Entering the 2016 recruiting class, Florida State signed a top-three class in four of the past five years. Last Wednesday, the Seminoles made it five out of six and finished with the nation's top-ranked class.
All of those recruiting hauls gives the Seminoles one of the most talented rosters in the country, and much of their 2015 depth chart returns in 2016. Every offensive starter and backup from the bowl game is slated to return as of now. The defense loses Jalen Ramsey and two senior linebackers but retained conference defensive player of the year candidate DeMarcus Walker.
The playoff window reopens for the Seminoles in 2016. If they can settle on a quarterback, the offense could be among the best in the country with an experienced offensive line providing room for Dalvin Cook. The defense has found a groove under coordinator Charles Kelly, too.
Biggest need going into national signing day: With abnormal attrition at the position, the Seminoles needed to sign linebackers again in 2016. The Seminoles have recruited well at linebacker, but injuries, suspensions and dismissals set the group back. They lose their two most experienced linebackers, too, so the position will have a completely different look next fall. The team needs former five-star Matthew Thomas to get his career back on track. Injuries and suspensions have derailed it through his first three years.
How it was addressed: The haul ended signing day with Houston inside linebacker Dontavious Jackson committing to FSU over Texas. Keion Joyner is the other ESPN 300 linebacker in the class, and four stars Josh Brown and Emmett Rice join Joyner on the outside. Brown enrolled early, and coach Jimbo Fisher said Rice reminds him of Telvin Smith, who was sixth in the NFL in tackles in 2015.
Strongest position post NSD: Despite losing Ramsey, a potential top-five pick, and senior Lamarcus Brutus, the secondary is loaded with young talent. Former five-star safety Derwin James is angling to become the best defensive back in the country. Nate Andrews is a solid second safety, and Trey Marshall returns from a torn biceps to play nickelback. Marquez White was terrific in his first season starting at cornerback, and one of the following three top-50 recruits will replace Ramsey: Ryan Green, Tarvarus McFadden or 2016 five-star and No. 1 cornerback Levonta Taylor.
Biggest remaining need: Few programs have as much talent at receiver as Florida State, but the Seminoles are awaiting a go-to threat to emerge. In 2013, they possessed a litany of game-breaking options in the passing game. Now, one of the former blue-chip recruits needs to become a dynamic No. 1 receiver. There will be seven ESPN 300 receivers on the roster in 2016. Travis Rudolph, Levonte Whitfield and Jesus Wilson all performed well in 2015 and made for a solid group, but the unit needs a Kelvin Benjamin or Rashad Greene kind of receiver to develop. Throughout the year, Fisher criticized the receivers as a whole.