One of the biggest mock draft trends for the Detroit Lions has been for the team to address their pass rush. While Damontre Moore and Bjoern Werner have been the focus there, one other candidate has risen to take his place among the other two.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper released his mock draft 2.0 today and he likes that third candidate. It’s Jarvis Jones out of Georgia. Kiper explains:
On Tuesday, Detroit cut veteran Kyle Vanden Bosch to clear more cap space. Jones isn’t the pure 4-3 defensive end to fill that void, but he’ll certainly upgrade the pass rush. No, he’s not a perfect fit in the current system, but Gunther Cunningham will be thrilled to scheme with Jones in mind. Roll the tape, and regardless of the how teams tried to stop Jones, you see them fail. He led the nation in sacks even though he was a blocking target, used great leverage to hold up as a run defender and in every case, was simply relentless. Sure, Detroit could also use Milliner if available, but a great pass defense starts with pressure.
I have to be honest. I really like the idea of the Lions going for a premier pass rusher but I have had a hard time warming up to the idea of Jarvis Jones as the pick, especially with Werner still on the board as he was in Kiper’s mock.
Jones may have been highly productive in college but that was after he left USC when team doctors wouldn’t give him medical clearance to return for the Trojans. His neck has been fine since but can the Lions gamble on that remaining the case through an NFL career, especially with a top five pick? That’s a tough sell considering where ignoring a medical red flag got them with Jahvid Best.