Allow me a moment to explain that this pick won't be happening. The Lions will make a trade one way or the other on Thursday night and won't be sitting there to pick at No. 10.
The Lions are in win-now mode and plenty of teams love to trade back in the draft. But fans are worried that the cost will be too steep to move up for Sammy Watkins, Khalil Mack or Mike Evans. However, with plenty of teams sticking to the ubiquitous the-draft-is-too-deep-to-trade-up mantra, the asking price to leap up the board won't be as expensive as originally presumed.
And that's exactly why Martin Mayhew should be able to strike.
Yet, if he fails to move up, here's betting he'll try to leverage whichever tackle or quarterback may be sitting there into an extra pick. Any cornerback or safety he is looking at here will have a comparable talent available wherever he trades down to.
But for the sake of keeping things sane in this mock draft, I'm acting as if trades don't exist. And in that case, Aaron Donald should prepare to hear his name called.
Donald has enough burst off the line (7.11 three-cone drill) to offset his smaller stature that can get him in trouble against the run. And once he thrusts into the backfield, he can use his 4.68 40-yard dash speed to close on quarterbacks and running backs.
Mayhew uses the best-player-available approach, and Donald likely has the highest grade of those who will be left at No. 10. He can contribute right away and step into the role vacated by Nick Fairley when the Lions either trade him or let him walk via free agency.
Yes, that's happening. There's no legitimate reason to give Fairley a new contract if he blows up this year. It would only prove he puts in the effort when he has a contact on the line.