Saturday, April 30, 2016

2016 Draft - Day 3 - Detroit Lions Rounds 4 through 7

4. S Miles Killebrew; 5a. G/T Joe Dahl; 5b. OLB Antwione Williams; 6a. QB Jake Rudock; 6b. DE/DT Anthony Zettel; 6c. LS Jimmy Landes; 7. RB Dwayne Washington

On Day 3 of the 2016 NFL Draft the Detroit Lions made zero moves, in fact there was not one Lions trade of any kind in the whole draft, and trades were something that most fans were expecting a lot of. So the Lions sat and picked right where they were at, and in the 4th round at pick 111 they drafted Miles Killebrew, a 6'2" 217 pound Safety from Southern Utah that I had ranked 97th. Whatever contact the Lions had with Killebrew were kept secret as he was not on our list of known contacts, so this pick surprised me (us) a little... but not in a bad way. After all, the Lions needed a Safety, he wasn't picked too early and in fact might be considered a bottom 3rd rounder by some. He's tall, has good weight, and that was what we knew before looking deeper. His NFL profile says this about him "Violent player who looks to punish and intimidate with the force of his strikes, but who won't compromise his form as a tackler just for the highlight reel hit. Killebrew is average in coverage, but has the size and physicality that makes him stand out in the box." and even if I read nothing else about him that would be enough. I'm excited to see what he can do once he settles into his job with the Lions.

Round 5 comes along and in my opinion there is still a lot of talent available. At pick 151 the Lions draft Guard (and sometimes tackle) Joe Dahl of Washington State, a 6'4" 304 pound offensive lineman. He will be battling Darren Keyton, Braxton Cave, Gabe Ikard, and Travis Swanson (along with their 3rd round pick C Glasgow) for a combination of starting center, backup center, and backup guard. As he could play some tackle in a pinch I think he'll have an upper hand at the backup guard position right from the start. His NFL profile pulls no punches on his weaknesses and fully credits him for his positives. A year in the NFL environment will likely do him a world of good, so much that he could start challenging for a starting job if anyone struggles, or due to injury.

The Lions second pick of round 5 is at 169 and the Lions draft OLB Antwione Williams from Georgia Southern with the pick. He's 6'3" and 247 pounds and I had him ranked 259th, or as a late 7th rounder. That doesn't mean anything much though, teams regularly have players at this point in the draft ranked one, two and even three rounds different then others, even other teams. Now I really REALLY wanted the Lions to draft RB Darious Jackson here and was screaming for them to do so for the next several picks, but instead Dallas went ahead and drafted him later. Williams will be battling Brandon Copeland and Jerry Franklin for a roster spot. Luckily he should be on special teams like Copeland so the Lions won't lose out there whichever one makes the final roster. The NFL profile on him says "Williams' tackle production in 2015 looks great on the resume, but what will intrigue teams is his size and length. While he fills up a stat sheet, there is still plenty of meat that Williams leaves on the bone. The good news is that some of his issues aren't related to physical limitations and he has the tools to improve. Worthy of a third day pick and could fight for a backup spot in 2016. " Maybe he makes the team, but I can name at least 5 guys I would have rather drafted here. We'll see if this choice was worthy.

The Lions have 3 picks in the 6th round and the first player taken at 191 was QB Jake Rudock of U of M. At 6'3" and 207 he's a bit light for a Quarterback. In fact many kickers, punters, and Safeties are bigger then this guy. His NFL profile kindly states his improvement over the past couple of years and that he's a 7th rounder or undrafted pickup. I got to say, I hate this pick. If the Lions wanted a decent backup QB they should've gone with Woodrum, at least he can throw the ball 56mph... and anyone under 55mph has never made it in the NFL to my knowledge.

At 202 the Lions spent their 2nd pick in round 6 on DE Anthony Zettle of Penn State. At 6'4" and 277 pounds he appears to fit the suit, and I had him ranked at 159 so to me he was a bit of a steal. His profile says he's undersized for a DT, and he is, if he was a DT. It also says his arms are too short to play DE. That may be, but that doesn't mean he can't play DE, and play it well, properly trained. He's not going to take Ansah's job away, but he should rotate in with Taylor and give the Lions some depth on the left side of the dline. He's relentless, and that to me means he will work extra hard to earn his spot on the team. For a 6th round pick, I like that.

At 210, the comp pick for losing Nick Fairley, the Lions inexplicably drafted a long snapper, Jimmy Landes from Baylor. They already have the best long snapper in the league in Muhlbach on the team, and his one year vet minimum deal costs the cap only a small amount more then a rookie contract costs, so I see zero benefit in wasting a pick in the 6th round on a long snapper. I absolutely positively HATE this pick. It's down right stupid. Idiotic. Amateurish. I won't say any more about it.

For the Lions final pick in round 7 at pick 236 the Lions drafted Dwayne Washington a Running Back from Washington (no the City is not named after him). I had him ranked almost exactly the same as the long snapper. At 6'2" and 226 pounds he sounds immediately like a guy who isn't going to take any punishment at all. His profile tells us about his problem fumbling, but since it doesn't show his hand size we don't know if it's a physical thing (small hands equals fumbles, guaranteed) or a focus issue. He was never going to be drafted by another team imo and should not have been by the Lions either. There was talent available, DT Zimmer, TE Sandland, QB Woodrum, and many others, but the pick was, well, maybe not wasted (or maybe so) but definitely not used to it's fullest potential.

In the end I loved the 1st days' pick. I understood you can't turn down the 2nd round pick that fell and the 3rd round pick is not the center I wanted nor do I like his profile but perhaps he can be turned into something good. I loved the 4th round pick and the first 5th round pick. I also liked the second 6th round pick. I totally disliked the 2nd 5th round pick, the first 6th round pick, the third 6th round pick, and the 7th round pick. That's a 5 - 5 split for me... not the grade I was looking for. If the undrafted signings don't turn this around for me I'm going to go into the rest of this off season feeling very let down... and concerned... for this GM is likely to be here for at least 2 more years. But, before I go all doom and gloom on everyone, I will first check out the undrafted signings tomorrow and then wait the long wait for OTA's, mini and summer camp to progress to the end and see where things are then. One thing for sure, no kool-aid and no rose colored glasses... color me unimpressed.

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