I think the most hilarious thing that I’ve heard all week is a comment by another Lions fan that I know who put the Lions draft this way “Its like waking up next to Amy Winehouse”. I, on the other hand, don’t think its even close to being that bad and it could always be worse, it could be like waking up next to Courtney Love.
Sure if you told me a week ago that the Detroit Lions would pass on Oher and then pass on Maualuga and Laurinaitis twice I would have called you crazy. Then if you backed those statements up by telling me the Lions would draft a TE with the 20th pick in the first round I'd probably have you committed before you finished your sentence.
However here we are, I didn't want Stafford. As a matter of fact in the games I watched "system quarterback" Graham Harrell who didn't even get drafted stood out a lot more than Stafford did.
However I knew he was probably going to be a Lion, with the whole Bobby Layne connection it just seemed like Stafford was the fated to the Lions. All I can say is welcome to the NFL kid and if anything goes wrong during a game just accept the fact that its your fault no matter what.
Round 1 – Pick 21 – Brandon Pettigrew – TE – Oklahoma State
With Pettigrew I do understand this pick, this is another growing pain that occurs when you change coaches every couple of seasons. The Lions went through the same thing when they took Drew Stanton a few years ago, we didn't need to use a high draft pick on a quarterback but we did beacuse Mike Martz was in love with him.
Well this time Scott Linehan’s system requires strong play from the tight end position so that’s exactly what the Lions are going to get with Pettigrew. It may not be the kind of offensive line help all the fans wanted but Pettigrew is beastly when it comes to blocking so they actually killed two birds with one stone here, they got blocking help from the TE position and got a guy who who will be key in Linehans system.
Round 2 – Pick 33 – Louis Delmas – S – Western Michigan
He was rated as one of the top two safeties in the draft and that’s because there aren't many things Delmas can't do. He has good instincts; he’s always around the ball, covers well, and can lay the big hits when WRs try to go over the middle.
I was excited when we picked up Kenoy Kennedy because the only really big hit I’ve seen in a Lions game since Mark Carrier and Kurt Shultz is the one where Corwin Brown absolutely obliterated Keyshawn Johnson. The only big hit I saw from Kennedy during his time with us was the one where he took out Fernando Bryant.
Hopefully Delmas can live up to his reputation and make the opposing WRs think twice when they go over the middle. Yes we passed up a chance at Rey Maualuga and James Laurinaitis but my question to every fan is this, did we REALLY need them?
Schwartz runs a 4-3 not a 3-4 so with Jullian Peterson and Ernie Sims already written in permanent marker as two of the three starters that’s a pretty solid starting lineup at linebacker no matter who you throw in there as the 3rdguy. We still need somebody to play middle but everybody seems to forget Jordan Dizon, yeah you know, the guy we took with the 2ndround pick last year.
Maybe Schwartz sees a lot of potential with Dizon in his system, so much so that LB wasn't as much of an issue as we all thought. Just playing a little devils advocate here.
Louis Delmas was the top rated safety in the draft and should help out our secondary but then again who wouldn't at this point? Also it looks as though the Lions got Delmas and a solid linebacker with one of their third round picks.
Round 3 – Pick 76 - Deandre Levy - LB – Wisconsin
Has good height but lacks bulk, good against the run and started every game over the past three seasons. The guy is 6’’2 and 227 pounds, people call him undersized and say he needs bulk but its been pointed out that Ray Lewis was 228 pounds when he was drafted.
The Lions have talked to him about playing middle linebacker, however scout.com has Levy ranked as the 18th LB yet have Detroits 7th round pick ranked as the 8th LB in the draft, very interesting.
Round 3 – Pick 82 – Derrick Williams – WR/KR – Penn State
We haven’t had a good kick returner since Eddie Drummond started having his injury problems and with Shaun McDonald gone, Mike Furrey gone, and Roy Williams gone they felt they needed to add some depth to their receiving core.
Round 4 – Pick 115 – Sammie Lee Hill – DT – Stillman
He’s a 6’4 330 pound run stuffer. We got rid of Shaun Rogers, Shaun Cody, and thank god finally realized Cory Redding is never going to be anything but a garbage DT.
Hes a very raw project player who played for a small school and received little coaching, hopefully Schwartz can make a starting DT out of him. There is also a story about him pulling a man from a burning building.
I read another article on the Detroit Bleacher Report main page which had a video with him jumping an amazing height into the air. Instantly convinced me that we won't have the problems with him that we had with Shaun Rogers, but just in case we should put Hill on buffet watch.
Round 6 – Pick 192 – Aaron Brown – RB - TCU
A speedy change of direction type of runner who isn’t going to run anybody over, most likely will be the 3rd or 4th RB on the depth chart and compete with Derrick Williams to breathe life into the Lions kick return units.
Round 7 – Pick 228 - Lydon Murtha – T – Nebraska
Lead offensive lineman in 40 times, cone drill, and 20-yard shuttle at NFL combine. Probably won’t see any game time unless we have a lot of injuries, pretty much a depth pick but that’s usually the case with later round picks.
Round 7 – Pick 235 – Zack Follet – LB – California
Scout.com rated him as the #8 LB in the draft and said this:
"Follett is an instinctive defender who makes plays all over the field. He moves well laterally, diagnoses the action and has great closing speed. He’s an outstanding tackler, who has excellent range and is a highly effective pass rusher. He has good awareness and possesses a high football IQ".
His weaknesses were listed as lateral movement and pass coverage. Sounds like a steal in the 7th round but we'll have to wait and see.
Round 7 – Pick 255 – Dan Gronkowski – TE – Maryland
TE depth, special teamer, probably won’t make the team.
WR - D.J. Boldin – Wake Forest
The brother of Arizona wide receiver Anquan Boldin. Said to have an NFL body and freakishly similar skill set to his brother. Biggest knock on him was that he didn't show anything until his senior year.
C - Dan Gerberry - Ball State
K/P - Swayze Waters - Alabama-Birmingham
Now to take a look forward, lets take a look back.
In 2009 the Lions went 7-9 in 2007, in 2008 we lost:
CB – Fernando Bryant
DT - Shaun Rogers
DE – Kalimba Edwards
RB – Kevin Jones
RB – Tatum Bell
SS – Kenoy Kennedy
RB – Kevin Smith
LB – Jordon Dizon
RB – Rudi Johnson
CB – Leigh Bodden
DT – Chuck Darby
CB - Brian Kelly
S – Dwight Smith
S - Kalvin Pearson
LB – Gilbert Gardner
RB – Artrose Pinner
LB – Ryan Nece
Now in my opinion other than the Shaun Rogers loss I thought the team was better and we didn’t lose enough player wise for a 7-9 team to go 0-16. What that tells me is that without Mike Martz the Detroit Lions offense had no chance in hell of being a decent NFL offense.
The zone blocking system didn’t fit the players we had just like the over used and played out Cover 2 didn’t fit the players we had on defense. What happens when you try to force players into a crappy system that doesn’t fit them?
The team goes 0-16. Now everybody seems to think that we need an entire new team in order for us to be able to accomplish anything and that its going to take three or more years to do so.
I don’t think so and I also think Leward, Mayhew, and Schwartz don’t believe that either. Of course they are going to say that its going to take years to turn around an 0-16 team, I work in a 1-hour photo lab I can do 1 roll of film in under 30 minutes but I’m not letting customers know that just in case anything goes wrong.
I think the people in charge know that this team is going to fall somewhere between 5-11 and 9-7 but they would rather undersell the teams chances than oversell it, they saw what happened to Jon Kitna when he said the Lions would win 10 games and even though they almost did and really should have Kitna got crucified for it.
Again, I think we got better. We didn’t lose anybody that can’t be replaced and got better in the secondary. My question marks are on the Defensive line but other than that if Schwartz doesn’t have this team winning over five games that will surprise me.