The Lions could use a talent infusion at linebacker as they look to bolster a lagging run defense. To’o To’o has 105 total tackles this season as the Crimson Tide head toward the College Football Playoff National Title Game, with 7.5 tackles for loss and four sacks. He came to Tuscaloosa after two seasons at Tennessee, where he started 22 games.
To’o To’o has played middle linebacker for Nick Saban, and inside is certainly where he’ll be in the NFL. At the top of the third round, the Lions gladly take him–assuming he declares for April’s draft.
Should he declare for the 2022 draft after the national title game, Smith will garner attention beyond the top of this year’s class of edge rushers. In limited snaps this season along Georgia’s loaded front seven, he has 3.5 sacks and six tackles for loss with three forced fumbles.
I’ll let our friends over at NFL Mocks better describe the Bulldogs’ junior.
"He’s extremely quick, explosive, and bendy at 235 pounds, and can look like he’s been shot out of a cannon when he gets into the backfield to create pressure. He may need to bulk up a bit to fit more defenses in the NFL, but it shouldn’t be a huge issue, especially with how well he stacks up as a run defender at his size. Smith plays low with good leverage, hand placement, and power to hold the edge and sometimes push tackles back."
As noted, Smith will probably need to add some weight at the NFL level. But if he’s eligible, the Lions jump to add another force off the edge here.
The Lions don’t have a 2022 fourth-round pick right now.