As it turns out, trading down wasn't so difficult after all. The Detroit Lions actually ended up in a perfect spot to trade down from the 23rd overall pick considering they had three different offers on the table, according to general manager Martin Mayhew. All of the trades would have kept the Lions in the first round, and they ultimately chose the Denver Broncos as their trade partner because they got offensive lineman Manny Ramirez back in the deal (plus a fifth-rounder this year and a fifth-rounder next year).
Prior to selecting Duke offensive guard Laken Tomlinson with the 28th overall pick, it looked like Ramirez was set to be their starting left guard. Ramirez can play multiple interior positions, and Mayhew is quite glad to have him back in Detroit.
Mayhew on OL Manny Ramirez: "Quite frankly, I don't know why we ever let him go."— Josh Katzenstein (@jkatzenstein) May 1, 2015
Mayhew denied a report from ESPN about this trade being agreed to earlier in the week, but it's clear that the Lions had their sights set on Ramirez well before Thursday night.
Elway said Lions have inquired about Manny Ramirez several times over last "couple weeks''— Jeff Legwold (@Jeff_Legwold) May 1, 2015
In any case, Ramirez is now back with the Lions. Mayhew didn't have much to say about where exactly Ramirez will play on the offensive line or if he'll be a starter or a backup, but it's probably a safe bet that he'll be the top interior backup going forward. I suppose it's possible he could even start at center if the Lions opt to hold off on Travis Swanson for another year, but either way, Detroit's overall offensive line depth is now much improved thanks to this trade, and getting two additional fifth-round picks is pretty nice as well.