The Lions are absolutely stacked with offensive weapons. Quarterback Matthew Stafford‘s unbelievable list of targets includes Calvin Johnson, recent addition Golden Tate, dual-threat backs Reggie Bush and Joique Bell and 6-foot-5 tight end Brand Pettigrew. With the best wide receiver in the NFL and a strong cast of characters around him, it is surprising that the Lions only had a seven-win season in 2013.
At 6-foot-1, 211-pounds, Watkins is a great blend of size, speed and strength. Watkins exploded onto draft boards with his 2013 campaign for the Clemson Tigers of 1,464 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. Watkins is the type of player who can immediately make an impact for any offense, and the wideout might not even be available when the Lions are on the clock with the 10th pick.
He would be a stud for any team that drafts him, but the Lions won’t improve by selecting Watkins. If the Lions want a better season in 2014, Stafford needs to improve his mechanics. It doesn’t matter if the 26-year-old quarterback had Johnson, A.J. Green and Josh Gordon to throw the ball to; Stafford forces the ball far too often and puts Detroit in bad positions.
Stafford had the third-most passing yards in the league in 2013, but he also had the sixth-most interceptions behind Eli Manning, Carson Palmer, Joe Flacco, Geno Smith and Andy Dalton. Where Johnson was only able to catch 53 percent of his targets this past season, Peyton Manning was able to make sure that Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker were able to haul in over 60 percent of their targets. The accuracy and mechanics of Stafford are holding the Lions back, and adding another receiver is not going to change that.
I hope the Lions can figure this out before wasting a pick on the talented Watkins.