NFL Draft 2018: Teams with most riding on draft
The amount of teams in the market for a quarterback means this could be one of the most important drafts of recent years.
In a decade's time, the 2018 draft will likely be looked back on as one that altered the course of a number of franchises for better or worse.
As well as organizations looking for a quarterback, there are a number of teams aiming to take the next step for whom this draft is similarly crucial.
Here we assess the five teams with the most riding on the 2018 NFL Draft.
The only way is up after an 0-16 season and, with the first and fourth overall picks at their disposal, as well as three selections in the second round, this is a golden opportunity to add premium talent to a team that general manager John Dorsey cannot afford to miss.
Surely even Cleveland cannot mess this one up. History, and rumors of an apparent infatuation with Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen, suggests otherwise.
New York Jets
Mike Maccagnan does not have much prior credit with the Jets' fanbase, particularly after wasting a second-round pick on Christian Hackenberg in the 2016 draft, and has no room for error this year.
After trading up to get to the third overall pick, missing on a quarterback with that selection would set the franchise back into the next decade and likely cost Maccagnan his job.
Green Bay Packers
"We'd be very happy and content taking a quarterback at that spot."-- New York Jets (@nyjets) April 24, 2018
GM Mike Maccagnan's pre-draft press conference pic.twitter.com/bIDLikGJ3g
Aaron Rodgers would have you believe that talk of his discontent at the Packers' personnel moves is exaggerated, but what cannot be denied is that Green Bay need to stop wasting one of the best quarterbacks of all time.
Rodgers can elevate his supporting cast on offense to another level, but the Packers still lack talented pass rushers and traded away one of their best defensive backs in Damarious Randall.
If they cannot make improvements on the front seven and in the secondary in this draft it will likely be another year without a Lombardi Trophy for Rodgers.
San Francisco 49ers
Trading for the man billed as Tom Brady's successor has so far paid huge dividends and, with the Jimmy Garoppolo deal and an impressive first draft on his resume, John Lynch already has a strong reputation as a GM.
But Garoppolo can only take the 49ers so far. It is the defense that will decide to what extent the 49ers will compete in 2018. Kyle Shanahan can scheme up an offense for Garoppolo to excel in regardless of the talent around him but, for the 49ers to succeed, Lynch needs to find defensive prospects who can take an improving unit to the next level.
He has four picks in the top 75 with which to do so. Should he fail then some of the shine will be taken off the early part of his tenure and life will be more difficult for the Niners in a loaded NFC.
New England Patriots
With Garoppolo gone, and continued murmurings about the future of Brady, the Patriots need a succession plan again.
There has long since been talk of Bill Belichick wanting to secure his legacy by leaving the Patriots with a quarterback in place.
They have two first-round picks with which to find a new successor to Brady, potentially via a trade, but the Patriots still need pass rush help and also lost talent in the secondary, as well as left tackle Nate Solder and running back Dion Lewis, in free agency.
This is a draft in which the Patriots need to secure their long-term future at quarterback and have plenty of more immediate holes to fill. For Belichick, it is the most important draft since the one that netted Brady 18 years ago.