Before the NFL draft on May 8-10, we'll be looking at all the key prospects and also breaking them down by position. In our "Draft Needs" series we will also examine which teams will be in the market at each position, looking to fill their remaining roster holes. DEFENSIVE LINE Dallas Cowboys: Signing Henry Melton from Chicago helps, but he is coming off a season-ending injury last year and if he just replaces Jason Hatcher, who had an unbelievable year before going to the Redskins. And Dallas lost future Hall of Famer DeMarcus Ware at end. Maybe the team brings back Anthony Spencer, who is still a free agent, but he's coming off major knee surgery and the fact that he's still unsigned tells you he's not going to fix everything. Dallas needs a lot of help, particularly on its horrible defense, and the line is a great place to start. A good inside presence is almost a must at pick No. 16, someone like Florida State's Timmy Jernigan or Pitt's Aaron Donald. NEED LEVEL: Extremely high Chicago Bears: The Bears loaded up at defensive end in free agency, and that was smart. That doesn't mean the line is set, because there are still holes inside. Henry Melton left to Dallas. Corey Wootton was miscast as a tackle out of necessity, but he's gone too, to Minnesota. The Bears didn't sign one natural defensive tackle, so there's a lot of work to do here. Being able to snag someone like Donald or Jernigan with the 14th pick, two spots before the tackle-needy Cowboys pick, would be a very smart move and accentuate everything they were able to accomplish in free agency. NEED LEVEL: Very high New England Patriots: The Vince Wilfork issue has been taken care of, but it still showed how tenuous the Patriots' defensive line situation is. New England always seems to have good, versatile linemen but need an influx of young talent, especially inside, to go with depth guys like Chris Jones and Joe Vellano. It's probably a good bet they find someone that fits their scheme with the 29th pick, or sometime in the first few rounds. NEED LEVEL: High New York Giants: The Giants have had a very good offseason, and the next step will be adding to the defensive line. The Giants don't have that dominant line we remember anymore, then lost end Justin Tuck and tackle Linval Joseph in free agency. Getting defensive end Robert Ayers wasn't bad, but he's never been a difference maker. Having the 12th pick should give them a good shot to improve on the defensive line, or perhaps they'll wait until the second or third round to grab a defensive lineman. But it would be a surprise if they don't address that position, considering their reputation of having waves of defensive line talent. NEED LEVEL: High Oakland Raiders: The guys the Raiders added to the line, like Justin Tuck and Antonio Smith, are solid players but also older veterans. While it seems the Raiders will use the fifth pick to grab a difference maker on offense, they'll still have plenty of opportunities to get a tackle or end that can basically be the young up-and-coming star they had with departed Lamarr Houston. NEED LEVEL: Medium Seattle Seahawks: The Seahawks still have a fantastic defensive line, but they don't want that to slip. Losing Clinton McDonald, Red Bryant and Chris Clemons in the offseason hurts the depth on the front. There are other needs (offensive line, receiver) to address as well, but one of Seattle's biggest advantages is being very strong up front, and drafting someone to help on the line will help ensure it remains a strength. NEED LEVEL: Medium Other teams in need: Tennessee, Philadelphia, Washington, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Green Bay, Pittsburgh NFL Draft Needs series April 18: Linebacker April 19: Defensive line April 20: Offensive line April 21: Running back April 22: Receiver/tight end April 23: Quarterback April 24: Defensive back April 25: Running back More NFL coverage: - - - - - - - Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab
Quarterback auditions for NFC South club
Northwestern kicker auditions for Beats
With the NFL draft just under three weeks away, Evan Silva unveils his updated two-round mock.
Evan Silva and Josh Norris break down every team's needs and which players fit those needs. Check out the weekly schedule.
PRO BASKETBALL Kevin Durant scored 42 points, including 21 in the fourth quarter, and the Thunder secured the No. 2 playoff seed in the Western Conference by rallying from 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Detroit Pistons 112-111 Wednesday night in Oklahoma City. Oklahoma City will open the playoffs Saturday against Memphis, which grabbed the West's No. 7 seed when Mike Conley hit two free throws with 1.1 seconds left in overtime to lift the Grizzlies to a 106-105 win over the Mavericks. The Mavericks dropped to the No. 8 seed and will open against at top-seeded San Antonio on Sunday.
PRO BASKETBALL Kevin Durant scored 42 points, including 21 in the fourth quarter, and the Thunder secured the No. 2 playoff seed in the Western Conference by rallying from 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Detroit Pistons 112-111 Wednesday night in Oklahoma City. Oklahoma City will open the playoffs Saturday against Memphis, which grabbed the West's No. 7 seed when Mike Conley hit two free throws with 1.1 seconds left in overtime to lift the Grizzlies to a 106-105 win over the Mavericks. The Mavericks dropped to the No. 8 seed and will open against at top-seeded San Antonio on Sunday.
Manning undergoes ankle surgery
Manning undergoes ankle surgery
Jets add Johnson to running backs corps

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