Mel Kiper Mock Draft Has Lions Taking Stephon Gilmore

South Carolina Gamecocks defensive back Stephon Gilmore participates in pass interception drills during the NFL Combine.

ESPN's Mel Kiper released his latest 2012 NFL mock draft today. In it he has the Detroit Lions drafting South Carolina cornerback Stephon Gilmore in order to improve their secondary. Here's more reasoning for the pick:

Detroit could get into the mix for a cornerback during free agency -- Cortland Finnegan is a name that has come up often -- but I'd still be shocked if the Lions go two rounds without adding a corner. They have plenty of talent up front, and they need to turn their pass rush into more interceptions. Gilmore is a bigger corner, a guy that can handle big wide receivers, but he also doesn't lose much in terms of quickness. I can also see the Lions going O-line or linebacker here, but corner is a big need.

Because it's unlikely the Lions will be able to afford a top corner on the free agent market like Finnegan, their best bet probably will be to improve the secondary through the draft. Gilmore would be a big step in upgrading the cornerback position. Not only would he add more depth to the position, but the overall talent level would receive a solid upgrade as well.

In Kiper's previous mock draft, he had the Lions taking cornerback Janoris Jenkins. In his latest edition, Jenkins isn't predicted to be taken until 31st overall by the New England Patriots.

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