The Detroit Lions looked to free agency to secure their tight end position. But that doesn’t mean they won’t draft for it as well.
One of the Detroit Lions‘ biggest needs this offseason was at tight end. The release of longtime tight end Eric Ebron last offseason left the Lions with a void at the position. And despite trying to fill that void with free agents like Luke Willson and Levine Toilolo last year, Detroit still got lackluster production out of the position.
The Lions recently addressed the need in free agency. After opting not to re-sign either Willson or Toilolo, Detroit landed one of the top tight ends on the open market in Jesse James. The 24-year is a former fifth-round pick out of Penn State who has played the last four seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Lions’ head coach Matt Patricia recently gushed over James and his potential in an offense now lead by Darrell Bevell, Detroit’s new offensive coordinator.
But the Lions are clearly not done addressing the position. And we know that due to a recent report that claims Detroit has a pre-draft visit scheduled with Texas A&M tight end Jace Sternberger. That’s according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.
At 6-foot-4, 250-pounds, Sternberger is primarily a pass-catching tight end that racked up 48 receptions for 832 yards and 10 touchdowns during his lone season for the Aggies. He’s not much of a blocker and that’s the part of the game he’ll need to develop on the next level. But Sternberger can come in on Day One and be an impact player in the Lions’ passing game.
Walter Football ranks Jace Sternberger as a possible third-to-fifth round selection. But with the tight end class being top-heavy, there is an expected run to take place at the position late in the first round. If that happens, Sternberger could end up going as high as the second round.