Zak Drapeau's NFL Offseason Review Part 1: Ranking Every NFL Team's 2023 Offseason
The 2023 NFL Draft has come and go and we are now only 3 months away from the return of NFL Football! The 2023 NFL Offseason began only 2 months ago with the Kansas City Chiefs being crowned champions for the second time in four years. The last 3 months have been somewhat grounded compared to previous offseasons but was still filled with mayhem, confusion and excitement as each of the NFL's 32 teams gear up for a run at Super Bowl 58.
With the NFL Draft being over, we thought it would be a good time to look over all the events that have transpired since February and rank each team's progress it's made. Some teams were VERY active while other teams took a more submissive approach, mostly depending on last year's success and salary cap maneuverability.
For these rankings, we will be weighting player personnel movements, including free agency and trade acquisitions as well as draft picks against the team's player departures to see how the team got better or worse over the offseason. We have attached a grade to each team where 80 is average, (team didn't get better or worse) while anything above means the team did better and vice versa.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This is not a list projecting power rankings for the 2023-24 season, it is just a list showing how team's faired in the offseason improving or declinging their roster.
Let's get right to it!
1. Atlanta Falcons Grade 87
Key Acquisitions: Safety Jessie Bates III, Defensive Tackle David Onyemata, Tight End Jonnu Smith, QB Taylor Heinicke, DT Calais Campbell, CB Mike Hughes and Edge Bud Dupree
Key Departures: CB Casey Heyward and Edge Rusher Dante Fowler Jr.
Key Draft Picks: RB Bijan Robinson, OT Matthew Bergeron, CB Clark Phillips III and SAF DeMarcco Hellams
The Falcons have taken our gold medal and have to be absolutely over the moon with their offseason. Free Agency was their bread and butter, signing multiple defensive players that will make an immediate impact for their defense which ranked 25th in passing and 23rd in rushing. They also lost very little value in Free Agency.
Adding Bijan Robinson will give an instant playmaker to first year starter Desmond Ridder while snagging two draft steals in the secondary in Phillips and Hellams will improve their defense this year while guaranteeing growth for seasons to come.
2. Philadelphia Eagles Grade 85.3
Key Acquisitions: RB D'Andre Swift, SAF Terrell Edmunds and CB Greedy Williams
Key Departures: SAF Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, DT Javon Hargrave and RB Miles Sanders
Key Draft Picks: DT Jalen Carter, Edge Nolan Smith and CB Kelee Ringo
The Rich Get Richer! The Eagles were the kings of the NFL Draft this year and everyone should take note of Howie Roseman over the last two years. The Eagles have snagged Jordan Davis, Nakobe Dean, Jalen Carter, Nolan Smith, AJ Brown and D'Andre Swift on draft night in the last two years and are certainly gearing up for another Super Bowl run.
While they did lose A LOT in free Agency, they went out and replaced all positions that suffered and then some! Look for their Early Super Bowl Odds to be Top 3 this year.
3. Seattle Seahawks Grade 84.3
Key Acquisitions: LB Devin Bush, DL Dre'Mont Jones and LB Bobby Wagner
Key Departures: DT Shelby Harris, RB Rashad Penny and DT Poona Ford
Key Draft Picks: CB Devon Witherspoon, CB Jaxon Smith-Njigba Edge Derrick Hall, RB Zach Charbonnet and C Olusegun Oluwatimi
The Seahawks take our bronze medal but this is no consolidation prize. Seattle had a huge splash in the draft while also retooling their defense in Free Agency, a defense that ranked 25th last year. The finality of the Russell Wilson trade has been reached and in total the Seahawks made out with three offensive starters and possibly three more on defense, while still acquiring a third round pick for next year.
Time will tell how far Geno Smith can take this team but be sure their Super Bowl window is now and Pete Carroll and company have taken full advantage of it.
4. Houston Texans Grade 84
Key Acquisitions: OG Shaq Mason, WR Robert Woods, TE Dalton Schultz, RB Devin Singletary, DT Sheldon Rankins and SAF Tyree Gillespie
Key Departures: WR Brandin Cooks, TE OJ Howard and OG AJ Cann
Key Draft Picks: QB CJ Stroud, Edge Will Anderson Jr. and LB Henry To'o To'o
Two words can sum up the Texans this offseason: All in. The Texans grabbed the future of their franchise on both sides of the ball in the draft while also bolstering their offense in Free Agency. The Texans had to trade a lot of draft capitol to get Will Anderson Jr but if he lives up to his potential, the cost will definitely be worth it.
Especially in the AFC South, The Texans seem to planning a major playoff run in only a season or two thanks to this offseason. New Head Coach Demeco Ryans has wasted no time building this team and should improve his defense with his tutelage alone, and was very smart to help his offense this offseason.