Why is it that year after year when we clearly need help in several areas on defense, we keep looking at areas on offense? Tom Kowalski recently stated that the Lions need to take a look at Offensive Tackle. Todd McShay predicts the Lions will take an OT at #13. I'm trying to understand this, I really am. I will agree that a team should always upgrade their offensive line when possible, especially at tackle considering today's DE's are professional quarterback killers. Is that the most pressing issue though?
I agree with Mel Kiper that a team should always take the best player available regardless if it that person doesn't fill their greatest need; I just don't think that an OT will be the best available at #13.
Right now on defense, we have an established starting defensive line plus solid backups. At LB we are hurting pretty bad. We have Levy who in my mind is solid but injury prone and we have a few guys who do not belong in a starting rotation. It would be easy to say to simply use #13 on a LB but I think Akeem Ayers will be the best available and I think that pick is too much of a stretch for him. Our secondary is better than it has been in a long time... unfortunately that’s not saying much. We have Delmas at FS and depending on what happens with the CBA, it’s safe to assume that Houston will be a FA. By signing him we will still need one more CB, I just don't see Alphonso Smith as the long term answer. He was impressive for a few games but was also exposed quite a bit. I think the best pick at #13 will be a DB. Right now Patrick Peterson and Prince Amukamara are the top two picks at DB and are most likely going to be gone by the time the Lions are on the clock. I like the Lions to pick Jimmy Smith out of Colorado. I listened to him yesterday on ESPN radio and an interesting stat about him is that in 2 years, he only allowed 2 completions for over 10 yards in Man to Man coverage. These days in the NFL, we need a guy who has height and good coverage skills, especially since the Lions are noted for giving up big plays close to the sidelines.
On Offense we have a decent OL and that’s only because they showed consistency last year. I know as fans we are always keeping our fingers crossed to get rid of Jeff Bakus... or is it Sack-Us?! Might as well forget about it folks. The coaches and GM's are very high on him and other than letting Julius Peppers desecrate Matthew Stafford's body, he had a decent year.
Bottom line is OL is not the way to go in the first round, we have too many holes on Defense and there’s too many good players to not consider at #13. I would much rather address OL and LB wholes in Free Agency assuming it happens on time.