Ever since Martin Mayhew took over for the struggling Lions as GM he has made a plethora of moves. If your a person that thinks these moves have not paid off then you may not understand how desperate the organization is for talent. So far with trades like Roy Williams where Mayhew robbed the Cowboys, along with other trades like Chris Houston getting him for a lower price from the Falcons; there is still one huge trade yet to be made and it could land the Lions two cornerstone players to move ahead in the rebuilding process.
Now before we move ahead in the process the Lions should sign Anthony Hargrove to an offer sheet that the Saints can't match. The Lions would lose a third round selection, but later in the scenario you will see how they should be able to get multiple thirds.
One of Mayhew's ideas for the organization is to keep their mouths shut; unlike the Millen era when information would leak through like a broken water pipe. Not all teams like to take this approach when leading up to the draft, heck some teams straight up lie to try to persuade other teams. Take this year for instance, Mike Holmgren the new Browns GM just recently told reporters regarding Jimmy Clausen "I wish I liked him more."
Holmgren has already been quoted earlier this offseason after picking up two veteran quarterbacks in Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace that he still wants to draft a quarterback, but he has never drafted one in the first two rounds (possibly because he had Brett Favre and Matt Hasselbeck for so many years). Although Holmgren seemed to downplay any liking towards Clausen, but there is just too much evidence pointing towards them making a move for him at the top of the draft.
Why would Holmgren say that about any player? It is an uncharacteristic thing for any coach or GM. If someone asks you a question about a player, the normal response is that you have to evaluate everyone equally, you can't just come out and say you don't like him.
That is the first red flag, it is too random of a thing to say to be overlooked. Also just in case no one has noticed the stock pile of picks in Cleveland is now up to 11 selections for the April Draft. This isn't to get eleven rookies this is to have ammunition, mostly for one player. The Browns have been trading ex-first round picks to stockpile third rounders to try and make a move up for Clausen.
The Lions are sitting at the number two overall choice. Presuming Sam Bradford is taken by the Rams this leaves one "elite" quarterback. Let the trade games begin! These teams that need Clausen will be trying to move up to that number two spot, and no one has the ammunition like the Browns.
Martin Mayhew has already discussed he knows at least one team will make an offer for the second overall choice, that team will be the Browns. The writing is on the wall, it was a bad attempt to throw teams off, but Holmgren wants that young player to mold because after the first two quarterbacks there is a drop off, and an even bigger drop off after guys like Mccoy, Tebow, and Lefevour. All signs point to this trade happening because the Lions want to move down.
Once the trade is executed look for the Lions to end up with a couple thirds and maybe a selection from next years draft. The Lions will move to pick number seven to where they have even more options. Said to be high on Oklahoma Tackle Trent Williams I see them taking him at this spot. If not Williams they could surprise by taking a guy like C.J. Spiller who continues to climb up draft boards. For the sake of the scenario I will have the Lions shore up offensive line troubles to help keep Matt Stafford healthy.
Now with a starting Left Tackle their first day of the draft may not be done. I have a feeling the Lions really want Jahvid best, that he is the one main target in their draft plans. As they watch the first round close out they must pay attention. If a guy like Ryan Matthews goes higher than expected the Lions may need to use the picks from The Browns to get back up into the first round to target Best.
The X-Factor team is the San Diego Chargers. They need another back besides Sproles. If Matthews is there I think they take him instead of Best because Best is too close in style to Sproles. If Matthews goes ahead of the Chargers pick then there is time to worry for the Lions. The Chargers may take Best just because he would be the last "elite" back on the board. This is where the Lions need to make a splash for once. Move back up into the first round to a slot right above the Chargers using their second round choice and some of the picks from the Browns, jump back into the first day and snag Best.
After my very realistic scenario is complete the Lions would technically not lose any draft picks (they would come out even), but they would get two players in the first round that they really like, and it would shore up the line while giving Stafford another playmaker.
For you people out there only thinking defense this is where the Hargrove move helps. They get an up and coming star on the Dline that can play any four positions, plus after the scenario they would have a solid offense with playmakers at every position while still having good depth.
If Mayhew can pull this off the Lions will soon be a contender, sure they could wait on Jahvid Best and hope he falls to the second round, but remember the second round is an all new day. Once teams have a chance to reset their board they may want to make a move to the Rams selection on day two to jump in front of the Lions for Best. So make a splash in the first round, and the Lions will be the talk of the draft for how well they did maneuvering choices.