NFL | The games are done

There are still some veterans who haven’t signed a new contract yet, but the vast majority have. With the draft also behind us, the rosters of 90 players who will participate in the summer retreat for the 32 NFL teams are in place. Which ones seem to have improved the most during the off-season and which ones seem to have weakened? Analyses.

Posted at 9:00

Miguel Bujold

Miguel Bujold
The print

Rising teams

Saints of New Orleans

PHOTO NICK CAMETT, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Jarvis Landry

In addition to summarizing Jameis Winston, who had done well prior to his knee injury last season, the Saints recruited two former LSU Tigers stars, receiver Jarvis Landry and safety Tyrann Mathieu, who have chosen to return to Louisiana. Michael Thomas will be back after missing the entire 2021 season and the Saints picked receiver Chris Olave in the first round of the draft. We can’t remember the last time the Saints had three broad wings the likes of Landry, Thomas and Olave. It was believed that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would be alone in the National South, but the Saints should have offered them good opposition at the top of the division.

Philadelphia Eagles

PHOTO CHRISTOPHER SZAGOLA, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

jordan davis

AJ Brown is the type of receiver who can change an attack on his own and will be the perfect complement to the explosive DeVonta Smith. The Eagles also added backup catcher Zach Pascal to their offense. On the other side of the ball, the organization got their hands on two leaders and alumni of the University of Georgia, imposing tackle Jordan Davis and linebacker Nakobe Dean, as well as signing the versatile Haason Reddick. Recently released by the New York Giants, cornerback James Bradberry accepted a one-year contract with the Eagles on Wednesday.

Denver Broncos and Indianapolis Colts

PHOTO DAVID ZALUBOWSKI, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Quarterback Russell Wilson will turn the Denver Broncos into legitimate Super Bowl contenders.

Two teams that have climbed to the top of the American hierarchy thanks to the acquisition of a leading quarterback in the transactional market. Russell Wilson will help the Broncos become legitimate Super Bowl contenders this year, while Matt Ryan could lift the Colts over the Tennessee Titans to the top of the American South. In addition to Wilson, the Broncos have strengthened their defense with the addition of DJ Jones, Randy Gregory, Alex Singleton and K’Waun Williams. For their part, the Colts have signed deals with defender Yannick Ngakoue and cornerback Stephon Gilmore, two reliable veterans.

New York Jets and Jacksonville Jaguars

PHOTO JOHN RAOUX, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Travon Walker

These two clubs are found much more often on the list of off-season winners than at the top of their division, we all agree … Their good work in recent months is therefore far from being a guarantee of success. However, the Jets managed to recruit four players who were considered the best in their respective positions by some analysts: cornerback Ahmad Sauce Gardner, wide receiver Garrett Wilson, pursuing quarterback Jermaine Johnson II, and running back Breece Hall. As for the Jaguars, they paid dearly, but still managed to convince a slew of free agents to come to Duval, including guard Brandon Scherff, wide end Christian Kirk and tight end Evan Engram. They also picked defensive linesman Travon Walker with the first ever draft pick.

The crows of Baltimore

PHOTO GAIL BURTON, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Tyler Linderbaum

Like the Jets, the Ravens have received praise for their crop in the recent draft. They notably enlisted what was seen as the best available security half, Kyle Hamilton, aged 14And ranking and what was considered the best center of the auction, Tyler Linderbaum, at 25And rank. GM Eric DeCosta, coach John Harbaugh and the Ravens then had some great shots in the later rounds with picks David Ojabo (2And round), Travis Jones (3And) and Daniel Faalele (4And).

Teams in decline

The West of the National (… except the Rams)

PHOTO TONY AVELAR, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo

When the Super Bowl champion is in your division, the goal should normally be to improve your team and significantly. However, the Seattle Seahawks ceded Russell Wilson to the Broncos; the San Francisco 49ers got stuck with Jimmy Garoppolo, didn’t have the first pick and it’s not yet clear what will happen to the Deebo Samuel case; then the Arizona Cardinals lost a handful of key players, including Chandler Jones, Christian Kirk and DeAndre Hopkins, who was suspended for their first six games for failing a drug test. Note that the cards got receiver Marquise Brown from the Ravens, which however cost them their first pick in the draft. Meanwhile, the Rams have added two high-quality players Bobby Wagner and Allen Robinson II to their roster.

Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs and Tennessee Titans

PHOTO MORRY GASH, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Christian Watson (9)

These three teams all decided to trade their number one receiver because they refused to accept their salary claims. The Packers’ reception body was already sparse before Davante Adams left for Las Vegas. Hopefully, rookies Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs will make a quick contribution to them. The Chiefs’ attack is sure to be damaged by the loss of Tyreek Hill, who will continue his career in Miami, and the Titans lost nearly as important a piece as Derrick Henry when they agreed to trade AJ Brown for the Philadelphia Eagles. Hill, Adams and Brown will receive annual salaries of 30, 27.5 and 25 million respectively.

PHOTO MARY HOLT, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

The Kansas City Chiefs’ offense will be damaged by the loss of receiver Tyreek Hill, who will continue his career in Miami.

New England patriots

The Patriots may not have weakened, but they have done little to improve their squad, unlike their three division rivals. The off-season was especially quiet in Foxborough. Bill Belichick, however, involved receiver DeVante Parker in a trade with the Dolphins and brought Malcolm Butler back after losing JC Jackson. The choice of Cole Strange in the first round of the draft also raised eyebrows for many. The guard was considered a future round three pick by most draft experts. But who are we to criticize good old Bill’s decisions?

The Browns of Cleveland

PHOTO RON SCHWANE, ASSOCIATED PRESS

Cleveland Browns new quarterback Deshaun Watson

There are two ways to judge the Browns’ off-season. The first is that they’ve probably FINALLY solved their quarterback problem by paying a heavy price to get Deshaun Watson in a trade with the Houston Texans, which should guarantee them a good team for many years to come. . That Watson was the missing piece. The other way to analyze the Browns’ off-season is that they’ve agreed to graft a player who several organizations have deemed radioactive due to the lawsuit of 22 masseuses accusing Watson of sexual crimes and thereby undermining the state of their organization. The decision to fire a warrior like Jarvis Landry is also moot, and it’s still unclear how the team will fix Baker Mayfield, who is guaranteed to make $ 18 million in 2022 no matter what.

The Atlanta Falcons

PHOTO JASON GETZ, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Marco Mariota

It’s not easy being an Atlanta Falcons fan … Since losing the Super Bowl nearly six years ago, this team has been steadily going downhill and, on paper, the Falcons are the worst team in the NFL today. . Their flirtation with Deshaun Watson led to the departure of Matt Ryan, who was traded to the Colts for a pittance. The club’s best wide receiver of 2021, Russell Gage, now plays for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Calvin Ridley suspended all season for betting on NFL games; and linebacker Foyesade Oluokun, who led the team with 102 individual tackles last year, signed with the Jaguars. Quarterback Marcus Mariota will have a lot to do to get his new team out of the slums, to say the least.

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