Last season, many expected that the offense would carry the Detroit Lions. Instead, it was the defense that took off in year one under Jim Caldwell, in part due to offensive line struggles, and injuries all around. While Joique Bell ran well for the Lions towards the end of last season, his performance combined with Reggie Bush‘s lackluster season has increased the possibility the Lions could look for a running back in the 2015 NFL Draft.
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Notable Combine Measurables
40-Yd Dash: 4.52 secs
3-Cone Drill: 6.76 secs
Vertical Jump: 35.0″
225-lb Bench Press: 19 reps
Traits and Projected Round
A lot of people liken Gordon to Jamaal Charles. He wears number 25 and has the hair, but aside from appearance, there aren’t very many similarities to their game. If you want a better comparison, think Marshawn Lynch. At the combine, they ran the exact same 40 time, had same vertical jump, they are relatively the same height, and they weigh the same at 215.
Aside from measurables, Gordon displays Lynch’s power and ability to shed tackles on the field, while also demonstrating Charles’ ability to make quick cuts on the field. The one knock on Gordon’s game is that he wasn’t asked to catch the ball a lot at Wisconsin. Some thought that might be because he can’t catch, but Gordon quickly put those concerns to rest with a nice showing at the combine.
Bottom Line: It would be a shock to see Gordon fall out of the first round.
Why the Lions could draft Melvin Gordon
As stated above, the Lions need help at the running back position. Matthew Stafford hasn’t ever had an every down back, and drafting Gordon would give the Lions their best back since Barry Sanders. I’m normally very reluctant to advocate for drafting a running back in the first round, but Gordon is just too good to pass up.
If the Lions choose to address another position with their first pick and Gordon somehow falls to the second round (which is unlikely with the Patriots and Seahawks sitting at the end of round one), the Lions would be wise to consider moving into the top of the second round or possibly into the back-end of the first to grab Gordon.
It’s hard to wrap your brain around sometimes, but the Lions really are a couple pieces away from a Super Bowl and Gordon’s ability could tilt the scales for the Lions.
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