In a CBS Sports free agency mock draft, the Detroit Lions land one of the top wide receivers available.
It’ll be a repeated refrain until free agency and the draft are in the books. But the Detroit Lions are in the market to add multiple wide receivers this offseason, and they aren’t hiding it. It’s a matter of finding fits, based on value, skill set… all of the typical things.
It’s a pretty deep class of wide receivers this year in free agency, and yet again the draft class of wide receivers is strong. But free agency is of course first on the docket, so the speculation about landing spots is in full force.
In an interesting exercise, Cody Benjamin of CBS Sports did a free agency mock draft with the first round order of April’s draft as the template.
The Lions get a wide receiver and an edge rusher in free agency mock
After the Jacksonville Jaguars pick up a blindside protector for Trevor Lawrence in Terron Armstead with the first overall pick, Benjamin as the Lions grabbing a wide receiver.
"2. Lions: WR Chris GodwinIf a big-name QB were hitting the market, they might consider it. Instead, they beef up the uninspiring offense with this year’s top veteran skill player. Even coming off injury, Godwin brings No. 1-level juice out wide."
As alluded to by Benjamim, Goodwin suffered a torn ACL in Week 15 last season. But he still finished with 98 receptions for 1,103 yards on 127 targets. He’s a bit of a durability concern, having missed at least three games in three straight seasons, but there’s no denying how good and versatile he is and he has never been a proverbial No. 1 wide receiver despite production that reflects he could be.
Depending on the cost, assuming Tampa Bay doesn’t keep him with at least the franchise tag, the Lions should have Godwin on their radar. He’s certainly not someone they should avoid.
Down at No. 32 in the free agent mock, Benjamin has Detroit taking an edge rusher.
"32. Lions: OLB Haason ReddickA potential steal at the back end, Reddick is just 27 with 23.5 sacks in the last two years. His short- and long-term potential would give Dan Campbell’s defense a much-needed boost."
After the Arizona Cardinals finally used him properly and he delivered 12.5 sacks in 2020, Reddick signed with the Carolina Panthers last offseason and had 11 sacks. The idea of him making it three teams in three years feels awkward, given the importance placed on pass rushers, but it’s definitely possible. If the Lions lose Charles Harris in free agency, they could have interest in another 2017 first-round pick.
In April’s actual draft, the Lions may end up with a wide receiver and an edge rusher. Priority could also be placed on those spots when free agency launches.