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Grades, draft needs, offseason questions for every eliminated NFL team

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Saints take advantage of Panthers' misfortunes (1:03)

Jeff Saturday and Ryan Clark agree the Saints took full advantage of the Panthers' missed opportunities while Tim Hasselbeck says the play of Drew Brees was the difference. (1:03)

NFL Nation reporters grade the regular seasons for every team out of the running for Super Bowl LII, assess what position each should target in the 2018 NFL draft and look ahead to a few looming offseason questions. Click the links after each team to view the full posts.


Arizona Cardinals

One word can define 2017 for the Cardinals: injuries. They began in Week 1 with All-Pro and All-Everything David Johnson fracturing his wrist, and they never stopped. Read more.

Atlanta Falcons

Average is the best way to sum up the Falcons' up-and-down follow-up to their Super Bowl run in 2016, despite a winning record and postseason appearance. Read more.

Baltimore Ravens

This was the most frustrating finish to a regular season in the franchise's 22-year existence. The Ravens failed to clinch a playoff berth because they were unable to beat the struggling Bengals at home -- despite being 9.5-point favorites. Read more.

Buffalo Bills

It was a season of peaks and valleys for the Bills that saw them climb to 5-2, tumble to 5-5 and recover late in the season only to fall short of the playoffs. Read more.

Carolina Panthers

All the pieces were in place defensively for the Panthers to make a run at the Super Bowl, except when it came to stopping the Saints. New Orleans scored at least 31 points in each of its three games against the Panthers. Carolina couldn't match that consistency on offense. Read more.

Chicago Bears

The Bears lost 10 games for the fourth straight year. Even with Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers hurt for much of the season, the Bears never contended in the NFC North. Read more.

Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals' offense was the worst in the NFL, and their defense was on the field too much to be effective. They got nothing out of first-round pick John Ross and fired offensive coordinator Ken Zampese after two weeks. Read more.

Cleveland Browns

Is there a limit for catastrophe? The Browns followed the worst season in team history (1-15 in 2016) with a more miserable experience -- for fans and the team. Read more.

Dallas Cowboys

Expectations were high for the Cowboys coming into 2017 after they had the NFC's best record in 2016. They have to be considered one of the league's biggest disappointments this season. Read more.

Denver Broncos

The Broncos could never escape their quarterback issues -- they played three quarterbacks, and each of the three started at least two games and was a game-day inactive at least once during the season. Read more.

Detroit Lions

The Lions couldn't sustain a hot 3-1 start to the season because they failed in almost every big spot other than their Week 4 win against the Vikings. Read more.

Green Bay Packers

The standard in Green Bay, at the very least, is the playoffs -- if not a Super Bowl. When you're eliminated from postseason consideration with two games to play, it is viewed as a disaster. Read more.

Houston Texans

The Texans finished with a losing season for the first time under Bill O'Brien, struggling in the second half after Deshaun Watson tore his ACL. Read more.

Indianapolis Colts

Injuries. Poor second-half play. And more injuries. Highlighted (or low-lighted) by Andrew Luck's shoulder injury, the Colts put 18 players on injured reserve this season. Read more.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars rode the formula they wanted to within a win from the Super Bowl and are tasked with keeping the momentum going in the offseason. Read more.

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs won the AFC West, but that should have been only the starting point. They were too talented to lose as they did in the playoffs. Alex Smith acknowledged the Chiefs underachieved. Read more.

Los Angeles Chargers

In his first year as the Chargers' coach, Anthony Lynn showed resiliency in leading the Bolts into postseason contention after a poor start. For the first time in three years, the Chargers will not finish with a losing record. Read more.

Los Angeles Rams

The Rams far exceeded expectations in their first season under Sean McVay. They improved from 4-12 last season to 11-5 this year, winning their first division title since 2003. Read more.

Miami Dolphins

Miami entered 2017 with high expectations following a 10-win season. But despite a 4-2 start, the Dolphins fell short for several reasons, including injuries, off-field distractions and a rotating door at quarterback. Read more.

Minnesota Vikings

Injuries struck at QB again this season, but this time the Vikings had an answer and made an unexpected run to the NFC Championship Game. Read more.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints were one of the biggest surprises in the NFL this year, especially after an awful 0-2 start that followed three consecutive 7-9 seasons. They were boosted by one of the best draft classes in recent NFL history. Read more.

New York Giants

The Giants couldn't stop anybody (32nd in total defense), couldn't score points (31st) and struggled on special teams. Quick recap: They stunk everywhere. It was a disaster of a season. Read more.

New York Jets

The title of the season should be "The Team That Couldn't Finish." The Jets were a three-quarter team, pushing some of the best teams in the league into the fourth quarter -- and then collapsing, sometimes in stunning fashion. Read more.

Oakland Raiders

Perhaps never before did a Raiders season scream for a do-over more than this one. A 2-0 start was followed by a four-game losing streak from which Oakland never recovered. Read more.

Pittsburgh Steelers

t would be impossible to assess the Steelers' season without taking into account the heartbreak and adversity the team fought through. The Steelers' locker room seemed to grow more united as the season progressed. Read more.

San Francisco 49ers

The 2017 Niners will always be viewed in two not-quite-equal parts: the 49ers B.G. (before Jimmy Garoppolo) and the 49ers A.G. (after Garoppolo). At their lowest point, they were 0-9 for the first time in franchise history. Read more.

Seattle Seahawks

Injuries on defense and a wildly inconsistent offense defined Seattle's season. Cliff Avril, Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor were all lost to season-ending injuries, leaving the Seahawks without three Pro Bowlers. Read more.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Bucs were billed as a team on the rise, looking to build on their 9-7 record from 2016 and not only reach the playoffs for the first time since 2007 but also win their division. Instead, things fell apart. Read more.

Tennessee Titans

The Titans overcame a three-game December losing streak to end their nine-year postseason drought and won their first playoff contest since the 2003 season, but their offensive struggles proved too costly against the AFC's elite. Read more.

Washington Redskins

An 8-8 record is impressive given the Redskins' schedule and injuries. But they were 1-5 in games against division winners and 6-0 against teams with a losing record. Read more.