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Is this the season for Carolina to get themselves back in the hunt?
  1. NFL

The Draft - NFL: Talking Points - Big news from the NFL draft

After a two-year wait, the NFL draft finally landed in Las Vegas, and as predicted, it did not disappoint.

Thousands of fans lined the street on the iconic Las Vegas strip, and as the next generation of players heard their names read out, there was a hint of what was to come under the bright lights of The Bellagio hotel.

Defensive lineman Travon Walker was selected first in this year's draft, while the Baltimore Ravens and New York Jets seem to have made giant strides as they look to be competitive next season.

Jags take a risk with Walker

The Jacksonville Jaguars picked first in the draft for the second year in a row, and they will hope they can start to make some inroads after snapping up Walker.

Jacksonville were linked with fellow defensive end Aidan Hutchinson for the majority of the off-season, but they decided to take a gamble, and they believe Walker has the biggest upside.

Walker started all 15 games for Georgia as they won the National Championship, but many experts believe Hutchinson was the more sensible pick.

Hutchinson went second to Detroit Lions, while the Houston Texans selected cornerback Derek Stingley Jr.

Ahmad 'Sauce' Gardner was selected fourth by the New York Jets, while the New York Giants picked Kayvon Thibodeaux with the fifth pick of the draft, meaning that for the first time since 1991, the first five players chosen were all defensive.

Following successive number one picks, the Jags will need to hope this year's gamble will pay off as they look to improve in the AFC South.

Walker is 6/1 to be named as the Defensive Rookie of the Year, although he looks to have his work cut out as the Jaguars finished with a 3-14 record last season.

Jets and Ravens play their hand

The New York Jets have been a laughing stock within the NFL for several years, but General Manager Joe Douglas made some aggressive moves over the course of the weekend.

After drafting Gardner, the Jets then chose wide receiver Garrett Wilson at No.10. The Jets also traded back into the first round and selected pass rusher Jermaine Johnson II, meaning they got three of the best in their position in an attempt to overhaul their weak roster.

The Jets were not finished there either, as they picked up running back Breece Hall in the second round, who many experts believe is the best in his position in the entire draft.

Robert Saleh's side may still not reach the play-offs this season, they have certainly given themselves some hope going forward.

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While the Jets may not have the quality to challenge for the Vince Lombardi trophy, the Ravens will feel their additions will help their chances of returning to the play-offs.

Centre Tyler Linderbaum followed safety Kyle Hamilton in round one, and even though they traded Marquise Brown to the Arizona Cardinals, they were still able to keep their team competitive.

The Ravens are 22/1 to win the Super Bowl this year, and they could give punters a run for their money over the next few months.

Dean's fall is Philadelphia's gain

Linebacker Nakobe Dean was expected to hear his name called in the first round, but he and his family faced a nervous wait as teams decided to take fewer risks.

The Philadelphia Eagles eventually threw their hat into the ring and added him to their roster, and they may have got themselves a steal. A pectoral injury and a knee issue are what is thought to have put teams off Dean, but the Eagles were happy to take him in the third round as they enjoyed themselves in Las Vegas.

They traded for wide receiver AJ Brown from the Tennessee Titans, while they also added Jordan Davis, Cam Jurgens, Dean, Kyron Johnson and Grant Calcaterra across the three days.

Eagles fans can back the 2017 champions to win the Super Bowl at 28/1, while they are 5/2 to win the NFC East.

Patriots and Seahawks flatter to deceive

The Seattle Seahawks needed a big draft after trading away Russell Wilson, but they failed to inspire their fanbase across the three days.

Offensive tackles Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas will work under Pete Carroll in 2022, but they have yet to find suitable replacements for Wilson or linebacker Bobby Wagner.

The Patriots decided to trade down in the first round to gain picks, but none of their selections really got the juices flowing, while the same can be said for the New Orleans Saints.

All those teams struggling to replace their franchise quarterbacks were in limbo this year, with very few elite players available at that position.

Kenny Pickett was the only QB to hear his name called in round one, as the Pittsburgh Steelers selected him with a view to him starting in 2022.

Desmond Ridder, Malik Willis and Matt Corrall went in round three, with Atlanta Falcons, Tennessee Titans and Carolina Panthers all taking a chance on this year's young prospects.

Pickett is 6/1 to win Offensive Rookie of the Year, while Willis is 10/1 to land the spoils as he tries to become the leading man in Tennessee.

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