» The NFC champs will roll out an almost identical roster to the one they employed in the Super Bowl. The glaring change is Josh Norman no longer anchoring the secondary. I don't have any rookies slated to start at the moment, which is a great sign for the Panthers' chances of repeating. Getting Kelvin Benjamin back in the lineup in it of itself is a huge boost to Cam Newton.
»Daryl Worley will play the slot corner. Robert McClain was picked on heavily opposite Norman last year, but is likely to keep his starting spot -- at least until the rookies have some seasoning. James Bradberry and Zack Sanchez should get a chance to steal playing time after the first month, especially if offenses continue to take advantage of McClain. This all assumes Bene' Benwikere will be fully healthy after a broken leg ended his 2015 campaign.
» There isn't a better defensive front seven in the NFL. The Panthers boast the best sideline-to-sideline tackling linebacker trio in the NFL in Thomas Davis, Luke Kuechly and Shaq Thompson -- expect Shaq to play an even bigger role this season. First-round defensive tackle Vernon Butler seems like a luxury in his first year, giving Carolina a dominant rotation. Paul Soliai could even play a role if injures crop up. SO. MANY. HOG. MOLLIES.
» Speaking of linebackers, it's interesting the team's official website now lists Vic Beasley as an OLB. Given that he's a candidate to break out rushing the passer this season, I don't expect coach Dan Quinn to drop him in coverage. When getting to the quarterback is your biggest need, you don't put your most talented rusher in space.
New Orleans Saints
» Where Andrus Peat will play this season remains a question entering the summer. At this stage I'm sliding him into guard, with the Saints hoping to eke out one more year of Zach Strief. New Orleans doesn't have a better option at guard in the present. Getting the five best blockers in front of Drew Brees is vital, even if Peat's future is at right tackle.
» I'm not buying any Saints tight end hype this year. Coby Fleener didn't pop in Indy and Josh Hill has been more projection than production. Benjamin Watson's 2015 season feels like less evidence Fleener and Hill will have bust-out seasons and more like an anomaly predicated on a quarterback's trust of a seasoned vet.
» I'm not a huge James Laurinaitis fan, but his signing gives the Saints flexibility to reshuffle the linebacker corps, pushing Stephon Anthony to the outside. It also allows Hau'oli Kikaha to move to defensive end. He'll be undersized as a pass rusher, but as a rookie Kikaha was much better getting after the quarterback than dropping in coverage. The Saints have a need at pass rusher and shifting Kikaha to end could be an in-house solution.
» I'm not ready to snipe Jairus Byrd yet. Vonn Bell might possess some of the same characteristics, but a team devoid of defensive talent isn't likely to toss aside potential playmakers -- especially ones who offer no cap relief if cut. We could see some three-safety sets with Kenny Vaccaro playing a hybrid role if Bell forces his way onto the field.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
» The third wideout spot behind Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson remains unaddressed. Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Cameron Brate offer a solid pass-catch tight end duo -- health permitting -- and better options in space than the spare-part receivers on the roster. I'd like to see Charles Sims motion to the slot more to help bridge the gap in the receiving corps for Winston.
» Could the Bucs run more 3-4 fronts in 2016? The move would get rookie Noah Spence and Lavonte David on the edge rushing the passer, with Gerald McCoy and Robert Ayers pushing from defensive end spots. Kwon Alexander and Daryl Smith would then clean up the middle. Tampa has struggled to get to the quarterback in recent year, necessitating creativity with the front seven.