The Detroit Lions may be choosing between two edge rushers with the second overall pick, and the NFL Combine may not do anything to settle the debate.
The Detroit Lions hold the second pick in this April’s draft. The expectation is that they will acquire an impact player. With no quarterback worthy of that selection, it’s become a debate between two edge rushers (Aidan Hutchinson, Kayvon Thibodeaux) with Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton starting to be sprinkled in.
For the Lions to come away with either of the top two edge rushers would be a win. With the assumption the Jacksonville Jaguars take an offensive tackle (Evan Neal?) No. 1 overall, the Lions will be able to pick between Hutchinson and Thibodeaux.
Making the right choice is the job of Lions general manager Brad Holmes. Hutchinson and Thibodeaux are so close that it would seem that there is no wrong answer and that could very well be the case. However, for the long-lost Lions, this is a big decision. Not only finding a talented cornerstone but at a premiere position that also happens to be a big need for Detroit.
Will the NFL Combine provide any clarity on edge rusher debate for the Lions?
Thibodeaux and Hutchinson are expected to compete in all the on-field drills.
"“I’m gonna do everything at the combine,” Hutchinson said on the Pat McAfee Show. “I’m not scared of anything, and I can’t wait to light that thing up.”"
It’s the type of attitude that Michigan fans have become used to with Hutchinson. He intends to go for the gusto and prove he is the best player in the draft.
As for Thibodeaux, I have not heard anything decisive from his very own lips that would indicate he will be skipping any of the drills. This could very much prove to be in Thibodeaux’s favor. Both Hutchinson and Thibodeaux are considered exemplary athletes, however, there are many who think Thibodeaux will stand out in on-field work.
It is possible the NFL Combine, on and off the field, will provide the Lions an answer to the debate between Hutchinson and Thibodeaux. But it’s just as likely the debate rages on right up until Detroit is second-up on the clock on the night of April 28.