We’re a little over three weeks away from the NFL Draft and that means we are nearing the point in the offseason where the rumor mill is in full force—and just like last year, the Lions’ position in the draft is beginning to get quite a bit of attention.
“Eyes are on Atlanta and Detroit now,” Albert Breer said in his most recent edition of the MMQB ($). “The first three picks are spoken for. And that leaves the Falcons as a team to watch... and Detroit’s another team I’ve been told to keep an eye on—since they can give other teams an opportunity to jump Carolina and Denver in the quarterback line (though that’d more likely be a draft-day deal, since you can’t totally be sure who’ll be there at No. 7 right now).”
Carolina may be out of the quarterback race now that they have traded for Sam Darnold, but there are still plenty of quarterback-needy teams behind the Lions in that draft—including Denver at pick No. 9, New England at No. 15, and Washington at No. 19—and all of them could be potential options in a trade up.
Then again, the Lions may be comfortable standing pat and just taking the top player on the board. “I’m told they’ve got a cluster of players ID’d they’d be good with at seven, but are open to doing a deal to move down as well,” Breer continued.
Could a quarterback be in the “cluster of players” Breer mentioned? There are a few draft analysts that believe so.
Benjamin Allbright, a plugged-in reporter/analyst from the Denver area, recently said on social media that he was told: “not to be surprised if Detroit went QB at 7 if the right one fell in their lap”.
Now, there’s nothing really surprising about this statement—and I have to imagine that is purposeful—but the fact that it’s out there is a good sign that Lions’ general manager Brad Holmes has let people know he is keeping his options open.
NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah also believes the Lions could be in the market for a quarterback and in his most recent mock draft, despite having four quarterbacks being selected in the first four picks, he still had the Lions snagging Justin Fields (Ohio State) with the seventh pick.
“This could be a trade spot,” Jeremiah said, “with some teams picking after Detroit potentially in the market for a quarterback, but I wouldn’t rule out the Lions staying put and taking a signal-caller themselves. Fields has more upside than Jared Goff.”
So there you have it. The Lions could draft a quarterback at seven. Or they may trade down at seven. Or they could stand pat and take one of a cluster of players.
Welcome to April in the NFL.