Detroit Lions: A way too early 2021 NFL Draft preview

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

The Detroit Lions have a top 10 pick in the NFL draft for the third straight year

Another poor season for the Detroit Lions has come to an end as they were handed yet another loss by the Minnesota Vikings. The loss resulted in the Lions finishing last in the NFC North division and finished the season with a 5-11 record.

The losing season and the sub .500 winning percentage gave the Lions a high draft pick which they are set to select from the seventh spot in the 2021 draft. Heading into the Week 17 matchup, there was a chance the Lions were able to get a top-five pick but that ultimately didn’t happen.

As the Philadelphia Eagles played the Washington Football Team for the primetime Sunday night matchup, it mattered for the Lions’ draft position. If the Eagles won, the Lions would have moved up a spot in the order but Washington ended up winning the game.

The last time the Lions held the seventh overall selection was back in 2004 when they used that pick to select wide receiver Roy Williams out of the University of Texas at Austin (Texas Longhorns).

He played 115 games with the Lions over five years where he caught 262 passes for 3,884 yards averaging 14.8 yards a catch with 29 touchdowns and 165 first downs. His best season came in 2006 which he was selected to his first and only Pro Bowl team as he got 1,310 yards on 82 catches with seven touchdowns and 66 first downs.

The Lions have many needs on their roster that they could address with the seventh overall pick. Any defensive player would provide a big upgrade to a porous Lions defense while they could opt to use the pick to select a wide receiver as Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones Jr., and Danny Amendola are all free agents. If the Lions decided to trade quarterback Matthew Stafford prior to the draft, they could select his replacement with the seventh overall pick.

Before any scouting or decision-making is done though, owner Sheila Ford Hamp will have to hire a head coach and general manager after firing the previous regime during the season. The Lions’ future new coach and general manager will have a huge say and impact in regards to who to draft and take.

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In Bleacher Report’s latest mock draft, they have the Lions taking edge Gregory Rousseau from Miami University. He opted out of the 2020 college football season but in 2019, he recorded 54 tackles (34 solo) with 19.5 of those going for a loss of yards as well as 15.5 sacks in 13 games.

The 2021 NFL Draft is still far away as it’s set to take place from April 29-May 1. A lot can happen before then.