Seems like there's a growing consensus that, for this draft, there just isn't the top-5 talent there should be: there are two offensive tackles, Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher, and then a big drop off in the value that the next tier prospects offer the Lions:
- Some of the top prospects just happen to be DT's this year (Floyd, Richardson, Lotulelei). Thanks, football gods.
- Dee Milliner looks like a good cornerback, but not nearly the elite talent of other secondarymen selected at #5 in years past (Patrick Peterson, Eric Berry). Plus, we can re-sign Chris Houston and keep developing the young guys from the 2012 draft.
- Dion Jordan is ridiculously athletic, but he's too tall and skinny to hold up as a 4-3 end. Perhaps he'd be a monster at 3-4 OLB.
- Ezekiel Ansah is ridiculously athletic AND big enough in the 270's, but his lack of multi-year experience maybe makes him too much of a risk at # 5 despite his upside.
- Jarvis Jones is a great playmaker who is probably too big a risk with the spinal stenosis. Plus, he might fit a 3-4 better than our system.
- Chance Warmack looks like a good guard, but positional value of a guard and the marginal difference in draft value between spending # 5 on Warmack and getting another beast like Larry Warford at # 36 (or, getting Warford in the lower-first with a small trade-up) or targetting another top interior OL (Jones or Frederick in the 2nd or 3rd? Trading up into the 20's for Cooper?), maybe doesn't justify spending the # 5 pick on Warmack.
Trading down is always the sexy sexy option. Everyone wants a trade-down. This year it's even sexier. It's like trading down put on some leather thigh-highs and is flying around on a dragon with a whip and a lightsaber, but let's delve no further into my subconscious fantasies. Suppose we can't trade down.
For those of you with Joeckel and Fisher at the top of your wish list: suppose draft day rolls around, and the top tackle (pick your favorite) is gone at # 1, and it doesn't look like the next tackle will last past pick # 4 (suppose Philadelphia broadcasts their plan to draft the other tackle at # 4). So, if we want Joeckel or Fisher, we have to trade up to # 3 with Oakland. What would you give to trade up? How much is reasonable? How much is too much?
With the new CBA and money no longer being an issue, you have to regard the traditional "draft value chart" less and less and look at the actual circumstances surrounding the teams looking to make a trade in the top 5.
For example, Washington gave up three first-round picks and a second to secure Robert Griffin the Third, only four spots higher than they were originally slotted. But, if he pans out as the franchise QB they hope for, it'll look like a good trade.
Cleveland gave up three mid-to-late round picks (a fourth-, fifth- and seventh-) to move up for Trent Richardson. They didn't want to settle for the next tier of talent and miss out on the running back they really wanted.
Jacksonville, however, only traded a fourth to move up two spots from # 7 to # 5.
St. Louis traded down all the way from # 6 to # 14 for only a second-round pick. In 2011, when they Lions reportedly were looking to trade up from # 13 to # 5 for Patrick Peterson, a second- AND fourth- were not enough to convince Arizona to swap picks with us.
So, it all depends who is available and how much the team wants him.
With Backus' age and Fox's injury history, and Reiff possibly being needed to replace Cherilus, I'd be willing to trade see us trade up when there's a potentially elite left tackle, considering we're such a pass heavy team that is only going as far as Stafford can take us (not that I don't like Ansah or Warmack or Milliner, but that's another discussion elsewhere).
What is the most draft value you would offer to move up for Joeckel/Fisher rather than settle for somebody else?
(Remember, we don't have a fourth [Tahir Whitehead trade] and compensatory picks cannot be traded.)