2015 NFL Draft Preview

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Football fans, the time is here again, time to talk about the future in earnest as a new season unofficially begins.

The mark of a new season can be boiled down to plenty of dates in the off-season. Whether it is the end of the Super Bowl or the beginning of free agency but there is nothing like the NFL Draft to kick off the season.

It is a time when the signings are mostly finished and the time where the teams in the league get to add those last few pieces.

After the draft the focus truly turns to the new season as training camp is right around the corner and the teams have put together what will likely be their roster heading into a new year.

The draft is a chance for most teams to add players that can help them for the new season and far beyond.

In some cases the draft is a chance to bring in a player that can forever change the franchise and bring them from the worst team in the league to a Super Bowl Champion.

It has happened plenty of times before as teams have seen players come into their team and only a few years later raise the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

There is no position that exemplifies that ability to change a team more than the quarterback. They can be the centre of a rebuild or the biggest bust of a draft.

Being the centre of a team takes a certain personality and the quarterbacks taken in the first round are no longer expected to sit back and watch for a few seasons.

football-sidebarThey are expected to enter a game as soon as possible and make a difference which puts tremendous pressure on young men that are only in their early 20s.

There have been the success like Russell Wilson, Andrew Luck, and Cam Newton but there have been many more failures.

Finding that quarterback that can change a team is something that many teams have been trying to do for decades with little to no success.

This year there may be help for some teams as two great quarterbacks enter the draft with the talent that could change a franchise.

There has been plenty of debate about both of these players and who should be the top pick in the draft.

On the one hand there is Jameis Winston from Florida State University. Winston led his team to the 2014 National Championship and won the Heisman Trophy for that season. He has been one of the best quarterbacks in the NCAA over the last two years and plays in a pro style system that resembles an NFL offence.

On the other hand there is Marcus Mariota out of Oregon University. Mariota won the Heisman Trophy last year and is considered a great leader with a great personality that rarely sees any issues off of the field.

As good as both of these quarterbacks have been in the NCAA there are some major issues with them and issues that teams must take into account.

For Winston it is his off-field issues that have scared some teams as he has been accused of sexual assault, has been convicted of shoplifting, and was suspended for shouting a vulgar saying on campus.

He has rarely been punished for these issues and can be seen as a young man who has been coddled throughout his time in the NCAA. A spoiled player with a history of off-field issues could turn out to be a disaster in the NFL when he gets the money and the fame that allows him to do anything including get into more trouble than he has already been in during his time in college.

For Mariota the issue is that he played in a spread offence that is plenty of success in the NCAA and lends itself to athletic players. In the NFL these athletic players have had great first years but after their rookie season have fallen into the realm of busts.

As good as these players are they cannot grasp the NFL game and have become something of a worry for many NFL teams as they continue to see former spread offence quarterbacks fail.

Through the last few months in the combine and in team workouts it seems like teams are willing to forget the of-field issues of Winston while Mariota’s spread knowledge seems less valuable every week that goes by before the draft.

It seems as though Winston will take the role of being the team saviour while Mariota may be in for a long fall.

That is only two of the 32 players that will be taken in the first round though and a fraction of the new players that will enter the NFL.

They may be the headliners in the draft this year but there is plenty more talent as this year’s draft features a very deep receiver pool while the debate over running backs being taken in the first round continues.

There will be plenty for every team to talk about as 32 teams bring new players to their team, and some will change their teams forever as the new season approaches after the NFL Draft.

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