I think the Lion's #5 draft pick comes down to 2 player's:
LT - Eric Fisher from Central Michigan
DE - Ezekiel Ansah from BYU
Strong arguments can be put forward for either player. Fisher is a potential franchise Left-tackle, while Ansah looks like a potential one-man wrecking crew on the defensive side of the ball. Both players fill areas of need on the team. Championship teams are built in the Trenches, I like either pick, but which way do we go?
To me this argument comes down to one player - Jason Fox. He has been the supposed heir apparent to Jeff Backus for it seems like forever. From all accounts he has the skill set, size and technique to fill the shoes left vacant by Backus's retirement. Just two problems - Fox has seen very little playing time on the actual field and he has had a history of injuries. If the Lion's roll the dice on Fox and it fails - the chance to draft an elite Left-tackle may not fall into our laps again.
However, Ansah has the size, speed and potential to be a major force on a defense that needs major upgrades if we ever hope to get to a Super Bowl. If Ansah is everything they say he could be, a line featuring Suh, Fairley and Ansah could wreak havoc on opposing offenses. Ansah doesn't have a lot of experience, but he appears to be rising fast as an elite defensive talent?
If we go with Fisher and secure our Offensive line for years to come, then we should find a pass rusher in round #2. If we go Ansah and build our defensive line, then we should go Guard in round two and find a replacement for the departed Stephen Peterman. That both lines will be upgraded.
Either way, I think we will come out winners. But to me - it all depends on whether or not we already have Backus's replacement on the roster in Fox (or perhaps Reiff). If the FO believes that we do - then the choice has to be Ansah.
My hope - Fox is ready to assume the mantle of protecting Matthew Stafford's blind side - and the Lion's go defense in round #1 with Ezekiel Ansah. Ansah would give the Lion's a formidable defensive line and would be the perfect replacement for the departed Cliff Avril.
My bet? This will be the Lion's "go-forward" strategy. Jim Schwartz is a Defensive Coach at heart and he will want defense over offense. Just like a few years ago when Suh (DT) was the choice over Russell Okung (LT).