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2015 NFL mock draft: Why I picked Jalen Collins for Lions

I went with LSU cornerback Jalen Collins for the Detroit Lions in the second round of SB Nation's 2015 NFL writers mock draft. Here's why.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

After selecting Florida offensive tackle D.J. Humphries in the first round of SB Nation's 2015 NFL writers mock draft, I decided to take LSU cornerback Jalen Collins with the Detroit Lions' second-round pick. Why? Here are the three main reasons behind my pick:

1. Jalen Collins was the best player available

There are some mock drafts projecting the Lions to take Collins with the 23rd overall pick, and just generally speaking, he seems to be viewed as a likely first-round selection. With that in mind, I was very pleasantly surprised to see Collins fall all the way to the 54th overall pick. I did not expect a player of his caliber to be there for the Lions' second-round selection, and he was clearly the best player available.

2. As a bonus, he fills a pressing need

With Darius Slay entering his third year in the league and Rashean Mathis back, the Lions' starters at cornerback are set. However, they need additional depth at cornerback, and they really need to start developing someone to eventually take over for Mathis. Collins fills that need perfectly, and I would put him on the Slay development plan with him seeing occasional playing time as a rookie before becoming a full-time starter in his second year in the league. That way he could learn behind a veteran like Mathis and have a year of experience under his belt before being called upon to start on a full-time basis.

3. The Lions should be able to add a DT or RB in the third round

I was tempted to take a player like Ohio State defensive tackle Michael Bennett, Washington State defensive tackle Xavier Cooper or Indiana running back Tevin Coleman with this pick, but I just think there's better value in waiting on addressing those needs until later in the draft, especially with Collins still on the board. This mock draft doesn't actually go three rounds, but if it did, I would likely target a defensive tackle or running back with the 88th overall pick.

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