It has been an active offseason in the National Football League already, with a number of prominent players switching teams. A few of them will likely shift the balance of power around the league.
Oh, and there’s also that Tom Brady guy who unretired. He’s still pretty good, and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers should continue to be in the mix for another Super Bowl ring.
All this player movement and news has fans of several teams dreaming of a world championship parade next winter. But which squads have improved the most thus far?
3. Denver Broncos
The rumor mill had been swirling about the Broncos acquiring an elite quarterback for some time now. The hot rumor going back about a year was that the Green Bay Packers’ Aaron Rodgers would pack his bags and head to Colorado, and that the Broncos badly wanted him.
Well, the Broncos got their man, but not that man. This week, they officially consummated a trade with the Seattle Seahawks to nab Russell Wilson.
"Who is Russell Wilson? Quarterback of the Denver Broncos."
We like the way that sounds, @DangeRussWilson.
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) March 20, 2022
In addition, that defense should be even better with the addition of Randy Gregory and D.J. Jones. Gregory had six sacks in 12 games during the 2021 season, while Jones should improve Denver’s somewhat lacking run defense.
The Broncos may not be the team to beat, but they’ll certainly have a shot at winning it all.
2. Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers came within a whisker of making the playoffs this past season when it lost a heartbreaking overtime contest to the Las Vegas Raiders in Week 18.
L.A. boasts one of the best quarterbacks in the world in Justin Herbert, who is only entering his third season, along with two of the better wideouts in the game in Mike Williams and Keenan Allen, as well as versatile running back Austin Ekeler.
Have the Chargers done enough to compete for the AFC West title?
**Sign CB J.C. Jackson to 5-yr/$82.5M contract
**Bears to trade LB Khalil Mack to Chargers for 2022 2nd-rd & 2023 6th-rd draft picks pic.twitter.com/eS1M6T1AeE
— Good Morning Football (@gmfb) March 15, 2022
Mack missed 10 games last season due to injury, but he had six sacks in seven games for the Chicago Bears and is still a difference-maker when healthy. Combined with Joey Bosa, Mack should allow the Chargers to aggressively pressure opposing QBs in 2022.
Jackson, meanwhile, will shore up what was a weak secondary. He was arguably the best corner on the open market, and he led the NFL in ’21 with 23 passes defended, while holding opposing wideouts to a 49.1 percent completion rate when targeted.
Could the Chargers soon overcome their so-called “curse” and make Inglewood, Calif, the location of SoFi Stadium, the City of Champions once again?
1. Las Vegas Raiders
The Raiders already had a promising squad, but now their legion of fans feel they have a great shot at their first world championship since they played in Los Angeles during the 1980s.
Their big splash was trading for star wideout Davante Adams, who was reportedly disgruntled with his former employer, the Green Bay Packers. Adams will give QB Derek Carr, whom he played with in college, a massive weapon to take advantage of.
With the Jon Gruden controversy now behind them, the Raiders can be focused as a unit on getting to the next level.