Lions host Khalil Mack for pre-draft visit

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo outside linebacker Khalil Mack visited the Detroit Lions on Tuesday. Could he be a trade-up option for the Lions?

The Detroit Lions' pre-draft visits continued on Tuesday with another big name: Buffalo outside linebacker Khalil Mack. Mack is viewed as one of the top players in the entire 2014 NFL Draft, and he is the latest potential top-five pick to visit the Lions. Earlier this month, the Lions hosted Clemson wide receiver Sammy Watkins and South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney -- two players who will almost certainly be long gone by the 10th overall pick.

Mack also isn't expected to be available when the Lions go on the clock at No. 10. In fact, he may not even fall out of the top three depending on what happens with the quarterbacks and offensive tackles at the top of the draft. If the Lions want Mack, chances are they will have to trade up. The same goes for Watkins and Clowney, and by taking a closer look at Mack, the Lions are giving themselves another option if they do make a move.

If the Lions end up swinging a trade up for Mack, he would fill their need at outside linebacker. He racked up 19.0 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks last season at Buffalo, so he's got skills as a pass rusher. Also, he had 3 interceptions (2 for touchdowns) and 7 passes defended in 2013, so he can do much more than simply get after the opposing quarterback.

It obviously remains to be seen if the Lions will actually trade up, but I'd personally be thrilled with any of the Mack/Clowney/Watkins trio. I do not think the Lions will move all the way up to the second overall pick or the very top of the draft, but if one of these three players is there at four or five, a trade up certainly wouldn't be surprising at this point.

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