There's been no shortage of quarterback movement this offseason. Russell Wilson (Broncos) and Matt Ryan (Colts) jumped from the NFC to the AFC through shocking March trades after playing at least a decade with their former squads, the Seattle Seahawks and Atlanta Falcons, respectively. Other younger signal-callers, Deshaun Watson (Browns) and Carson Wentz (Commanders) among them, were also traded. Then there's the slew of passers who recommitted (Jameis Winston, Saints) or relocated (Marcus Mariota, Falcons) in free agency.
After all of that movement, there are still a number of teams that need to fill the game's most important position as we draw closer to the 2022 NFL Draft, which is April 28-30 in Las Vegas. When assessing the NFL landscape, one question comes to mind:
Which team most needs to select a quarterback in Round 1?
Joe Thomas: I'm looking at the Detroit Lions. They have nine total picks in this year's draft, including a pair of first-rounders (Nos. 2 and 32 overall), the second of which they received in the Matthew Stafford trade. With a serviceable veteran in Jared Goff in place for 2022 -- but likely gone beyond that -- this is the perfect opportunity to draft a quarterback. The Lions could let a rookie develop and learn for a year from a former No. 1 overall pick as the team around him improves, then pass the reins over next offseason. No quarterback in this year's draft class is going to be truly ready to play in Year 1, anyway. They'll all benefit from a wait-and-see season, which the Lions can offer.
DeAngelo Hall: The Seattle Seahawks must make a move for a franchise quarterback with the ninth overall pick after trading away nine-time Pro Bowler Russell Wilson. Liberty's Malik Willis has the intangibles to be the Josh Allen of this draft, with a big, strong arm and immense physical gifts. Pete Carroll can use the same plan to develop Willis that he had with Wilson: build a strong defense, protect him with the run game and gradually bring him along. Seattle needs a player who can be sold to the 12s and compete with Drew Lock.
Brian Baldinger: I think it has to be Carolina. We've seen enough of Sam Darnold; he's not the guy. As it stands now, Scott Fitterer and Matt Rhule are struggling to build a team because there's been so much change at the game's most important position. Until they find an answer at quarterback, this team remains in flux, which is why the Panthers should take one at No. 6 overall.
James Jones: For the first time since the 2011 season, the Seahawks will have someone other than Russell Wilson under center. The Seahawks did acquire Drew Lock from Denver in the Wilson trade, but their work at quarterback is far from done. They are in good position to draft one of the top QB prospects at No. 9 overall to compete with Lock in 2022 and become the quarterback of the future for 2023 and beyond.
Marc Ross: The Carolina Panthers have swung and missed several times at the quarterback position in the Matt Rhule era with Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Darnold, and they missed out on Deshaun Watson last month. Owner David Tepper wants a star at quarterback. With Rhule entering his third season at the helm under pressure after back-to-back five-win seasons, and with the presence of new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, the Panthers are poised to make an aggressive move for a QB in Round 1.