Detroit Lions: A first-round trade down looking more unlikely

Barry Sanders, Detroit Lions (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Barry Sanders, Detroit Lions (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Lions are actively looking for a trade down from the third pick overall. However, recent reports are making it look unlikely a move happens.

With the 2020 NFL Draft less than a week away, the Detroit Lions‘ front office has some big decisions looming in front of them. Chief among those decisions is whether or not they will trade down from the third overall pick. To do that, they will most likely need to find a team that wants to trade up for a quarterback.

Unfortunately, as the draft draws closer, it’s starting to appear as if there will be no first-round trade down for Detroit. And that’s due to medical concerns surrounding Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.

There’s seems to be widespread speculation that Tagovailoa’s long injury history could see him tumble down the first round in this week’s draft. In just two full starting seasons in Alabama, Tua compiled a list of injuries that include a sprained knee, a finger injury that required surgery, two ankle injuries that required surgery (one on each ankle), and most traumatic, a blow to his hip that caused it to become misplaced and fractured.

The Alabama quarterback may very well have an Aaron Rodgers-esque fall, just like the Green Bay Packers’ eight-time Pro Bowl passer experienced in the 2005 NFL Draft. Because of this, it’s unlikely that a team such as the Los Angeles Chargers, Carolina Panthers, or Jacksonville Jaguars decides to give up multiple early-round draft picks for Tagovailoa.

By extension, it also seems unlikely that the Miami Dolphins will feel that they must jump the two spots up from fifth overall to ensure that Tagovailoa doesn’t get drafted out from underneath them.

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At this point, it’s starting to seem most likely that any team moving up to the Detroit Lions’ third overall selection will be attempting to jump the New York Giants, who pick at four overall, for an offensive tackle or someone like linebacker Isaiah Simmons from Clemson. But for now, it seems that the Lions may be forced to stay put in the first-round and draft a top player on their draft board.