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Friday open thread: How many players of the 2017 draft class will last in Detroit?

The departure of Michael Roberts leaves just half of the class left in Detroit.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Dallas Cowboys Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

No team will ever ace the NFL Draft, even if analysts praise a team’s weekend immediately following the proceedings. The whole concept of a judging a draft class is debatable in itself, as there are a million factors going into the success of a single player, let alone a whole collection. One metric that is black and white, however, is how long a draft pick sticks with his team.

Keeping a player with the team is not a perfect determinant, as some players perform so well that they price themselves out of a second deal. Still, there is definitely some correlation between a team’s willingness to keep a former pick on the roster after his first contract expires and how smart of a selection he was on draft night.

The 2017 draft is one that has received much criticism from Lions fans. The trading of fourth-round pick Michael Roberts serves as another reminder of how much this class has struggled to really make it. His exit is unlikely to be the last from this cohort.

Today’s Question of the Day is:

How many draft picks from 2017 will receive a second contract with the Lions?

My answer: Four of the nine picks are already off the Lions roster, leaving just Jarrad Davis, Teez Tabor, Kenny Golladay, and Jalen Reeves-Maybin, and Jamal Agnew at this time. Roberts was obviously just traded, sixth-rounders Jeremiah Ledbetter and Brad Kaaya have been cut already, and seventh-round pick Pat O’Connor did not make it out of September 2017.

The most likely player to stick around is Golladay, who is proving to be the best value pick of this class, after the Lions surprised people by selecting him in the third round. He is likely to be joined by Jarrad Davis, who seems to have the favor of the coaching staff even if some fans are still waiting for him to live up to the hype.

Reeves-Maybin has looked decent at times, but his position is just too critical for Detroit to be satisfied with him, so expect him to be gone. Agnew is an interesting case, as his return skills are impressive, but he is lower on the defensive depth chart. Given this organization’s desire for players who can contribute to both offense/defense and special teams, it would not be surprising for the Lions to move on in a couple years.

The real debate is around Teez Tabor, whose future is seriously in doubt at this time. My guess is that he makes it through his contract but that will be the end of the road. That leaves us with just two picks—Davis and Golladay—staying on the roster following 2020, not quite the turnout the front office was hoping for back in 2017.

Your turn.


How many of Detroit’s 2017 draft picks will make a second contract with the Lions?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    (3 votes)
  • 5%
    (32 votes)
  • 35%
    (206 votes)
  • 51%
    (298 votes)
  • 6%
    (39 votes)
  • 0%
    (4 votes)
582 votes total Vote Now

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