In the Millen years, the Lions became noted for drafting a WR in the first round. Four in six years from 2003 through 2007. Charles Rogers, Roy Williams, Mike Williams, and finally getting it right, Calvin Johnson.
Now Mayhew has spent the Lions last two second round picks on WRs; Titus Young and Ryan Broyles. However, due to the age and injury to Nate Burleson, the banishment/meltdown of Titus, and the injury to Broyles the Lions find themselves very thin at WR. A good sized # 2 wide receiver seems to be in order, and those candidates don't grow on trees. In fact, Mayhew and the Lions have already visited with four WRs, three of which are potential second round pick candidates. I am going to remove Cordarrelle Patterson from consideration as pretty much every scouting report and mock draft has him going in the top twenty of the draft.
Here are three candidates for selection at # 36.
1. Deandre Hopkins - Clemson 6' 1", 214 lbs, 4.57 40, 36" vert, + 10" hands
I'll start with my personal favourite, Deandre Hopkins. He had a monster 2012 season with 82 catches for 1405 yards and 18 TDs. He reminds me of Julio Jones with his physical play, but he is not as fast as Julio. Does a nice job catching the ball and creates a lot of yards after contact. He seems to be consistently ranked as the third to fifth best WR in this class. Most show him as a late first to early second round pick.
CBS Scouting report: http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1737078/deandre-hopkins
2. Justin Hunter - Tenn. 6' 4", 196 lbs, 4.44 40, 39.5" vert. , 9.4" hands
Hunter is a taller and faster WR than Hopkins, but I did not see much physicality in his play. He did not break
many tackles and does not look that fast on the field. His height and great vertical should make him a great end zone weapon. His hands seemed very inconsistent, and he definitely needs to add some weight and strength to be successful in the NFL. He seems to be ranked between the third and ninth best WR. He has met with the Lions for a private interview.
CBS Scouting report: http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1737463/justin-hunter
3. Robert Woods - USC 6' 0", 201 lbs, 4.51 40, 33.4" vert, 9.4" hands
Woods had an outstanding 2011 and went into 2012 as the top WR prospect for the 2013 draft. He had ankle surgery and seemed to lose some of the explosion that made him such a dangerous runner after the catch. He is considered an excellent route runner and outstanding catcher of the ball. He has added some weight over the last year [he used to be listed at 180 pounds] and hopefully that is all muscle. Woods also returned kicks and punts in college. Not that successfully from what I saw or his stats. He was also privately interviewed by the Lions.
Woods is ranked between the fourth and eighth best WRs in the rankings I reviewed.
CBS scouting report: http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1754280/robert-woods
Other candidates for being selected in the second round by the Lions are Terrance Williams of Baylor or Keenan Allen of California. I did not include a write up for either because Williams is not a second round talent IMO, and Allen [even with his injury issues] will very, very likely get picked in the first round. Some have him ahead of Patterson. If he did fall to the Lions at # 36, I think that would mean that his injury issues are a much bigger concern to the teams ahead of the Lions. Da'Rick Rogers of Tenn. Tech is also an outstanding talent, but his character issues should disqualify him. If not totally from the Lions board, at least from the second round.
There are other later round prospects for the # 2 WR spot that deserve a closer look in another post.
As always, all questions and comments will be happily answered. GO LIONS!!