Some say that the Super Bowl is won in the offseason. It is a critical time for teams to bolster their rosters and improve the holes they had from the year before. The offseason is when a well-executed draft, a monumental trade, or a couple of key-free agent signings came take a team from constant duds to Super Bowl champs…just ask the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
This is our NFL Team Needs series. We will break down the top needs for each team in the league by division. Let’s examine the NFC North.
Green Bay Packers – RB, WR, CB, LB
I can tell you exactly what the Packers should be doing this offseason but after drafting a quarterback in round one last year, there is no telling what direction this team will go. Aaron Jones is a free agent this year and a guy who has been a staple for Rodgers, if they don’t bring him back, AJ Dillon will need a complement in the backfield. Speaking of key players, the Packers should get someone to help Davante Adams. Kendrick Bourne or Julian Edelman are my picks. Next up is getting some defense that can slow down Tom Brady. Names like JJ Watt have been thrown around, but Green Bay doesn’t have much salary cap room and should sign a smaller name so that they have money left over to upgrade the secondary.
Detroit Lions – WR, CB, LB, DL
The Lions made a huge move when they traded Matt Stafford. They got a decent quarterback in Jared Goff in return, not to mention the extra draft picks. Now they need to give Goff some weapons on offense with guys like Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay potentially on the way out. But the real focus should be improving the defense. They allowed nearly 420 yards per game which was last in the league and they need major upgrades. Detroit desperately needs help in their secondary and a presence on the defensive line to get to the quarterback. If Detroit wants to seriously contend with teams like the Packers, defensive needs come first. New coach Dan Campbell has his work cut out for him.
Chicago Bears – QB, WR, OT, DL
The Bears have a bit of a mess on their hands. It is clear that neither Nick Foles or Mitch Trubisky are the guys moving forward and now they need to figure out who their quarterback of the future will be. A trade for Deshaun Watson would be great but is highly unlikely. The Bears don’t have a ton of salary cap money to spend and will more than likely lose Allen Robinson to free agency, which means they need a quarterback and number one receiver. Thankfully, their defense is superb. However, they will need an excellent draft and a few great trades to turn things around. The Bears could take a flier on one of the lower graded quarterbacks like Kyle Trask and Mac Jones and hope they get lucky.
Minnesota Vikings – OL, S, EDGE
The Vikings were without three top defensive linemen in 2020 and it hurt them a ton. Minnesota needs to work on getting rid of some salary cap casualties and then they need to focus on some good trades and low-end free agents they can bring in to fill the reserves. Ryan Kerrigan is an intriguing option that shouldn’t cost a ton and would bring a much-needed veteran presence to the team. I also like Kawaan Short to help the defensive line out. Offensively the team ranked sixth in points scored but adding another receiver to complement rookie phenom Justin Jefferson would be great. A good draft and a couple of key free agent signings could put the Vikings back in the playoffs.