Detroit Lions 2014 NFL Mock: Complete Post-Combine 7-Round Mock
Detroit Lions' Post-Combine 2014 NFL Mock Draft
After writing a mock draft for the Detroit Lions a week ago, I figured now would be a good time to come out with a post-combine edition of the Lions' mock draft. With just a couple months to go before the 2014 NFL Draft, it's hard to tell what kind of class this is going to be.
There are a handful of players in this class who are very hard to judge in terms of talent translating to the next level. With the No. 10 overall pick in this year's draft, the Lions need to think about what their overall needs are for each round.
Many people, including myself, have had the Lions picking a cornerback in the first round of the draft. However, for this post-combine edition of the Lions' mock draft, I am veering away from my original Darqueze Dennard selection for the team's first pick and leaning more toward a wide out.
Everyone knows that the Lions need wide receiving help as Kris Durham is the team's No. 2 wide out right now as Nate Burleson has been released and Ryan Broyles has had a tough time staying healthy. Calvin Johnson cannot carry the entire receiving load on his shoulders -- he showed last season that he gets worn out with too much pressure and too many targets.
For that reason, I have the Lions taking a wide receiver in the first round, and I wouldn't be surprised if they went with a wide out more than once in this year's draft -- maybe even two early selections.
Let's take a look at the Lions' post-combine mock draft and let me know what positions you think this team needs to fill and which players you wish they would target.
Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
First Round(10): Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
While it would be much more beneficial if the Lions took Sammy Watkins in the first round, the chances he falls to Detroit without trading up is highly unlikely. Evans would give the Lions a valuable No. 2 wide receiver with great size and underrated speed. Evans had a dominating season with Johnny Manziel as his QB, catching 69 passes for 1,394 yards and 12 touchdowns. Imagine his 4.51 40-yard dash speed on the opposite side of Megatron. Scary.
Second Round(13): Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State
It's hard to give the Lions a wide out with their first two selections, but if anything is going to be safe, it's just that. Detroit needs to ensure Megatron remains healthy and adding a tall, speedy possession receiver like Evans in the first round and a quick, slashing wide out like Brandin Cooks in the second round could set the Lions up for a few years. Cooks ran the second-fastest 40-yard dash time of anyone at the combine at 4.33 seconds. He may be somewhat small, but he can be that guy to catch a ton of passes and be the deep-threat when need be.
Third Round(12): Stanley Jean-Baptiste, CB, Nebraska
Stanley Jean-Baptiste is somewhat of a stretch for a third-round selection, that's why the Lions may want to consider a first-round CB selection. However, there's a chance that he will be around when the Lions select at No. 12 in the third round and that would be almost a steal. Jean-Baptiste performed well at the combine and is a top-tier corner with 4.60 speed. He is 6-foot-3 so he has the size to hang with the elite wide outs, but many believe that he just doesn't have quickness to counter wide outs' moves.
Fourth Round(11): Terrence Brooks, FS, Florida State
The Lions are losing Louis Delmas from the free safety position this offseason which makes the selection of one during the draft even more likely. Brooks is an All-American-caliber free safety out of Florida State and he can be a force -- when he wants to be. Brooks has been dubbed a vicious tackler and great against the run, but he has a tendency to disappear at times. Still, selecting him in the fourth round would make the Lions very happy.
Sixth Round(13): Tyler Larsen, C, Utah State
Larsen was a finalist for the 2013 Rimington Trophy given to the nation's most outstanding center. With Dominic Raiola nearing the end of his career, a center in the later rounds would be a smart option. Larsen is quicker than your average lineman, but had some knee issues during the 2009 season -- scary for teams looking for durable linemen. Learning under Raiola wouldn't be the worst thing ever.
Seventh Round(12): Connor Shaw, QB, South Carolina
While the Lions don't necessarily need a quarterback, it has been known that the team will be parting ways with veteran backup quarterback Shaun Hill this offseason. While Detroit's front office has said that it wants to add a veteran in free agency, it might be wise to draft a reliable backup quarterback like Connor Shaw who could learn the playbook easily and has a very high football IQ. Plus, Kellen Moore is not the best option as the backup -- or even the third-string QB.