Detroit Lions 2019 Draft Profile: Edge Rusher Montez Sweat
By Kellen Voss
Here at SideLion Report, we will be previewing potential Detroit Lions‘ draftees as the draft draws closer. This week, we look at MSU’s Montez Sweat.
The Detroit Lions‘ version of the Super Bowl is less than a month away. And by that of course I mean that the NFL draft is just around the horizon.
The Lions made a lot of meaningful free agent signings this offseason, including the signings of EDGE rusher Trey Flowers and cornerback Justin Coleman to help bolster the young defense that could use a bit more firepower.
We’ve already covered multiple EDGE rushing options on this site, including Ed Oliver and Brian Burns most recently. As amazing as it would be to have either one of these guys, based on recent mock drafts, it looks as if both of those guys may be unavailable by the time the No. 8 pick rolls around.
One guy that is likely to be there at the No. 8 spot is Mississippi State’s Montez Sweat, who has similar athletic ability to both the guys listed above and can have an instant impact to the front seven of the Lions’ defense.
Sweat can fill the hole left by Eli Harold, who said his goodbye to the Detroit fanbase on social media earlier this week. While Harold did a fine job at the outside linebacker spot, the rookie in Sweat could do an even better job in his shoes.
ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. slated Sweat to the Lions in his most recent mock draft, as he feels that the former Bulldog could be an ideal fit in the Detroit Lions defense. Here’s what Kiper wrote according to The Detroit News.
"“I really liked Sweat’s 2018 film, as he had 11.5 sacks and was a terror off the edge for the Bulldogs. And after running a 4.41 40-yard dash at 260 pounds at the combine, he has likely locked in a spot in the top 10. There is a fit in Detroit, which just added big-money signing Trey Flowers as a replacement for Ezekiel Ansah but needs help on the other side. Sweat could be an impact pass-rusher in the tough NFC North.”"
That other side that Kiper Jr. previously mentioned is currently occupied by outside linebacker Devon Kennard, who did a fine job on the edge last season. Signing a three-year deal last offseason, Kennard racked up a career-high 7.0 sacks last season.
Sweat could do even better in that role this season, as he put up double digit sack totals in each of his last two seasons. In his 27 combined games played by Sweat at both Michigan State and Mississippi State, he was able to total 105 tackles, 30.5 tackles for loss, and 23.5 sacks.
To go along with the impressive numbers previously listed, Sweat would offer the Lions NFL-caliber size, as his 6-foot-6 height and 35.75 inch arms provides him with the proper length to get separation from even the biggest NFL offensive linemen.
Sweat could upgrade a unit that has shown inconsistent flashes of greatness, providing a big body with proper NFL speed that can be a man to fear by NFC North offenses in the near future.
The untapped potential for Sweat appears to be limitless, as a 4.41 second 40 time (a record for defensive line prospects), a 36 inch vertical jump, and a 125 inch board jump proves that Sweat is an elite athlete who can make in an instant NFL impact.
If the numbers at the combine don’t do enough for you, just look up Montez Sweat highlights on YouTube. Having this man playing at Ford Field in the Honolulu blue would be a dream come true, and Detroit Lions fans better pray that no one snatches him up before the No. 8 spot in the draft.