2020 NFL combine: Draft needs, prospects to target for all 32 NFL teams

ByNFL Nation ESPN logo
Wednesday, February 26, 2020

More than 300 of the top 2020 NFL draft prospects have gathered in Indianapolis for the annual NFL scouting combine, which runs through Monday. Players will undergo medical testing and be put through on-field drills at Lucas Oil Stadium. Then it's on to interviews with team personnel and the media in advance of the draft, which will take place April 23-25 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Check out coverage on ESPN throughout the week, including specials on Thursday and Friday night.

With talented quarterbacks at the top of the board and wide receivers for miles, we asked our NFL Nation reporters which one position their team should be focused on at the combine. Here's what they said.

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NE | NO | NYG | NYJ | PHI | PIT | SF



Buffalo Bills

Wide receiver. It all boils down to the Bills needing playmakers, and that starts at wide receiver. John Brown had a career year in 2019 -- his first in Buffalo -- but quarterback Josh Allen needs as many weapons at his disposal as possible if the Bills are to take advantage of an up-for-grabs AFC East in 2020. More positions to watch: DE, LB, CB -- Marcel Louis-Jacques

Miami Dolphins

Quarterback. You could list just about every position outside of receiver here and be correct, but it all starts and ends at quarterback. The Dolphins should be considered the favorites to land Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa, but the combine will be a huge step as they get a chance to fully evaluate his medicals. Miami will also want to do its due diligence on the other top quarterbacks likely to be available at the No.5 pick such as Oregon's Justin Herbert and Utah State's Jordan Love. Ryan Fitzpatrick is set to return for the 2020 season, but the Dolphins have been clear that they need to find their quarterback of the future. More positions to watch: EDGE, OT, RB -- Cameron Wolfe

New England Patriots

Tight end. Patriots tight ends ranked last in the NFL in receptions and targets, according to ESPN's Stats & Information. New England was tied with Chicago for the fewest receiving touchdowns from tight ends. Dayton's Adam Trautman is an intriguing small-school prospect who opened eyes at the Senior Bowl. Also, Randy Moss' son, Thaddeus, is a fun story to follow. More positions to watch: WR, G, S, K -- Mike Reiss

New York Jets

Offensive line. It would be an upset if the Jets, in dire need of an extreme makeover, don't draft a lineman with the 11th pick. Overall, look for them to draft at least two linemen. With needs at tackle, guard and center, they will cast a wide net. The names to watch are Andrew Thomas (Georgia), Jedrick Wills Jr. (Alabama), Tristan Wirfs (Iowa) and Josh Jones (Houston). Also don't be surprised if they sign two free agents for the line. For a change, they will invest significant resources in the line. More positions to watch: WR, CB, EDGE-- Rich Cimini


Baltimore Ravens

Pass-rusher. The Ravens managed only nine sacks with a four-man rush last season, which were the fewest in the NFL in nine years. Baltimore has to address its rush on the interior and the edge so it doesn't have to rely so heavily on the blitz to get to the quarterback. The Ravens haven't drafted a pass-rusher in the first round since Terrell Suggs in 2003. Iowa's A.J. Epenesa would be a great fit, but it would be a surprise if he falls to the bottom of the first round. More positions to watch: Interior OL, ILB, WR -- Jamison Hensley

Cincinnati Bengals

Quarterback. In case you haven't heard, the Bengals are in the market for a new franchise quarterback. And even if Joe Burrow decides not to throw, the trip to Indianapolis will be good as the two sides get to know each other. More positions to watch: DT, LB, WR -- Ben Baby

Cleveland Browns

Offensive tackle. It's no secret that the Browns will be targeting a tackle in this draft, given their difficulty protecting QB Baker Mayfield off the edge last year. This is a solid tackle draft, and the Browns should have options when their selection at No. 10 comes around. More positions to watch: S, RG, DT-- Jake Trotter

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tight end. The Steelers' tight ends were woefully underutilized and ineffective last season. Much of that is injury-related, with Vance McDonald missing two games and the quarterback carousel failing to find a consistent rhythm with either McDonald or Nick Vannett. With McDonald as a potential cap casualty and Vannett as an unrestricted free agent, the Steelers best option to fortify the group is through the draft, and if the team opts to choose one with their first selection in the second round, they should have their pick of the tight ends in the 2020 class. More positions to watch: RB, G, DT, WR -- Brooke Pryor


Houston Texans

Running back. Lamar Miller and Carlos Hyde are free agents, and while Houston could choose to bring one back on a low-risk deal, the Texans need to find their future at the position. Duke Johnson is still under contract, but Houston needs a back to pair with him. The Texans don't have a first-round pick, but could take a running back in the second round. More positions to watch: CB, G, DT-- Sarah Barshop

Indianapolis Colts

Quarterback. There's plenty of uncertainty surrounding who the Colts will select as their next franchise quarterback. Jacoby Brissett, who replaced the retired Andrew Luck, finished 30th in the NFL in completion percentage last season. With Joe Burrow likely going No. 1 to Cincinnati, the Colts will likely still have to trade up from their current spot at No. 13 if they want to select Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa or Oregon's Justin Herbert. Utah State's Jordan Love is also projected to be a first-round pick. More positions to watch: EDGE, WR, TE -- Mike Wells

Jacksonville Jaguars

Defensive tackle. The Jaguars were awful against the run last season (139.3 yards per game, 28th) and aren't expected to bring back Marcell Dareus. When healthy, he's been the key to their run defense (109.1 yards per game allowed with him and 153.2 without him since start of 2017). The Jags missed on Taven Bryan in 2018, too. Derrick Brown, Javon Kinlaw and Justin Madubuike are names to watch, with Brown and Kinlaw the most likely choices if the Jaguars do go DT at No. 9. More positions to watch: OT, LB, CB-- Michael DiRocco

Tennessee Titans

Pass-rusher. Although the Titans finished 13th in the NFL with 43 sacks, they are still in need of a consistent game-changing pass-rusher to pair with third-year outside linebacker Harold Landry. Tennessee may sign a veteran pass-rusher, but they should look to the draft to add a long-term option. There are an abundance of players to consider, so getting a close look at the prospects in drills and meetings will help them sort through the evaluation process.More positions to watch: CB, WR, TE -- Turron Davenport


Denver Broncos

Cornerback. Chris Harris Jr. has been a fixture at the position -- to the tune of four Pro Bowl selections to go with 1,000-snap season after 1,000-snap season -- but is now poised to be an unrestricted free agent. Both Harris and the Broncos have given plenty of indications they expect him to move on. Bryce Callahan is a question mark after missing all of last season because of a foot injury after signing a three-year, $21 million deal. And De'Vante Bausby, who played in five games before he went to injured reserve in early October, is coming back from a significant neck injury. Overall, it might be the Broncos thinnest position. More positions to watch: T, WR and LB-- Jeff Legwold

Kansas City Chiefs

Cornerback. StarterBashaud Breelandand key reserve Kendall Fuller are prospective unrestricted free agents, so the Chiefs have some work to do in the draft if either one departs. More positions to watch: RB, G, LB -- Adam Teicher

Las Vegas Raiders

Receiver. The Raiders' receiving corps was still reeling from the Antonio Brown fiasco (checks notebook) late in the season. Sure, they had some nice complementary pieces in Tyrell Williams, whose fast start with TDs in each of his first five games was undone by plantar fasciitis in both feet, and rookie Hunter Renfrow, who does his best work from the slot. A true WR1 would help immensely, and with two first round picks, Nos. 12 and 19 overall, Las Vegas would be wise to keep close tabs on Oklahoma's CeeDee Lamb and Alabama's Jerry Jeudy. More positions to watch: MLB, CB, QB -- Paul Gutierrez

Los Angeles Chargers

Quarterback: The Chargers have not selected a quarterback in the first round since taking Eli Manning No. 1 overall in 2004 and trading him to the New York Giants for Philip Rivers. Of course, Rivers has been the team's starter since 2006, so they haven't had a reason to take a quarterback early. That changes this year, with the Bolts and Rivers mutually parting ways. The Chargers have Tyrod Taylor as a bridge quarterback and need to find a quarterback for the future, whether it's Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert or some other prospect. The Chargers have been diligently doing their work on this year's quarterbacks, and the combine is a continuation of that process. More positions to watch: OT, CB, DT -- Eric Williams


Dallas Cowboys

Defensive line. The Cowboys will need pass-rushing help, and since Rod Marinelli is no longer the line coach, they could look for size on the interior. Robert Quinn is likely too much to keep as a free agent, so they will need somebody to help DeMarcus Lawrence. They have four other defensive linemen set to hit free agency, too, so they will need playmakers and depth at this spot. More positions to watch: LB, DB, TE, WR-- Todd Archer

New York Giants

Offensive tackle. The Giants need to finally find a solution at this spot. Nate Solder hasn't played well since signing as a free agent and is over 30. Maybe Nick Gates can grow into a starter, but that is a risk and last year's starter,Mike Remmers, is a free agent. Adding a young tackle to work with new line coach Marc Colombo is a necessity in this year's draft, whether it be from the No. 4 overall pick or somewhere in the middle rounds.More positions to watch: EDGE, LB, CB-- Jordan Raanan

Philadelphia Eagles

Wide receiver. The Eagles are looking to reconfigure a wide receiver group that failed to produce a single 500-yard performance in 2019. ESPN draft analysts suggested this receiver class could be historic, with as many as 25 wideouts being selected in the first three or four rounds. There will be a wealth of talent to choose from, and Philadelphia will be on the hunt for the right fit in Indianapolis. More positions to watch: CB, S, DE-- Tim McManus

Washington Redskins

Tight end. Vernon Davis retired and they'll cut Jordan Reed soon; that means they have no one at the position on their roster who can provide legitimate help in the pass game. There's a good chance they'll target someone in free agency like Austin Hooper,who could be a good part-time veteran option. Regardless, they'd need to add someone else, and though it's not a top-heavy draft for tight ends, there are strong options between rounds 2-4. With a young quarterback in Dwayne Haskins, it would be wise to add more talent at this spot. More positions to watch: DE, WR, CB, S, RB-- John Keim


Chicago Bears

Tight end. The Bears are expected to overhaul the position. Chicago just agreed to terms with former Browns tight end Demetrius Harris -- and general manager Ryan Pace could look to sign a higher-profile and more expensive veteran in free agency -- but the Bears are in dire need of a young, pass-catching tight end. Trey Burton's future availability is unknown after he underwent another surgery. Former second-round pick Adam Shaheen is on the bubble to even make the team. It got so bad last year that J.P. Holtz led all Chicago tight ends with 91 receiving yards. That's not a misprint. More positions to watch: OL, WR, QB, S, CB-- Jeff Dickerson

Detroit Lions

Defensive line. The release of Damon "Snacks" Harrison means Detroit could be completely renovating the interior of the defensive line with Mike Daniels and A'Shawn Robinson headed for free agency. The Lions need to be better getting to the quarterback, whether that comes from the defensive line or a linebacker. Chase Young, if he somehow were to fall to No. 3, would be the obvious top target. If that doesn't work out, they could look at the interior of the line (say, Derrick Brown or Javon Kinlaw) or on Day 2 with Senior Bowl guys they coached (Bradlee Anae, Josh Uche). Building a better pass rush can help the secondary, which has talent but can only defend for so long before it gives way. More positions to watch: CB, OL-- Michael Rothstein

Green Bay Packers

Receiver. GM Brian Gutekunst couldn't hide the fact that he needs another pass-catching weapon -- or two -- for Aaron Rodgers. He admitted that he tried to make a move for one at the trade deadline last season but couldn't find a deal that made sense. Even if the Packers don't take a receiver in the first round (they haven't since Javon Walker in 2002), this receiver-rich draft class could produce immediate starting-caliber players in Rounds 2 and 3. More positions to watch: ILB, OT, TE-- Rob Demovsky

Minnesota Vikings

Cornerback. Don't roll your eyes, Vikings fans, despite how predictable this feels. In the process of retooling its defense, Minnesota might need to replenish its cornerback group with whatever happens for Xavier Rhodes, Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander. The value the Vikings could get for a top-tier corner at No. 25 is greater than that of a guard the team can expect to be a Day 1 impact player, so going all-in on a defensive first-rounder might be the best play. More positions to watch: QB (Yes, really! If the Vikings can't get an extension done with Kirk Cousins, this is a huge priority), OL, DT-- Courtney Cronin


Atlanta Falcons

Pass-rusher. The Falcons had just 28 sacks last season while opponents sacked their quarterbacks 50 times. The decision not to re-sign former eighth overall pick Vic Beasley Jr., an ex-sack champ, speaks to the Falcons' direction this offseason. They need an immediate-impact pass-rusher and don't have a lot of money to spend in free agency. That's why they'll look hard at Iowa'sA.J. Epenesaand Penn State's Yetur Gross-Matos, among other edge rushers in this draft class.More positions to watch: EDGE, OL, CB, RB-- Vaughn McClure

Carolina Panthers

Defensive tackle. Tempted to say quarterback here because if the Panthers move on from Cam Newton that opens the door for that position at No. 7 for one of the top three -- Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa and Justin Herbert. But Carolina has an urgent need in the middle of the defensive front with Pro Bowl defensive tackle Kawann Short coming off rotator cuff surgery, the option on Dontari Poelikely not getting picked up with a $13 million cap hit and Gerald McCoy and Vernon Butler set to become free agents. Auburn's Derrick Brown seems like a perfect fit if that is the direction the Panthers choose to go. More positions to watch: LB, CB, OT and QB-- David Newton

New Orleans Saints

Wide receiver: Good news for the Saints: Their most glaring need just so happens to line up with one of the most loaded positions in this year's draft. Picking 24th, they would probably need to trade up for Alabama's Jerry Jeudy or Oklahoma's CeeDee Lamb. But there are plenty of others to choose from, including Clemson's 6-foot-4 Tee Higgins, who would be a nice big target for Drew Brees on midrange and back-shoulder throws. More positions to watch: DE, CB, OL -- Mike Triplett

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Offensive tackle: This is assuming the Bucs bring back quarterback Jameis Winston in some capacity, although that's not a foregone conclusion. Either way, they need a replacement for right tackle Demar Dotson and a possible future replacement for Donovan Smith on the left side if that doesn't pan out. Jedrick Wills, Mekhi Becton,Tristan Wirfs, Andrew Thomas and Josh Jones will all get a closer look. More positions to watch: DL, DB, QB -- Jenna Laine


Arizona Cardinals

Wide receiver. Yes, the Cardinals drafted three receivers in 2019, but none panned out to be the playmaker they had hoped for. With the eighth pick in the draft and the offense on the verge of exploding, the Cardinals need to bolster their receiving corps with a No. 1 option, and someone who could potentially replace Larry Fitzgerald whenever he decides to retire. Options that high in the first round include Alabama's Jerry Jeudy and Oklahoma's CeeDee Lamb. More positions to watch: OL, DL, RB -- Josh Weinfuss

Los Angeles Rams

Offensive line. It's the position group that caused the biggest issue in 2019 and the one that must continue to be addressed moving forward. Without a first-round pick, the Rams must do their homework to find value in the second round and beyond. L.A. has to find a long-term replacement for left tackle Andrew Whitworth as well as other starting-caliber linemen who could start immediately or provide sturdy reinforcement. More positions to watch: DL, LB-- Lindsey Thiry

San Francisco 49ers

Offensive line. The Niners' starting group mostly played well in 2019 and all five of them are under contract, but this is about the future. Left tackle Joe Staley is 35, and though he still played at a high level, it's not too soon to begin thinking about life after him. In addition, it wouldn't hurt to add some talent along the interior. Perhaps a top tackle prospect with the ability to push for a starting job inside would fit the bill? More positions to watch: WR, DB, DE -- Nick Wagoner

Seattle Seahawks

Defensive line. The Seahawks' list of pending unrestricted free agents includes five players who were either starters or regular contributors along their defensive line: Jadeveon Clowney, Jarran Reed, Quinton Jefferson, Al Woods and Ezekiel Ansah. Branden Jackson is a restricted free agent. Even if the Seahawks can re-sign a few of them, they'll still have to add some firepower up front given how ineffective their pass rush (only 28 regular-season sacks) and run defense (4.85 yards allowed per carry) were with those players in 2019. After getting next to nothing in 2019 out of L.J. Collier, whom they chose 29th overall last year, the Seahawks may need to spend another early pick on a D-lineman. More positions to watch: CB, OL, RB -- Brady Henderson

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