By Quinne Lowe @sports_qa on May 13, 2014
Now that the 2014 NFL Draft is complete, we get to assess the Lions' selections from worst to first not based on what round they were selected but the level of impact they could have for the team this year and beyond.
Project is the first word that comes to mind for this small school talent. While he played DE in college and in the East-West Shrine game, some are already transitioning him to the TE position where there's a log jam of talent.
While the Lions did draft a cornerback, many Lions fans were expecting a bigger splash than the 5-foot-9 prospect from Utah State. In a division where you are facing receivers who are 6-foot-3 and taller, how much can Lions fans expect out of this talented but diminutive defensive back?
Since the retirement of Jason Hanson the Lions have been searching for a solid placekicker, and the reliable Freese could be the answer. He finished the 2013 season as one of only two placekickers to not miss an attempt with more than 10 tries. He doesn't have a strong kickoff leg, but second-year punter Sam Martin can handle those duties.
The Lions have had one center in the past 14 years, Dominic Raiola, but his career is winding down. While Swanson may not have the best physical tools, he has the mental capacity to make all the right reads, calls and be the leader of the offensive line once Raiola calls it a career.
The Lions have one of the most heralded defensive tackle tandems in the league with Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley, but there are contract questions with both beyond this season. Reid not only brings some needed depth, but if he plays well, he could be in line to replace one of the starters if they choose to leave Detroit.
The talented Ebron is a luxury for a team that already has two other contributing tight ends in Brandon Pettigrew and Joseph Fauria. Placing him at No. 3 isn't an indictment on his talent; it just means that the two other players selected in the draft filled a bigger need to the team for the moment.
Who is the Lions slot receiver? While they have solidified the outside receivers with Megatron and Golden Tate, there still is an unknown at the slot. Jones has the ability to come in even as a late-round rookie and reap the benefits of defenses worrying about the outside receivers and whoever lines up at running back.
Who had more sacks than Jadeveon Clowney and more interceptions than Kyle Fuller last season? This answer is Kyle Van Noy. If he is able to settle in at the SAM linebacker position, he could be the answer to not only the coverage woes the Lions have been suffering from, but also give defensive coordinator Teryl Austin another blitz option in his aggressive defense.
May 29, 2015 by Jason Fletcher
The Carolina Panthers drafted linebacker Shaq Thompson with their first pick in the 2015 draft. Find out why he makes the Panthers' linebackers the best in the NFL. Read More
May 29, 2015 by James Forsythe
San Francisco 49ers NaVorro Bowman has completed his first practice week since tearing his ACL in 2013. Read More
May 29, 2015 by Seth Lassen
Which teams are most likely to join the 2008 Detroit Lions as the only teams to finish 0-16? Read More
May 29, 2015 by Gil Alcaraz IV
Every once in awhile, an NFL team goes from worst to first in their division; it might just happen again in 2015. Read More
May 29, 2015 by Bill Zimmerman
The Chicago Bears have had a lot of ups and downs (mostly downs) within the last quarter century. Take a look at the best players to don the Bears uniform over that stretch. Read More
Yet another Atlanta Falcons player has been charged with committing a terrible act to a dog. Read More
May 29, 2015 by Casey Drottar
Despite the rave reviews for Johnny Manziel's actions post-rehab, it doesn't look like any impact has been made on the field. Read More
He's barely even practiced with his new team, but Byron Maxwell is already guaranteeing a Super Bowl 50 appearance for the Philadelphia Eagles. Read More