ESPN draft gurus Mel Kiper and Todd McShay unveiled their updated mock drafts yesterday. While they agree on the Detroit Lions taking a guy who plays on the outside, they disagree on which side of the ball.
Kiper’s pick for the Lions is Oklahoma State cornerback Justin Gilbert (Link, subscription required). Kiper comments:
Gilbert has some competition to be the first corner taken, but I expect him to put up some pretty impressive numbers at the combine. He should prove to be a pretty big draw in a league where big corners who can battle at the catch point but also have elite speed and quickness are coveted. Detroit should get some development at corner on the current roster, but also could face some turnover. They need to place a bet on another young corner or two.
McShay has a similar group of players off the board by the time he picks for the Lions but decides to pass up on Gilbert for Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans (Link, subscription required). His explanation of the pick:
Evans still has some developing to do as a route runner, and yes, he has some immaturity issues and a tendency to get overly emotional. But he is an absolute pit bull on the field, and there is no receiver in this draft who is more dangerous when the ball is in the air. Both the tape and the advanced metrics make the case that he is the most proven down-the-field pass-catcher in the 2014 class. The Lions need a difference-maker opposite Calvin Johnson, and Johnson’s leadership and experience could be just what Evans needs to avoid early-career pitfalls.
Both cornerback and wide receiver have been popular picks for the Lions in early mock drafts.
Which position would you most like the Lions to address with their 2014 first round pick?
- Wide Receiver (70%, 60 Votes)
- Cornerback (30%, 26 Votes)
Total Voters: 86