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Every NFL Team's Biggest Need Entering 2023 Free Agency

Jan 3, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; General view of the NFL shield logo signage before the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The legal tampering period for 2023 NFL free agency opens on Monday, March 13 which means teams can begin agreeing to contracts with prospective free agents. Deals become official when the new league year begins on Wednesday.

Every team in the NFL will have holes to fill this offseason, whether they made the playoffs or bottomed out. The 33rd Team is breaking down each team's biggest roster blemish heading into the start of free agency.

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Every NFL Team's Biggest Need

Arizona Cardinals

Biggest Need: Edge

Analysis: The Arizona Cardinals ranked 23rd in the league in sacks last season. They already lost J.J. Watt to retirement, and they could lose Zach Allen in free agency. Edge rusher was an area of weakness for the Cardinals already, and it remains especially weak after these departures.

Atlanta Falcons

Biggest Need: Edge

Analysis: The Atlanta Falcons ranked 30th in expected points added (EPA) allowed per play and allowed a score on a league-worst 43.5% of their opponent's drives. They also had a poor pass rush — ranking 32nd in pressure rate and 29th in time to pressure. The Falcons need to find a stud edge pass rusher with their cap space in free agency or in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Baltimore Ravens

Biggest Need: WR

Analysis: The Baltimore Ravens have lacked a legitimate No. 1 receiver for a long time. Rashod Bateman showed some promise before going down with an injury, but Lamar Jackson — assuming he stays in Baltimore — needs more receiving weapons to go along with All-Pro tight end Mark Andrews.

Devin Duvernay can provide some value as a deep threat and kick returner, but DeMarcus Robinson is a free agent, and rolling into 2023 with Tylan Wallace or James Proche as starting wide receivers seems ill-advised.

Buffalo Bills

Biggest Need: LB

Analysis: Tremaine Edmunds is 25 years old and is expected to land a big payday in this free agency cycle. The Bills can clear about $30 million in cap space, but it would be difficult for the Bills to bring back Edmunds and fill the other needs on their roster.

If Edmunds leaves, the Bills would only have All-Pro Matt Milano, Terrel Bernard (2022 third-round pick), and Baylon Spector (2022 seventh-round pick) at linebacker. Bernard fits closer to Milano's mold, and Spector is too unproven to show he can start (let alone replace Edmunds' production).

Whether it comes early in the draft or somewhere in free agency, the Bills will need to find a do-it-all linebacker to command the center of their defense.

Carolina Panthers

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: With the hiring of Frank Reich and the trade up to No. 1 in the draft, it is clear the Carolina Panthers are resetting this franchise and want Reich to work his magic and develop a young stud quarterback. They have not found a solution at quarterback since Cam Newton left, but now they have a chance to capitalize on a strong quarterback class. 

>> READ: The 33rd Team's Latest Mock Draft

Chicago Bears

Biggest Needs: DL, OL

Analysis: The Chicago Bears could not pressure opposing quarterbacks and could not keep Justin Fields clean. They allowed the highest pressure rate on offense and generated the second-lowest pressure rate on defense.

Cincinnati Bengals

Biggest Need: OL

Analysis: La'el Collins will miss a significant portion of 2023 after tearing his ACL and MCL at the end of 2022, and he didn't play well when healthy (6.3% pressure rate, six sacks allowed). Hakeem Adeniji was moved from backup guard to starting right tackle in the playoffs, and the results were disastrous (11.8% pressure rate, four sacks allowed in three games).

Left tackle Jonah Williams is also entering a contract year. Expect the Cincinnati Bengals to address the OT position in multiple ways, looking for a starting RT and more depth.

Cleveland Browns

Biggest Needs: DL (EDGE or DT)

Analysis: Myles Garrett is one of the best pass rushers in the NFL, but their No. 2 and No. 3 edge rushers,  Jadeveon Clowney and Chase Winovich, are both free agents. The Cleveland Browns' defensive tackles struggled to stop the run last season, and starter Taven Bryan is a UFA.

Dallas Cowboys

Biggest Needs: WR2, RB2, TE1

Analysis: The Dallas Cowboys need another true weapon alongside CeeDee Lamb. Michael Gallup is a solid WR2, but they need one more guy to push this unit over the top. They also need to figure out what to do with Ezekiel Elliott, whether he's getting cut or not. Dalton Schultz will likely price himself out of Dallas, so they will need to find a new No. 1 Tight end.

Denver Broncos

Biggest Need: Interior Offensive Lineman

Analysis: The Denver Broncos ranked 21st in yards per game (325) and 32nd in both points per game (16.9) and in sacks allowed (63).  Courtland Sutton, Tim Patrick, Jerry Jeudy and Javonte Williams fill out the skill positions quite nicely for Denver in 2023, and, for better or worse, the team is stuck with Russell Wilson as its signal caller for the foreseeable future.

The remaining problem is the offensive line, which has been questionable at best. Pro Bowler Garett Bolles will return to hold down the left tackle position, but the other four spots could use an upgrade.

Detroit Lions

Biggest Need: CB

Analysis: The Detroit Lions had arguably the NFL's worst passing defense in 2022. They ranked 29th in total passing yards allowed and 31st in yards per attempt. Jeff Okudah showed promise last season but still struggled. Expect Detroit to target a cornerback in free agency or early in the draft.

Green Bay Packers

Biggest Need: WR

Analysis: Allen Lazard was the Green Bay Packers' top receiver this season but is now a free agent. This position group is in need of another dynamic piece to pair with rookie standout Christian Watson. Quarterback is also something to keep an eye on with the future of Aaron Rodgers still in question. If Rodgers doesn't return, Green Bay will need to find a capable No. 2 quarterback.

>> READ: Rodgers Says Decision 'Won't Be Long' 

Houston Texans

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: The Houston Texans had one of the worst offenses in the league last year, garnering only 17 ppg last season (30th in the league) and a league-worst -0.17 EPA per play. Davis Mills couldn't sustain drives in games or take the top off of defenses with deep, accurate throws.

The Texans need to find a QB with a big arm and elite playmaking ability to bring this offense back to life. Lucky for the Texans, their QB issue can be solved in this year's draft with the No. 2 overall pick.

Indianapolis Colts

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: The Indianapolis Colts headed into the 2022 season with high hopes. Expectations did not meet reality, as the season turned into a nightmare. The offensive line looked disoriented, Matt Ryan was benched multiple times, Jonathan Taylor injured his right ankle and Frank Reich was fired midseason. Now the Colts have coach Shane Steichen and a chance to select a new quarterback with the fourth-overall pick.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Biggest Need: CB

Analysis: The Jacksonville Jaguars struggled in the secondary last season. With Shaquill Griffin now cut, the defense lacks depth and talent at the DB position. Tyson Campbell proved his worth — he was tied for fifth in the NFL in pass breakups last season (15). However, the Jaguars couldn't find a consistent slot corner, where Darious Williams got a majority of snaps until he was eventually moved outside.

If the Jaguars can find either another lockdown corner to complement Campbell, they could have one of the AFC's strongest defenses.

Kansas City Chiefs

Biggest Need: OT

Analysis: The Kansas City Chiefs are likely to lose left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. and right tackle Andrew Wylie in free agency. If the Chiefs cannot re-sign them, their top priority will be finding new protection for their $500 million quarterback.

Las Vegas Raiders

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: The Las Vegas Raiders quarterback room consists of Chase Garbers. He is the entire room.

Los Angeles Chargers

Biggest Need: Cap Space

Analysis: The Los Angeles Chargers will have numerous departures this offseason, but the most important thing for the franchise to figure out this offseason will be Justin Herbert’s extension. The Chargers started $23 million over the salary cap but have restructured their way to $19,545,886 in cap space. Getting Herbert under contract before the market continues to skyrocket is priority No. 1 this offseason.

Los Angeles Rams

Biggest Need: OLB

Analysis: Both Los Angeles Rams' starting outside linebackers, Leonard Floyd and Michael Hoecht, are unlikely to return in 2023, which presents a major problem for their exterior pass rush. Especially without Pro Bowl corner Jalen Ramsey locking down one side of the field to give the pass rush more time to get home.

The defensive line is another area of concern for the Rams, despite having possibly the best interior defensive lineman in the league in Aaron Donald. A'Shawn Robinson and Greg Gaines are both free agents and would be major losses for the Rams front, especially in the run game.

Miami Dolphins

Biggest Need: TE

Analysis: The Miami Dolphins had a big need in the secondary, but the trade for Jalen Ramsey changes things. The Dolphins are likely to lose starting tight end Mike Gesicki in free agency, and they included former third-round pick Hunter Long in the deal for Ramsey. Miami has great pass catchers on the outside, but adding a consistent receiver and blocker at tight end could open up the offense even more.

Minnesota Vikings

Biggest Need: WR

Analysis: Justin Jefferson is arguably the best receiver in the NFL, but with Adam Thielen set to be a free agent the Minnesota Vikings will be looking for a strong No. 2.

New England Patriots

Biggest Need: OL

Analysis: The New England Patriots are going to need to address the offensive line. The Patriots' offense struggled last season, both in the run game and in the red zone. 

The Patriots are losing right tackle Isaiah Wynn to free agency and left tackle Trent Brown struggled through the season. Building up the offensive line (particularly at tackle) would improve both the passing and running game.

New Orleans Saints

Biggest Need: WR

Analysis: The New Orleans Saints need to provide new quarterback Derek Carr with weapons on offense. The Saints had an efficient short-yardage passing attack last year but need someone to complement Chris Olave as a bonafide stud on the outside.

New York Giants

Biggest Needs: WR, CB, ILB, TE

Analysis: The New York Giants need a true outside WR1. Plus, depth pieces like Richie James and Darius Slayton are all free agents. The Giants also need another corner alongside Adoree' Jackson. They have no viable starting inside linebackers on the roster so expect them to target linebackers aggressively in free agency. Lastly, adding a pass-catching tight end alongside Daniel Bellinger will unlock the middle of the field more for Daniel Jones.

New York Jets

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: The New York Jets have one of the best rosters in the NFL, but they need a quarterback to put everything together. They were third worst in offensive points scored per game (17.41) and posted the league's worst passer rating (75.0) in 2022. With weapons already in place in Garrett Wilson, Elijah Moore, Breece Hall and C.J. Uzomah, the team should expect much better output from their offense with an upgrade at quarterback. The Jets hired new offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett and will hopefully have a new player under center next season.

>> READ: Jets Optimistic Rodgers Trade Will Happen

Philadelphia Eagles

Biggest Need: EDGE, Secondary

Analysis: The Philadelphia Eagles will attempt to retool last year's Super Bowl runner-up with numerous big names from their roster hitting the market in free agency. The Eagles' secondary could lose three starters from last year's roster.

Lastly, the Eagles need to rebuild their front seven. They already re-signed Brandon Graham and need to figure out what to do with Fletcher Cox. They will likely be outbid for Javon Hargrave.  Robert Quinn is leaving after a disappointing season in Philadelphia.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Biggest Need: CB

Analysis: The Pittsburgh Steelers' top cornerback, Cam Sutton, is a free agent. The team brought in William Jackson at the trade deadline, but he never made an impact and is expected to be released this offseason. Pittsburgh needs to find a cornerback in free agency or the draft, regardless of whether Sutton heads elsewhere.

San Francisco 49ers

Biggest Need: CB

Analysis: The San Francisco 49ers' secondary will be a unit that needs to be improved heading into 2023, especially if San Francisco cannot retain some key players. Emmanuel Moseley and Jimmie Ward are both free agents, and Ward would be an especially noteworthy loss considering he can play nickel.

Seattle Seahawks

Biggest Need: Edge

Analysis: The Seattle Seahawks could own one of the best defenses in the NFL once again if they can add impact players to their defensive line. With the fifth pick in this year's draft, they are in a position where they can add one of the top young pass rushers in the draft; including Tyree Wilson (scouting report) or Jalen Carter (scouting report).

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Biggest Need: QB

Analysis: With the retirement of Tom Brady and Blaine Gabbert heading to free agency, the only quarterback of consequence on the roster is Kyle Trask. The Bucs need to decide if they are going into rebuild or retool mode. Their quarterback choice is the first place to start.

Tennessee Titans

Biggest Needs: OL, WR, LB

Analysis: The entire Tennessee Titans roster is a mess right now. Almost half of the defense is headed into free agency or injured, there are only two returning starters on the offensive line, and there are talks Derrick Henry might be moved this offseason. Regardless of whether or not Henry gets moved, the offense can't do anything with a dysfunctional offensive line.

Eventually, the Titans will need to decide whether they will re-sign David Long or not, and with the recent releases of Bud Dupree and Zach Cunningham, they might be freeing up cap space to lock him up long-term. New GM Ron Carthon will have his hands full this offseason with a team that has needs at almost every position.

Washington Commanders

Biggest Need: QB, SAF, TE

Analysis: The Washington Commanders need a new quarterback after the failed Carson Wentz experiment. Taylor Heinicke will be hitting free agency as well. Sam Howell is likely to be the starter if nobody else is added, but there are several QB options available for new OC Eric Bieniemy via trades, free agency or the draft.

The Commanders also need another safety next to Kamren Curl, who performed well last year. Logan Thomas has struggled mightily with both health and production. Thomas is 31 years old and the Commanders need a new pass-catching tight end.