<
>
Insider

NFL overhaul rankings: Teams that will change most for 2018

play
Riddick doesn't see a future for Tyrod in Buffalo (1:35)

Louis Riddick breaks down a hypothetical scenario in which the Bills and the Chiefs work out a trade for QB Alex Smith. (1:35)

NFL teams will spend the first months of 2018 devising their game plans for free agency and the draft. In the meantime, several indicators help with projecting how far teams might go in overhauling their rosters.

Coaching changes, scheme changes, front-office changes, expectations, average player ages and starters unsigned for next season can provide clues. Using those and other cues, I've placed all 24 eliminated teams on the overhaul continuum. Check back after each playoff weekend to see where the the newly eliminated teams rank.


The first 11 teams seem likely to make bigger changes and/or a larger number of moves.

1. Arizona Cardinals

Indicators: new head coach; new QB; NFL's oldest starters; league-high 10 unsigned veterans with at least eight starts and seven more with one to seven starts

GM Steve Keim has alluded to an overhaul that will probably make the Cardinals younger as they build around David Johnson, Chandler Jones and Patrick Peterson. The timing seems right, with coach Bruce Arians and quarterback Carson Palmer retiring.

The Cardinals rank No. 1 by a wide margin in 2017 snaps and starts by unsigned veterans (40 percent of their starts from 2017 are tied up with players who have four-plus years of experience and no contract for next season). As the oldest team in the NFL, the Cardinals have even more reason to overhaul. Keim has been aggressive in the lower-priced veteran market. Now, he could be looking for players to fit new schemes.