Offseason Moves and Draft Needs: NFC West
This is the final installment of an eight-part series detailing the biggest offseason moves and where teams still need to fill holes via the NFL Draft. Here, I will focus on the NFC West with a slant toward the impact on dynasty leagues.
Kliff Kingsbury takes over as the Cardinals new head coach and we should assume he would be installing his spread principles from the college ranks, possibly with a high percentage of four wide receiver sets. We should also consider that Kyler Murray may be the Cardinals' pick first overall. Arizona’s offensive line was truly dreadful last year, as well as very beat up from injuries. To help this huge problem area, the Cardinals have added Marcus Gilbert, J.R. Sweezy and Max Garcia, but more work here is needed for sure. The Cardinals also signed Charles Clay, who replaces Jermaine Gresham. Brett Hundley replaces Mike Glennon as a depth quarterback.
No matter who is playing quarterback, this offense needs to go through David Johnson. With better scheme and line play, Johnson should be in for a much-improved season. People in your dynasty league might have forgotten how truly great of an all-around back Johnson still is. The effects from the coaching change on Johnson should be highly positive and we know having a dangerous running quarterback really benefits the run game as a whole. Still, this offense only managed to score 24 touchdowns in 2018, so don’t expect a fantasy bonanza all of a sudden. However, with the RPO’s and spreading the field horizontally, Kingsbury’s system could be ideal for Murray.
What To Expect
It seems pretty close to a foregone conclusion that Murray will be heading to Arizona. And while it might not happen immediately, that surely means that Josh Rosen will be playing elsewhere. We will have to see how that plays out and what Arizona gets in return. When healthy, Gilbert is an excellent right tackle and this was a low-risk gamble worth taking for Arizona, but his injury history is very concerning. There isn’t an offensive line position the Cardinals should shy away from adding throughout the draft. This is somewhat true at wide receiver as well, especially if we assume that we are bound to see many formations with three or more wideouts on the field. Arizona should be looking for top after-the-catch options here in a quick-hitting attack with suspect pass protection and a young quarterback. It is unclear how much this coaching staff values the tight end position and with so many needs on one of the league’s worst rosters, they might just stick with what they have there for 2019.
Los Angeles Rams
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