The 49ers are rebooting all over again in 2017. So far, they’re off to a smart start with Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch.
Since Chip Kelly became one-and-done and dragged Trent Baalke out the door with him, the 49ers already have showed signs they struck gold with their new coach-GM combination.
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Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess were a combined major disappointment last season despite looking the part with their big frames and catch radii. Benjamin was well behind ageless tight end Greg Olsen in receiving production, and Funchess was a shaky fourth option. Ted Ginn and Corey Brown, the speedy deep threats from Ohio State, are gone.
But until the regular-season schedule for 2018 is released next spring, chances are you’ll want to be aware of a few more key dates on the NFL calendar 鈥?the trade deadline, the beginning of 2018 free agency and the 2018 NFL Draft, to name a few.
The NFL this week released its list of such important dates, beginning with what’s now called the Rookie Experience Transition Program later this month and running through the NFL Draft in late April.
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Those two teams figure to put up big numbers and yardage again, and the Buccaneers, with an aggressive offseason of adding playmakers, will be a lot more dangerous.
That left the Panthers no choice but to keep up and upgrade both the protection and ball skills around Cam Newton. Even with MVP Matt Ryan, future Hall of Famer Drew Brees and rising Jameis Winston, Newton remains the most talented QB in the South. The Panthers still have the most defensive upside in the division, too.
Here we analyze all the key offseason changes on the Panthers’ depth chart, and what they mean for their chances of a strong playoff return.