Draft Preview: Detroit Lions

by Daniel Foster

Anyone who foresees a need to focus on television on Thanksgiving Day in an effort to make the Turkey Spins stop should be interested in the fate of the Detroit Lions, who are probably just a few picks away from being a .500 team (high praise for a franchise just two years removed from an 0-16 campaign.)

The word is that Detroit GM Martin Mayhew is looking for cornerbacks, but at 13 there’s a fat chance the best on the board — LSU’s Patrick Peterson — will still be around. The good news is that Nebraska’s Prince Amukamara just might be, and he is 99.9 percent the player.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Lions most pressing need is to protect their young quarterback. The OT corps in Detroit is either aging, suspect, or both, which is why so many mock drafts have the Lions taking USC’s Tyron Smith. He’s young, just 20 years old, with a solid floor and astronomic upside. A lot of scouts project him as an elite blind-side protector.

The Lions first string ball-carriers are actually pretty good, meaning they’ll probably be looking to draft for depth — a weapon to line up opposite Calvin “Megatron” Johnson and, especially now that Kevin Smith is gone, an insurance policy for Jahvid Best after an iffy (but likely unrepresentative) freshman year. 

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