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Now that we know where we are drafting, time to start plugging players into place.

Lions are starting with only 5 draft picks. Our 7th rounder goes to Seattle in the horrible Quandre Diggs trade. Gave up our 6th for Everson Griffin (whom I hope the Lions re-sign).

My Front office includes John Schneider as GM. He built the Seahawks superbowl team with a solid QB but great defense, lead by their secondary. HC Robert Saleh, former DC for San Francisco and defensive QC for Seattle with Schneider, who is a players coach and loves a solid secondary. Retain OC Darrell Bevell who has experience with Schneider and adds continuity on offense.

Draft:

1. #7- I believe Lawrence, Fields and Wilson will be off the board by #7. Even though I want a QB, I'm not high on Trey Lance. So I'm going with 6'2" 205lb CB Caleb Farley VT. I thought about WR here (Chase, Smith, Waddle) but I like Farley more as a prospect. Drafting him and letting Farley, Okudah and Oruwariye develop will allow us to move on from Trufant and Coleman which would save the Lions almost $11 million in capspace to address the WR position in free agency.

2. Mac Jones, QB Alabama is my pick for QB to sit behind Stafford for a year and develop. I like him better than Lance and Trask. I could see him going late 1st to mid-2nd. Stafford only has a $6 million dead cap hit next season. So either we find a trade partner (Indy, NO, NE) or we let him go outright next season. 

3. This is where I think players start falling/dropping and picks could see alot of movement. I thought about OL/WR/DB here. My pick is Trevon Moehrig S TCU. 6'2" 203lbs, althletic safety with good play making ability. I've been vocal about not being as high on our current safeties than most on this board. This is a deep and elite DB class. Adding two quality DBs to our backfield can only help us get off the field against QBs like Rodgers and Cousins 4 games a season. 

4. A strong secondary still needs a decent/good front 7 in front of them. I don't see the Lions moving on from Trey Flowers with his contract, but cutting Nick Williams saves us $4.7 million, cutting Danny Shelton could save us $4M, but I see us keeping him for now. But let's pair him up with DT Marvin Wilson FSU. 6'5" 305lbs of quick pressure that we haven't seen from our DTs since Suh left. Rotate John Penisni and Da'Shawn Hand along the line to fill out. 

5. Lions final pick went to one of my underrated guys, LB Merlin Robertson ASU. 6'3" 250lbs of versatility. He's a 3 down LB who can do something none of the rest of our LBs can do and that cover in man. He has lots of tools and talent, his problem is consistency. I believe going to a coach like Saleh could really bring out the best in him. 

 

Cut: (cap space added)

Desmond Trufant ($6,500,000)

Justin Coleman ($4,942,000 this season/$11,029,000 next season)

Nick Williams ($4,700,000)

Joe Dahl ($2,875,000)

Nick Bawden ($850,000)

 

Re-sign:

Kenny Golladay 5 year contract if not franchise tagged

Everson Griffin 1 year deal

Adrian Peterson 1 year deal

Jamal Agnew 3 year deal

Mohamed Sanu 1 year deal

Matt Prater 1 year deal

Jack Fox 3 year deal

Don Muhlbach 1 year deal

 

Sign in Free Agency:

Ahkello Witherspoon 4 year deal- Big FA signing, follows Robert Saleh to Detroit. 

Tyrell Adams 3 year deal 

Richard Sherman 1 year deal- Help coach up our young CBs. Sherman played for Saleh in SF. He's a stop gap at this stage and will need a year to prove himself after his calf injury to earn a next contract.

Matt Milano 2 year deal 

Austin Mack 2 year deal

 

2021 Detroit Lions

QB- Matthew Stafford/Mac Jones/Chase Daniel

RB- D'Andre Swift/Adrian Peterson/Kerryon Johnson/Jamal Agnew

WR- Kenny Golladay/Austin Mack

LT- Taylor Decker/Matt Nelson

LG- Jonah Jackson/Logan Stenberg

C Frank Ragnow/Russell Bodine

RG- Halapoulivaati Vaitai/Logan Stenberg

RT- Tyrell Crosby/Halapoulivaati Vaitai

TE- TJ Hockenson/Jesse James/Hunter Bryant

Slot- Geronimo Allison

WR- Quintez Cephus/Mohamed Sanu

 

DE- Romeo Okwara/Julian Okwara/Austin Bryant

DT- Marvin Wilson/Kevin Strong/John Atkins

DT- Danny Shelton/John Penisini

DE- Trey Flowers/Everson Griffin/Da'Shawn Hand

LB- Jamie Collins/Matt Milano/Julian Okwara

LB- Tyrell Adams/Jahlani Tavai

LB- Merlin Robertson/Christian Jones

CB- Jeff Okudah/Caleb Farley

FS- Tracy Walker/CJ Moore

SS- Trevon Moehrig/Will Harris

CB Ahkello Witherspoon/Amani Oruwariye/Richard Sherman

 

K- Matt Prater

P- Jack Fox

LS- Don Muhlbach

KR/PR- Jamal Agnew

 

Addressed the secondary thoroughly. Would like to see the young DBs fight it out for playing time. Added 3 new Linebackers. Kept the offense mostly intact. A number of players can come off the books next season (Stafford, Flowers, Collins, Vaitai, James, Daniel, etc) providing us ALOT of capspace in 2022. I did not want to invest alot of long term money but added in key areas (Golladay, Witherpoon, Adams). We already have a fairly young OL and I didn't address it until we get a look at Stenberg and can waive Vaitai. 

 

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I agree with the others about the front 7.  However, if this is how the draft falls then it is what it is. I think with any rebuild, it is going to take some time as Quintricia has gutted the defense, and our best player very well could be leaving town in the next year.

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I like the GM and coaching moves for sure. I have zero issue with bringing Bevell back if Saleh thinks the two can co-exist. 

I like the idea of bringing Stafford back if the belief is that they can turn the defense around faster than most of us expect. 

The talk is that Saleh would bring in a couple guys in the secondary wherever he goes. I'm expecting Richard Sherman to be one of those guys, maybe Tartt (SS) and Witherspoon (outside CB). Tracy Walker has commented on how he feels he is a better FS. Sherman isn't going to come in to be a back up or without a prominent role and we did just spend the 3rd overall pick on Okudah. 

CB: Sherman, Okudah, Oruwariye, Witherspoon

FS: Walker

SS: Tartt

With all of that being said, adding Farley does not feel like the right move for a team with many needs at other spots. 

I could get on board with adding a WR like Chase or a DL prospect like Paye, Rousseau, etc. Parsons (talent-wise) is the no brainer there assuming the off-field stuff clears. 

I like Mac Jones in rd 2 if the plan is to keep Stafford for another year or two. Investing a first round pick in a guy that isn't going to see the field  for 12+ months (see Jordan Love/Packers) does not seem like the right move, especially in the top 10. This is especially true if the team is in need of a major infusion of talent like the Lions do. 

 

I like the Wilson and Robertson picks but I doubt they'll be there in the spots you are picking them. 

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13 hours ago, Louis Friend said:

I just don't see it happening until 2022 when we can cut Flowers/Collins/Shelton for cap savings. I agree though. 

See I don't think those players are useless.  A good defensive mind can adapt its system to fit the personnel and Flowers is still very talented.  Maybe not up to his contracts standards but I don't think that he is trash by any means.  His sack numbers are down but I think a lot of that is because he  is the only person on the line who needs attention and was easily gameplanned out of the game.  Adding another edge and DT that can impact the game will greatly improve his ability to do what he does best.  

So I agree that front 7 is a priority.  I dont love our CBs but still feel it is the strongest unit on the D by far.  But no group of DBs will look good when they have to cover for 5 seconds and a QB can sit comfortably in the pocket and pick them apart.    

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5 hours ago, Karnage84 said:

I like the GM and coaching moves for sure. I have zero issue with bringing Bevell back if Saleh thinks the two can co-exist. 

I like the idea of bringing Stafford back if the belief is that they can turn the defense around faster than most of us expect. 

The talk is that Saleh would bring in a couple guys in the secondary wherever he goes. I'm expecting Richard Sherman to be one of those guys, maybe Tartt (SS) and Witherspoon (outside CB). Tracy Walker has commented on how he feels he is a better FS. Sherman isn't going to come in to be a back up or without a prominent role and we did just spend the 3rd overall pick on Okudah. 

CB: Sherman, Okudah, Oruwariye, Witherspoon

FS: Walker

SS: Tartt

With all of that being said, adding Farley does not feel like the right move for a team with many needs at other spots. 

I could get on board with adding a WR like Chase or a DL prospect like Paye, Rousseau, etc. Parsons (talent-wise) is the no brainer there assuming the off-field stuff clears. 

I like Mac Jones in rd 2 if the plan is to keep Stafford for another year or two. Investing a first round pick in a guy that isn't going to see the field  for 12+ months (see Jordan Love/Packers) does not seem like the right move, especially in the top 10. This is especially true if the team is in need of a major infusion of talent like the Lions do. 

 

I like the Wilson and Robertson picks but I doubt they'll be there in the spots you are picking them. 

I had 3-5 rd value on Wilson, Robertson and Moehrig. There were so many good prospects in those rounds that I could see moving around in those mid rounds. I think with this college season being unusual due to covid and not knowing how the pre-draft programs will go, I think a few teams might reach for "sure things" and we'll see picks moving around. I wouldn't be shocked to see all of them drafted in the 3rd or the 5th.

If Wilson is there at #7, I'd take him no question. I'm not as high on Lance as others. I'd rather sit Mac Jones who is a fine QB prospect and let him learn from Stafford. 

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5 hours ago, Sllim Pickens said:

See I don't think those players are useless.  A good defensive mind can adapt its system to fit the personnel and Flowers is still very talented.  Maybe not up to his contracts standards but I don't think that he is trash by any means.  His sack numbers are down but I think a lot of that is because he  is the only person on the line who needs attention and was easily gameplanned out of the game.  Adding another edge and DT that can impact the game will greatly improve his ability to do what he does best.  

So I agree that front 7 is a priority.  I dont love our CBs but still feel it is the strongest unit on the D by far.  But no group of DBs will look good when they have to cover for 5 seconds and a QB can sit comfortably in the pocket and pick them apart.    

I don't think Flowers or Collins are useless. I actually think they were good gets for Quinntricia TBH. However, I see a full rebuild happening and with an expanded window and minimal cap room the next few seasons, I could see the next FO cutting their losses and rebuild the team their way. Those are the largest contracts on the team and can be cut for large savings. This season, those largest contracts we can cut are Trufant and Coleman, which is why the secondary was addressed (as well as not liking our safety situation).

Next season, I could see them overhauling the front 7 when they'll have more capspace and I'm fond of next years draft class in that regards compared to this season. 

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16 hours ago, Superduperman said:

It makes me want to throw up how much nothing there is at defensive line in this draft when the Lions have passed on so much DL talent in the last five years

I hate how we've ignored the DL especially the last 5 years. This year, I don't see that Chase Young/Ndamukong Suh/Aaron Donald type player that can truly change a defense from day one, in the draft. And we really won't have the capspace to go after the top talent there in free agency. We could potentially have alot more capspace next season to go after a proper DL if they cut their top contracts. 

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19 minutes ago, Louis Friend said:

I don't think Flowers or Collins are useless. I actually think they were good gets for Quinntricia TBH. However, I see a full rebuild happening and with an expanded window and minimal cap room the next few seasons, I could see the next FO cutting their losses and rebuild the team their way. Those are the largest contracts on the team and can be cut for large savings. This season, those largest contracts we can cut are Trufant and Coleman, which is why the secondary was addressed (as well as not liking our safety situation).

Next season, I could see them overhauling the front 7 when they'll have more capspace and I'm fond of next years draft class in that regards compared to this season. 

I guess it just doesn't make sense to me to draft another high CB when its already somewhat of decent spot on our team.  I know we had a horrible year in pass  coverage but again I don't put that all on the CBs as I think the over the top help, and D line help were non existent this year which caused the majority of our issues.  Why not start re-tooling the front 7 when we can see if those contracts are worth keeping?  If we draft Parsons or Rosseau we have a significant upgrade on the front 7.  Add a LB or DE in free agency and we have another big upgrade in our front 7.  Then we can see if Okudah and AO are worth keeping and developing with a real line in front of them and in this scenario, adding Moehrig.  

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16 minutes ago, Sllim Pickens said:

I guess it just doesn't make sense to me to draft another high CB when its already somewhat of decent spot on our team.  I know we had a horrible year in pass  coverage but again I don't put that all on the CBs as I think the over the top help, and D line help were non existent this year which caused the majority of our issues.  Why not start re-tooling the front 7 when we can see if those contracts are worth keeping?  If we draft Parsons or Rosseau we have a significant upgrade on the front 7.  Add a LB or DE in free agency and we have another big upgrade in our front 7.  Then we can see if Okudah and AO are worth keeping and developing with a real line in front of them and in this scenario, adding Moehrig.  

I understand where you are coming from, this is just the way this mock fell for me. I'll probably change it 20 more times before the season starts. 

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9 minutes ago, Sllim Pickens said:

I guess it just doesn't make sense to me to draft another high CB when its already somewhat of decent spot on our team.  I know we had a horrible year in pass  coverage but again I don't put that all on the CBs as I think the over the top help, and D line help were non existent this year which caused the majority of our issues.  Why not start re-tooling the front 7 when we can see if those contracts are worth keeping?  If we draft Parsons or Rosseau we have a significant upgrade on the front 7.  Add a LB or DE in free agency and we have another big upgrade in our front 7.  Then we can see if Okudah and AO are worth keeping and developing with a real line in front of them and in this scenario, adding Moehrig.  

This is a question for @Sllim Pickens and @Louis Friend 

I'm assuming that we'll be running a more traditional 4 man front: DE, DT, NT, DE

I don't think there is any question that we need a major overhaul at the defensive tackle (DT and NT) position. What would you do at DE? 

We have Flowers with a big contract, Romeo Okwara was our best guy but is a FA, Hand has struggled with injuries for too long to be considered an option. The draft offers up guys like Paye and Rousseau who should be there at #7. 

Do you bring back Okwara, pair him up again with Flowers and then just upgrade the interior? Do you kick Flowers inside and draft Paye/Rousseau to play opposite of Okwara?

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Just now, Louis Friend said:

I understand where you are coming from, this is just the way this mock fell for me. I'll probably change it 20 more times before the season starts. 

You have to make your decisions now... 

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Karnage84 said:

This is a question for @Sllim Pickens and @Louis Friend 

I'm assuming that we'll be running a more traditional 4 man front: DE, DT, NT, DE

I don't think there is any question that we need a major overhaul at the defensive tackle (DT and NT) position. What would you do at DE? 

We have Flowers with a big contract, Romeo Okwara was our best guy but is a FA, Hand has struggled with injuries for too long to be considered an option. The draft offers up guys like Paye and Rousseau who should be there at #7. 

Do you bring back Okwara, pair him up again with Flowers and then just upgrade the interior? Do you kick Flowers inside and draft Paye/Rousseau to play opposite of Okwara?

I definitely keep Okwara. We cannot keep losing DL talent that we've coached up. He's a solid DE that hopefully won't cost us a ton. He also has his brother here which works in our favor just a little. 

I like Rousseau and Paye, but they aren't game changers for me. If we draft one of them, it helps our DL, but I don't think their addition changes the fact that our DL needs a complete overhaul especially inside. John Penisini has been a solid depth DT for us. But we basically need two starters inside. I'm not high on Williams or Shelton. I can see both leaving in the next two seasons. This is where my love for Marvin Wilson comes in. 

IMO, our entire defense is bad, on every level. We have two young promising CBs that hopefully can pan out. We have Okwara who is a free agent but arguably our best DL. We have nothing else to build around IMO. This is not a plug a hole situation. We need help everywhere. So I'm taking the best talent available where I can, and filling it up piece by piece. 

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