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2020 NFL Draft order: Detroit Lions climb 3 spots after loss to Washington

The Lions don’t appear to be tanking on purpose... but it’s working.

Detroit Lions v Washington Redskins Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Last week, the Detroit Lions jumped into the top 10 in terms of 2020 NFL Draft order, but after their loss to Washington on Sunday, it may be time to start considering a top-five pick as a real possibility.

After Week 12’s results (Ravens vs. Rams pending, but irrelevant to this discussion), the Lions are currently holding onto the seventh overall pick in next year’s draft. Here’s a look at the draft order as it currently stands.

(Tiebreakers are decided by strength of schedule for the full 16-game schedule. Numbers are based on Tankathon’s results).

  1. Bengals: 0-11
  2. Giants: 2-9
  3. Dolphins: 2-9
  4. Washington: 2-9
  5. Broncos: 3-8
  6. Falcons: 3-8
  7. Lions: 3-7-1
  8. Cardinals: 3-7-1
  9. Jaguars: 4-7
  10. Jets: 4-7
  11. Chargers: 4-7
  12. Buccaneers: 4-7

As you can see, the Lions are just a half-game behind the Broncos and Falcons. Seeing as the Lions play the Broncos later in the year, and the Falcons have won two of their last three, Detroit could realistically jump both teams into the top five.

Unfortunately for the Lions, Week 12 wasn’t great for their chances to jump much higher than that. Every single team ahead of them in the draft order lost this week—expect for Washington.

Oddly, the seventh overall pick hasn’t been a great spot for many teams as of late. Check out the last 10 players picked seventh overall:

2019: LB Josh Allen
2018: QB Josh Allen
2017: WR Mike Williams
2016: OT Ronnie Stanley
2015: WR Kevin White
2014: WR Mike Evans
2013: G Jonathan Cooper
2012: S Mark Barron
2011: LB Aldon Smith
2010: CB Joe Haden

Wide receiver is a fairly popular pick at this point and a realistic option for the Lions. Though they have Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr. on board for at least one more year each, it’s unclear if Detroit will want to keep both around beyond that.