The Lions are now without two future draft picks after previously sending a 2013 fourth-found pick to the Minnesota Vikings to draft linebacker Tahir Whitehead last April. However, the Lions may be able to replenish their lost picks as a result of natural NFL “business”.
The NFL uses a formula based on salary, playing time and postseason honors to hand out compensatory draft picks to teams who are adversely affected by the movement of players through free agency. The Lions are likely to receive a compensatory pick in the 2013 draft as a result of Eric Wright signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He won’t be up for postseason honors but the Bucs gave him a pretty penny and he is getting plenty of playing time. Look for the Lions to receive a fourth or fifth round pick when compensatory picks are handed out next March.
The Lions will likely be in position to receive a compensatory pick in 2014 should they allow a player like Cliff Avril or Louis Delmas leave via free agency next winter.