The Detroit Lions season is sunk. But can they sink low enough in the next four games in order to secure the top selection in the 2020 NFL Draft?
With a record of 3-8-1, the Detroit Lions are actually raising. Raising up the draft board, that is. A fortunate turn of events over the weekend has elevated the downtrodden Lions to being in line for the sixth overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft.
The Lions have four more games left on their schedule. And four more games to lose if Detroit wants the best possible draft position come next April. Due to the fact the team is already out of playoff contention, all the Lions stand to win now is better draft positioning.
Detroit is currently on the precipice of a top-five selection next year after unlikely wins by the Denver Broncos, Miami Dolphins, Cincinnati Bengals, and the Washington Redskins on Sunday.
Let’s take a look at the bottom of the NFL Standings …
Cincinnati Bengals: 1-11
New York Giants: 2-10
Miami Dolphins: 3-9
Washington Redskins 3-9
Atlanta Falcons 3-9
Detroit Lions: 3-8-1
Arizona Cardinals: 3-8-1
With four games to go, the Lions are technically still in the running for the number one overall selection in 2020. But they’ll have to be more upset weekends like the one we just had.
The Bengals are currently the favorites to obtain the top spot in next year’s draft with the 5-7 Cleveland Browns (twice), the 10-2 New England Patriots, and the 3-9 Dolphins left on their schedule.
The Giants have the next best chance at number one. They’ll play the 5-7 Philadelphia Eagles (twice), 3-9 Dolphins, and 3-9 Redskins.
In the end, it seems unlikely the Lions will get the top selection in 2020. But they could certainly get in the top five. Of course, Detroit’s own matchups against the 8-3 Minnesota Vikings, the 5-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the 4-8 Denver Broncos, and the 9-3 Green Bay Packers will determine their draft fate as well.
According to Justin Rogers of the Detroit News, the Lions will select no lower than fourth overall in the 2020 NFL Draft if they lose their final four games of the season.
Yet, just because you secure the top selection in the draft that doesn’t mean the chosen prospect will become a Hall of Famer. In the Super Bowl era, the Detroit Lions have possessed the top selection in the NFL draft only twice. Those players being quarterback Matthew Stafford in 2009 and running back Billy Sims in 1980.