Detroit Lions should trade back in the first round

Bob Quinn, Matt Patricia, Detroit Lions (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Bob Quinn, Matt Patricia, Detroit Lions (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Possessing only six selections in next week’s NFL draft, the Detroit Lions should strongly consider trading back in the first round to acquire more picks.

With the NFL draft now only a week away, speculation is at an all-time high. And after months of scouting, debating and mock drafts galore, we are no closer to actually knowing what direction the Detroit Lions might go when their number is finally called.

But one thing we do know is that the Lions enter the 2018 NFL Draft with only six total selections. And based on the various needs across their roster, they most certainly would like to have more picks.

Lions general manager Bob Quinn confirmed as much just last month.

"“Absolutely,” Quinn told the team’s official website in March when asked if they would try to acquire more draft picks. “That’s something that will definitely be in the talks I’d say, a week or two leading up to the draft … but it’s easier said than done. Sometime those things really can’t happen until draft day or draft weekend. But we’ll have conversations leading up to it. The more the better.”"

It’s the Lions first round selection, 20th overall, that holds the most value in both draft equity and in any possible trade back scenario in an attempt to gather more selections.

In the last few months, several candidates have been slotted to the Lions in the first round. Prospects like LSU running back Derrius Guice, UTEP offensive guard Will Hernandez, Boston College edge rusher Harold Landry, Washington defensive tackle Vita Vea and Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch.

The diversity of positions thought to be a possibility for Detroit at the 20th overall selection really highlights just how many needs the team currently has after a rather light free agency haul. So it makes sense, with so many voids to fill, to try and trade back in the first round in order to garner as many additional draft picks as possible.

A likely trading partner would seem to be the New England Patroits, who currently own two picks in the first round (23rd, 31st overall). With new head coach Matt Patricia being the Pat’s former defensive coordinator and considering his close relationship with Bill Belichick, head coach and defacto general manager in New England, it’s seems like the two share enough common ground to make a deal actually happen.

Rumor has it the Patroits could be interested in obtaining a quarterback in the first round.Perhaps they’d like to leapfrog a team like the Buffalo Bills at #22 for one. That is if the Bills don’t grab one with their other first round selection, currently 12th overall.

Another team the Pats may like to jump ahead of is the New Orleans Saints at #27, who are also rumored to be interested in a possible quarterback to develop behind longtime veteran Drew Brees.

Finally, I think the Carolina Panthers, who posses the 24th overall selection in the first round, may want to trade up with Detroit for a wide receiver, getting ahead of a team like the Bills to grab someone left on their board.

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The point is, the Detroit Lions will likely be open to several trade scenarios throughout the 2018 NFL Draft. And their first round pick represents the most bang for their buck. Don’t be surprised if the Lions opt to move back on Day One in order to gather themselves a little more draft ammunition.