Last offseason, we had the bounty scandal and the Tim Tebow trade and Peyton Manning, the free agent. Three of the most highly-publicized storylines in NFL history, all in one year. This year, the key storylines aren't as clear, but here are four to keep a very close eye on.
1. Joe Flacco becomes a very rich man: But how rich? That's the question. Flacco has always been a slightly-above-average quarterback, but now he's a Super Bowl champion coming off a playoff run in which he threw 11 touchdown passes and zero interceptions. If he gets the $20 million he's hoping for, quarterback salaries could hit a whole new level in the years to come.
2. Michael Vick, Alex Smith and Matt Flynn lead the quarterback sweepstakes: With teams like Arizona, Jacksonville, Buffalo, Kansas City, Oakland and maybe even Philadelphia and the Jets all looking for franchise quarterbacks and the draft lacking top-tier signal callers, look for Vick, Smith and Flynn to be in high demand on the trade market and/or in free agency.
3. Robert Griffin III tries to pull an Adrian Peterson: Griffin underwent surgery on his torn-up knee on Jan. 9, giving him eight months to recover in time for the start of the 2013 NFL season. Usually, that timeline would seem a little rushed, but Peterson set the bar high with his remarkable comeback from a similar surgery last offseason. Redskins fans are hoping and praying the 2012 offensive rookie of the year can pull it off.
4. Who will be the top pick in April's draft?: For the first time in four years, it appears there won't be a clear-cut No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft. And because of the lack of blue-chip quarterbacks, this could be the first time since 2008 that a signal caller isn't selected with that top pick. The Chiefs are on the clock, which is fairly intriguing considering that Kansas City has revamped its front office with Andy Reid and John Dorsey taking over.