Which unheralded Detroit Lions draft pick may get extended playing time?

John Penisini, Detroit Lions (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
John Penisini, Detroit Lions (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Quintez Cephus, Detroit Lions
Quintez Cephus, Wisconsin (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

The Lions draft class should have several contributors

The Lions 2020 draft has plenty of prominent names that will probably garner playing time. Obviously Jeff Okudah is being heavily counted on to earn his way into the lineup. D’Andre Swift will play a key role in the backfield, while Julian Okwara’s pass-rushing ability alone should mean playing time.

One would also suspect that either Jonah Jackson or Logan Stenberg, if not both, will become contributors on the offensive line and Jason Huntley will put his electric speed to use in the return game while his versatility will create opportunities for him on offense.

So the draft seems to have given the Lions plenty of players who should see early playing time, whether it’s because of their abilities or just filling the Lions various needs. But what about the remaining three draft picks that the media and even the fans are hesitant about?

Are they capable of winning roster spots, much less garnering playing time?

The answer is ‘yes’, as surprising as that may seem to some fans. Unfortunately, the reason is that Detroit’s roster has many needs and two of those picks could make the roster simply due to the Lions many needs.

Quintez Cephus, however, gives the Lions a promising young pass catcher who will be the only receiver signed beyond this season. Now we all expect that Bob Quinn will sign Kenny Golladay to a long term contract, at least if he knows what’s good for him, but that will still only make two receivers signed beyond next season.

While re-signing Marvin Jones wouldn’t be bad in theory, overpaying for a 30-year-old receiver is risky business. Especially given his injury history over the past two years.

Danny Amendola can’t have a whole lot left in the tank himself, and the Lions don’t have one other real receiver of note.

So Cephus will make the team and quite frankly is another one who could find playing time. He may not have blazing speed, but he runs outstanding routes, understands the nuances of playing receiver, and has very good hands. I suppose it also doesn’t hurt that fellow Lions rookie Jeff Okudah called Cephus the best receiver he faced in college.

However, there is one other pick that may be in line to get plenty of playing time even though none of us knew his name when Bob Quinn selected him.