During the offseason, there were a lot of blockbuster moves and signings that occurred, and the AFC East was certainly not left out of the action. The Buffalo Bills, who are the current favourites to win the Super Bowl this season, made a surprising signing of pass rusher Von Miller in free agency. On the other hand, the Miami Dolphins pulled off one of the biggest trades of the spring when they dealt for former Chiefs wideout Tyreek Hill. Both of these moves were a surprise to the football world. While this was going on, the New England Patriots acquired wide receiver DeVante Parker in a trade, and the New York Jets made multiple moves throughout the draught to get three first-round picks.
This division will naturally be much more competitive in 2022 as a result of those trades and the growth of everyone else on their rosters. As training camps around the league get underway, let’s take a look at three issues that every AFC team needs to answer before the start of the regular season.
1. When exactly does Tre’Davious White plan to make his comeback? The Buffalo Bills are coming off of a 2021 season in which they had the best pass defence in the league according to DVOA. This was accomplished despite missing White for a significant portion of the season due to an ACL injury that he sustained on Thanksgiving. Whenever he’s in top form, he’s an All-Pro corner for a secondary that has its sights set on the Super Bowl. Therefore, Buffalo’s chances of winning a championship will be much improved if they can get him back on the field. The degree to which he participates in training camp will determine how far along we are in the process of determining when we may expect to see him during the regular season.
2. Who is the back that is being passed down? There is no assurance that James White will be ready to play when training camp begins because he is still recovering from a hip ailment that caused him to miss virtually all of the 2021 season. There is a degree of uncertainty in what has been a significant component of the Patriots offence due to the fact that Brandon Bolden, who was New England’s running back with the most catches in the previous season, left the team via free agency. There is a chance that veterans who are still on the team, such as Damien Harris, Rhamondre Stevenson, and J.J. Taylor, will take on additional targets. However, youngster Pierre Strong Jr. is also a possibility. At the combine, the South Dakota State running back ran the 40-yard dash in a time of 4.37 seconds, which was the quickest time for his position.
3. What is the order of preference among the backfield players? The running back room has seen significant change as a result of the Dolphins’ recruitment of Chase Edmonds, Raheem Mostert, and Sony Michel, in addition to the retention of Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed from the 2021 team. There are a lot of people competing for playing time in the backfield, so a depth chart is probably going to be necessary before Week 1 begins.