Top defensive tackle prospect is now surely off Detroit Lions draft board

The Lions had some interest in T'Vondre Sweat early in the pre-draft process, but Sunday's news now surely takes him off their draft board.
Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman /

Very early in this year's pre-draft process, mock drafts tied Texas defensive tackle T'Vondre Sweat to the Detroit Lions and they had some level of interest in him. The need for an interior defensive lineman in the early rounds of the draft has been greatly reduced by the signing of DJ Reader, but Sunday's news probably scratches Sweat of the Lions' draft board completely.

According to KXAN-TV in Austin (TX), Sweat was arrested by the Austin (TX) Police Department on Sunday and charged with DWI.

"Records show Sweat, 22, was arrested by the Austin Police Department and booked into Travis County Jail at 2:12 p.m. Sunday. Driving while intoxicated is a Class B misdemeanor. Sweat posted a $3,000 bond and was released from custody shortly after he was booked."

Sweat won Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and the Outland Trophy (best interior lineman in college football) after helping the Longhorns to the Big 12 title and the College Football Playoff semifinals last season. He has been regarded by some as a Day 2 draft pick, and possibly a late first-rounder, despite being primarily a run-stopping force at 6-foot-4, 366 pounds.

Cameron Sutton situation informs Lions taking T'Vondre Sweat completely off their draft board

Sweat has a right to due process, but an off-field issue of any sort less than three weeks before the draft is not ideal. It may mean he now becomes a draft steal for the team who takes him, but whatever remaining likelihood there was the Lions would draft him is now surely gone. And we have recent evidence that says so.

The Lions moved quickly to cut cornerback Cameron Sutton just over 24 hours after a warrant was issued for his arrest on a domestic violence charge in Florida last month. That he had been evading authorities for two weeks at that point was likely a big factor in that decision, along with the organization's zero-tolerance policy when it comes to domestic violence allegations. After he finally turned himself in on Easter Sunday, Sutton was charged with a misdemeanor.

In general, this Lions' regime has shown a tendency to avoid problematic players.

The idea the Lions would draft Sweat where was likely to go seriously faded with the signing of Reader. With Sunday's news of a DWI arrest, one of the highly-regarded defensive tackles out of the University of Texas in this draft class is probably no longer on the draft board in Allen Park.


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