Going into the 2013 NFL Draft, the consensus was that it was short on elite talent but very strong in the second and third rounds. We'll get to see that on Friday as teams return to action for the second day of the draft. The first-round picks may grab the headlines, but you can build your team into a contender by making excellent picks in the second and third rounds.
For the Detroit Lions, which hold the 36th and 65th overall picks on Friday, there's a lot of talent left on the board at positions of need. They addressed defensive end on Thursday night, but there's still some first-round-caliber talent left at that position in case they want double-dip. And if they want to address needs like offensive line, wide receiver, tight end, defensive tackle, linebacker or secondary, there's a lot of talent left at those positions, too.
Below is a rundown of Mocking The Draft's best available players at the Lions' positions of need (number is the overall ranking).
19. Keenan Allen (California)
48. Robert Woods (USC)
51. Justin Hunter (Tennessee)
60. Quinton Patton (Louisiana Tech)
64. Da'Rick Rogers (Tennessee Tech)
If the Lions want to fill their need at wide receiver, Friday night seems like the time to do it. There is some really high-level talent still available, and wide receiver seems like a real possibility at the start of the second round.
34. Zach Ertz (Stanford)
40. Gavin Escobar (San Diego State)
53. Travis Kelce (Cincinnati)
87. Vance McDonald (Rice)
95. Dion Sims (Michigan State)
Tight end also seems like a possibility on Friday night. The Lions are in need of extra depth at tight end, and perhaps someone like Ertz could end up being their second-round pick.
54. Menelik Watson (Florida State)
67. Terron Armstead (Arkansas Pine-Bluff)
92. Oday Aboushi (Virginia)
100. Jordan Mills (Louisiana Tech)
111. Reid Fragel (Ohio State)
After the big run on tackles in the first round, the Lions may be wise to fill that need in the second round with Watson or Armstead. Watson especially was viewed as a potential first-round pick, and after so many guys went on Thursday, he appears to be the top tackle left on the board.
33. Larry Warford (Kentucky)
63. Barrett Jones (Alabama)
80. Brian Schwenke (California)
88. Dallas Thomas (Tennessee)
98. Brian Winters (Kent State)
If the Lions don't go tackle, they could stick with the offensive line by drafting an interior lineman. There's still some good talent available, and the Lions could use a boost in the depth department.
29. Johnathan Hankins (Ohio State)
31. Jesse Williams (Alabama)
47. John Jenkins (Georgia)
45. Kawann Short (Purdue)
75. Bennie Logan (LSU)
Defensive tackle isn't anywhere near the top of the list of needs, but it may have the most talent left on the board in the second round. There are a few guys still available who were at one time talked about as first-round picks.
18. Arthur Brown (Kansas State)
39. Jamie Collins (Southern Miss)
42. Manti Te'o (Notre Dame)
43. Khaseem Greene (Rutgers)
49. Sio Moore (UConn)
Just say no to Te'o.
46. Logan Ryan (Rutgers)
47. Johnthan Banks (Mississippi State)
55. Jamar Taylor (Boise State)
59. Jordan Poyer (Oregon State)
61. Blidi Wreh-Wilson (UConn)
If the Lions want to boost their secondary, there are a lot of intriguing options at cornerback that should be there in both rounds on Friday night.
Best of the rest
14. DE Tank Carradine (Florida State)
20. QB Geno Smith (West Virginia)
23. S Jonathan Cyprien (Florida International)
26. S D.J. Swearinger (South Carolina)
38. DE Damontre Moore (Texas A&M)
The Lions obviously aren't going to draft Smith, but perhaps he could be of some use in terms of finding a team that wants to trade up for him. As for the others, Carradine would be a very attractive option if the Lions really want to bolster their pass rush, whereas someone like Cyprien would be a very attractive option if the Lions really want to bolster their depth at safety.
Given that there is so much talent left, trading down might actually be the Lions' best option. Moving down, getting some extra picks and still landing a couple players who can help you in 2013 would set the draft up nicely for Saturday.