Saturday, May 2, 2015
2015 NFL Draft - Rounds 4 - 7
The Lions had no 4th round draft pick due to the trade for Ngata but that didn't stop Mayhew, he simply traded a 3rd from next year for a 4th this year with the Philadelphia Eagles. It appears the Lions will be receiving a 3rd round comp pick next year for losing Suh and that one can not be traded, so that one they will use next year to draft in the 3rd round, but their normal one can and was traded... so they could draft Defensive Tackle Gabe Wright from Auburn. He is the 4th (and final) player selected to be on the Lions contact list.
4th round pick DT Gabe Wright (Auburn) is 6' 2 5/8" tall and weighs in at 300 pounds. He's 1 3/8" shorter then the proto-typical DT, about 11 pounds light, and has arms 2 1/4" shorter then ideal. He was a team captain and gives all he has when he plays. He has great first step quickness and should be a rotational pass rush DT in the Lions 4-3 defensive line. I had him ranked at 103, NDT has him at 169, and Optimum Scouting has him at 97. He pursues plays and plays to the whistle every snap. Has big strong hands but doesn't get a lot of vertical height on his jumps. He was forced to play a lot of DE due to injury but DT is his natural position. He is comparable to Jordan Hill. He will need an NFL diet and gym time and to improve on his run defense before seeing more snaps then only on obvious passing downs.
The Lions had also traded away their original 5th round pick in the Ngata trade, then received one from Denver in the trade in round 1 with them, then lost that one when trading up in round 3. Prior to that the Lions were losing DE George Johnson to Tampa Bay Bucaneers due to them signing him to a restricted free agent offer the Lions weren't going to match, but instead of risking losing him in arbitration the bucs traded their 5th to the Lions for their 7th, giving the Lions the 168th pick (#32 in round 5).
5th round pick FB Michael Burton (Rutgers) is 5'11" tall and weighs in at 242 pounds. Neither NDT nor Optimum Scouting did a profile on Burton. I had him ranked at 460, or as an undrafted free agent. I fully expected the Lions to pick up a full back in the draft, in the 7th round, to make sure they got the one they wanted, instead of waiting until after the draft. I never expected them to do it in the 5th round. I'm also a little surprised the one they wanted is only 242 pounds and has very little college production running the ball, though he does catch well. A pass catching TE slash FB was exactly what I was expecting so perhaps they plan to beef ole Michael up with an NFL diet and gym room, not sure. He can run the 40 in 4.74 and did 25 reps so he has a good start to an NFL career at fullback. He is expected to contribute to special teams, but then ALL fullbacks should. Taking an undrafted ranked player in round 5 is usually not the best way to handle your draft however, especially one who is undersized, so we will see if he's worth this investment.
Continuing on with this interesting draft the Lions stayed put at pick #200 and made their selection, a nickel back (not talking about the musical group) who is also very much undersized. Assuming that the Lions current nickel is injured and may not play right away if at all this year, the position to fill makes some since, so what's with this player?
6th round pick CB Quandre Diggs (Texas) is 5' 9" if you bend your ruler a little and weighs in at 196 pounds, a bit stout for that height. NDT ranked him at 150, I had him at 207, and Optimum Scouting is at 142... not bad for pick 200. He can blitz, play cover, kick and punt return, but won't be able to man up as a starting corner, ever. He too was a team captain, is smart, and has good instincts. I like everything about him, if he was 3" taller.
The Lions also kept their 7th round pick after gaining one and losing the same one in trades. In the end they finally drafted their offensive tackle with the 240th pick.
7th round pick OT Corey Robinson (South Carolina) is 6' 7" tall and weighs in at 324 pounds. I had him ranked at 198, 9 spots ahead of their 6th round pick. Optimum Scouting has him at 138 and NDT is at 145... so two 5th round grades and a 6th. Corey is 1" taller then proto-typical, 4 pounds heavier, and arms are .63" longer. So nothing wrong there. NDT calls him a massive power player who's frame may be a hindrance and will be needing a lot of polish to overcome his size. His experience is at left tackle but is going to prove too slow for LT and will likely end up starting as a backup RT in the NFL. If he can't improve his kick-slide and speed with a bit less weight and coaching he may be moved into the inside. In a word, he's a Prospect.
There are a lot of positives in this draft, both overall and with individual players. BUT. There are some negatives too, more then I prefer. It could work out, it could flop, it's such a toss up I'm not sure if I like it or not. I'm going to have to sulk, I mean think, on this some more, do more research, read what others are saying, find out about the undrafted signees, then report back with another blog entry. This is just too much to absorb all at once.
Hope you had a happy draft day (ala 3 days) also known as the annual Lions superbowl. Shame it's not the crueling weekend long event it used to be but this format has it's pluses and minuses too. Kind of like the Lions draft. Think I'll pour myself a drink and contemplate life for awhile, then dig in some more for further analysis. Aloha.
Posted by NetRat's Lions Blog at 6:57 PM