With the NFL season officially over the off-season comes into full gear and the AFC East goes into overdrive trying to figure out the biggest needs and holes about what is needed for next season. These are the biggest need that each team needs to address to improve from last year.
Patriots: Tight End
The Patriots nearly made it to the Super Bowl and they did all this with scraps on offense and practically every starter getting hurt. They had young receivers in Aaron Dobson and Kenbrell Thompkins who were forced into the starting lineup early on and that experience will help them in the 2014 season. The defense was without Jerrod Mayo and Vince Wilfork for a large part of the season the defense still upped its game and was a dominating presense. The only concerning part was the torn ACL of Tight End Rob Gronkowski. He was a focal point of the offense and without him the passing game was struggling. His lingering injury concerns means that Tight End should be a position to address. They can address this in Free Agency by getting a Scott Chandler or Brandon Pettigrew or draft one early like a Troy Niklas from Notre Dame or Austin-Sefarian Jenkins from Washington. Upgrading the TE position will give insurance in case Gronk is not 100% plus will let the Patriots do those dreaded 2 Tight End sets.
Jets: Wide Receiver
The Jets passing game was atrocious in 2013. They finished dead last in TDs with 13 and 31st in passing yards with only 183 ypg. They had a rookie QB in Geno Smith who had his struggles but he also had to deal with the lack of any weapons on offense. The Jets need to add to the skill position by signing a big name free agent Wide Receiver like Golden Tate or Eric Decker. Also in the draft Wide Receiver should be a focus early on with such potential choices like Jordan Matthews, Allen Robinson or Marquise Lee. Addressing the Wide Receiver position and getting some real talent will help jump start the passing game and really help whoever the QB ends up being.
Dolphins: Offensive line
The Dolphins finished the 2013 season giving up the most sacks with 58 and it is a miracle quarterback Ryan Tannehill is not in a wheelchair. Tannehill made significant progress this season and for a period of the season was literally carrying the offense on his back. But for the Dolphins to make the playoffs in 2014 they need to improve the oline to protect Tanny and the run game. In Free Agency some potential choices for Tackle are Eugene Monroe and Brandon Albert, both of which can be plugged into LT right away. In the draft a couple potential choices for RT/LT are Cyrus Kouandjo from Alabama or Taylor Lewan from Michigan. Getting one of those guys will help protect Tannehill and give him time to actually complete a deep ball to Mike Wallace for a TD.
Bills: Offensive Line
The Bills finished the 2013 season 4th in sacks allowed with 48. Some of that could be due to having Three QBs with 1 combined start playing but it also had to do with poor line play, mainly from the LG and RT position. Some Free Agent choices are some Jon Asamough for the LG position and Zach Strief for the RT position. The other need can be addressed in the draft by picking a Dakota Dozier or Gabe Jackson in the 2nd or 3rd round for the LG position. For the RT position a good 1st round choice would be either Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson though I prefer Matthews. In the 2nd round a choice can be Antonio Richardson from Tennessee. Improving the oline will help protect their investment in EJ Manuel and help a running game that struggled at times.