Hope and the Draft

Thursday night the NFL Draft begins the hopes for the 2012 NFL season. Teams drafting early are betting they will make the right choices to put them on the road to the playoffs.

The teams drafting in the middle are hoping to draft the good players the early drafters left behind for a playoff run or, if possible, a Super Bowl run. Finally, teams drafting near the end of each round are looking for one final unknown player to help them become the next Super Bowl champions like the New York Giants or to stay dominant like the New England Patriots.

From the first pick Thursday to the final pick Saturday, fans will watch their teams choose and dream that these young men will lead their team to new heights.

This could be a deep draft with a lot of good, talented players in each round, but we will not know how deep for about three to five years down the road as players blossom or fail. Some players will get a chance to show fans early that they will be franchise saviors like Robert Griffin III for the Washington Redskins or Andrew Luck for the Indianapolis Colts.

The NFL draft is always fun to watch to see which teams will possibly help their chances on the field come September. So what should the team you love do this weekend?

If you are a Dallas Cowboy fan, look for the team to add defensive help. The secondary and linebackers need upgrades. Good offensive linemen would be helpful, and they might have a late-round chance on a tight end or wide out.

For New England Patriots fans, you should hope the team does not trade away picks, instead using the picks that the team has stock piled for a pass rusher and wide receivers. The Brady era is getting close to the end, and the team needs defensive help and a wide receiver to stretch the field.

Pittsburgh Steelers fans know that the team must rebuild the offensive line and that its defense is aging. Look for the Steelers to begin work on both areas at the draft. Linebacker and secondary are also big needs on defense for Pittsburgh.

Finally, if you are a New Orleans Saints fan, look for defense to be the team's biggest need. The Saints need linebackers and cornerbacks to shore up a defense that may see multiple suspensions due to "bounty-gate."

Saints fans will also need to watch what the rest of the NFC South drafts. What will Tampa Bay, Atlanta and Carolina do this weekend?

The NFL Draft is where hope begins for the 2012 season.

Follow Bryan Flynn at http://www.jfpsports.com, Facebook and @jfpsports.


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