The perfect 2024 NFL offseason for every AFC North team, including Derrick Henry joining the Raven

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The official start to 2024 NFL league is almost here, as free agents are about to sign with new teams, trades will be commence and the draft will be here before you know it.

We’re going to go through all eight divisions in the NFL and try to draw up perfect offseasons for all of the teams. While perfect is absolutely a subjective term, we’ve tried to imagine how some key free agent signings, draft picks and other moves could help all 32 of the league’s teams.

We’re going to continue with the AFC North, where the Baltimore Ravens field the reigning MVP in Lamar Jackson. Let’s see how all four AFC North teams could improve their rosters this offseason to maximum effect through free agency and the draft.

AP Photo/Steve Luciano

3 Key Free Agents: RB Derrick Henry, QB Tyrod Taylor, DE Bilal Nichols

Draft Picks: Rounds 1-3: WR Xavier Worthy (30), DT Braden Fiske (62), RB Will Shipley (93)

Other: Re-sign G Kevin Zeitler, CB Arthur Maulet

The Ravens are of the NFL teams that really need to maximize the draft because of limited capital in free agency, but they’d also really benefit from keeping Zeitler on the offensive line to maintain some continuity with one of the team’s best players. Finally landing Henry on a team-friendly deal would be a huge boost to the run game, while Nichols would be a nice, affordable addition to the defensive front. Taylor would be a fantastic backup quarterback for Lamar Jackson.

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3 Key Free Agents: DT Justin Jones, WR K.J. Osborn, T Chukwuma Okorafor

Draft Picks: Rounds 1-3: DT Johnny Newton (18), TE Ja’Tavion Sanders (49), WR Devontez Walker (80)

Other: Re-sign TE Drew Sample, WR Trenton Irwin, DT Josh Tupou

The Bengals have plenty of cap space, and the team could add some intriguing free agents like Jones, Osborn and Okorafor, who would all fill starting roles on the roster in various spots. Drafting Newton could be another stellar addition to the defensive line to develop, while Sanders could fill in as a new starting tight end. Walker would add more impressive depth at wide receiver.

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AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn

3 Key Free Agents: LB Oren Burks, WR Alex Erickson, RB Alexander Mattison

Draft Picks, Rounds 1-3: DE Adisa Isaac (54), DT Mekhi Wingo (85)

Other: Re-sign QB Joe Flacco, DT Shelby Harris, LB Sione Takitaki

The Browns don’t have a ton of cap space, and they desperately need to re-sign Flacco as their backup quarterback. In free agency, they add some key depth pieces, and in the draft, they add two very promising young pieces to develop for the defensive front.

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3 Key Free Agents: CB Jourdan Lewis, WR Mack Hollins, OLB Bud Dupree

Draft Picks, Rounds 1-3: C Jackson Powers-Johnson, T Troy Fautanu (51), LB Trevin Wallace (84)

Other: Re-sign LB Blake Martinez, OLB Markus Golden

With the Steelers seemingly interested in giving quarterback Kenny Pickett a shot to hold onto the starting quarterback role and with limited cap space, Pittsburgh adds a starting corner in Lewis and a nice depth piece at receiver in Hollins. The team also brings back Dupree for a reserve role. Powers-Johnson and Fautanu would be great additions for Arthur Smith’s offense, and Wallace could provide young depth at linebacker.

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