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NFL Draft Rounds 2 & 3 Preview

Tonight is where the great franchises start to distance themselves from the pretenders. Teams like the Detroit Lions, Cleveland Browns, and Oakland Raiders tend to be the worst at drafting in these rounds it seems. Then the Green Bay Packers, Pittsburgh Steelers, and New England Patriots tend to draft better than most other teams here.

The Detroit Lions will have the 4th pick in round 2 and I am really hoping they can trade down. I know I wanted them to trade down last night too. They just have so many needs still and there is so much talent that is about equal here tonight. If they trade down some I think they could get Barrett Jones at guard and another player of their choice like Damontre Moore defensive end from Texas A&M, Cornellius Carradine defensive end from Florida St., Manti T’eo linebacker from Notre Dame, Chase Thomas linebacker from Stanford, or possibly Zach Ertz the tight end from Stanford.

It all comes down to value and so you don’t want to reach if you can trade down and still get the guy you want and possibly another guy later on. To me the Lions have to get an offensive lineman who will start for them in the 2nd round. Once they do that they can go for a wide receiver or Zach Ertz (only tight end I feel is worth drafting) but I am still hoping for a 2nd offensive lineman and an outside linebacker or another defensive end.

The Lions could make some huge moves here with some work and creative maneuvering. No matter what they do though they need at least 4 starters out of this draft or I think a new gm and head coach will be in the war room next year as we plan for another rebuilding of the Detroit Lions.

What do you think?


NFL Draft 2013 Night 1 Reflection

Last night the draft was very odd. It didn’t flow like usual. Guys were picked in places where they shouldn’t have been and other guys are still on the board going into round 2 tonight.


Dion Jordan picked by the Miami Dolphins at #3 after they traded up with the Oakland Raiders was far too soon I feel. He could be really good but he needs a lot of polish. He is more of an outside linebacker in a 3-4 than a defensive end in a 4-3 if you ask me. The guy has the speed to keep containment outside but other than that he isn’t too impressive if you ask me. I believe he has had shoulder surgery before as well.

Ziggy Ansah was picked a little bit too early for my taste as well. The ceiling is high for him and he will be playing next to Suh and Fairley two former 1st round draft picks so he is set up to succeed. If he doesn’t pan out though the Lions could be looking for a new coach and general manager.

The Jets at #13 went with a defensive tackle but not the one who was almost unanimously considered the top defensive tackle in the draft. They picked Sheldon Richardson who was a guy I hadn’t heard much about and can’t remember actually watching in college even though I saw a few Missouri games. I would even argue he was behind Sharrif Floyd and Lotulelei when compared to defensive tackles. Plus I think the Jets should have picked up someone on offense because they were 30th in scoring offense last year.

EJ Manuel from Florida St. reminds me of Daunte Culpepper and that isn’t a good thing. Daunte was alright but without Randy Moss in his prime he didn’t do too much. He even had Calvin Johnson for a year but couldn’t put up good enough numbers to stay employed by Detroit. So in my opinion Manuel was a huge reach. I think Geno Smith, and Matt Barkley will be better pros.

The Cowboys picking the Wisconsin center Travis Frederick was a surprise to me. I didn’t expect this pick at all. Wisconsin is known to produce some good offensive lineman but the Cowboys probably could have picked a good interior lineman of equal quality later in the draft I feel.

Good Picks?

Lane Johnson at #4 to the Eagles was a good pick. I thought the top three tackles were pretty equal and if anyone wasn’t going to work out it would be Fisher. It will be interesting to see how well they all do but the Eagles I think got a good value pick at 4 and messed up my hopes for the Lions at #5.

Jonathan Cooper from North Carolina could be one of the best offensive lineman in this draft. He went at #7 to the Cardinals who need some help on offense. They have a new coaching staff and have brought in Carson Palmer to start at quarterback for them. Cooper will provide a good interior presence on that offensive line.

At #8 the Rams moved up to pick Tavon Austin who could be the best player in the whole draft. The guy is fast and can make great players miss. I expect him to be the go to wide receiver for many years to come in St. Louis. I only question his height.

Titans picked Chance Warmack guard from Alabama and they need him. I think they are hoping he can be as good as Steve Hutchinson to revive their once great running game. Warmack is good and may be the best guard in the draft which is saying a lot because there are a lot of good guards in the draft this year.

The Pittsburgh Steelers pick of Jarvis Jones at #17 may be one of the best picks in the draft. If a team like the Lions or Browns would have picked him I probably would have frowned on it but because it was the Steelers I naturally think the talent will outshine the possible injury concerns.

Howie Longs son Kyle Long guard/tackle from Oregon was picked up by the Chicago Bears. He was a guy I had hopes for in the 2nd round for the Lions. He is green but is already really good. He is a converted college baseball pitcher to football offensive lineman. He is probably a little bit of a project but there is no denying his athletic ability and on top of that he has a hall of fame father and a pro bowl brother. Football is just in his blood. I just know he is going to haunt me every time the Lions play the Bears.

The Minnesota Vikings had a blockbuster draft day. Sharrif Floyd defensive tackle out of Florida is in my opinion the top defensive tackle in the draft and was projected as a top five pick by some so picking him up at 23 is huge. Xavier Rhodes corner from Florida St. picked at 25 will fill a much needed hole due to Winfield being gone (I believe). Cordarrelle Patterson wide receiver from Tennessee is a good one for a late first round pick at 29. I thought Patterson was the second best wide receiver in the draft and he will be expected to replace Percy Harvin on offense. The Vikings on day one have the best draft so far.


The Rams and Vikings are the big winners on day one I think. There is no denying that both teams improved on day one.

What do you think?

NFL Draft 2013

The prospects were just introduced. So many of them have been talked down as being 2nd round picks in most drafts. Outside of a handful of guys it seems like nobody is really excited about the 1st round of this draft. As fans though this is shaping up to be one of the more exciting drafts in the last 10-15 years it seems.

The first pick has come down to either Eric Fisher Central Michigan tackle or Luke Joeckel Texas A&M tackle. Then after that things get interesting. Lane Johnson will more than likely be the next tackle taken and will probably be picked up at #3 or #4 if the Raiders or Eagles can trade with a team looking to move up and get a franchise tackle.

The only defensive players who are true top 5 draft picks are probably Dee Milliner corner Alabama and Sharrif Floyd defensive tackle from Florida. Ziggy Ansah doesn’t have the experience most teams like and is considered a project but he is very athletic. Dion Jordan from Oregon is undersized to be an every down defensive end.

Teams that need defensive lineman can get a quality starter as late as the 3rd round. Guys like Cornellius Carradine from Florida State, and Damontre Moore Texas A&M may still be around. Alex Okafor from Texas, Margus Hunt from SMU, and William Gholston from Michigan State are all guys who may be around in the 3rd round who could start for a team and be productive.

Things really are up in the air at this point but that is why the NFL Draft is such an exciting time for football fans. It is the one year the fans can put on their imaginary GM hat. Fans everywhere on this night are discussing who they would or wouldn’t pick and why. In a few months all fans will be predicting the Playoffs or Super Bowl for their team because of those couple of new guys on the team that make them so much better than last year. We forget to look at who retired, or left in free agency. Nobody wants to acknowledge that their older players may start losing a step. Hope is in the air for it is NFL Draft time!

Now as a Lions fan there are a few things on my mind. I want Luke Joeckel to drop to 5 but if not I would take Lane Johnson at offensive tackle. In a perfect world the Lions would trade down to pick up another 2nd round pick. With their mid 1st round pick they would take Chance Warmack, or Kyle Long on the offensive line. With the 2nd round picks they would take Barrett Jones, and one of the defensive lineman who is highest on their draft board that I mentioned above.

Detroit has a lot of holes including offensive tackle (need 2), offensive guard (need 1), defensive end (need 2), cornerback (need 1), outside linebacker (need 2), and wide receiver (need 1). Those are their most glaring needs though. If the Lions could pick up another safety who could also play nickel corner in the 4th or 5th round that would provide depth in case of injury. I would prioritize the offensive line as the #1 need, defensive end as #2, and linebacker at #3 personally but I don’t think media or the team view it the same as I do.

The Detroit Lions lost three of their five startng offensive lineman. Riley Reiff will more than likely be the new left tackle since he was a 1st round pick last year. Rob Sims will be their left guard. Dominic Raiola will be their center. right guard could be Barrett Jones or Chance Warmack in my scenario. Right tackle could be Kyle Long in my scenario too. That would be a good offensive line and I think a better one than last years. This line could run block better than in years past I think but ultimately with Raiola at center the run game up the middle would still need a lot of work. Until Dom retires the Lions won’t ever have a dominant run offense up the middle.

If Mayhew is patient he could probably get a speed receiver really late in the draft that could contribute. Denard Robinson is a project and would be a hit with fans if the Lions sat and waited to pick him up in the 5th round when he may still be on the board.

Tyrann Matheiu at corner may be on the clock in the 6th round and is a true playmaker. He fills a team need for the Lions but also has off the field issues with drugs which is something the Lions need to try and avoid. In the 6th round though he may be too good to pass up if the Lions haven’t picked up a corner. The Honey Badger has acknowledged recently though that he doesn’t even trust himself and needs help battling his personal demons. He made his agent take his car and phone after his work outs while preparing for the Draft. He would need a personal assistant of some sort to help keep him out of trouble when he signs his first NFL contract.

Those are just some of my thoughts. Let me know what you think of my evaluation off the top of my head.

Go Lions!!!!

Detroit Lions Week 4 Preview

Minnesota Vikings vs Detroit Lions

The Vikings come into Ford Field riding the momentum of a huge win over San Francisco. Jared Allen has been complaining of neck pains but will play thru it. Is Christian Ponder legitimate or is he just off to a hot start? Personally I think he is just off to a hot start. This week against the Lions I still expect him to play well but in the next couple of weeks people will figure him out. He doesn’t go deep very much and averages less than 6 yards per throw.

Most experts on all of the networks football programs are picking the Lions over the Vikings this week but I think it is harder to pick the Lions right now. They benched Wendling and brought Silva off the practice squad to play free safety. Coleman should be suiting up at the strong safety position again. Tulloch at linebacker is going to have to play out of his mind in order to stop Adrian Peterson who is probably the toughest, and hardest working player in the NFL.

The Lions offense needs to have a coming out party. Stafford and Johnson need to get some big plays even if they are short drag routes that go deep. I expect the Vikings to do a lot of what others teams have done with playing the safeties about 15 yards off the line of scrimmage. Mikell Leshoure played well for his first NFL game and I think he will do well again this week.

Special Teams has to play better for the Lions. It is going to be a long season if the Lions continue to give up big plays in the kicking game. Titans were able to return a couple plays for touchdown last week and the Vikings have the special teams weapons to do the same. Keep an eye on the return game this week.

The key for this game is the Lions safety play. If the safeties play ok then the defensive line should be able to get some pressure on Ponder. Peterson will probably break a couple of 20 yard runs but if the Lions can limit him to under 100 yards then they have a good shot to win big in this game.

The Vikings will be able to move the ball with Jerome Simpson returning and being their deep threat and the Lions struggle to stop deep threats. That purple defense is good up front and is only a couple years removed from being a top 5 defense. They have a lot of the same players too so they have the potential to play great.

Detroit Lions over Minnesota Vikings 28-16

Detroit Lions Week 3 Review

Tennessee Titans over Detroit Lions in Overtime 44 to 41

This game was one of the most exciting football games I have ever seen. It was a big let down for us Lions fans though. I thought the Lions were going to lose when they were down by 14 with a little over a minute left after Pettigrew gave the ball to the Titans for a touchdown. I left the room only to come back and see that the Lions were down by 7 and going for an onside kick. So I saw the recovery and got extremely excited. Then there was the hail mary to send it into overtime. It just felt like the Lions were going to win espescially when they held the Titans to a field goal in overtime.

The Lions drove down the field and had 4th and short on the Titans 1o yard line. Then the jumbo package was in and they snapped it but only Raiola lunged forward. Hill bobbled the snap and then lunged forward but not enough. Coach Schwartz said it was a called dead play and the ball wasn’t supposed to be snapped.

The safeties for the Lions defense played terrible Wendling who was playing for the injured Delmas did not play well at all and showed me he is nothing more than a special teams player. Coleman playing in place of the injured Spievey did ok but still didn’t play well enough. The Lions gave up 5 plays of over 60 yards. You can’t win a game giving up that many big plays. Detroit was lucky to get the game into overtime.

Stafford will have to play thru the hip pain in future weeks for the Lions to have the best chance of winning.

Stafford reinjured his hip in the 4th quarter but should be able to play in the coming weeks. He needs to play to right this ship and pick up some W’s.

Detroit Lions Week 3 Preview

Detroit Lions at Tennessee Titans

Former Titan who joined Coach Jim Schwartz in Detroit.

Did you know the Detroit Lions have never beat the Tennessee Titans? Well now you know, and knowing is half the battle according to G.I. Joe. This week I really don’t think the Lions will have a hard time in this game.

Leshoure is now able to suit up and I think he will put up good numbers. Mike Martz came out and said Leshoure will be a Marshall Faulk type running back for the Lions. I don’t think he is going to be anything like Faulk though. Martz is certainly more qualified to say something like that than I am since the man coached Faulk and has been a coach for years.

Stafford has not had a good game yet this season. Expect this game to be his coming out party. I won’t settle for less than 275 yards 2 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. In two games Matt Stafford has 585 yards and only 2 touchdowns so that would be a big improvement.

Last year Calvin Johnson had 4 receiving touchdowns by himself at this point but this year he has a big goose egg of touchdowns. He does however have 205 yards already which is really good. Calvin could put up a couple touchdowns today though.

The Titans are trying to rebuild which is why they are playing a young quarterback, and why they let some good players go in the past couple of years. Vanden Bosch, Tulloch, and Finnegan were their best players on defense who have left them lately. Two of those guys are on the Lions now. The defense used to be the strength of the Titans and still is the strongest part of their team just not as experienced as it once was. They have some good wide receivers but the young quarterback has a lot to learn. Chris Johnson is arguably the fastest running back in the NFL but has only put up 21 yards rushing in two games. That is unacceptable espescially considering Tennessee has some good offensive tackles and guards. Their center may be their weak point on that offensive line.

Tennessee has given up 72 points this season and only scored 23 themselves. This week they play a hungry Detroit Lions team who is coming off of a big loss to one of the best teams in the NFL. I think the Titans are in a lot of trouble even though they are at home. There is a quote that says “water always finds its level”, that is how I feel about this Lions offense. They are eventually going to find their level and it is much better than what they have shown so far this year.

Detroit Lions over Tennessee Titans 41 – 14.

Detroit Lions Week 2 Review

Lions on offense early in the Sunday Night Football game.

San Francisco 49ers over Detroit Lions

San Francisco lead the whole game. Detroit tried their best to keep it close and it always felt like they were a big play or two away from being in the lead. The early field goals they were forced to take didn’t help and the missed field goal really hurt the Lions. The 49ers defense is just too good though. The defensive line is dominating and so is their linebackers. The secondary can take a few more risks than most because of how good the front seven are. It showed too because the 49ers blanketed Calvin and played off the line of scrimmage forcing the Lions to do a lot of short dump passes. They rarely took shots down field. Did the Lions have time to make the throws down field or did they game plan to throw short passes all game long?

It felt like the Lions were able to run the ball but when looking at the statistics they didn’t get a lot of yards rushing or passing. Joique Bell showed some open field skills and broke a few tackles that should have had him down in the backfield. Later in the game he had a nice pass that he took a nice chunk of yardage on picking up the first down.

I expect better performances out of Stafford and Johnson but in order to get those Linehan needs to air the ball out a little more. Even if the passes aren’t completed it can back a defense up if they are worried about the shots down field. It felt like the 49ers played the Lions the same way they game planned for the Packers a week earlier.

Once again penalties on defense hurt the Lions. There was a play when Alex Smith should have been sacked by three guys about 10 yards back but he managed to get out of it and then Vanden Bosch got a face mask. He had Smith and there was no reason to grab the face mask though. Seems like every other week there are plays like this and it really gets frustrating. Not sure if it can be fixed because I think these players are just high motor instinctive players. That is what makes this defensive line so good but it also is the downside of having this defensive line. Remember Vanden Bosch is the captain and doesn’t always lead by example. The guy is nuts! Just ask Aaron Rodgers who came out and paraphrased what Vanden Bosch is like a couple of years ago on the radio. It was pretty funny and worth listening to if you are a Lions fan.

I like this team and think they have a lot of potential but they have a lot of things they need to improve upon. The offensive line needs to improve on run blocking. I am not sure they have the talent and their best two offensive lineman are getting older. Titus Young is talented but he has discipline problems and has been benched because of them. The defense needs to stay healthy in the secondary. Louis Delmas seems like he is hurt 75% of the time and Chris Houston seems like he is injured 50% of the time. The secondary is already the weakest part of the team but if Detroit is going to be making any run in the playoffs they need guys who can stay healthy. Obviously injuries happen in a physical sport like football but some guys are careless with their bodies when going in for the tackles. I worry Delmas throws his body around too much.

Jim Harbaugh and the 49ers will probably see the Lions again only next time it will be in the playoffs I think. The Lions showed they can pretty much hang with them but need to stop getting caught by those trap plays where the tight end blocks down. The 49ers did it almost every single play and it always worked. It was a good game and I enjoyed it. Just think the Lions left a lot to be desired.