With their first pick in the 2015 NFL Draft and the 28th overall selection, the Detroit Lions have selected Duke offensive guard Laken Tomlinson. This move came after the Lions traded with the Denver Broncos and moved down five spots in exchange for a pair of extra picks and offensive lineman Manny Ramirez.
At the time, it looked like the Lions acquired Ramirez to start him at left guard, but clearly that is now Tomlinson's spot. He was a four-year starter at right guard for Duke, and he has actually drawn some comparisons to Larry Warford, the Lions' current starting right guard. Warford certainly won't be moving from his starting spot, so Tomlinson will likely flip over to the other side of the offensive line and be a Day 1 starter at left guard.
Most draft pundits assumed Tomlinson would be a second-round pick, but clearly the Lions felt that he was worth a late first-round pick. They went into this offseason looking to upgrade their offensive line, and Tomlinson will certainly help them do that. What's more, the Lions are getting a very high-character player in Tomlinson. From NFL.com:
Born in Kingston, Jamaica and moved to Chicago in eighth grade. Didn't start playing football until his freshman season at Lane. Traveled to Ethiopia in May 2012 on a water-well digging project with teammates. Wants to be a doctor after football career is over.
Tomlinson actually graduated from Duke with degrees in evolutionary anthropology and psychology. Clearly he is a smart guy, and now the Lions will be hoping that he translates that intelligence to the left guard spot in their offense.
What are your thoughts on this pick?