Detroit Lions 7-round mock draft: Before the free agency frenzy

Right before free agency gets going, here's a fresh 7-round mock draft for the Detroit Lions.

Ricardo B. Brazziell/American-Statesman
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Fourth Round

The Lions don't have a fourth-round pick right now, since they sent it to the Vikings in the T.J. Hockenson trade.

Fifth Round, No. 163 overall
Dylan McMahon, C/OG, N.C. State

Offensive line may be on the radar for the Lions sooner than Day 3 of the draft, with at least one looming loss at guard in free agency. But by all accounts they did not formally meet with any offensive lineman at the combine, so depth might be the draft move rather than an immediate clear-cut starter.

McMahon played all three interior line positions at NC State, but he like projects as a center at the next level. With Frank Ragnow not retiring just yet but likely to have a shorter career due to all the injuries he has dealt with, the Lions may have a succession plan somewhere on their radar.

McMahon clear strengths are his smarts, technical savvy and versatility. He is undersized, at a little less than 300 pounds, with less than ideal length and sheer play strength. But if he can add some weight upon getting into a NFL strength and conditioning program, there is a lot of potential here.

Sixth Round, No. 204 overall
Decamerion Richardson, CB, Mississippi State

Richardson's size (6-foot-2), residual length (32 and 3/8-inch arms), top-end speed (4.34 40 at the combine) and 164 total tackles over his final two years at Mississippi State make him an enticing NFL prospect.

But some of his weaknesses (short area quickness, tightness athletically, etc.) are attached to his length, and a common thread in evaluations is a lack of eye discipline that gets him in trouble in coverage. So he quickly becomes a Day 3 pick in a deep draft class at cornerback, but he's one Aaron Glenn and Deshea Townsend could see as moldable into a good NFL corner.

Seventh Round, No. 249 overall
Omar Speights, LB, LSU

The Lions don't have an urgent need for an off-the-ball linebacker, with the kind of depth they haven't had at the position in many years. But here in the seventh round, keeping the pipeline of talent full regardless of position is firmly in play.

Speights spent the first four years of his college career at Oregon State, before transferring to LSU last year. His sheer tackle production is hard to ignore, with at least 63 total tackles in all five seasons (that 63 came in the shortened 2020 campaign).

Speights is all-around very good, sideline-to-sideline as a run defender along with good feel in coverage. He can tend to be over-aggressive though, and he's undersized. He will also not offer much of anything as a pass rusher.

But with potential to make it immediately as a special teamer, and possibly become an option to enter the defensive rotation down the road, Speights is a fine final pick for the Lions.

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