The Detroit Lions have had a very active offseason thus far in free agency patching holes and adding players to a thin roster, and as a result, they could be even more open with their goals for the 2021 NFL draft.
This season, the Lions have already solved plenty of their needs as they set their sights on trying to re-shape their roster and the team will theoretically be wide open when it comes to their picks this year as a result of what they’ve done this offseason. From offense to defense, there are deep needs across the roster and a chance for the draft to help some of their weakest spots in a big way.
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With help of The Draft Network’s simulation tool, our second mock of the 2021 offseason was put together, and it features the team filling plenty of needs in a very confident way given the players that were selected and where they were able to be added to the mix. This mock takes into account what the Lions have already done to this point.
Here’s a look at the second mock of the offseason.
Round One, Pick Number Seven – Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon
On the surface, tackle isn’t a huge need for the Lions, but if Sewell was to slide down the board in a situation like this, it would be good news for Detroit. Having Sewell in the mix would be a great problem for the Lions to have and give the team the makings of an elite offensive line well into the future. If Sewell is there, Detroit shouldn’t overthink it and should simply sprint to the podium to make the selection. He has the makings of a solid, All-Pro type player for the future. It wouldn’t be a sexy pick, but it would be the right one and would finally give the Lions the looks of a potentially elite offensive line.
Round Two, Pick Number 41 – Kadarius Toney, WR, Florida
If the Lions don’t go with a wideout in round one, there are still great options down the board and one could be found in the second in the form of Toney, an explosive playmaker from the Gators. There is a tie to the Lions here as well given Toney has met with the team pre-draft. If it’s one thing the Lions have lacked the last few seasons, it’s explosive plays. Toney can deliver that on both the ground and through the air, making him a potential Tyreek Hill type player in the NFL. Toney has been productive in college, and he could be the elite type of wideout to help the team turn things around on offense.
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Round Three, Pick Number 72 – Jevon Holland, S, Oregon
Depth at safety is currently a bit thin, so the Lions could stand an addition to the position this offseason. It’s a wise bet that the team will add a safety of some kind in free agency, but right now, Holland was the next best option for the Lions to check off the need in the draft pre-free agency period. While at Oregon, Holland was a playmaker with 108 tackles and 9 interceptions in just two seasons of game action. Holland sat out the 2020 season which cost him in exposure and he could be surging as a target in the draft given his abilities. If he slips any, the Lions should snap him up and add him to a talented backfield. Nabbing Holland here, as farfetched as it seems, could be a huge win for the Lions and their defense.
Round Three, Pick Number 101 – Keith Taylor Jr., CB, Washington
Detroit lost a bit of depth off the roster at cornerback but gained it with a couple sensible signings in Corn Elder and Quinton Dunbar. Even such, the chance does exist to add a bit of depth to the spot. Taylor is an intriguing player given the body size and type he brings to the mix. With some length at play, Taylor is the type of corner that can frustrate opposing wideouts and morph into a number two corner in the league. Given what the Lions have and have added, there would be less pressure on Taylor. A star-studded Senior Bowl should have Taylor on Detroit’s radar in the middle rounds.
Round Four, Pick Number 112 – Dayo Odeyingbo, Edge, Vanderbilt
The Lions have managed to do some work on their defensive line in free agency, but the need still does exist for an edge presence as well as a player who could potentially work in at linebacker as well. Odeyingbo is that type of player, and in terms of someone who could be a valuable project with starter potential, this would be an interesting pick for the Lions. Odeyingbo has enough talent to make his own way in the league and could have potential at either linebacker or up front. Such scheme versatility could be huge for a Lions defense that will be starting over with a new approach this season.
Round Five, Pick Number 154 – Sage Suratt, WR, Wake Forest
With the Lions not landing an elite wideout early on, the team loads up on them in this draft. If Surratt lasts this long, he could be a huge steal. He has shown burst and quickness early in the week along with his impressive 6-3 frame. The Lions could be in the market for a top wideout, and this class seems to be deep with a guy like Surratt being there potentially in round two. How does his talent translate to the NFL? That might not be hard to say given his solid production in just two shortened years. Surratt put up 1,582 yards and 15 scores and is beginning to make a bigger name for himself with his play.