Going against the grain in a mock draft can be fun, but a recent one from Pro Football Focus is a stretch for the Detroit Lions.
Going against the grain can allow someone to stand out in the sea of mock drafts, even in early February less than a week from the Super Bowl. And there’s nothing wrong with that, to a point. There’s definitely a line between “oh, that’s interesting” and “that has exactly no chance to actually happen.”
In his fresh mock draft on Monday, Seth Galina of Pro Football Focus laid out a first round itinerary. As we know, the Lions have two first-rounders, No. 2 overall and either No. 31 or No. 32 depending on if the Rams win Super Bowl LVI or not.
PFF Mock Draft: The Lions reach at No. 2
Galina having Mississippi State offensive tackle Charles Cross going to the Jacksonville Jaguars at No. 1 should have been a sign. Cross may be a top-10 pick, but he’s not going first overall. At No. 2 to the Lions…..
"2. DETROIT LIONS: CB DEREK STINGLEY, LSUThere is no better player in the draft than Stingley. At LSU’s bowl practices in 2018, he was still the best cornerback on the field despite still being in high school. He parlayed that into one of the best freshman seasons PFF has ever seen in 2019 — he recorded the highest wins above average (WAA) by a non-quarterback that season. The next two seasons were marred by injuries but when he’s on the field, there is no one better. He’s a true lockdown cornerback."
There’s no denying Stingley’s talent. He may still very well be the first cornerback drafted this year and a top-10 pick, despite being hampered by injuries the last two seasons. The Lions can certainly use some help at cornerback too.
Galina has the Lions adding to their secondary again with Georgia safety Lewis Cine at No. 31. That is viable. It’s a scenario that has a decent chance to happen, given the need present at safety and the role the position plays in Aaron Glenn’s defense.
But a cornerback, even one expected to be as good as Stingley, at No. 2? A trade down is more likely than that.