4 players Detroit Lions should've drafted at No. 126 instead of Giovanni Manu

The Lions definitely reached for Giovanni Manu, and here are four players they should have drafted instead at pick No. 126.
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If you were to have put a percentage chance on the Detroit Lions trading to get into an earlier part of Day 3 of the 2024 draft going into the day, anything less than 80 percent would not have sufficed. So when they were suddenly on the clock at pick No. 126 in the fourth round, it was not a shocker.

What was a surprise was the player they drafted. University of British Columbia offensive tackle Giovanni Manu was not ranked among the top 200-300 prospects in this year's class by most people. He was a late riser in the pre-draft process after an outstanding Pro Day, which led to a run of visits leading up to the last day pre-draft visits were allowed.

Manu certainly seems to have upside, and he may become a future starter along the Lions' offensive line. Working closely with Penei Sewell, who he looks up to, can only help. But after he played left tackle and left guard in college, the plan seems to be to move Manu to right guard. So his NFL learning curve will have an immediate "learn to do everything the opposite of how you've done it before" element.

General manager Brad Holmes has built up equity and benefit of any doubt with his draft track record. But giving up a third-round pick next year (top-100 overall?) to draft a project with a pick just outside the top-125 this year is questionable until Manu shows otherwise. It feels just as likely that he'll be a future star as he'll be forgotten two years from now.

With the Lions roster as good as it is, there's room to take fliers in the draft and develop someone who doesn't have to start immediately. But with the team looking like a Super Bowl contender, adding someone who could contribute more immediately with pick 126 might have been nice.

With that in mind, here are four players the Lions should've drafted instead of Giovanni Manu.

2024 NFL Draft: 4 players Lions should've taken at No. 126 instead of Giovanni Manu