The Toronto Maple Leafs have had to lean on some of their better prospects this season with the number of injuries they have sustained, particularly at the forward positions.
There was a time when it would have been challenging to get excited about the Leafs' prospect pool as it was woefully small. That has begun to change slowly as there are a number of players who should be impact NHLers if they are given the time to mature and improve.
While some prospects can make a splash as teenagers (think Morgan Rielly here), the overwhelming majority have to spend an extra year or two in juniors as well as some time in the minor leagues.
Defencemen, in particular, often need multiple minor league seasons under their belts in order to be ready for the physicality and rigours of playing defence at the NHL level. It is similar with goalies, with many not being NHL-ready until they are at least 23 or 24 years old.
With all of this in mind, by position, here are the most underrated prospects in the Leafs organization.
All stats can be found on hockeydb.com.