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2023 NFL season: 10 biggest remaining roster holes

As we approach the NFL's annual summer break, the bulk of the team-building process is in the rearview.

The 2023 NFL Draft and the lion's share of free agency have long since passed, but there is still work to be done. Following OTAs and mandatory minicamps, we'll see roster tinkering ahead of training camps in late July.

Some big-name free agents still have to find homes, including recently released receiver DeAndre Hopkins and running back Dalvin Cook. Other veterans like Yannick Ngakoue, Jadeveon Clowney, Dalton Risner, Marcus Peters and Teddy Bridgewater could help upgrade rosters at this late stage.

Even with lineups mostly set, there are still holes on every roster. No team is a perfect compilation -- not in the offseason, not ever. The best clubs fill those voids on the fly, plugging gaps and papering over injuries sustained.

As we head into the down period for players, let's take a gander at 10 roster holes that could use upgrades ahead of the 2023 season.

Kansas City Chiefs
Edge rusher

Kansas City parted ways with veteran Frank Clark, who recently signed with AFC West rival Denver, leaving the Chiefs young on the edges. Andy Reid's club is counting on 2022 first-rounder George Karlaftis to build on a solid first year, when he finished second on the team with six sacks. Free-agent addition Charles Omenihu brings upside in an expanded role after being a rotational player his first four years, while 2023 first-rounder Felix Anudike-Uzomah should play a lot in his rookie campaign. Last season, the Chiefs were a committee pressure force, finishing second in the NFL with 55 sacks, despite DT Chris Jones (15.5) being the only K.C. player in double digits. They'll need that same sort of spread production in 2023. Still, it wouldn't be a surprise if K.C. brought in a veteran presence to round out the group closer to the season -- especially one looking for a ring who might take less money to join Patrick Mahomes. A solid group of veteran edge rushers is currently available in Ngakoue, Clowney and former Chiefs Melvin Ingram and Justin Houston. The edge depth chart isn't a fatal flaw for the Chiefs, but it could be solidified ahead of the Super Bowls champs' title defense.

Jacksonville Jaguars
Edge rusher

The Jaguars lost a chunk of their pass rush with Arden Key signing in Tennessee this offseason. To date, they haven't replaced his production with a veteran presence. Jacksonville is banking on 25-year-old Josh Allen returning to Pro Bowl form and 2022 No. 1 overall pick Travon Walker finding his footing after an up-and-down first season that saw him register 3.5 sacks. K'Lavon Chaisson, Jordan Smith and fifth-round rookie Yasir Abdullah are the top depth options. Coach Doug Pederson has noted the club could look to add a low-cost veteran later this summer to help round out the group. Jacksonville produced solid pressure last season, but tallied 35 just total sacks in 2022, tied for seventh-fewest. To take the next step in 2023, the Jags' defense needs to go from getting pressure to getting the QB on the ground.

Atlanta Falcons
Wide receiver

The Falcons want to pound the ball on the ground, which makes perfect sense, given their coach and roster makeup. That said, wide receiver Drake London displayed flashes of tremendous upside in Year 1, and ATL is counting on a Year 2 leap. Beyond London, the WR corps screams for aid. Even if we consider tight end Kyle Pitts -- who had a down, injury-abbreviated 2022 campaign -- a WR type, the Falcons remain shallow. Mack Hollins is currently No. 2, coming off his only season above the 300-yard mark. Scott Miller, KhaDarel Hodge and Penny Hart are the depth options. If the wideout corps remains unchanged, Desmond Ridder will use his tight ends (Pitts and Jonnu Smith) and running backs (Bijan Robinson, Tyler Allgeier and Cordarrelle Patterson) a lot in the passing game. He'll have to.

New Orleans Saints
Defensive line

The Saints lost bulk in the middle, with David Onyemata (Falcons) and Shy Tuttle (Panthers) leaving for division rivals. Oft-injured first-round defensive end Marcus Davenport (Vikings) also departed in free agency. Khalen Saunders was a solid signing, but can he be more than the rotational player he was in Kansas City? The Saints hope rookies Bryan Bresee and Isaiah Foskey can help plug the holes. Of course, we've seen New Orleans rookies struggle out of the gate in the past (SEE: Davenport and 2021 first-rounder Payton Turner). For a club out to win the NFC South, the Saints are counting an awful lot on soon-to-be 34-year-old Cameron Jordan to generate a pass rush.

Baltimore Ravens
Edge rusher

Baltimore spent the offseason stocking up on offensive weapons for Lamar Jackson, but the defensive front has serious questions. 2021 first-round pick Odafe Oweh took a step back in Year 2 and will look to rebound this fall. 2022 second-rounder David Ojabo had most of his rookie campaign wiped out due to a pre-draft injury. The Ravens are relying heavily on the Michigan product becoming a consistent force. Two of Baltimore's top sack producers from last season aren't on the roster. Calais Campbell left for Atlanta, and Justin Houston remains a free agent. Could a Houston reunion be in the cards? It wouldn't be a surprise if general manager Eric DeCosta added multiple veterans at some point to round out a group lacking in depth and playmakers.

Chicago Bears
Defensive end

General manager Ryan Poles has revamped almost the entire roster in his first two years on the job, but top-shelf pass-rushing options remain scant. The Bears' current rotation includes DeMarcus Walker, Dominique Robinson, Trevis Gipson and Rasheem Green. Walker generated seven sacks last season in Tennessee. None of the rest hit the four-sack mark. Chicago recorded a league-worst 20 sacks a season ago -- safety Jaquan Brisker led the way with four. Poles and coach Matt Eberflus haven't prioritized the rush, but it would make life much easier on the back end if the Bears had a player who could win off the snap and command an offense's attention up front.

Tennessee Titans
Wide receiver

It's no coincidence the Titans had free agent DeAndre Hopkins in for a visit. Tennessee's receiver crew is thin. 2022 first-round pick Treylon Burks is the top dog after showing brief flashes in an injury-plagued debut season. Burks has upside but needs to take a big step forward in Year 2. The Titans retained Nick Westbrook-Ikhine for peanuts (one year, $1.26 million), considering he's currently the club's No. 2 wideout. The only free-agent addition so far this offseason? Veteran Chris Moore. And Tennessee waited until the seventh-round (Colton Dowell) to address the position in the draft. It's the thinnest WR group in the NFL. Add Hopkins, and that would change things somewhat.

Las Vegas Raiders

There are plenty of questionable areas on the Raiders' roster. Backup quarterback looks cringy if Jimmy Garoppolo's return from offseason surgery is delayed, with veteran Brian Hoyer and fourth-round rookie Aiden O'Connell next in line. Surprisingly, Vegas didn't upgrade the O-line, but the cornerback cupboard is particularly bare. David Long Jr. and Duke Shelley are currently pegged as the outside corners, but neither has been a full-time starter before. Nate Hobbs is a solid nickel. The group lacks a No. 1 and is counting on parts to create a whole. Adding a veteran to solidify the corps should be a priority before the season kicks off.

Los Angeles Rams
Entire defense

Can an entire side of the ball be a roster hole? The Rams jettisoned most of their veteran defenders as part of their massive overhaul, electing to go uber young. Jalen Ramsey, Bobby Wagner, Leonard Floyd, A'Shawn Robinson, Greg Gaines, Taylor Rapp and others are gone. Alongside Aaron Donald, the defensive front is basically an NFL version of Hasbro's "Guess Who?" Third-round rookies Byron Young and Kobie Turner will likely play a ton. The back end could all come down to training camp battles, save for the one safety spot occupied by Jordan Fuller. Los Angeles likes its young pieces, including 2022 rookies Cobie Durant and Derion Kendrick, but they'll be tasked with proving they can be every-down players. It's clearly a rebuilding season for L.A., but adding a few low-cost veterans to buttress the young players could go a long way in a transition year.  

Arizona Cardinals
Defensive front

This certainly isn't the only concerning spot on Arizona's current roster, but it's the most apparent. The front seven is a complete question mark following J.J. Watt's retirement and Zach Allen's relocation to Denver. Maybe former Seattle first-round pick L.J. Collier finds his way after four unproductive, injury-marred seasons with the Seahawks, but we're already squinting for optimism. The Cardinals hope moving former first-rounder Zaven Collins to outside linebacker will unlock dormant potential. Can second-round pick BJ Ojulari provide instant pressure off the edge? At this point, analyzing Arizona's defense is like playing blackjack in the dark. With the 2023 season looking like a steep uphill battle before it even begins, GM Monti Ossenfort might not have much interest in spending to upgrade the group at this point, which likely means the Cards' D will struggle in Jonathan Gannon's first year as head coach.

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