experts tell you who will be drafted, but now it’s time for you to throw on your GM cap and vote which player should be drafted where. Each day we will present an argument for each player and why the respective team should pick them. Then, it’s up to you. You make the pick. The next day, we will compile the results and you can see who is off the board. Disagree with all of the options? Be sure to write in your pick below in the comments section. Ok, let’s get into it. The Detroit Lions are on the clock.
Something had to change for the Lions, who following a playoff appearance in 2011, stumbled to a 4-12 campaign in 2012. Not only was it the first time the team regressed since head coach Jim Schwartz took over in 2009, the Lions became more known for questionable antics (
Ndamukong Suh) and team chemistry obliterators (
Titus Young). Changes needed to come and come they did. The offensive line was eaten away as left tackle
Jeff Backus retired, right tackle
Gosder Cherilus signed with the
Colts and right guard
Stephen Peterman as cut for salary cap relief. Free agency ended up being a wash as Detroit didn’t sign anyone to fill those three spots. The Lions’ secondary – the bane of their defense – did improve a bit as they signed safety
Glover Quin away from the
Texans and re-signed safety
Louis Delmas and starting cornerback
Chris Houston. However, one more piece is still needed to round out that group. Both starting defensive ends from 2012,
Cliff Avril and
Kyle Vanden Bosch, have also joined the ranks of the departed. Clearly, there are holes to fill and the Lions have been dealt tough break from the fans, as offensive linemen Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher are both off the board. Let’s see who else is left to pick from.
Oklahoma OT Lane Johnson
With both tackle spots needing to be filled, Johnson could be a wise choice here. Considered to have tremendous upside, the 6-6, 303-pound monster ran the 40 in a dizzying 4.69 seconds. He has the size and quickness to be a force up front and even though some scouts view him as a project, he has the talent to be a starter for years to come. He’s explosive off the snap and has the length to keep pass-rushers at bay.
Alabama OG Chance Warmack
Most team wouldn’t reach for a guard this high in the draft, but Warmack could end up being an exception. An All-American in his senior season with the Crimson Tide, he has earned notice for his quick feet and exceptional pass-blocking ability. Plus, it’s not often when you see a player earn this type of praise from Alabama coach Nick Saban: “I think people that have his kind of balance and body control and the kind of athleticism that he has at his size are rare commodities. Everybody knows that those guys play 12, 14, 15 years. I think Chance has a chance to have that kind of career.'' With several gaps to fill along the offensive line, Warmack could prove to be too good to pass up.
BYU DE Ezekiel Ansah
Ziggy Ansah is similar to Dion Jordan in that both can play multiple roles, but Ansah was used solely along the defensive line during his short tenure at BYU. He can rush the passer from either a standing position or from a traditional stance. Despite having just two years of football playing experience, the native of Ghana, has natural ability. With his long arms, he can also be a terror in the running game as he’s able to slip blocks easily and eat up running backs in the backfield. He might be a stretch at the No. 5 pick, but Ansah could end up having the most spectacular career out of anyone in this draft.
Alabama CB Dee Milliner
The Crimson Tide product could slid right in and fill the hole the Lions have in their secondary. He could slide right in and start opposite Chris Houston right away. Add him to safeties Glover Quin and Louis Delmas and you have a serviceable secondary. Milliner’s size, strength and his ability to be a force in stopping the run game makes him a great option here. Is it too soon to reach for a corner at this spot? We’ll leave that for you to decide.
Georgia LB Jarvis Jones
Jones has some health issues coming out of college as he has a condition known as spinal stenosis, which kept him from playing at USC. However, the condition didn’t prevent him from blowing up with the Bulldogs. If the team can make peace with that, Jones could be an invaluable pass-rushing threat from the outside. His burst off the edge can wreak havoc for opposing quarterbacks and can dictate the tone for the entire unit.