Detroit Lions trade up to draft guard Jonah Jackson in third round

Jonah Jackson, Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jonah Jackson, Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Lions helped to shore up their offensive line needs, trading up in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft for Ohio State guard Jonah Jackson.

The Detroit Lions were believed to have a need for a starting right guard heading into the 2020 NFL Draft. Those suspicions were confirmed when the Lions traded up in the third round for Ohio State guard Jonah Jackson.

The Lions moved on from the entire right hand side of their offensive line this offseason. Detroit released starting right tackle Rick Wagner last month. And they allowed starting right guard Graham Glasgow to leave via free agency, signing a four-year, $44 million contract to join the Denver Broncos.

Detroit seemingly addressed their starting right tackle void by inking former Philadelphia Eagles reserve Halapoulivaati Vaitai to a five-year, $50 million deal. But that left the starting right guard position in question.

It appear that question was answered on Friday night as Detroit traded away Picks No. 85, 149, and 182 to the Indianapolis Colts in exchange for Jackson (75th overall) along with Pick No. 197. Jackson joins an ascending offensive line in the Motor City which features two former first-round selection in starting left tackle Taylor Decker and center Frank Ragnow.

The 6-foot-3, 306-pound Jackson has center/guard versatility similar to Glasgow who ironically was Detroit’s third-round pick back in 2016. Lead Draft Analyst for Pro Football Focus, Mike Renner, calls Jackson his favorite pass protecting guard in the entire draft predicts he’ll start for Detroit as a rookie.

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

The addition of guard Jonah Jackson was an important move for the Detroit Lions. This is mainly due to the fact starting quarterback Matthew Stafford missed eight games last season due to injury. Keeping the 32-year old passer upright and healthy entering his 12th NFL season will be key for the Lions to improve upon their disappointing 3-12-1 record from 2019.