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2012 NFL Draft Preview and Betting Odds

4/26/12

The New York Giants were crowned Super Bowl XLVI champions less than three months ago, and they are already getting ready for next season along with the other 31 teams in the NFL. The biggest offseason event besides free agency is the NFL draft, which gets underway on Thursday with the first round and continues on through Saturday. Some of the players who get drafted will not make a significant impact right away, but some of them will and play big roles for their teams.

The top two picks in the NFL draft are expected to be Stanford's Andrew Luck with the No. 1 overall selection by the Indianapolis Colts followed by Baylor's Robert Griffin III at No. 2 by the Washington Redskins. Both players were outstanding college quarterbacks and will likely start immediately. The Colts are much bigger longshots to win Super Bowl XLVII at 100/1 and knew they would be taking Luck to replace Peyton Manning ever since they clinched the worst record in the league.

The Redskins are 50/1 to win Super Bowl XLVII and needed to make a blockbuster trade to move up to the second spot, sending the No. 6 overall pick, two future first-round selections and a future second-round pick to the St. Louis Rams. Griffin III won the Heisman Trophy last year and will have some offensive weapons in place when he arrives in the nation's capital, as former Indy wide receiver Pierre Garcon signed with Washington as a free agent in addition to former San Francisco 49ers WR Josh Morgan.

The Rams are 75/1 to win Super Bowl XLVII despite picking QB Sam Bradford with the top overall pick just two years ago. They have a new head coach in Jeff Fisher and are contemplating whether or not to take Oklahoma State WR Justin Blackmon. Bradford needs a No. 1 receiver, but St. Louis also has a lot of other needs to address. Fortunately, the team also picks first in the second, fourth and sixth rounds and second in the third and seventh, barring any additional trades.

Other top contenders to watch throughout the weekend include the 49ers (10/1), Green Bay Packers (13/2), New England Patriots (8/1), Denver Broncos (12/1) and Houston Texans (12/1). The 49ers flirted with adding Manning before he ultimately chose Denver as his next destination and were just a play or two away from getting to the Super Bowl last year. The Packers underachieved in the playoffs last year despite finishing the regular season with the best record at 15-1, getting upset by the Giants (16/1) at home one year after winning the Super Bowl.

The Patriots have traditionally traded down in the NFL draft to stockpile more picks, but they need to start taking better players to put them over the top. The Broncos and Texans are viewed as New England's top competition in the AFC, and both of them have the potential to get to the Super Bowl in 2013. They each have championship-caliber defenses, putting extra pressure on their offenses to produce. Manning is still a question mark coming off multiple neck surgeries while Houston QB Matt Schaub is also still recovering from a serious foot injury.

5 Dimes Sportsbook will be offering several draft related prop betting opportunities as well. For example, QB's taken in the 1st round over/under 3.5. Running Backs in the 1st round over/under 1.5 and so on. There are far too many to list. to be sure to check them out!

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