With NFL free agency well underway, the LA Chargers have made key re-signings as well as signing Eric Kendricks from the Minnesota Vikings. The Chargers are likely not done searching the market for more depth options to fill out the roster with some holes still to fill.
While the Bolts have been making moves, their competitors have all been doing so as well. There have already been many big moves made throughout the NFL and there is still much more to happen with free agency rolling on.
We'll take a look at 3 of the Chargers opponents scheduled for the 2023 season that have made great improvements to their team this offseason.
3 Chargers 2023 opponents who have improved:
The Detroit Lions ended the 2022 season in second place in the NFC North with a 9-8 record, the best record and division standing since 2017. The Lions just missed out on the playoffs last season and are looking to make their way back there for the first time since 2016. This free agency period Detroit has put in the work to take the next step forward.
With Jamaal Williams signing with the New Orleans Saints, the Detroit Lions signed a new running back to replace him and did so with one of the top backs on the market, David Montgomery. Coming from the Chicago Bears, The Lions know this back well and what he can bring to the table. Montgomery replaces Williams as the power back who can run between the tackles and has one of the best broken tackle rates in the league since he arrived in the NFL. Montgomery was able to produce behind one of the worst offensive lines in football, now we get to see what he can do behind an above-average line.
Speaking of the offensive line, the Lions added depth with the addition of a familiar face, Graham Glasgow. Glasgow left on not-so-great terms when he signed with the Denver Broncos, and last season was not his most productive coming off an injury. Glasgow coming back though brings great depth for the center and guard positions, with the potential to win the starting right guard role which ended up being the one weak spot on the line for the Lions last season.
The Lions' offense already was firing on all cylinders last season. Top 3 in offensive drives ending in a score, as well as 2nd lowest sacks against and offensive drives ending in turnovers percentages, the Lions made moves that look to keep the offensive front just as good if not better than last season.
The offense was moving last season but unfortunately, the defense is what lost Detroit multiple games. In particular, the Lions defensive back room needed an upgrade, giving up the third most passing yards last season and near the bottom of the league in pass deflections, 3rd down conversion percentage, and red zone conversion percentage.
In a short period of time, general manager Brad Holmes has turned the defensive back room upside down and has made multiple moves over the last few days. Holmes signed Cameron Sutton, Emmanuel Moseley, and CJ Gardner-Johnson, while re-signing both Will Harris and C.J. Moore. Gardner-Johnson was arguably the best defensive back available in free agency, so when creating a list of teams that have most improved, the team that adds the best player to a position they need the most help in is a clear-cut addition.
Brad Holmes came into this offseason with a purpose for the Detroit Lions. Adding depth to both sides of the ball and solidifying the biggest hole in the team's defense. The Lions have made big strides and will look to fight for the division this season and should be the favorites, and be a strong match for the Chargers when they play.
The Chargers will play the Detroit Lions at home this upcoming 2023 season.