Every NBA Team’s Biggest Hole After Free-Agency Madness

Another hectic round of NBA free agency has come and gone, and with the dust now settling, teams are left to grapple with the roster holes that went unfilled.

Nothing, of course, is set in stone so far from training camps. But barring any more blockbuster trades, depth charts and rotations are beginning to take shape. Squads have better than a general idea of what they’re working with and what they still need. youth nfl jerseys

And make no bones about it: Every team needs something.e596478f668a19fb6ffe789b688a5d88_crop_exact

Some voids are more concerning than others. Certain holes are newly created by departures. Select needs are holdover issues from previous seasons. Big or small, though, each team has at least one.nfl youth jerseys

For instances in which a squad has numerous holes, we’ll default to the most pressing. These selections are not meant to be debilitating blows in every case. Some squads have potential, albeit unproven, solutions in-house. This is more so a look at which player types a team could still use most.nfl youth jerseys cheap
Losing Dewayne Dedmon is a huge deal for the Atlanta Hawks—much bigger than most realize. Floor-spacing rim protectors are hardly a dime a dozen, and he was a stabilizing defensive force in the middle.cheap nfl youth jerseys

Atlanta doesn’t have a clear-cut replacement for him. That might speak to the team’s plan for John Collins. He’s a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses at the 5. But the Hawks have yet to tread water with him in the middle. They gave up 120.6 points per 100 possessions when he played center last season.

Extending his time at the 5 would be a big bet on his defensive development, both as a decision-maker and physical presence. That’s not an unreasonable gamble given the Hawks’ gradual timeline. It is still a risk.replica nfl jerseys

Jabari Parker’s arrival doesn’t help the cause. Alex Len can. He doesn’t have the mobility of Dedmon, but he’s a good enough rim protector, and Atlanta gave him the green light last year to shoot threes, which he buried at 36.3 percent clip. nfl youth jersey

Maintaining that value in a larger role won’t be easy. Len has barely cracked 20 minutes per game over the past three seasons. If he can’t take on more responsibility and Collins doesn’t improve on defense, a heavier-than-expected burden figures to fall upon rookie Bruno Fernando.nfl replica jerseys cheap

Rebound King: Zion Williamson

Runner-up: PJ Washington, Charlotte Hornets

There aren’t many rookie big men set up for full-time roles. Two who are were poor rebounders in college, specifically the Atlanta Hawks’ De’Andre Hunter (9.8 rebounding percentage last season) and the Washington Wizards’ Rui Hachimura (12.1 rebounding percentage). wholesale jerseys cheap nfl

With starter minutes, a 285-pound frame, explosiveness and motor, Williamson is poised to win the rookie rebounding crown, albeit with limited competition. cheap wholesale nfl jerseys from china80592ac4b2a7c7f3871e69445b684ca9_crop_exact

At 18 years old, he finished second in the country in points per game off putbacks (3.9), and there isn’t a reason why he can’t continue using the offensive glass as a source for scoring. cheap wholesale nfl jerseys china

The Pelicans’ No. 8 pick, center Jaxson Hayes, was also a weak rebounder at Texas (12.5 rebounding percentage), which could lead to the need for Williamson to spend more time and energy under the boards.wholesale cheap nfl jersey china

The Charlotte Hornets’ PJ Washington and the Memphis Grizzlies’ Brandon Clarke will be the challengers to monitor. But neither has Williamson’s cheap nfl jersey wholesale rebounding tools or role. New York Knicks forward RJ Barrett is the sleeper to finish second behind Williamson based on his projected minutes and urges to hunt grab-and-go opportunities.

Early Signs of Doom for MLB’s Expected 2019 Contenders

The 2019 Major League Baseball season has only been going for three weeks and change, but the expected status quo is already in jeopardy.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

To wit, a few teams that were expected to be heavy hitters in the American League and National League playoff races are off to slow starts that are laced with signs of lasting doom.

We will focus on seven in particular, plus a few dishonorable mentions. These teams have been worse than anticipated out of the gate, with flaws that run the gamut from offensive, defensive and pitching problems to plain ol’ injury issues.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

We’ll start in the AL East and work our way to the NL West.

Record: 12-10, 2nd in AL East

Relative to the 100 games they won in 2018, the New York Yankees’ early record is a massive disappointment. Considering who occupies their injured list, it could be worse.

Currently out of commission for the Yankees are outfielders Aaron Judge,cheap nfl nike jerseys from china  Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Hicks and Jacoby Ellsbury, infielders Didi Gregorius, Miguel Andujar, Troy Tulowitzki and Greg Bird, catcher Gary Sanchez and pitchers Luis Severino, Dellin Betances, Ben Heller and Jordan Montgomery.

What’s more, many of these injuries are of the serious variety. Per the official MLB.com tracker, only Stanton and Sanchez are expected back before the end of April.nike nfl cheap jerseys
The big concern right now is how long Judge, a two-time All-Star and elite power supply, will be out with the oblique injury he sustained on Saturday. Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters it’s a “pretty significant” injury.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap
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These injuries hardly constitute a roster construction flaw, yet they’re nonetheless a harsh reality that New York has to deal with. This season will be a success story only if the Yankees ultimately rise above their current .500-ish pace.nfl cheap jerseys nike

Record: 9-13, 4th in AL East

The Boston Red Sox’s starting rotation has been knocked around, yet hope has materialized. Per MLB.com’s Dawn Klemish, Boston starters went from an 8.79 through their first 13 games to a 3.21 ERA over their next nine. cheap nike nfl jerseys from china

Now it’s the Boston offense’s turn to get going, because this isn’t pretty:

2018: .792 OPS and 5.4 R/G
2019: .691 OPS and 4.2 R/G

Apart from J.D. Martinez and Mitch Moreland, nobody is free from blame for the Red Sox’s offensive downfall. That includes reigning AL MVP Mookie Betts, who’s gone from a 1.078 OPS to a pedestrian .783. In his own words, what he’s doing is “unacceptable.”nike jerseys nfl cheap

The guys in the Red Sox’s lineup also need to shape up on the other side of the ball. The club’s defense ranks 24th in efficiency, rooted in some truly sloppy play.

It should bode well that the Red Sox have carried over essentially the same lineup that led the charge to 108 wins and a World Series title in 2018. But there’s clearly a hangover effect in play right now, and such things have been known to last.

Lions will accept consequences of ‘Hard Knocks’ if chosen

The Detroit Lions – as closed off as the franchise might want to be – has been pretty open and transparent about one thing: There is little to no interest in being on HBO’s “Hard Knocks.” For months now, general manager Bob Quinn and coach Matt Patricia have been campaigning against it.

They even suggested at the team’s season ticket holder summit how good of a candidate the Oakland Raiders and Jon Gruden would be – and that was before the franchise traded for Antonio Brown. At the end of all of it, though,nfl jerseys for cheap authentic  the Lions also know they have little actual say in the matter.

If HBO wants the Lions, the Lions will have to comply.

“It’s an interesting thing because obviously we’re one of the teams, as you all know, that could be forced to be on it,” Lions team president Rod Wood told reporters at the NFL owners meetings on Tuesday. “I’d much rather end up in a  nfl jersey supply position of not being forced to be on it.i

“Since we’re in that position I guess cheapest nfl jerseys we’ll have to live with the consequences of what they decide.”official nfl jerseys

Wood said there haven’t been any “direct conversation” about whether the Lions would be the team the popular television show chooses for the year. And he also wasn’t sure about the timetable for a decision, although in past years the decision has usually come down in April or May.wholesale authentic nfl jerseys

He also didn’t know if the Lions were still under consideration or had been eliminated from those talks. Detroit is one of five teams that would have to do the show if asked. The others are the Raiders, Giants, Redskins and 49ers.buy nfl jerseys

There is a thought, of course, that doing the show could help the marketing side of a team, but Wood said they would prefer not to be in this position.

“There’s the episodic viewing of it on HBO and does that help the brand somewhat depends on how well it goes, I think,” Wood said. “As I said, I’d much rather not be qualified for it. Let’s be in the playoffs, not be one of the teams that are eligible.”womens nfl jerseys

While the Raiders seem like the obvious option, here’s something to consider. nfl nike jerseys That franchise might be more intriguing in 2020 – if you work with the thought that Oakland isn’t going to fire Gruden and on paper seem like a non-favorite to make the playoffs – when the club is expected to start play in Las Vegas.

Giants Lead, but Multiple NFL Teams in Dwayne Haskins Sweepstakes After Pro Day

Only the most aggressive NFL organization will be fortunate enough to land Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The idea an elite prospect at the game’s most important position will slide beyond this year’s top 10 draft selections is folly. 2019 new nfl jerseyshi-res-6c8e227005276eb2cddfe8b81ac3cd50_crop_north

“It’s a massive decision,” New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman said at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, per NorthJersey.com’s Art Stapleton. “I mean this is the face of your franchise. He’s got to do all the right stuff for all the right reasons. You can’t go to bed at night worrying if he’s gonna come in on time. You can’t do that, no matter how talented they are.”

Haskins is a traditional pocket passer with the production, pedigree and skill set worthy of franchise consideration. He crushed two throwing sessions, first at the combine and then at Wednesday’s pro day in Columbus, Ohio. While working under the assumption the Arizona Cardinals will select Kyler Murray with the first overall pick, the free-for-all to land the other elite signal-caller should be wild. cheap new nfl jerseys

Three teams are prime candidates to make a move for Haskins. The Giants, Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins own top-15 selections. One will almost certainly be forced to trade into the top five for a chance to select the Big Ten Conference’s new nfl football jerseys 2019  all-time single-season leader in passing yards and touchdown tosses.

How teams will go about making such a significant decision varies, though. the new nfl jerseys

Two different strategies are often utilized weeks before the actual draft: Either a smokescreen is laid by disinterested teams, or the simpler “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” option portends heavy interest in a prospect. nfl jerseys new The difficulty arises when attempting to decipher which tactic individual teams are using because every franchise is trying to throw the 31 other organizations off its scent.are the new nfl jerseys stitched new nfl nike jersey

The upcoming draft class isn’t like last year’s. Five different quarterbacks held first-round grades. Each became a rookie starter and flashed.

Right now, Murray and Haskins lead the group, and a significant drop-off occurs in their wake. If Murray is already off the board with the initial pick, multiple teams must vie for Haskins’ services or be left at the altar. No team wants to be in a position in which a long-term quarterback plan isn’t in place.

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Jordan Hicks: Bud Norris ‘Has the Best Intentions for Me’ in Harsh Treatment

St. Louis Cardinals rookie reliever Jordan Hicks shot down the notion Thursday that veteran Bud Norris is too hard on him.

In an interview with Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Hicks said the following about his teammate:cheap nike nfl jerseys from china

“He has the best intentions for me. I think he’s nudging me in the right direction. That’s the best way to put it. … It’s a collective group doing it. You have to learn 10 times faster in the big leagues. You have to adjust 10 times faster. You have to be mentally stronger than you have ever been before. You have to make all of that happen faster. I have no problem with anybody getting on me. I get that. I have to listen.

“Bud is not bad at all. He’s getting on me because he wants me to be a better player, and I know it’s to make me a better teammate. That can happen.”

Hicks’ comments came on the heels of an article by The Athletic’s Mark Saxon in which Saxon wrote that Norris “mercilessly rides” Hicks.cheap official nike nfl jerseys

As an example of the sometimes prickly relationship between Hicks and Norris, Goold wrote about an exchange they had before a recent home game.

Hicks turned the clubhouse music up a couple of times after Norris had turned it down, which led to Norris shutting it off completely and suggesting that Hicks put on some headphones.

Hicks told Goold that he didn’t take offense to it: “It’s pretty much like the music thing—I’m trying to keep track and not get confused. I’m a rookie. I need guys guiding me. [Norris] actually does care about me. I know that. There are times, though, when he or anyone basically says, ‘You should know better.'”nfl cheap nike jerseys

The 21-year-old Hicks has become a key part of the Cards bullpen this season despite having never pitched above A-ball previously.

In 42 appearances he has a 3-1 record with a 2.70 ERA.

Norris, 33, is the Cardinals closer, converting 17 of 19 save opportunities with a 3-2 record and 2.87 ERA.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

He is in the midst of his 10th MLB season and has essentially seen and done it all. In addition to having both started and relieved, Norris has played for seven different teams.cheap wholesale nike nfl jerseys

Oakland Raiders Sign Tahir Whitehead

Bolstering the defense had to be an offseason goal for the Oakland Raiders, who allowed an average of 350.1 yards per game last season (23rd in the NFL). They took a big step toward accomplishing that goal by adding former Detroit Lions linebacker Tahir Whitehead.

Whitehead may not be one of the league’s star linebackers, but he is an extremely productive player who will improve the second level of Oakland’s defense. The 2012 fifth-round pick racked up 110 tackles, two passed defended, an interception and a sack last season. He has amassed more than 100 tackles in each of the last two years.

With six years of experience under his belt, Whitehead is also poised to be a leader on Oakland’s new-look defense.kids nfl jerseys cheap

“Whitehead is a guy that is very vocal. Very vocal,” fellow linebacker Derrick Johnson said, per the Raiders’ official website.

Johnson, who joined Oakland after playing 13 seasons with the rival Kansas City Chiefs, was an addition that generated a lot more buzz this offseason. Don’t be surprised, however, if Whitehead is the new linebacker who has the biggest impact.

You may have heard this before, but the Detroit Lions haven’t had a player rush for at least 100 yards in a game since 2013 (Reggie Bush). This is a fact that loomed large behind the team’s decision to use a second-round pick on former Auburn running back Kerryon Johnson.kids nfl jerseys

Johnson isn’t the only running back the Lions added this offseason, however. They also brought in LeGarrette Blount, and he shouldn’t be overlooked.

While Johnson is likely to be Detroit’s workhorse back of the future, Blount is a strong between-the-tackles runner who can add punch to the running game. He proved as much with the Philadelphia Eagles last season, rushing for 766 yards and 4.4 yards per carry.nfl kids jerseys

“When I think about how I can contribute to this team, the first thing that jumps out is my physicality,” Blount explained on his official website (via Lions Wire). “It’s extremely important for any team to get good at short yardage and converting on third down.”nfl jerseys for kids

Blount is also familiar with new Lions head coach Matt Patricia from their time together in New England. Expect him to have a big role in both the team’s development and its success this season.cheap kids nfl jerseys

Danielle Hunter, Vikings Reportedly Agree to Contract Extension

The Minnesota Vikings and defensive end Danielle Hunter reportedly agreed to a contract extension Wednesday, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero and Mike Garafolo.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported Hunter signed a five-year, $72 million deal with $40 million in guaranteed money. There is also a $15 million signing bonus, per Rapoport.

Hunter had been set to enter the final year of his contract in 2018 before becoming an unrestricted free agent.cheap nfl nike jersey

Hunter, 23, had another strong season while coming off the edge in Minnesota, accumulating 45 tackles, seven sacks, a forced fumble and fumble recovery in the 2017 season. While he couldn’t replicate his impressive 12.5 sacks from 2016, he remained a pass-rushing threat for Minnesota’s staunch defense.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

Pro Football Focus gave him a grade of 82.6 last season, which was 29th among edge-rushers.

Hunter’s talent and upside never quite blossomed at LSU, but his ability has manifested during his three NFL seasons—to the point that general manager Rick Spielman used him as an example of the types of players the Vikings seek in the nike nfl jerseys cheap china

“We talk about this all the time in the draft meetings, this guy may be a better football player today, but this guy this guy has such a higher ceiling. Our coaches are so eager to work with these athletes and to me that’s when you get an opportunity to make a hit on a guy that can be something, the Danielle Hunters of the world. I think when we drafted him in the third I don’t know how popular that was because he had one cheap nfl nike jerseys from china sack coming out. But, he had such great traits and things these coaches love to work with that he’s developed. That’s the philosophy we’ve kind of used as we’ve went through the draft.”china nike nfl jerseys cheap

With 25.5 sacks in his professional career, Hunter has made that philosophy look smart.

And with players such as safety Harrison Smith, defensive end Everson Griffen, defensive tackle Linval Joseph, linebackers Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks and cornerbacks Trae Waynes and Xavier Rhodes, the Vikings have built a talented, dangerous defense.

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Tennessee Titans: RB Derrick Henry

Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry has started just four games in his two NFL seasons, but the 2016 second-round pick has accumulated 1,507 yards from scrimmage while scoring 11 touchdowns and averaging 4.3 yards per carry in those two campaigns.cheap nfl jersey wholesale

He hasn’t lost a single fumble on 310 touches.

That might partially explain why the Titans moved on from veteran back DeMarco Murray in the offseason, although Henry will still have to fight for reps with the arrival of free-agent addition Dion Lewis.

Still, look for Henry’s role to increase. He was clearly a backup at the start of last season, but new offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur told the media last week—per Paul Kuharsky—that he views Henry and Lewis as “1A and 1B” in the backfield. cheap nfl jerseys wholesale china

Henry and Murray were a lot more similar than Henry and Lewis, which should enable the Titans to find plenty of opportunities for both of them. And when that happens, watch for the 24-year-old Alabama product to take off. cheap authentic nfl jerseys from china wholesale

Six of the 35 passes Washington Redskins wide receiver Josh Doctson caught last year were touchdowns, which is at least a sign the 2016 first-round pick still possesses the playmaking cheap nfl authentic jerseys wholesale ability that helped him score 25 times during his final two years at TCU.

Achilles issues cost Doctson the vast majority of his rookie season, making it easier to excuse the fact he caught only 44.9 percent of the passes thrown his way as a sophomore in 2017. Four of those receptions gained 30-plus yards, and two of his six touchdowns came on deep completions of 48-plus yards from quarterback Kirk Cousins.

If the 25-year-old continues to do that while becoming more consistent and reliable in 2018, he’ll finally begin to live up to the expectations the Redskins had for him when they took him 22nd overall two years ago.cheap wholesale authentic nfl jerseys

The good news—as Michael Phillips of the Richmond Times-Dispatch points out—is Doctson is feeling more confident this spring than in past offseasons, and that has manifested itself at OTAs.

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Cleveland Browns: DE Myles Garrett

It’s not as though top pick Myles Garrett wasn’t effective when he was on the field as a rookie in 2017, but the Cleveland Browns defensive end just wasn’t out there enough as a result of a September ankle injury and an October concussion.

Garrett finished the year with seven sacks and 31 tackles despite starting just nine games and taking part in less than half of the team’s defensive snaps. wholesale jerseys cheap nfl

But the 22-year-old is healthy now, and he believes he’s primed to take on a much larger workload as a sophomore.

“The last game of the season, I was going most of the game,” Garrett said in May, per Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal. “I think I took five, maybe 10 plays off. That’s my goal—to be on the field as much as possible, so I can make as big of an impact as possible.”wholesale cheap nfl jersey china

The Browns need a lot of players to break out in order to turn it around after a zero-win season, but Garrett tops the list.

The Dallas Cowboys will also be relying on several sophomores to break out in 2018, but their top 2017 pick, defensive end Taco Charlton, doesn’t top the list. That’s because Charlton was eased in as a rookie and will likely continue to play a limited, low-pressure role alongside Demarcus Lawrence and Tyrone Crawford. cheap wholesale nfl jerseys from china

Instead, second-year cornerback Chidobe Awuzie will be expected to emerge as the top cover man in place of departed veteran Orlando Scandrick.

The 60th overall pick out of Colorado missed six games due to a hamstring injury as a rookie, but when he was on the field, he surrendered just 7.0 yards per reception and just 0.69 yards per cover snap, both of which were the lowest rates ever recorded by a rookie corner, per Pro Football Focus.cheap wholesale nfl jerseys china And it’s possible he would have been better than that had his first NFL offseason not been spoiled by injuries.

If Awuzie and second-year, third-round corner Jourdan Lewis can continue to improve in 2018, the Cowboys defense could become a tremendous asset.