Detroit Lions: Outside-the-Box Thinking on Draft Day

Chris StewardContributor IJanuary 10, 2010

AUBURN, AL - NOVEMBER 27:  Terrence Cody #62 of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium on November 27, 2009 in Auburn, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

With a mind like mine, where mental flatulence is more common than brainstorms, it's caution beware when ideas start to form. 

With the disclaimer out of the way, here is something I would like to share and draw feedback on. It's common knowledge that Detroit’s defensive line is in shambles. It is also obvious that a youth movement needs to happen right now. This draft is the perfect time to fill that need.

Unless something drastic happens, Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy will most likely be a Detroit Lion next season. But it's the second round where the mystery builds. Here is where the disclaimer comes into play. I'm thinking about the prospect of drafting Terrence Cody of Alabama with the 34th pick.

Before calling Arkham Asylum to take me away, hear me out.

Defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham and Coach Schwartz have already stated their desire to get bigger and stronger. So, where does that leave Suh or McCoy, who are both at the moment clocking in under 300 lbs.?

Chances are, they will be encouraged to get bigger. No one knows exactly how that would affect their games. But, if moved to the edge, they would be faster than most tackles and strong enough to play the run.

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That's where drafting Cody in the second round comes in.

At 6'3", 378 lbs., he creates a wall inside if partnered with last year's fourth round selection, Sammie Hill, as the two players are almost 700 lbs. combined. That would pretty much plug all inside running lanes, keep offensive linemen from getting to the second level, and ensure single blocking for both ends, while freeing up linebackers.

I understand it will be hard to pull the trigger on drafting two defensive linemen back to back, but this would create depth and a rotation—a key to a consistent pass rush. We've seen Detroit's defense collapse on fourth quarter drives all season, allowing opposing teams to either sustain drives or score game-winning points. Creating depth and building a solid rotation on the line will help keep the players fresh at the end of games. 

In my mind, it's a no-brainer. (Although my wife tells me that in regards to everything, but what does she know?) In the third round and later we can address other issues or continue to draft the best player available (BPA), but this should happen.

Cody isn't listed as a first round prospect on any boards I've seen so far (not saying they aren't out there) so it's a good chance he would still be available in the second, maybe even third round.  Why take the chance, however? Grab him with the second pick of the second round and solidify your line for the next five to 10 years.

Let me know what you think.