Should the Detroit Lions postpone addressing major need to the 2023 draft?

Credit: The Indianapolis Star-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: The Indianapolis Star-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Lions have a pretty significant void to fill looking to the future, but should they postpone finding it to the 2023 draft?

If the 2021 season proved anything after trading Matthew Stafford to the Rams, it’s that Jared Goff is indeed only a bridge, stopgap, etc. before the Detroit Lions really hitch their wagons to their next potential franchise quarterback.

Just in time for a long-term franchise quarterback to be on the radar again, and the Lions having the second overall pick in the draft, the general perception is there is no elite, can’t-miss quarterback prospect in the 2022 class. Multiple signal callers will probably still go in the first round, and it’s possible the Lions like someone well enough to actually take them No. 2 overall.

There’s a segment of Lions’ fans who would say they should not take any quarterback in April’s draft, with no upside in taking a risk on one early and any potential mid or late-round pick not easily anointed as a long-term answer.

Could the Detroit Lions really wait to fill a substantial future void in 2023 draft?

The idea the Lions could wait until the 2023 draft to take a quarterback isn’t a fresh one. But if they win six or seven games next season, which isn’t out of the question, they would not be in position to get someone like Alabaman’s Bryce Young.

Michael Renner of Pro Football Focus has listed out each NFL team’s biggest 2022 offseason need, along with how they should address it–in free agency, the draft or both.

The Lions’ biggest need is deemed to be quarterback. But…

"Detroit Lions: QuarterbackVerdict: Draft….in 2023The Lions knew what they were doing when they traded away Matthew Stafford. It was a calculated effort to secure the Holy Grail: a franchise quarterback on a rookie deal. Unfortunately, this year’s quarterback class did not turn out as expected. Instead of forcing someone at No. 2 overall, though, they should realize they are still going to be in a rough spot as a roster next year. Cut bait with Jared Goff, and it’s easy to see that an ideal scenario would be heading into next spring with the No. 1 overall pick. Having someone like Alabama’s Bryce Young waiting for you to pair with a roster budding with young talent sounds like a dream the Lions have never gotten to experience."

Renner seems to be outlining a scenario where the Lions actively tank the 2022 season to get the No. 1 pick in 2023. Safe to say that’s not going to happen under Dan Campbell’s watch. Young is easy to deem as a cut or two above the best of this year’s quarterback class, but the talent/potential gap may not actually be that wide.

The Lions may indeed punt on this year’s quarterback class. If they don’t take one with one of their first three draft picks, it’ll be safe to assume that’s what they decided to do. But punting on winning games in 2022 with an eye on 2023’s quarterback class is not an ideal, or necessarily a better, plan.

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