Photo: Cam Atkinson, who has 10 points in 21 games with Columbus this season, ranks as the top forward prospect in the mid-season Top 20 ranking (courtesy of Jason Mowry/Icon SMI)
The Columbus Blue Jackets still have strong defensive depth and a good amount of young wingers slowly reaching their potential. Unfortunately for Columbus not all of these wingers can be Cam Atkinson or Boone Jenner. Much like the deep defensive core, the Blue Jackets are riddled with gritty forwards that get in the dirty areas, but have trouble finding the back of the net. Although the Blue Jackets have a significant amount of household names, the back-end prospects in the talent pool are not improving nearly as much as they should.
Photo: In his first season with the Springfield Falcons, winger Jonathan Audy-Marchessault ranks second on the team with 28 points. (courtesy of Bill Streicher/Icon SMI)
Everything is going right for the Springfield Falcons, the AHL affiliate for the Columbus Blue Jackets. They are at the top of the Northeast Divison and rank fourth in the AHL with 39 points through 30 games. They have flourished under the play of goaltender Curtis McElhinney who has registered a league-leading six shutouts.
Photo: Though the Columbus Blue Jackets added several important prospects this past off-season, none were more prominent than defenseman Ryan Murray, who was selected second overall in the 2012 NHL Draft. (Derek Leung/Getty Images)
Below is the bottom third of the NHL Team Rankings in terms of prospects as voted on by Hockey's Future staff. To determine the ranking, each team's entire prospect pool was taken into consideration. For reference, just the top five prospects are listed. To be eligible, a prospect must meet HF's prospect criteria. The rankings are done twice a year, with the second scheduled to be published in the Spring.
Photo: Notre Dame's leading scorer each of the past two seasons, junior forward T.J. Tynan will again be expected to be the driving force behind the Irish offense in 2012-13. (courtesy of Zuma Press/Icon SMI)
The Columbus Blue Jackets had top five picks in two of the last three NHL drafts. As a result there system has a good amount of quality prospects that should be seeing formidable playing time in the future.
Swedish goaltender Oscar Dansk is among the Blue Jackets' prospects expected to have a big impact in the 2012-13 season, his first with the OHL's Erie Otters. (courtesy of Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
The Columbus Blue Jackets are stacked with defensive talent lurking in their system. Ryan Murray leads the pack of NHL-ready defenders, but the positional depth is uncanny. From puck-moving defensemen to stay-at-home guys, Columbus’ blue line is going to be set for years to come.