The Detroit Lions have a big consideration to make in the NFL Draft as it relates to Tua Tagovailoa, and they could be strongly in play to select the quarterback depending on who is asked.
Fox Sports personality Clay Travis sees the Tagovialoa situation as very interesting, and thinks it will be the situation to watch near the top of the draft. At this point, Travis sees it as a slam dunk that Tagovailoa goes high in April.
“Right now, there’s a 100 percent chance in my mind that he’s gone by No. 5. The Miami Dolphins will take him at No. 5 if he’s there,” Travis said in the clip. “The most intriguing part is will someone trade up, maybe to the Washington Redskins pick potentially. Or, could the Detroit Lions decide, you know what, the Matthew Stafford era is never going to really lead to championships, he’s got an issue, maybe move him. Maybe make the decision to go with a young quarterback.”
As Travis said, Tagovailoa could be in play for the Lions thanks to the hope he might give a staff that needs some moving forward.
“Matt Patricia is on the ropes. Best way to guarantee yourself another year often times is to have a young quarterback that you’re developing,” he said. “I think there’s a good chance Tua goes inside the top five. No way he goes beyond the No. 5 pick with the Miami Dolphins, and there could be a lot of drama and interest wit what No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 whether someone tries to trade up and grab him. It’s really going to be fascinating to see.”
There’s been mixed commentary on whether the Lions would take Tagovailoa or not and whether the quarterback would even want to play for the team, but one thing is for certain and it’s his presence will be major near the top of the draft.
Colin Cowherd Explains Lions’ Decision With Tua Tagovailoa
Interestingly, Fox Sports analyst Colin Cowherd took time out to address the Lions situation on his show, and laid out a game plan for what he would do if he were the Lions and their ownership team during the draft and the offseason.
As Cowherd implied, it’s time for the Lions to shake things up and get a bit more interesting, because they’ve been far too passive and boring for years. The only way to do that as he sees it is to draft Tua Tagovailoa and put Matthew Stafford on the trading block.
“Look at the top 10 teams drafting. Who’s the team we’re not talking about? Detroit. Detroit’s a bad franchise. Detroit’s bad and boring. If I ran that franchise or owned it, go draft a quarterback. Nothing against Matt Stafford, but see what you can get. Matt Stafford, 11 years, 0 playoff wins. No division titles. Put him on the market and see what you can get,” he said.
Cowherd said the buzz factor has been lacking with the Lions, and drafting a player like Jeffrey Okudah isn’t going to help that. Instead, he thinks it’s time for the Lions to move on from an average Stafford.
“What’s the loyalty? ‘Well (Stafford’s) the best we’ve ever had.’ That is a you problem. Draft better. If I got Tua, and I got a cornerback from the Big Ten, and I own that team and run that team, who’s changing history? A corner? Yeah that will be exciting. You hear they got a corner in Detroit,” Cowherd said through laughter.
As Cowherd finished, it’s nothing against Stafford personally or professionally, but rather, everything against the way the Lions do business, which is to be both irrelevant and boring as he sees it.
“(Stafford’s) record in the NFL, 69-79-1 as a starter. It’s Andy Dalton with a better arm. I’m not disputing talent but I’m over talent. Win games,” he said. “No. 3 you’re gonna settle for a corner? Roll the dice. And now Stafford is hurt. He’s past his prime, he’s banged up. Great kid. There’s value for Matt Stafford, but the franchise, are you just going to draft a corner? You think that’s going to sell a ticket? That’s going to sell a jersey? Give me a break. Detroit doesn’t have a brand and bad teams do. Roll the dice. Take a risk.”
As boring as a pick like Okudah might be, it could be just what the doctor ordered for a Lions team which was miserable on defense in 2019 and struggled on the back end. Theoretically, the Lions could view it as already having their quarterback in the fold and not needing to take a chance on someone like Tagovailoa, no matter his talent.
It’s an interesting take to say the least, and it only adds to the discussion as it relates to how the Lions should approach this offseason.
ESPN NFL Analyst Wants Lions Drafting Tua Tagovailoa
Detroit must take Tua Tagovailoa according to ESPN’s Bart Scott and start over by dealing Matthew Stafford. It’s the only way Scott sees the team moving forward and crafting a brighter future for themselves.
“I think about that sweet spot. The sweet spot for me is the third pick with the Detroit Lions,” Scott recently said on Get Up. “I don’t see how the Detroit Lions let Tua Tagovailoa get past them.”
According to Scott, who’s said before that Stafford should be on the move via trade this offseason, the timing is perfect for the Lions to start over with a talented young player in Tagovailoa.
“They understand they have had Matthew Stafford. He’s only 31 years old. We’ve seen what it looks like to have Stafford for 11 years. You’re not going to win a Super Bowl with him,” Scott said. “If you’re a struggling coach in this league, you want to press the reset button. You can’t let a guy with arm talent and vision get away. This is your opportunity to get a young gun, start off young, and really be able to trade Matthew Stafford to get some picks to start over with a young core.”
As Scott said, depth should be the first order of business for the Lions, who need to build a more complete team.
“What you need in Detroit is depth, you need talent. The only way you’re going to get talent is by getting rid of your biggest chip, which is Matthew Stafford,” he said.
As it stands now, the Lions have seven draft picks with which to work with this season, including a pair in the fifth round. Adding to that would certainly help them build things up and improve the depth. They could also do this by not trading away Stafford and merely dealing down from their top pick.
Regardless of what they decide to do, Tagovailoa will loom large over the top of the draft for the team.
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