The NFL's most important players: These 160 will decide season

Schefter: Winston facing potential ban if violations continue (1:18)

Adam Schefter reports that any future violation of the league's personal conduct policy by Jameis Winston will result in a more substantial discipline, including a potential ban from the NFL. (1:18)

Every NFL team has the same goal headed into the 2018 season: to make the playoffs and try to win Super Bowl LIII.

But which players will have the most impact in making that happen? We asked our 32 NFL Nation beat reporters to identify the five players on each roster who will be most vital in helping their team try to win it all. These are not necessarily the best players on each roster -- these are the most important.

Click the link after each team to view the full post.

AFC East | AFC North| AFC South | AFC West

NFC East | NFC North | NFC South | NFC West


Buffalo Bills

If quarterback AJ McCarron wins the starting gig in the preseason but the Bills' grueling first-half schedule -- including five of their first seven games on the road -- proves too much for him, turning to rookie Josh Allen could be Buffalo's only hope at the postseason. Read more.

Miami Dolphins

Quarterback Ryan Tannehill returns from a major injury. If he is to lead the Dolphins back after a 6-10 season, he'll have to adjust to life without wide receiver Jarvis Landry. Read more.

New England Patriots

Who replaces Nate Solder as Brady's blindside protector? The Patriots selected Isaiah Wynn in the first round because they believe he's capable, but they also traded for Trent Brown to give themselves more options. Read more.

New York Jets

The Jets think they have their quarterback of the future. Now they need first-round pick Sam Darnold to meet the expectations if they're going to end a seven-year playoff drought. Read more.


Baltimore Ravens

The pressure is on for Joe Flacco. He needs to get the Ravens back into the playoffs and hold off first-round pick Lamar Jackson. Read more.

Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals needed to shore up their offensive line to try to help Andy Dalton & Co. They're hoping Cordy Glenn is the answer at tackle. Read more.

Cleveland Browns

Yes, Cleveland drafted a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick. For an improved 2018, however, the Browns will lean on a defensive trio of Myles Garrett, Denzel Ward and Emmanuel Ogbah. Read more.

Pittsburgh Steelers

There's little surprise here, but a healthy and motivated Ben Roethlisberger could catalyze a legitimate Super Bowl run. Read more.


Houston Texans

As last season showed, the Texans' season hinges on the performance -- and health -- of QB Deshaun Watson. Read more.

Indianapolis Colts

Andrew Luck's return from a shoulder injury is crucial to the Colts' hopes. Protecting him makes linemen Quenton Nelson and Anthony Castonzo extremely important. Read more.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars will lean on their defense as they did during their run to the AFC Championship Game, but they'll need more from QB Blake Bortles. Read more.

Tennessee Titans

The Titans' passing attack's development will be big if Tennessee is to make the playoffs. The Titans' defense, however, has higher hopes thanks to the offseason acquisition of DB Malcolm Butler. Read more.


Denver Broncos

Adding QB Case Keenum was the centerpiece of the Broncos' offseason and they'll be asking a lot of him this season. Read more.

Kansas City Chiefs

Yes, the Chiefs switched to QB Patrick Mahomes II, but to go deeper in the playoffs, they'll need more from their defense and DE Dee Ford. Read more.

Los Angeles Chargers

With Hunter Henry lost for the season, more of the Chargers' passing attack will rely on receiver Keenan Allen. Read more.

Oakland Raiders

In coach Jon Gruden's second stint in Oakland, the Raiders will need a return-to-form season for QB Derek Carr and a healthy Amari Cooper. Read more.


Dallas Cowboys

For Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott to perform, Dallas needs its offensive line to be dominant again. That means a healthy season from tackle Tyron Smith. Read more.

New York Giants

The Giants have questions all over the field, but one place they have the answer is at wide receiver with Odell Beckham Jr. Read more.

Philadelphia Eagles

Nick Foles' postseason heroics and Super Bowl MVP award were great, but the Eagles' best chance at repeating are with a healthy QB Carson Wentz. Read more.

Washington Redskins

Washington made one of the biggest offseason moves to get QB Alex Smith, who'll be counted on to improve the team's playoff chances. Read more.


Chicago Bears

After struggling mightily last season on offense, the Bears will go only as far as Mitchell Trubisky can carry them. Read more.

Detroit Lions

With the Lions turning to a new head coach in Matt Patricia, they'll need the same steady performance from QB Matthew Stafford. Read more.

Green Bay Packers

After another injury-shortened season, QB Aaron Rodgers returns. Even with some solid players on defense, Rodgers is still the most important player in Green Bay. Read more.

Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings were one win from the Super Bowl. Now they've landed the top free-agent quarterback in Kirk Cousins and will get running back Dalvin Cook back from injury. Read more.


Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons' offense is loaded with star power, but to get back to the Super Bowl, they need a happy and productive Julio Jones in the lineup. Read more.

Carolina Panthers

Though "Keep Pounding" is the motto around Bank of America Stadium, "As Cam goes, so go the Panthers" will be the case for Newton and Carolina this season. Read more.

New Orleans Saints

With the youth movement in New Orleans, more pressure for the Saints' season will rest with QB Drew Brees. Read more.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Bucs' hopes will hinge on a big season from Jameis Winston, but the quarterback's looming suspension hangs over 2018's expectations. Read more.


Arizona Cardinals

With both QB Sam Bradford and RB David Johnson returning from injury, health becomes a huge factor for Arizona's most important players. Read more.

Los Angeles Rams

The Rams took over the offseason with big-name additions. With all the new names, the season will be a success only with continued growth from Jared Goff. Read more.

San Francisco 49ers

Yes, Jimmy Garoppolo can build on his hot finish to the 2017 season, but to make the playoffs, the 49ers need big years from their defensive stars. Read more.

Seattle Seahawks

Earl Thomas' holdout hangs over the Seahawks. They need him to bounce back next season, but it's not clear whether he'll remain in Seattle. Read more.