2012 NFL Draft: 4 Draft Trends That Could Shake Up the Draft

Yueh Ho@@YuehHoCorrespondent IOctober 28, 2011

2012 NFL Draft: 4 Draft Trends That Could Shake Up the Draft

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    It is never too early to start looking into the next year's draft class and who one's favorite team may target. Despite all the experts and pundits and their predictions, it seems that no one can truly predict how a draft will go and there is always a surprise every single year.

    2012 will be an interesting draft, as many draft trends may affect the way the draft unveils. Here are four draft trends that will be sure to shake up the 2012 draft...

1. "Suck for Luck"

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    There are plenty of desperate franchises out there that are hoping to snag future superstar quarterback Andrew Luck in the draft. As a result, the first pick will surely be to select Luck, right? That alone could change the draft plans of the other struggling teams, who would then have to alter draft plans to either take the next best quarterback, or address another position of dire need.

    The desire of teams to select Luck in the draft may lead to some interesting scenarios. For instance, if St. Louis gets the first overall pick they will surely trade the pick for many more high picks. And with those high picks, players may unexpectedly start flying off the board, such as at the wide receiver and secondary positions.

2. Ravens Draft Trend

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    The Ravens have used the majority of their first-round picks in the last decade on offensive players. This would make sense once again for the Ravens, they have a need at wide receiver. Anquan Boldin is not getting any younger and Lee Evans has proven to be a huge disappointment so far. And as the game against the Jaguars has shown, the Ravens could certainly use some help on their O-line.

    But the defense is also aging, and it would also be wise for the Ravens to begin rebuilding it. Either decisions would make sense for the Ravens and whatever the club decides to do will surely affect the draft choices and plans of the teams following it in the draft.

3. Browns Draft Trend

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    The Browns appear to be a team on the rise, as they have made great progress this season and appear ready to contend within a few seasons. They finally have a quarterback to build around in Colt McCoy, and a good defense.

    But the team is filled with holes, and it will be difficult to tell what area of need they decide to address with their top picks. Will they try to obtain a good receiver for McCoy to throw to? Or will they try to fill holes in the defense? The defense, despite the progress made with Dick Jauron, is still with few playmakers at the linebacker position.

    Or could the Browns potentially follow trends that they have shown in recent years, being to trade further back in the draft and accumulate as many picks as possible to hasten their rebuilding process? Whatever the Browns decide will ultimately affect the rest of the league's draft plans. 

4. Denver Broncos Draft Trend

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    The way this team performs overall, especially with Tim Tebow now under center, will completely determine its own draft plan and that of the teams following it.

    Tebow has had good performances to some extent so far this season, but if he struggles and the organization loses faith in him, the Broncos may be looking to take a new quarterback to replace him and Kyle Orton.

    If Tebow plays well and shows he is legit, then the Broncos could be looking into wide receivers to replace the void left by the departures of Brandon Lloyd and Brandon Marshall.

    And overall, no matter how Tebow plays, the Broncos have an affinity for running backs and may simply take the best running back available and add to their depth at that position. This may be even more likely if Knowshon Moreno fails to break out and remove his bust label. 

    The Broncos have many potential trends that they can follow. And their decision will surely shake up the entire 2012 draft.