Detroit Lions preview

About a month ago, I said the Detroit Lions did not need to spend a high draft pick on an offensive tackle. About two weeks ago, the Lions' front office agreed with me, choosing instead to take a low-risk chance on Johnny Culbreath, a small-school project tackle. It has been a no-brainer to most. The Lions need Matthew Stafford to play, he has suffered four injuries in two seasons, and played less than a single season's slate of games. Looking at just those facts, the Lions need to upgrade the offensive line. In particular, most were looking for an upgrade for left tackle Jeff Backus, to whom Julius Peppers gave the blow-by on the [...] Continue reading → | , , ,
The Detroit Lions have been a roster turnover machine in the last two years. When a new coach and administration is trying to rebuild a team that avoided the win column for 21 months, that sort of comes with the territory. Because of that, the 2011 offseason comes with a fair amount of intrigue, and I'm not just talking about the labor situation. We may see the least turnover in Detroit in over a decade this season, with a steady coaching staff, rock-solid starters in a majority of positions, and only a handful of draft picks. But still, as it is with any team, some guys are just plain and simply going to get cut. The list of who will change significantly as we have free agency and trades (whenever that turns out to be), but as of [...] Continue reading → | , , ,
This is going to seem just a tad bit hypocritical. Two days ago, I posted my final mock draft of the season, and it prominently and proudly featured Jimmy Smith being selected with the Lions' top pick. A few hours later, more detail came out about Smith's "character concerns" than he probably would have liked. Two alcohol-related violations. Two abortions paid for by the families of women he impregnated. Third-degree assault at a restaurant. Three failed drug tests, one which he admitted was for codeine misuse. You know who else got in trouble recently for codeine misuse? JaMarcus Russell. Just saying. Suddenly, this isn't a couple of youthful indiscretions in college. This is a [...] Continue reading → | , , , ,
It has recently been brought to my attention that I have yet to mock a single Michigan State player to the Lions in any mock draft. The reason for that, primarily, is not the players themselves, but rather a fear of the past. Matt Millen was notorious for taking local guys who didn't work out. I don't know if he just saw them on TV while in Michigan, or if he thought he would put more butts in the seats by loading up on local kids, but he did it, and it was almost universally a bad idea. Charles Rogers should be enough, but he was also responsible for David Kircus (of Grand Valley State), Drew Stanton (MSU), and Jeff Backus (Michigan), amongst others. Of those, Backus worked out reasonably well, and Stanton is still an unknown. But in general, I've been hesitant to look into [...] Continue reading → | , , , , ,
Seems like the Detroit Lions always get shafted when the schedules come out, don't they? Of course the Lions couldn't have drawn the NFC West this year. They get the rough-and-tumble NFC South and the unpredictable AFC West. And to make matters worse, they open with three of their first four on the road for the second straight year. The home game is against the AFC West champion Kansas City Chiefs, i.e. not any easier than the road tests. But really, is a tough schedule something to whine about, or is it an opportunity? If the Lions had the league's easiest schedule and went 10-6, they would be dogged all year by "who have they played" criticisms (think last year's Tampa Bay Bucs). Playing the league's fourth-toughest schedule leaves no room for doubt if the Lions have a [...] Continue reading → | , ,
The Detroit Lions and Chicago are slated to play at Ford Field on Oct. 10, 2011 on Monday Night Football. Let me say that again, boiled down this time. The Detroit Lions are playing on Monday Night Football. According to Mike O'Hara of Fox Sports Detroit, the Lions will get their first Monday night game since 2001 next season, and they will get it against their hated rivals, the Chicago Bears. The last time the Lions played on Monday night, they were dismantled by the St. Louis Rams 35-0. The fact the schedulers have given them a primetime spot is proof that the Lions are beginning to regain some [...] Continue reading → | , , , , , ,
Another week, another Detroit Lions mock draft. Yes, that means you'll be getting one of these from me every week. Though you may tire of mock drafts, consider it an opportunity to become better acquainted with more draft prospects down the board. After all, the draft is no fun if you only know the top five players on the board. Believe me, I've been there. And you can be sure you'll learn plenty each week from my mock drafts, given the rules I've set in place for myself. Those rules are as follows: 1. No repeating picks. If you've heard my analysis on a player once, you don't need it again. If that means I have to get creative with my selections, so be it. 2. No trades. I actually think the Lions will trade down somewhere, but it's just silly to assume to know [...] Continue reading → | , , , ,
Look far and wide, across the internet. There are mock drafts aplenty, and the picks are as random and varied as the whims of Al Davis. That said, it's hard to find a mock draft out there that doesn't send Tyron Smith, the young offensive tackle out of USC, to the Detroit Lions at pick 13. The reasoning usually goes along the lines of, "The Lions need to draft an offensive tackle to keep Matthew Stafford healthy," even though they're talking about drafting an offensive tackle, not a doctor. But is that really the case? Do the Lions need, first and foremost, to pick up an offensive tackle over other team needs? And was the offensive line really so atrocious as to need a major shakeup? The statistics say "absolutely not." This is a difficult determination for me to make. [...] Continue reading → | , , , ,
A good mock draft is like a good March Madness bracket. No matter how much time, effort, analysis, and knowledge goes into each one, it's still nearly impossible to get more than half the picks right. And it pretty much falls apart completely after the first or second round. As the public demands mock drafts, it is my duty to provide them. But I like throwing a twist into the equation every once in a while. Last week, I ignored the likelihood of certain players being off the board and wrote a mock draft that I represented the best-case scenario for the Detroit Lions. This week, I'm flipping the script, ignoring all logic and reason to provide the most unbearably bad draft scenario imaginable. Now, like last week, this will be conducted within reason. This isn't a [...] Continue reading → | , , ,
One of the toughest things to project in a mock draft, especially one covering a single team, is who will be available at any given pick. To project that is to be inside the minds of 32 different teams' war rooms. That's obviously impossible, especially when some in those rooms are not even inside their own minds (am I right, Raiders fans?). So this time around, I'm going to run a mock draft for the Detroit Lions that ignores that to an extent. Don't worry, this isn't some crazy mock where the Lions get Patrick Peterson in the fifth round or something. These are simply some very improbable, but still slightly possible, scenarios that would very possibly comprise the best case scenario for the Lions. Round 1, 13th Overall Pick: Prince Amukamara, CB, [...] Continue reading → | , , ,
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