The Detroit Lions will be hearing a lot about what changes they can make for the future as the offseason evolves, and the next part of the calendar involves mock drafts.
To that end, an annual doozy was revealed on Wednesday, January 25 when ESPN sage Mel Kiper Jr. came out with his first mock draft. With two picks in the first round this coming year, the Lions were always going to be a popular team to analyze.
Kiper, like many, sees defense as the biggest need for the team when all is said and done, specifically help up front. So with pick six in the draft, he sends Detroit Texas Tech edge rusher Tyree Wilson.
As Kiper explained, Wilson could help the team against the run and the pass, and boost an already developing group with another quality young body.
“Wilson, the top true defensive end in this class, would help both. He can use his burst at the snap to beat offensive tackles on passing downs or use his 6-foot-6 frame to hold up against the run. An edge-rushing duo of Wilson and Aidan Hutchinson would be formidable, with surprise rookie James Houston working in on obvious passing downs,” Kiper wrote in the piece.
From there, with the 18th pick, Kiper had the Lions going with a cornerback to help solve a depth situation on the back end. As he explained, Gonzalez is going to have a strong pre-draft process that could make him irresistible to a needy team like Detroit.
“Jeff Okudah flashed the talent that made him the No. 3 overall pick in 2020, but he was still inconsistent, and there’s no surefire starter on the other side of the field. Gonzalez was a lockdown defender at Colorado before transferring to Oregon last year, where he picked off four passes and improved every week. He’s going to test really well at the combine in March too. This pick makes too much sense for a Detroit defense that badly needs an infusion of young talent in the secondary,” he wrote of Gonzalez.
Finding solutions at defensive line and at cornerback would be a huge win for the Lions, and would continue some of the early momentum that they seem to have found from this past season.
In terms of Kiper’s mock, this is where the process starts for Detroit at this point in time.
Wilson’s College Stats …read more