The NFL Combine came to a close on Monday, wrapping up one of the major steps in the evaluation process. Going forward, teams will continue to evaluate prospects at pro days and by bringing players in for visits, but with the combine out of the way, there's now a better sense of where certain guys might land in the draft.
In order to better understand who might be available for the Detroit Lions at No. 23 in the first round, let's take a look at SB Nation's latest 2015 NFL mock draft. The Lions are projected to select Florida offensive tackle D.J. Humphries, but I want to focus more on who is off the board and who is still available at certain positions of need.
First, here's a rundown of some players who are not projected to be available when the Lions go on the clock:
- Offensive tackle: La'el Collins (LSU), Brandon Scherff (Iowa), T.J. Clemmings (Pittsburgh)
- Defensive tackle: Leonard Williams (USC), Danny Shelton (Washington), Malcom Brown (Texas)
- Cornerback: Trae Waynes (Michigan State), Marcus Peters (Washington), P.J. Williams (Florida State)
That's a lot of talent at positions of need that is projected to be gone by the 23rd overall pick, but the bright side is that the following players are still on the board in this mock draft:
- Offensive tackle: D.J. Humphries (Florida), Andrus Peat (Stanford), Ereck Flowers (Miami FL), Cedric Ogbuehi (Texas A&M)
- Defensive tackle: Jordan Phillips (Oklahoma), Eddie Goldman (Florida State), Carl Davis (Iowa), Michael Bennett (Ohio State)
- Cornerback: Jalen Collins (LSU), Quinten Rollins (Miami OH), Kevin Johnson (Wake Forest), Ronald Darby (Florida State)
Granted, a lot of the players still on the board are probably better suited for the second round, but keep in mind that no running backs are projected to be off the board by the 23rd overall pick in this mock draft. In other words, the Lions could take Georgia's Todd Gurley or Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon if they want to make an upgrade at that position. And if they want to address a more pressing concern in the trenches, there are plenty of intriguing options on both sides of the ball.
Based on what you saw during the NFL Combine, who should the Lions target with their first-round pick?