Understanding how the 2015 NFL Draft affects each Division is a science by itself. Let’s take a quick look at which teams should be on your watch lists this season:
NFC East – Washington Redskins
Draft pickups: Offensive Guard(2) Defensive End, Running Back, Wide Receiver, Outside Linebacker, Strong Safety, Center
Analysis: This year the Redskins had several great pickups in the Draft for their Offensive line, finally. For years the Redskins have suffered a collapsing O-Line that has destroyed drives and injured many a quarterback. In addition, the Redskins picked up more height. All the O-Line acquisitions are at least six feet tall, and weigh between 270-300 pounds. This in effect will bring a great deal of weight and fresh legs to the line.
NFC East – Philadelphia Eagles
Draft pickups: Corner backs(3), Defensive End, Outside Linebacker, Wide Receiver
Analysis: The Philadelphia Eagles were 10-6 last season, so shoring up the defense is an obvious play for more offensive opportunities. Their defense last season was 12th in the league. They matched the Cincinnati Bengals and New York Giants in passes defended (72), but fell behind in tackling (1,083).
NFC South – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Draft Pickups: Quarterback, Offensive Tackle, Center, Wide Receiver (2), Full Back, Outside Linebacker
Analysis: Tampa Bay will have the entire NFC South on notice if they can get No.1 Draft Pick Jameis Winston in a rhythm. Even better, they picked up some help – and yes, they are Fifth and Sixth-round draft picks. Then again, Redskins’ running back Alfred Morris was a sixth rounder and look how well he’s doing. The NFC South is anyone’s game – The top teams in the division last season (Carolina, New Orleans) only won seven games. The league awaits a dominating force to arise in that division.
AFC East – Buffalo Bills
Draft Pickups: Cornerback, Offensive Guard, Running back, Outside Linebacker, Tight End, Wide Receivers
Analysis: All eyes will be on new head coach Rex Ryan and Kyle Orton. Consider this a rebirth for the man who left Kansas City and was almost considered “buried” at Buffalo. However, that was definitely not the case, passing more than 3,000 yards. And with the perfect backup (E.J. Manuel) bringing in some extra bodies to fill out the Offensive depth chart is not a bad move. They finished Second in the AFC East – successful season, but not strong.
AFC North – Pittsburgh Steelers
Draft Pickups: Outside Linebacker, Cornerback (2) Wide Receiver, Tight End, Defensive End, Defensive Tackle, Free Safety
Analysis: The Steelers had a shopping cart ready for the Draft when it came to defensive solutions. With Troy Polamalu in retirement, the fear many offenses in the league had when it came to passing against the Steelers is gone. The Steelers will be looking to prove that it’s business as usual when it comes to their Secondary. They finished first in their division last season, so proving that point will be the focus from Week 1.