As the NFL draft draws near the Detroit Lions identify specific targets

Credit: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Credit: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images /

The Detroit Lions may trade down to gain more picks then package those picks to trade up to target these or other players they desire to add to the roster

The Detroit Lions may choose to stay at each of the current draft spots and make their nine selects without making any trades, but that is not how they have operated since Bob Quinn was hired as general manager. The more likely scenario involves at least one trade, in which direction remains to be seen. I worked out a mock draft with not one, not two, but three trades to give the Lions maximum flexibility in the draft.

Now, these aren’t wild pie-in-the-sky type trades, rather basic (and some might say too cheap) kind of trades that could actually happen. I start with the Los Angeles Chargers trading their 6th overall and their second-round pick number 37 overall to jump over Miami for the Lions 3rd overall pick.

Then the phone rings and the Jacksonville Jaguars want to move up from 9th overall to the 6th overall spot giving up their second-rounder pick number 42 overall. Since we’re dreaming here, maybe the New York Jets see it to their benefit to move up from 11th overall to the 9th pick giving the Lions their 3rd round pick 79th overall. What a haul, moving down eight spots for two 2nd round picks and another 3rd round pick.

From there I looked at the Lions roster and what spots have room for some camp competition and the kinds of players the Lions like to fill their roster with (and they do have types). Keep in mind I didn’t package any picks to move up back up to target specific players like the Lions might do, so I kept all three of the extra picks giving them 12 to work with.

11. Javon Kinlaw DT South Carolina
35. Zack Baun OLB Wisconsin
37. Curtis Weaver DE Boise State
42. Neville Gallimore DT Oklahoma
67. Devin Duvernay WR Texas
79. John Simpson G Clemson
85. Darrynton Evans RB App State
109. Michael Ojemudia CB Iowa
149. Quintez Cephus WR Wisconsin
166. Braden Mann P Texas A&M
182. Hakeem Adeniji OT Kansas
235. Kelly Bryant QB Missouri

Looking at the roster the Lions will find a fourth quarterback for summer camp and Kelly Bryant fits there. Lions could use a 3rd down running back that can catch the ball and be elusive which is perfect for Darrynton Evans. At wide receiver, the Lions will eventually need a new deep threat and a new slot receiver, Cephus and Duvernay fit these roles.

I feel that Guard John Simpson, with some NFL coaching, will eventually start in the NFL. Also adding to the trenches on defense are defensive tackles Javon Kinlaw and Neville Gallimore along with EDGE Curtis Weaver (who is not talked about enough if you ask me).

Some have Zack Baun playing EDGE, and he can play some there, but I see him more a fit for rotating in as a Jack linebacker for the Lions. Other underrated players are cornerback Michael Ojemudia and offensive tackle Hakeem Adenijo. True they may need more time to play full time than others, but I believe they can eventually get there.

Finally a punter. Not sure which one, but I do believe a punter is in the works around this spot in the draft.

You may not agree with my choices, and you might think I’m dreaming too much with the trades, but that is what a mock draft is, a chance to play “what if”. This just happens to be my what if.

Next. Ranking the Detroit Lions’ first round picks since 2010. dark

The mock generator I used (that can do trades ) can be found at  Pro Football Network. Just in case you would like to give it a go while we are awaiting sports to start up again. Don’t forget to click on the notepad before making your pick each time to make sure the player fits with what the Lions might want, and use other sources if you wish to really dig in deep.

Stay safe everyone, and if you want to tear my mock apart, there is a comment section below.