Analyzing The Detroit Lions Draft – A Mixed Bag
Another National Football League Draft has come and gone. And your gridiron heroes, the Detroit Lions, have added eight players to their roster via the Draft. And now that the Lions have completed their picks, we can now properly analyze each choice.
The Lions took four offensive players and four defensive players in the Draft. And the team reportedly has signed former Nebraska QB Adrian Martinez and former Minnesota RB Mo Ibrahim to deals as undrafted free agents among others.
So let's go through the picks one by one and give my thoughts on each one:
1st Round Pick - #12 - Jahmyr Gibbs - RB - Alabama
The Lions traded down from the 6th pick to take Gibbs at #12. But this was a massive reach to take a running back this high in the first round. This isn't 1976, you do not take a running back this high in the first round anymore. The shelf life of an NFL running back is pretty short as it is. Gibbs may turn out to be good, but this was waaaaay too high to take him. At best, he should've been a 2nd round pick.
1st Round Pick - #18 - Jack Campbell - LB - Iowa
This pick makes more sense as the Lions need help on defense, as most people know. This pick was a little bit too high for my tastes. He might have been a better pick at #34 in the second round. He's a good player at a program that traditionally is good on defense. Not as much of a reach as the Gibbs pick, but we'll see.
2nd Round Pick - #34 - Sam LaPorta - TE - Iowa
This pick makes no sense to me. You have Shane Zylstra, James Mitchell, Brock Wright, and Derrick Deese, Jr. on the roster. The first three guys mentioned made a contribution last year after T.J. Hockenson was traded to Minnesota. You don't need a tight end! I didn't like this pick at all.
2nd Round Pick - #45 - Brian Branch - S - Alabama
I like this pick. The Lions traded up to get Branch. With C.J. Moore gone and Tracy Walker coming off of a major injury, there was a need in the secondary. He'll likely be a backup behind Walker and Kerby Joseph. But this is a good depth piece. Like the pick.
3rd Round Pick - #68 - Hendon Hooker - QB - Tennessee
The team traded down to take Hooker. Everybody whose a Lions fan knows that the team needed to upgrade the QB room behind starter Jared Goff. Hooker will join Nate Sudfield as likely backups to Goff. I think it's a good pick. With a good camp, he could be QB2 entering the season.
3rd Round Pick - #96 - Brodric Martin - DL - Western Kentucky
The Lions traded up to take the former Hilltopper. Martin should provide depth behind Alim McNeil and Benito Jones. And he could join the playing group with a good training camp. The pick fills a need.
5th Round Pick - #152 - Colby Sorsdal - OL - William & Mary
Another depth guy on the offensive line. You have Taylor Decker and Penei Sewell at the tackle position. And with Jonah Jackson and, hopefully, Halapoulivaati Vaitai at guard. And All-Pro Frank Ragnow is at center. If he makes the team, he'll likely back up the guys I just mentioned. It makes sense, unlike a couple of the other picks above.
7th Round Pick - #219 - Antoine Green - WR - North Carolina
With Jameson Williams out for the first six games due to suspension and Quintez Cephus gone due to the same suspension, this pick makes a lot of sense. He's got Amon-Ra St. Brown, Marvin Jones, Khalif Raymond, and Josh Reynolds ahead of him. So he won't play a lot and he'll battle training camp star Tom Kennedy and others to make the team. If he does, expect him to play on special teams.
Like the title suggests, a mixed bag for the Lions in this year's Draft IMO. The Gibbs and Campbell picks were reaches. The LaPorta picks makes no sense. But the other picks make sense to me. I give the Lions a grade of C for this year's Draft.
What do you think? Let us know!!