What are the Detroit Lions actual draft needs on offense?
The Detroit Lions have some needs on offense. But too many so-called experts are predicting a need that is completely unnecessary.
Detroit Lions general manager Bob Quinn has done a decent job of filling the roster holes this off-season. Quarterback Matthew Stafford has plenty to be thankful for on his side of the ball.
The only thing left: an improved defense to balance out this team. New Detroit Lions head coach Matt Patricia has a lot of hope placed upon him because of his defensive background. But he certainly could use a few more pieces.
For Detroit, the offense should not be the focus of this draft. For all but one position, there are no offensive needs. But fixing this one position could catapult the Lions into an elite offensive machine.
They need a running back. And they need it this year. The only saving grace for the running game is they have a guy for 2018: running back LeGarrette Blount.
Blount almost makes me feel too comfortable as a Detroit Lions fan. This signing was best described as “elation” during free agency. He’s one of those “put you head down and gain some yards” backs.
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Well, scratch that. Apparently, “putting the head down” is now illegal, so just “gain some yards” will have to be enough. And is more than I can say for anyone last year.
The one thing that I want to see is the acquisition of the apprentice. If LSU running back Derrius Guice is somehow on the board when the Detroit Lions pick at twenty, it would be hard to complain about his selection.
My hope is that the Lions scout out a gem. Third round or later in the draft would also bring about happiness, the same way that Blount did. Whomever they pick, it needs to be an impact guy.
Detroit needs someone that that contributes for the next 5-7 years, which just happens to coincide with the prime years of Stafford’s career. This pairing is the ultimate ingredient to playoff success in Detroit.
WHY IS THIS A NEED?
Several outlets have “tight end” listed as a need for the Detroit Lions. This is the one that is hard to comprehend.
My closet isn’t full of tight end Eric Ebron jerseys (although there might be a throwback for wide receiver Charles Rogers somewhere in there). But if the Lions are in need of a tight end, then why release Ebron?
Bob Quinn’s selection of tight end Michael Roberts in last year’s draft, along with the acquisitions of tight ends Luke Willson and Levine Toilolo, have to suffice for this year.
On top of which, Detroit has a deep wide receiver corps. They have running backs Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah who add to their receiving threats. They don’t need a receiving tight end!
How can tight end be a top three need for this team? It was my belief that the release of Ebron meant a different use of the tight end going forward: more blocking and less receiving from the position. Stop with the tight end talk.
Then there is the interior lineman debate. With the departure of center Travis Swanson, the Detroit Lions have a hole to fill at center or guard. This all depends on where guard Graham Glasgow plays next year.
If a sure-fire starter is there at center/guard, it is a tempting pick. It is hard for me to fathom guards Joe Dahl and Kenny Wiggins, along with center Wesley Johnson, are all just depth guys. Depth is important. But none of these guys have the chops to play on the interior of the offensive line?
That worries me a bit. Detroit is strong at the tackle position and that is a major coup when it comes to blocking elite pass rushers. If the Detroit Lions go high at this position, it cannot be another flame out like guard Laken Tomlinson. They need a starter from day one.
AND THE REST
Everything else on the offense is set. A late round or free agent rookie quarterback could get drafted. But only if backup quarterback Jake Rudock is traded. A “day 3” prospect at tackle or wide receiver is always a possibility, but not necessary this year.
Plain and simple: this team needs defensive help. And defense takes time to develop. So, this year’s draft may really show dividends in 2019 and 2020, especially in the later rounds.
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Bob Quinn’s first two drafts have demonstrated a steady hand at the helm of this franchise. It is my belief that, a little more than a week from now, that trend will continue.
But, please: no tight end.