a starting job after Pro Bowl left guard Laken Tomlinson’s departure to the New York Jets. Brunskill holds on to the right guard spot.
On defense, Ebukam, who had a solid 2021 term with 38 tackles, five for loss, 4.5 sacks and 16 pressures, holds off rookie second-rounder Drake Jackson at defensive end. The 49ers signed Charvarius Ward, who will start on the boundary, but they lost K’Waun Williams to the Denver Broncos in free agency.
San Francisco re-signed Jason Verrett, which allows the club to move Emmanuel Moseley inside, where he’s played minimal snaps but has some experience. Moore missed the entire 2021 campaign with a torn Achilles but beats George Odum for the safety spot.
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Matt Patterson/Associated Press
Offense: QB Geno Smith, RB Rashaad Penny, WR Tyler Lockett, WR DK Metcalf, WR Freddie Swain, TE Noah Fant, LT Charles Cross, LG Damien Lewis, C Austin Blythe, RG Gabe Jackson, RT Abraham Lucas
Defense: DL Shelby Harris, DL Al Woods, DL Poona Ford, Edge Darrell Taylor, ILB Jordyn Brooks, ILB Cody Barton, Edge Uchenna Nwosu, CB Tre Brown, CB Sidney Jones, FS Quandre Diggs, SS Jamal Adams, NB Ugo Amadi
The Seattle Seahawks will have a true quarterback battle between Smith and Drew Lock, whom the team acquired from the Denver Broncos in the Russell Wilson trade. The former has the edge because of his familiarity with the system. Last year, Smith played in four games and started three contests in place of Wilson, who had surgery on his finger.
In the backfield, running back Chris Carson’s unclear status following neck surgery opens up a potential battle between Penny and rookie second-rounder Ken Walker III. If the former can stay healthy, he wins the job after logging 135-plus rushing yards in four of the last five weeks of the 2021 season. The Seahawks’ rookie tackles don’t have tough veteran competition, so they’re both penciled into starting roles.
As another ripple effect from the Wilson deal, Seattle recouped a starting-caliber defensive lineman in Harris. The Seahawks didn’t replace linebacker Bobby Wagner with a notable free agent or a high draft pick, which gives 2019 third-rounder Cody Barton a good shot to start. In 2021, Nwosu recorded career highs in multiple categories, including sacks (five), pressures (30) and tackles for loss (eight). He’ll claim a starting edge spot.
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Alex Menendez/Associated Press
Offense: QB Tom Brady, RB Leonard Fournette, WR Mike Evans, WR Chris Godwin, WR Russell Gage, TE Cameron Brate, LT Donovan Smith, LG Luke Goedeke, C Ryan Jensen, RG Shaq Mason, RT Tristan Wirfs
Defense: DL Rakeem Nunez-Roches, DL Vita Vea, DL Logan Hall, Edge Shaquil Barrett, ILB Lavonte David, ILB Devin White, Edge Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, CB Carlton Davis III, CB Jamel Dean, FS Logan Ryan, SS Antoine Winfield Jr., NB Sean Murphy-Bunting
Godwin spoke to the media in March about his recovery from a torn ACL, but he didn’t give an estimate about his timetable for a return. Until the wideout or the team expresses doubt about his availability for Week 1, the 26-year-old holds a starting spot.
The Athletic’s Greg Auman doesn’t expect the Buccaneers to re-sign defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. As a rookie second-rounder, Hall could fill that void. At safety, Ryan has more starting experience (115 games) than Keanu Neal (53 games), which gives him the edge to take over for Jordan Whitehead, who signed with the New York Jets. Tampa Bay selected Tryon-Shoyinka in the first round of last year’s draft. He’ll replace edge-rusher Jason Pierre-Paul, who’s still a free agent.
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Offense: QB Ryan Tannehill, RB Derrick Henry, WR Treylon Burks, WR Robert Woods, WR Nick Westbrook-Ikhine, TE Austin Hooper, LT Taylor Lewan, LG Jamarco Jones, C Ben Jones, RG Nate Davis, RT Dillon Radunz
Defense: DL Denico Autry, DL Naquan Jones, DL Jeffery Simmons, Edge Bud Dupree, ILB Zach Cunningham, ILB David Long Jr., Edge Harold Landry III, CB Kristian Fulton, CB Caleb Farley, FS Kevin Byard, SS Amani Hooker, NB Elijah Molden
In the third round of the 2022 draft, the Tennessee Titans moved up for quarterback Malik Willis, but the rookie probably has a long way to go before he challenges Tannehill for the starting spot. The passing attack will feature a pair of new starting wideouts in Burks and Woods. The former has big cleats to fill following the departure of A.J. Brown via trade to the Philadelphia Eagles. After two underwhelming seasons with the Cleveland Browns, Hooper fills a big void at tight end.
The Titans have major questions along the offensive line, though head coach Mike Vrabel vouched for Jamarco Jones as an option to start at left guard, which leaves Radunz and Nicholas Petit-Frere in competition at right tackle. The 2021 second-rounder wins the battle over the rookie third-rounder.
Farley has to recover from a torn ACL and stay healthy, or he could lose his spot to rookie second-round cornerback Roger McCreary. The Titans selected the former in the first round of the 2021 draft, but he’s unproven with only 60 defensive snaps on his resume.
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Offense: QB Carson Wentz, RB Antonio Gibson, WR Terry McLaurin, WR Jahan Dotson, WR Curtis Samuel, TE Logan Thomas, LT Charles Leno Jr., LG Andrew Norwell, C Chase Roullier, RG Trai Turner, RT Sam Cosmi
Defense: DE Montez Sweat, DT Jonathan Allen, DT Daron Payne, DE Chase Young, LB Cole Holcomb, LB Jamin Davis, LB David Mayo, CB Kendall Fuller, CB William Jackson III, FS Bobby McCain, SS Kamren Curl, NB Danny Johnson
The Washington Commanders offense may crack the top 20 in points or total yards for the first time since 2017 because of their offseason additions.
In a deal with the Indianapolis Colts, the Commanders acquired Wentz, who, despite his reported shortcomings as a leader, is an upgrade over Taylor Heinicke. A first-rounder out of Penn State, Dotson can complement McLaurin at wide receiver. According to Pro Football Focus, Norwell allowed just three sacks through 1,078 snaps last year with the Jaguars. He’ll upgrade the team’s interior pass protection.
On the defensive side, the Commanders need another linebacker who will allow them to use their base defense when necessary. For now, Mayo holds the third spot. Johnson continues to lock down the slot position, though Fuller can move inside and Benjamin St-Juste could play on the outside in nickel formation.
College football statistics are provided by cfbstats.com.
Maurice Moton covers the NFL for Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @MoeMoton.