News & Analysis

All 32 NFL team's 2019 NFL Draft needs

By Cam Mellor
Mar 27, 2019

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PFF’s Senior Content Manager Cam Mellor outlines all 32 NFL team needs as we head towards the 2019 NFL Draft.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys

Quarterback: No

Top needs: DI, WR, TE

Dallas was a middle-of-the-pack team last year in terms of receiving grade, but that figure is strongly buoyed by the midseason acquisition of Amari Cooper. Prior to the Cooper trade, Dallas ranked 26th in team receiving grade (Weeks 1-8) before ranking 10th in team receiving grade from Weeks 9-17. Cooper bolstered the receiving corps who lost their leading target receiver (Cole Beasley, 85) in free agency. Jason Witten is not a serviceable long-term replacement plan at tight end as he joins the inconsistent Rico Gathers, Blake Jarwin and second-year Stanford product Dalton Schultz on an inexperienced group of tight ends. Dallas should be in the market for both pass-catching positions early, and perhaps even often, as passing is by far the most important aspect of football.

New York Giants

Quarterback: Yes

Top needs: CB, LB, Edge

The time to replace embattled quarterback Eli Manning was last year (or maybe even prior) and despite that, they selected Saquon Barkley with the second overall pick. Barkley had a great season by all standards, but his value at the top of the 2018 NFL Draft is still questionable as the Giants won just five games with Manning at the helm. It’s highly likely that New York will go quarterback with the sixth pick; they still have other holes to fix throughout the draft as they were the 27th-ranked coverage unit in football in 2018. Their highest-graded cornerback played just 429 snaps, and Janoris Jenkins allowed seven touchdowns in his coverage a season ago. No linebacker finished with a grade above 66.2, and they did very little in free agency to address either position. Combine that with the loss of Olivier Vernon in a trade with the Browns, and this team has holes at every level on defense.

Philadelphia Eagles

Quarterback: No

Top needs: LB, CB, RB

The Eagles’ defensive line is arguably one of the league’s best with Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham manning the ship but behind them, question marks pop up all over. The loss of Jordan Hicks hurts their linebacking corps, as he was well above average in coverage and after Hicks, Nigel Bradham was the team’s highest-graded linebacker at 67.5. Even with the return of Bradham and Ronald Darby at cornerback, every Philadelphia fan saw what happened a season ago when injuries depleted an already-thin unit at cornerback. Coverage is the most important facet in the NFL for a defense and getting players who can contribute in key passing downs at both linebacker and cornerback should be priority No. 1 for the Eagles.

Washington Redskins

Quarterback: Yes

Top needs: WR, CB, LB

Case Keenum isn’t likely the answer for the long term in our nation’s capital, and it’s unclear whether or not Alex Smith will ever play again after his injury and subsequent troubles following surgery. The Redskins may not have their choice of a top signal-caller with the 15th pick, but in a draft class that lacks a true No. 1 quarterback after Kyler Murray, the middle of the first round may be the spot where you can risk a selection on a potential boom-or-bust quarterback of the future. Still, a quarterback needs targets, and reliable ones at that, which is another position the Redskins must address in April. No receiver finished with a grade above 65.0 and that was last year’s $40-million signing Paul Richardson, who ranked just 71st among all receivers in overall grade. Jamison Crowder‘s exit presents a much-needed slot (pun intended) to fill as Crowder saw 306 targets come his way in his four seasons with the team.

NFC North

Chicago Bears

Quarterback: No

Top needs: Edge, OL, CB

The Bears spent big on Khalil Mack a season ago, letting go of two first-round picks in the process and all he did was finish the season with the fifth-most pressures in the regular season and push the Bears’ pass-rushing unit to the seventh overall grade as a team. However, outside of Mack, Leonard Floyd was the only other edge defender to tally more than 20 QB pressures and he reached just 36 on 443 pass-rushes. They’ll be in the market for a pass-rusher who can get home with pressure as well as a cornerback to fill the void left by Bryce Callahan‘s departure to Denver. Swing guard Eric Kush‘s prowess in pass protection a season ago playing behind James Daniels will also be sorely missed as Chicago could add depth in key spots along the offensive line in the earlier stages of Day 3.

Detroit Lions

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, TE, Edge

It was a bleak state of affairs for the Lions in coverage last season, especially at the cornerback position where former second-round pick Teez Tabor gave up a perfect passer rating on targets thrown his direction. Tabor gave up 22 receptions on 27 targets for 371 yards (16.9 yards per catch) and four touchdowns without making a play on the ball. As a team, they ranked 29th in coverage grades and behind Darius Slay, Nevin Lawson was their highest-graded cornerback at 60.6. Lawson is now in Oakland and while they made Justin Coleman the richest slot corner, there is still a void at outside CB in Detroit as well as serious questions at depth. As mentioned prior, coverage is the most valuable asset for a defense, so going cornerback early and often is not unrealistic and should probably be the way the Lions go in April.

Green Bay Packers

Quarterback: No

Top needs: S, WR, LB

Gone is Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and in is Adrian Amos in one of our favorite deals of free agency. However, opposite Amos will likely be Josh Jones if they weren’t to address the position further this offseason as Jones finished with a 61.7 overall grade to rank 74th overall a season ago. A year removed from selecting two cornerbacks with their first two picks, the Packers seemingly know the importance of coverage on the backend, but they should also be wary of the fact that they’re lacking in the game’s second-most valuable facet: receiving. Randall Cobb is a Dallas Cowboy and Davante Adams is as good as they come, but he can’t do it all. A trio of second-year players will likely see extended time as Equanimeous St. Brown, Marquez Valdes-Scantling and J’Mon Moore each impressed at times a season (albeit some in preseason), but another viable target for Aaron Rodgers seems vital.

Minnesota Vikings

Quarterback: No

Top needs: OG, DT, CB

It should be no surprise even to the football layman that the Vikings interior offensive line struggled in 2018. Combined between Danny Isidora, Mike Remmers and Tom Compton, the trio allowed 87 total QB pressures on 1,410 pass-blocking snaps. That’s one pressure per every 16.2 snaps in pass protection from just the guard position alone. They’re likely locked into having to come out of the 2019 NFL Draft with at least one starting-caliber offensive lineman, and guard is definitely the biggest area of need. Sheldon Richardson‘s departure also opens up a sizable gap along the interior of the defensive line and a Day 2 selection of one of the top interior defensive linemen in terms of pressure percentage makes sense.

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, Edge, OG

Atlanta drafted Isaiah Oliver a season ago and while he impressed in Year 1, there is very little depth behind him and Desmond Trufant, who certainly isn’t getting any younger. Blidi Wreh-Wilson represents the team’s current third cornerback but he’s coming off a season in which he played just 30 total snaps. Injuries decimated the Falcons as a whole on defense, so valuable additions along the depth chart at both cornerback and along the edge should be top priorities.

Carolina Panthers

Quarterback: No

Top needs: Edge, CB, WR

Julius Peppers should next be seen in Canton in five years, as he officially retired from the game after years of pressuring NFC South and NFC North quarterbacks. Peppers’ void leaves just Mario Addison as the only edge player who recorded more than 25 pressures in 2018. Bruce Irvin was signed but he managed just those 25 QB pressures a season ago, the lowest of his career since 2013. Donte Jackson was solid during his rookie season but still gave up 675 yards in coverage and he’s penciled in next to James Bradberry, who allowed 783 yards in coverage in 2018. The need at cornerback is there just as the need to add a pass-rushing force off the edge, and they should likely go with the best available at either position come their selection at 16th overall in April.

New Orleans Saints

Quarterback: Yes; Developmental QB

Top needs: OG, C, TE

Drew Brees has famously stated he wants to play until he’s well into the twilight of his career, but that shouldn’t stop the Saints from selecting a player to learn under his tutelage. Brees broke the PFF record for highest adjusted completion percentage in a season last year, besting the previous record that stood since 2007 with his 82.2% adjusted completion percentage. Still, the 2018 season marked the second year in a row that he averaged a depth of target shorter than 8.0 yards downfield after averaging well over 8.0 in the previous nine seasons. Outside of a quarterback in potentially the Day 2 or Day 3 range, the interior of the Saints offensive line is in need of help as Max Unger announced his retirement earlier this month and no guard finished with a grade above 63.1 last year.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Quarterback: Maybe

Top needs: CB, LB, Edge

It’s unknown how much longer Jameis Winston will play for the Bucs, as he’s entering the final year of his rookie contract and will likely get a hefty contract at the end of the year, but that’s where the question lies. Will the Bucs finally cut ties with him if he hasn’t shown improvement in Year 5 with the team, now under a new regime? Or will head coach Bruce Arians see enough out of him in their lone season together to warrant a possible extension? Either way, a reliable backup isn’t out of the question, as the current depth chart pits Ryan Griffin and Blaine Gabbert battling at QB2 in Tampa. The team’s most pressing need, however, is cornerback after hey finished with the 28th-ranked coverage unit last year. The long term plans at cornerback between Carlton Davis and M.J. Stewart were shaky in their first year with the team while Javien Elliott, the team’s highest-graded full-time player at the position is still a free agent. The loss of Kwon Alexander in the middle of the defense also will go a long way even despite his missed tackle woes. The acquisition of Shaquil Barrett and Deone Bucannon on one-year deals aren’t the solutions for the future more than they are a band-aid to fix massive gaps on the team currently and defense first in the 2019 draft should be their top priority.

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

Quarterback: Maybe

Top needs: OL, CB, WR

The Cardinals are rumored to Kyler Murray in more ways than one at the top of the 2019 NFL Draft and while the discussion is whether to trade former first-round pick Josh Rosen or not, there is no reason why the team couldn’t keep both signal-callers and go with the winner from camp. The idea of being married to a first-round pick as a starter right away doesn’t have to take effect next season, and the duo battling it out to be the best could be the ideal situation in the desert. Still, the Cardinals have needs elsewhere and that mainly is true of their offensive line which has struggled for years now. They were the league’s lowest-graded pass-blocking unit while possessing the NFL’s 22nd-lowest run-blocking group. Any acquisition in the early stages of the draft will almost certainly be an upgrade over a unit that allowed 218 total pressures a season ago.

Los Angeles Rams

Quarterback: No

Top needs: C, Edge, OT

The weak link along the Rams’ offensive line last season was at center, as John Sullivan limped to a 51.7 overall grade, which was the 34th-ranked grade at the position. With Rodger Saffold‘s departure from the guard spot, the interior offensive line is a key area for the defending NFC Champs to attack in the class and with Brian Allen the only center on roster right now, it makes the most sense to start there. After that, a replacement plan for Andrew Whitworth also seems logical as does a plan to get more pressure off the edge as the team had to spend $12 million to get the inconsistent Dante Fowler back for another year. Fowler may have had his best year yet as a pro with the Rams, he still only registered 46 total pressures on 480 snaps if you include the postseason. Adding a valued pass-rusher outside of the league’s best defensive player in Aaron Donald should only free up more one-on-one situations for the All-Pro in the interior.

San Francisco 49ers

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, Edge, OG

Jimmy Garoppolo returns to man a 49ers offense void of playmakers on the outside. George Kittle is a bona fide star at tight end but after him, the team’s highest receiving grades belong to Matt Breida and Kyle Juszczyk. San Francisco could use another receiver opposite Dante Pettis and even after the acquisition of Jordan Matthews, the team is locked into the 2019 season with a career-high receiving grade of 77.0, a figure that Marquise Goodwin put up in 2017. Mike Person and Laken Tomlinson struggled to move people for the run game while they each allowed at least 30 pressures a year ago and Person, the higher-graded of the duo, will be 31 when the season begins. But the most pressing need for the 49ers is certainly on the back end in coverage where the aging Richard Sherman and K’Waun Williams were the only two players to put up plus-grades on a unit that finished with the league’s lowest coverage grade last season. Sherman had career-low grades in overall, tackling and in coverage in his first season with the 49ers so getting a player to learn under the tutelage from one of the greats while also bolstering the league’s worst coverage unit from 2018 certainly is a good idea.

Seattle Seahawks

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, OG, Edge

Gone is Justin Coleman, the team’s highest-graded cornerback from a season ago. Akeem King, Tre Flowers and Neiko Thorpe should see more snaps in 2019 but with how important coverage is for a defense, adding to their cornerback room is vital. Starting cornerback Shaquill Griffin struggled in the role of No. 1 CB last year, allowing 66.2% of the passes thrown his way to be caught for 677 yards while he finished with just a 54.7 overall grade. They’ve found their fix at tackle on a historically bad offensive line from a few years back, but guard is still a weak spot. D.J. Fluker and Ethan Pocic return after putting forth overall grades of 50.9 and 45.9, respectively. Interior help along the offensive line should go a long way at aiding Duane Brown and George Fant on the outside.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

Quarterback: No

Top needs: Edge, TE, CB

The Bills knew they had an area of weakness on their defense at edge when they went out and signed Trent Murphy from the Redskins a year ago. However, Murphy struggled in his first year with the Bills and mustered just 21 total QB pressures. With Jerry Hughes set to be 31 at the season’s opener, and even after a career year from him, the Bills would be best suited to get someone who can wreak havoc on opposing offenses early in the draft. Providing an additional pass-rusher from the edge would only free Hughes up more and allow him to excel perhaps even more so than the 74 total pressures he accumulated a season ago. Elsewhere on defense, the Bills saw Levi Wallace become a revelation at cornerback and while they signed Kevin Johnson and E.J. Gaines this offseason, it is indeterminable to know which version of Johnson they’ll receive with his injury concerns or what they’ll get with Gaines, who logged only 181 snaps with a subpar performance in his season with the Browns.

Miami Dolphins

Quarterback: Yes

Top needs: Interior OL, Edge, LB

Ryan Fitzpatrick isn’t the answer. The Dolphins know that. Fitzpatrick knows that. While he may provide some plus-play at the position for the first time since Ryan Tannehill‘s stretch in 2013-14, Fitzpatrick is 36 years old and showed moments of hot and cold with the Bucs last year. Now on his third AFC East team over his career, the Dolphins would be best suited to go QB early and find ideally someone who can become the face of the franchise and learn from a wily vet like Fitzpatrick at sport’s most important position. Miami also lost Cameron Wake, Ted Larsen and Ja’Wuan James in free agency, opening big holes on the edge and at guard with Larsen’s departure and no immediate replacement plan.

New England Patriots

Quarterback: Yes; Developmental QB

Top needs: WR, TE, Edge

Even if Tom Brady plays for another five seasons, look at what they did with Jimmy Garoppolo and what they got in return. Why wouldn’t they take a replacement for the all-time great to groom and either play or subsequently trade away for draft capital? The defending Super Bowl champs have few holes and pass-catchers are on that list in a deep class at receiver and tight end. They’ll likely need to address the receiver position early and perhaps often as they return just Phillip Dorsett and Julian Edelman as significant contributors while the retirement of Rob Gronkowski puts them in a bind at the tight end position.

New York Jets

Quarterback: No

Top needs: Edge, WR, OT

The Jets may have a loaded receiver room but at this moment, there is no real star or No. 1 WR for QB Sam Darnold to rely on during Year 2. The same thing could not be said about the edge group in terms of depth, but this group also lacks a true threat to get after the passer. The interior of the defensive line is as strong as they come with Leonard Williams, Henry Anderson and a cast of others while their edge rotation got home with a combined 119 pressures on a whopping individual 1,127 pass-rushes. Their combined pressure rate of 19.7% was the league’s 23rd-lowest rate among edge defenders as a group and by far the worst in their division.

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

Quarterback: No

Top needs: WR, Edge, LB

The Ravens roster was overhauled during free agency, but not necessarily in the right way, losing their top three players in terms of tackling grade and their downfield threat as they still are lacking at wide receiver. They lost John Brown to the Bills and currently hold Willie Snead as the most experienced receiver on the roster. Their running back room is crowded just as their tight end corps is as well but the lack of options outside for Lamar Jackson to count on is thin, to say the least. The loss of Za’Darius Smith and Terrell Suggs at edge defender presents an obvious need along the edge as does the departure of C.J. Moseley who finished with the team’s highest grade at linebacker a season ago.

Cincinnati Bengals

Quarterback: Maybe

Top needs: LB, OT, TE

The Bengals re-signed Preston Brown to an extension but the release of Vontaze Burfict signified their desire to move on and get younger at the position. Even before Burfict’s release, linebacker was a need, it’s only now the clear-cut No. 1 area of need. New head coach Zac Taylor will almost certainly be watching Andy Dalton‘s performance under a microscope in his first year in Cincinnati as the quarterback guru’s expertise likely means either good things for Dalton’s future with the franchise or officially his way out. An escape plan from Dalton isn’t out of the cards in this year’s draft under the new regime, if the right quarterback falls to their draft spot.

Cleveland Browns

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, OT, LB

The Browns are football’s most talked about franchise this offseason after No. 1 overall pick a season ago, QB Baker Mayfield, has seemingly transformed the culture in Cleveland. Super Bowl odds are higher than anyone could have anticipated after a frenzied free agency period saw them bring over Olivier Vernon and Odell Beckham Jr. from the Giants as well as some other splash signings. Still, the Browns should benefit from some restructuring of the cornerback position. Outside of Denzel Ward, there was no real play of mention. T.J. Carrie‘s play down the stretch was strong and he didn’t allow a touchdown on 87 targets all season and had four pass breakups over the last eight games of 2018. Carrie, Ward and an additional threat at cornerback could make for a feared unit against a now seemingly void division of playmakers outside of Cincinnati’s A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Quarterback: No

Top needs: WR, CB, LB

This one is simple. Running backs are replaceable; re: James Conner. Wide receivers are not. JuJu Smith-Schuster is nearing the conversation to be considered one of the league’s best and that’s before he’s even been the best receiver on his own team. With Antonio Brown now in Oakland, Smith-Schuster is the No. 1 target for Big Ben Roethlisberger and the jury is out on the rest of the class at receiver. James Washington was abysmal in Year 1 with Pittsburgh, finishing with a 49.4 overall grade while newly-signed Donte Moncrief has failed to crack a 63.0 overall over the past two seasons. On defense, Joe Haden isn’t getting any younger and the signing of Steven Nelson came at a steep price for a guy who gave up 14.1 yards per reception a season ago. Pittsburgh’s needs are simple: find a reliable No. 2 receiver and a true shutdown corner, and do it quickly.

AFC South

Houston Texans

Quarterback: No

Top needs: OT, TE, OG

The loss of Duane Brown in the middle of the 2017 season has really never been repaired in Houston as Deshaun Watson was under pressure more frequently than any other quarterback last season (44.7% of dropbacks). While he played well under pressure, that kind of play is highly volatile and you would expect his high passer rating under duress to come back down to the mean, meaning a dropoff is likely in 2019. That more than answers why they should get a big name at tackle but it becomes even more clear when Kendall Lamm, the team’s highest-graded tackle at 63.8 from 2018, left to join the Cleveland Browns. Julie’n Davenport and Martinas Rankin were the league’s 77th and 85th ranked tackles, out of 85 tackles a season ago, and the team should be concentrating on improving protection on the outside of Watson’s line not only for their future but for Watson’s future.

Indianapolis Colts

Quarterback: No

Top needs: WR, DI, CB

The Colts saw a resurgence with a healthy Andrew Luck in the lineup and are seemingly just a few players removed from a true threat to AFC crown with Luck playing as well as he can. What Luck does lack in Indy, however, is playmakers on the outside, opposite T.Y. Hilton. Eric Ebron was a nice addition to the tight end spot and the Colts’ stable of backs are threats in the passing game but without Hilton, there would be no real threat at receiver. They gave former Carolina No. 1 Devin Funchess a one-year deal to see if he can muster some of the inconsistent success he found with the Panthers but considering his career-high grade came in his rookie season of 2015, it seems unlikely. On defense, the interior defensive line for the Colts was nothing more than above average run defenders in 2018 so adding a pass-rushing force from the middle should also be on the list.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Quarterback: No

Top needs: WR, OT, TE

Like their fellow AFC South rivals, the Jaguars are also void of receivers with Dede Westbrook playing the role of the highest-graded returning wide receiver. Unlike the Colts, however, starting running back Leonard Fournette is not much in the passing game outside of screen passes and flares out of the backfield and combining that with the loss of Donte Moncrief, the Jags are left with Keelan Cole and D.J. Chark as returning receivers. Marqise Lee returns from injury but even with his presence and the signing of Chris Conley, who hasn’t graded above 63.1 overall in his four seasons, the value receivers add to an offense are second only to the value a quarterback adds and should be paramount for Jacksonville in the draft.

Tennessee Titans

Quarterback: Maybe

Top needs: WR, OG, DI

Chalk this one up to the division that needs playmakers at receiver as the Titans are the third team in a row from the AFC South who could arguably use at least one additional receiver from the draft. Corey Davis represents the team’s No. 1 WR by a long shot and despite the signing of Adam Humphries to man the slot, the rest of the receiving corps looks bleak. Taywan Taylor has the tools to possibly breakout if utilized correctly but adding another threat on the outside and opposite Davis, one who can run a full route tree for Marcus Mariota should be high on the list. Rodger Saffold was signed to fill the void left by Quinton Spain‘s departure but right guard is certainly an issue as Kevin Pamphile, the likely starter, played only 155 snaps last season and finished with a 52.0 overall grade. In fact, Pamphile has two seasons in which he’s been a full-time player, and hasn’t finished with an overall grade above 60.0. This season will also go a long way at deciding whether or not Mariota will warrant a hefty extension to stay with the Titans or if, similar to Jameis Winston above, the Titans will be ready to move on from their oft-injured quarterback after five years.

AFC West

Denver Broncos

Quarterback: Yes

Top needs: WR, OG, DI

Joe Flacco isn’t the end-all solution for the Broncos at quarterback. John Elway knows it, Broncos faithful know it. Still, Flacco represents an upgrade from Case Keenum a season ago, who failed to recreate the success he saw in Minnesota in 2017. A young signal-caller is likely headed to Mile High to learn under the former Super Bowl MVP for at least a season but the Broncos shouldn’t stop there at recreating their offense. Emmanuel Sanders isn’t getting any younger and Courtland Sutton will likely need to do more to be considered a real outside threat in Year 2 as those two represent the top targets for Flacco at this time. Along the interior of the offensive line, Matt Paradis left for Carolina and Billy Turner left for a payday in Green Bay after they were the Broncos’ highest-graded interior offensive linemen a season ago. With Connor McGovern likely to take over the center role in Denver, guard is arguably the most important need for the Broncos outside of receiver given the value of pass-catchers in today’s NFL.

Kansas City Chiefs

Quarterback: No

Top needs: CB, Edge, WR

It’s no shock that the Chiefs need help in the secondary after their cornerback unit finished with the league’s 26th-ranked coverage grade. The loss of Steven Nelson does hurt, even if he did allow 971 yards in coverage last year, as they’re left with just Kendall Fuller and newly-signed Bashaud Breeland as the only two cornerbacks with plus-grades over their careers. Coverage is imperative for a defense to succeed in and if the Chiefs don’t do something to secure the services of top-notch coverage defenders at the position, you can expect that to draw the ire of Chiefs’ fans. The loss of Dee Ford – the league leader in total pressures a season ago – and Justin Houston along the edge also present a massive gap to fill in the 2019 draft (or offseason altogether).

Los Angeles Chargers

Quarterback: Yes; Developmental QB

Top needs: OT, DI, OG

Sure, Philip Rivers put forth his best season in some years in 2018 but the simple fact remains: he isn’t getting any younger. Anthony Lynn has to have some sort of backup plan that isn’t Tyrod Taylor, even if Taylor can suffice in a pinch this or even the next season. Still, the chance to draft a developmental quarterback on Day 3 to learn from one of the game’s all-time regular season greats in Rivers, is one they should jump at. As far as other positions, this one is easy: The Chargers put forth the league’s 31st-graded pass-blocking unit a season ago and there are holes all along the line. Between Sam Tevi, Joe Barksdale and Trent Scott, the need for a stalwart tackle along the right side of the offensive line is one that should be filled right away as all three of those aforementioned players put forth sub-63.0 overall grades in 2018.

Oakland Raiders

Quarterback: No

Top needs: Edge, CB, LB

The whole NFL world watched what happened when the Raiders traded away Khalil Mack and he single-handedly out-pressured the entire Oakland edge room last season. And now, the whole NFL world will watch as head coach Jon Gruden attempts to fix the massive hole left by the departed Mack and Bruce Irvin, who left in the middle of last year. The Raiders were the league’s lowest-graded unit in terms of pass-rush grade and stopping at nothing short of a dominant edge rusher in the first round would be a loss. Their defensive woes don’t end there, however, as unproven Nick Nelson mans one cornerback spot, Gareon Conley and his 771 career snaps man the other and Nevin Lawson comes over from Detroit to start in the slot. Conley has failed to recreate the magic he had in his final season at Ohio State while Nelson was the team’s lowest-graded starter at any position a season ago.

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