Hello everyone, and happy Wednesday. Joe Burrow isn't locked up for the long term in Cincinnati just yet, so John Breech is taking the day to advocate for exactly that. Or at least I think he is. In the meantime, you've got me, Cody Benjamin, to deliver all the latest from around the NFL.
This is the Pick Six Newsletter. Now let's get to it. (And please, do yourself a favor and make sure you're signed up to receive this newsletter every day! You don't want to miss our daily offerings of everything you need to know around the NFL.)
We've got free agency previews, a definitive ranking of 2022 QBs, and lots more:
1. Today's show: Which teams need offseason overhauls?
Ryan Wilson and John Breech joined Will Brinson on Wednesday's "Pick Six NFL" podcast to break down the forthcoming offseason and identify which teams in each division require the most turnover in free agency and the draft. Some highlights:
- Wilson thinks the Patriots should be headed for restructuring in the AFC East. "It starts and ends with Bill O'Brien," he said. "He has to be able to fix that trainwreck" of an offense. Questions at QB, up front and out wide are part of the issue.
- Breech thinks the Browns and Ravens are about even in terms of needs in the AFC North, but he leans Baltimore: "Not only do they have to deal with the quarterback situation," but they've got key defensive starters headed for free agency.
- The guys agree that while the Texans are easy candidates for roster turnover, the Colts may be in a more dire spot out of the AFC South. "The Texans have $20 million more in cap space," Breech said, "and a slightly higher" draft pick for a QB.
Catch the full episode (and subscribe for daily NFL talk) right here.
2. Free agent WR market: Top targets for 2023 offseason
Quarterbacks get all the attention, but if you don't have reliable pass-catchers, you're probably not going the distance, either. So which veterans are set to be available this offseason? Jared Dubin separated all the notable pending free agents into different categories, including slot targets, speed demons and possession receivers, to provide a full overview of the 2023 market.
At the very top of the market, however, might be three unicorns -- guys who don't fit into any one specific category. Here's Dubin on those three big names, who figure to garner varying levels of interest:
Jakobi Meyers, Odell Beckham Jr. and Julio Jones: Meyers is a slot guy, but he can also win on the outside. ... (He) was pretty damn productive in New England. He's 26 years old, and he's probably the best wideout available this offseason. Beckham didn't play at all last season as he rehabbed his torn ACL. At his peak, he is one of the very best players at the position. We haven't seen that peak in a while, though, and we don't know how close to it he can get in the wake of his injury. Jones, meanwhile, is just Julio Freaking Jones. Or at least, he used to be. You have no idea what you're going to get if you sign him, other than that you're not likely to get a whole lot of it due to his persistent health issues.
3. Ranking every QB to throw a pass in the 2022 season
Now that the 2022 campaign is fully in the rear view, we decided to recap the year in quarterback play by ranking each and every signal-caller to throw a pass, either in the regular season or the playoffs. A record number of QBs started games in 2022, with more than 20 teams relying on multiple players under center. So we had plenty to sort through -- 82, in total. You can find the entire breakdown right here, but in the meantime, here's a look at our final top six, who were in a category of their own:
- Patrick Mahomes (Chiefs)
- Jalen Hurts (Eagles)
- Joe Burrow (Bengals)
- Josh Allen (Bills)
- Trevor Lawrence (Jaguars)
- Justin Herbert (Chargers)
These guys are the real deal, through and through, and they all proved it in 2022. It's not a coincidence that two of them are among the highest-paid in the game, and three more are eligible for lucrative deals this offseason. Mahomes sets the near-unachievable standard for contemporary quarterbacking, and his seamless crunch-time production as the MVP and Super Bowl MVP confirmed he reigns supreme. Hurts truly looks fit to rival the other young stars for the foreseeable future, however, after his breakout as a confident dual threat. Burrow matches Hurts' poise as a prototypical pocket artist, and both Lawrence and Herbert teased the same power in their first playoff appearances. Allen is the biggest wild card, possessing Mahomes-like athleticism but failing to secure a top-three spot -- or deep playoff run -- thanks in part to a reckless style.
4. Jets pitch themselves to Derek Carr, teasing Hall of Fame run
If you wanna know what QB desperation looks like, look no further than the Jets. New York is seemingly ready for a playoff run, so long as it adds an experienced arm under center, and the club recently hosted ex-Raiders starter Derek Carr for a free agent visit. But that's not it: while courting Carr, one of the top veteran QBs on the market, the Jets argued they could make an immediate Super Bowl run with him on their squad, and that Carr can become a first-ballot Hall of Famer by joining Gang Green, per ESPN. Talk about boosting an ego -- and/or distorting reality -- to secure your man.
5. A.J. Brown jokes Eagles should trade him if Jalen Hurts isn't paid
A year after the star wide receiver was dealt by the Titans, Brown told the "Raw Room" podcast this week that he might as well be moved again if Philadelphia doesn't extend quarterback Jalen Hurts on a long-term deal. It was in good fun, of course, with Brown joking that he's just putting more pressure on general manager Howie Roseman to secure the team's new face of the franchise: "I'm definitely going to do everything in my power to play as long with Jalen as I can, him and DeVonta (Smith)," Brown said. "(But) they gotta give Jalen the house, the building, the state, everything. ... They gotta pay him."
6. Rapid fire roundup: Coaching news, XFL power rankings, more
Hungry for additional headlines? We've got you covered:
- McCoy questions Bieniemy's credentials: While other ex-Chiefs have defended the coach
- Evan Engram hopes for long-term deal with Jaguars: The tight end wants to stay in Jacksonville
- New Ravens OC believes Lamar Jackson is elite: Todd Monken may or may not coach the QB in 2023
- Jim Caldwell done seeking HC jobs: The longtime coach is content as an assistant in Carolina
- NFC East offseason priorities: Jeff Kerr surveys the biggest holes for each team in the division
- XFL Week 2 power rankings: An updated look at the hierarchy of teams in the rejuvenated league