Could the Detroit Lions focus on offense early in the draft?
Defensive depth is a need for the Detroit Lions, but what if they focus on the other side of the ball with their early draft pics this week?
Much has been said about the Detroit Lions needs at cornerback opposite Pro Bowler Darius Slay and depth across the board on the defensive side of the ball. But what if general manager Bob Quinn has his sights focused on improving the offense in the first two rounds of this week’s draft?
Tight end T.J. Hockenson has been a polarizing option for Detroit. Fans seem to love or hate the idea of landing the drafts best tight end. That being said, there’s a very real possibility of Quinn’s favorite defenders being off the board by the 8th overall selection.
Imagine this scenario: The Lions draft Hockenson and guard Chris Lindstrom, the highest rated guard in the draft, is on the board for Detroit’s second-round pick. The team could shore up two of their biggest offensive needs right out of the gate.
While this scenario ignores the defensive side of the ball, fans might need to prepare for this outcome. It’s possible only one quarterback is drafted before the Lions are on the clock and the top defensive options could be selected ahead of them.
Another scenario could be the Lions drafting offensive lineman Jonah Williams with the 8th overall pick and then following that up with a tight end like Irv Smith in the second round. The same two needs are met without addressing the defensive side of the ball. Would the latter scenario be better in fans’ eyes because the tight end wasn’t selected in the top ten overall picks?
Quinn has talked about the offensive line quite a bit this offseason and noted he isn’t opposed to selecting another offensive lineman in the first round. He’s also said he isn’t opposed to selecting a tight end in the first. So, both of these scenarios are real possibilities.
All of what Quinn has said could also just be smoke and mirrors. He could be intentionally leading us all away from what he really wants to do. And that might be drafting the best defensive player he can.
Neither of the scenarios above will happen unless Quinn’s top defensive targets are off the board. He’s selected too many offensive linemen in the first round to continue that trend and he’s noted that tight end is deep in this draft. These scenarios would seem more like back-up plans should the board not fall Quinn’s way.
For back up plans, they’d sure help out an offense that struggled last year. But there are so many needs across the roster that it would be surprising to see the Detroit Lions lean so heavily to one side of the ball with their first two picks. Thankfully, we only have two days to wait until we find out the answer.