Complete Detroit Lions 7 round draft

March 26th, 2014

Justin Gilbert, photo from Tulsa World


By Dylan Gross, DLD Staff Scout

Round 1 (#10)

Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St.

To no one’s surprise, the Lions need help in the secondary.  Glover Quin is as solid as it gets at safety.  The recent signing of James Ihedigbo, who played under new defensive coordinator, Teryl Austin in Baltimore, will sure up the other side for now.  But let’s be honest, Chris Houston looked downright bad last year, Darius Slay had a handful of flashes in his rookie campaign, and a handful of plays chasing down a receiver that burned him.  Also, Bill Bentley will never manifest into an above average starter.  Even if Rashean Mathis signs, Justin Gilbert, the best corner on most draft boards, can come in and automatically start.  This pick will add talent and depth this year, but more importantly, the Gilbert/Slay duo will be able to go toe-to-toe with receiving tandems for years to come.

Alternative Pick-

Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M

It was painful watching the mess that played opposite Calvin Johnson last year, Mike Evans would step in and be able to start on the outside and stretch the field.  This would push the versatile Golden Tate inside, where in my opinion; he is better suited with his sure hands.

Round 2 (#13)

Allen Robinson, WR, Penn St

I know the Lions need another receiver, but they would be wise to pass on anyone besides Sammy Watkins in round 1.  The depth at the Wide Receiver position this year is remarkable, and at pick 13 in the second round, someone with a first round grade will fall to them.  In this situation, Allen Robinson falls.  Very similar to what was said above about Evans; Robinson could push the versatile Tate inside.  Or, they could bring him along slowly, with Tate on the outside, Broyles on the inside and Robinson at #4 on the depth chart.

Alternative Pick-

Kyle Van Noy, OLB, BYU

We know the Lions have watched Van Noy, after watching Ziggy Ansah last year.  After bowl season, there were plenty of rumors about Van Noy and the Lions.  Last year, under the old regime, the Lions played the vast majority of defensive snaps with only Levy and Tulloch on the field.  Van Noy could come in and give Teryl Austin more versatility, and could battle special team ace, Tahir Whitehead and Travis Lewis for the starting OLB position.

Round 3 (#12)

Jackson Jeffcoat, DE, Texas

The loss of Willie Young to division rival Chicago doesn’t hurt, but it still stings.  Devin Taylor looked good last year, and Jason Jones is aging and coming off a major injury.  Jeffcoat is very talented, but hasn’t necessarily put it all together, he adds depth at the position, and could be much better than Willie Young ever was.

Alternative pick

Ahmad Dixon, Safety, Baylor

Ihedigbo is a solid player that will come in and start.  But he is only on a 2-year deal and is on the wrong side of 30.  Dixon adds depth and will step in as a starter once Ihedigbo departs.

Round 4 (#11)

Dion Bailey, Safety, USC

Very similar to what is said about the more talented Ahmad Dixon above. Bailey adds depth at the position, and a starting ability in a few years, after some grooming.

Alternative Pick-

 Stanley Jean-Baptiste, CB, Nebraska

If the Lions don’t attack the Cornerback position in the first 3 rounds, and Jean-Baptiste is on the board, there is no way they pass on him.  Jean-Baptiste is the biggest CB in the draft, and everyone saw in early February that big, strong, physical corners can win games…..big games.

Round 4 (#33)

Cameron Fleming, OT, Stanford

LaAdrian Waddle surprised everybody last year, starting eight of the last nine games at right tackle.  But, it doesn’t hurt to have a contingency plan if Waddle doesn’t progress as a starter.  Nine times out of ten, when you draft an offensive lineman from Stanford, you get a quality player.  Fleming comes in and is an immediate upgrade from Jason Fox and Corey Hilliard, who are both aging, and pushes LaAdrian Waddle to be better……fingers crossed.

Alternative Pick-

Caraun Reid, DT, Princeton

Reid, who is much better suited to play 4-3 DT, fits in nicely on the Lions defensive line.  This is a position that the Lions must address with the uncertainty surrounding Nick Fairly.  Reid has a lot of upside after dominating the Ivy League, but falls because he is a bit undersized.

Round 4 (#36)

Bryan Stork, C, Florida State

Dominic Raiola has been an integral part of the Lions rebuilding effort and success, but is on his last leg.  Raiola has said recently that he knows he is battling for the starting Center job, after signing a veteran minimum.  Stork won a national championship, and has a year to battle and learn from Raiola before eventually taking over as the starter.

Alternative Pick-

Aaron Lynch, DE, USF

Character issues shouldn’t be a problem with new coach Jim Caldwell.  Aaron Lynch was a freshman All-American at Notre Dame, and ended up at USF.  Lynch is versatile, being able to line up inside and outside.  Reward outweighs the risk here.

Round 6 (#13)

A.C. Leonard, TE, Tenn. St.

You can’t teach speed, and that is one thing that Leonard excels in.  He ran a 4.5 40 yard dash at the combine.  The platoon of him, red-zone specialist Joseph Fauria, and sort-of starter Brandon Pettigrew would be impressive.

Alternative Pick-

Trai Turner, G, LSU

Once again, the Lions take a player that adds depth and has the ability to start in a year or two.  Turner is a large man, at 6’3” 310 pounds, with some refinement in the pass protection aspect of his game (which is kind of important in the Lions offense), he could be very imposing opposite Larry Warford.

Round 7 (#12)

Zach Hocker, K, Arkansas

The Lions biggest need may be kicker. Watching David Akers in snowy Philadelphia was just brutal.  Akers won’t be back. In steps Hocker, who may have to battle Havard Rugland (aka Kickalicious) for the kicking duties.

Alternative Pick-

Tom Savage, QB, Pitt

If Shaun Hill departs via free agency, they will need to bring someone in to battle with Kellen Moore.  Savage is definitely underrated, in part due to his terrible o-line at Pitt his senior year.

This is Dylan Gross’ debut with Detroit Lions Draft. We are happy to welcome him to the Draft Sites Network family. He’s an avid Lions fan and budding draft mind. You can follow Dylan on Twitter @realdylangross, and expect to see more of his work soon!

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3 Responses to “Complete Detroit Lions 7 round draft”

  1. The Strategy Expert says:

    Hmm I’m actually predicting that they won’t draft any Secondary players in this draft, so I’m a little surprised to see Gilbert with the 1st pick but I can understand the pick, just would like to know who is the 5th guy out and do you expect to see somebody traded and for what kind of value? Sure they could use help in both spots, but with Ihedigbo signing I think they have a quantity of 5 CBs as planned keepers and 3 at Safety with a couple to compete for the 4th spot. I’m thinking that with the high roster count numbers there that they will see what they have and use the next 2 drafts to really hit the Secondary group hard then. I’m not as surprised by the Safety later on, but to take 2 players this year in the Secondary I just have a hard time seeing them going that route.

    I also think we have 3 TEs already set to make the roster so I’ve ruled out TE completely from this draft on my board. I’m more open-minded about taking a CB than a TE, but that’s contingent on finding a trade to remove a CB first. And I would prefer if they didn’t draft a Kicker at all, just not enough talent in this draft and not enough teams that will need Kickers that I would prefer to see what UDFAs we can get or others that become freebie pickups later. There will be plenty of suitable free players to use. Heck we might be able to get 2 UDFA kickers to compete for the 1 spot, plus we still have Tavecchio and Potter for whatever they can add to the competition, or at least I thought we did. Neither of them appear on our roster on the website so I’m unsure why that is if anybody knows?

  2. The Strategy Xpert says:

    Slay and Quin are the only secondary players guaranteed to be here after the next season.
    Houston will be most probably be cut and I am yet to see anything from any other young CB’s or S’s that lead me to believe that they will become solid starters. So why would they not grab an ?elite? CB.

    TE is a little different. Fauria is a one trick pony. He will never be a No.1 TE. I can easily see Ebron being our pick at 10. We would be running a 2TE formation most of the time and with great success I would say, Ebron, in the Jimmy-Graham-role with Pettigrew as the 2-way TE and Fauria coming in as a redzone threat and quality backup.

    As for Kickers I could care less as long as they can kick straight.

    I am hoping they trade up for Watkins. But no more than our 1st, 3rd, 4th.

    • The Strategy Expert says:

      I disagree that Quin is a guarantee to be here, to me he’s more interesting to look at as trade bait so I think he is on a short list of intriguing players to move at some point in the future. All of my plans would be to reconfigure this team and we need somebody that we can pawn off to make a transition and he’s one of the guys that would need to be used to make big changes.

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