Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Detroit Lions Draft Review: Part 4

The middle to late rounds in the draft for the Lions was pretty good, getting depth and possible special teams starters. Zach Follett out of Cal looks like a monster on the special teams. He was a tackle for loss specialist for Cal and has the size to be a solid depth guy. I was really high on him during the second day of the draft, and with good coaching and drive, he could be a decent starter for the Lions. Aaron Brown out of TCU was a strange pick. Aaron Brown is another running back, another kick returner and a possible third down back in the sixth round. I thought Morris or Williams could return kicks and that we addressed the running back situation in free agency. I guess he was the best player available at that point. Overall, a good draft, not great right now but the potential to be in a few years. Remember Lions fans, we can’t do this all in one draft. So not taking a middle linebacker, offensive line or much defense is not a big deal yet. Give it time, and I think Schwartz and Mayhew can pull this off.

Detroit Lions Draft Review: Part 3

The Lions have two solid young safeties that are solid when healthy. Daniel Bullocks and Gerald Alexander have battled injuries during their brief careers. The top rated safety in this year’s draft was Louis Delmas of Western Michigan University and the Lions could not resist taking him with the 33rd pick. He is a confident hard hitting ball hawk, who had 110 tackles for the Brown and Gold last season. He upgrades a defense instantly and has to cause havoc in the secondary. Deandre Levy of Wisconsin and Derrick Williams of Penn State round out the third round for the Lions. Levy will get an opportunity to play middle linebacker after playing outside linebacker during college. Williams will play slot receiver and kick/punt returner for the Lions, both drastic needs from last year. Since Eddie Drummond left Detroit for Kansas City, the Lions have lacked any spark returning the ball, opting to resign Aveion Cason every year. Rounds two and three gave the Lions depth and filled in needs and did not reach for names or positions as Millen did every year.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Detroit Lions Draft Review: Part 2

At first I did not like the Brandon Pettigrew pick. I know how a tight end is important to an offense. Look what Jason Witten, Greg Olsen, John Carlson and Owen Daniels do for their teams. They help block for the running and passing game and are valuable to convert on third down. The Lions have not had a good TE since David Sloan left for the Saints. Pettigrew can add another weapon on the offense and solidify the running, passing and blocking game. I personally wanted a MLB or OL to help two of our needs. But, I see the difference in Millen and Mayhew there in that pick. Millen would have reached for a name or a position no matter what (like he did with Godser Cherilus and Jordan Dizon with the first two picks last year) and would not consider taking best talent available. It filled a need (although not a huge one) and will help Stafford in the long run with another weapon, but unlike a wide receiver, Pettigrew can get tough, physical, NFC North style yardage.

Detroit Lions Draft Review: Part 1

STWWC Draft Grade: B

Best Pick: Brandon Pettigrew

Possible Steal: Sammie Lee Hill

First I will start by saying I am fine with the Lions taking Matt Stafford with the first pick. It helps a lot to have a franchise QB to lead a team. If we took the QB next year (Sam Bradford of Oklahoma or Colt McCoy of Texas would be possible choices) he would have to ride the bench as Stafford appears to be this year. This would delay overall development of the team by another year. Stafford has the big NFL arm you are looking for. I know his accuracy is in question, but so was Jay Cutler’s a few years back. Aaron Curry would have been nice, but he would probably be switching positions to play middle linebacker. Ernie Sims and Julian Peterson are good Outside Linebackers, and the possible addition of Larry Foote could give the Lions a far improved LB core. I think the Lions biggest need is on the defensive line. Sammie Lee Hill could change that. He is a big physical presence from a small college who needs good coaching to unlock his potential. Luckily, we have Grady Jackson and Chuck Darby to hold the line down now.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Thoughts From My Desk May 4th Edition

• I am back from a bye week after college got out for the summer. I also wanted some time to reflect the draft before writing on it (because who wants to hear “WE PASSED UP CURRY?!?!” again?) and will break it down over the summer leading up to the opening kickoff.
• The Red Wings look to regroup after a marathon 4-3 loss in triple overtime to the Ducks Sunday. With the series shifting to Anaheim, the Wings look to down the giant killers before it gets out of hand. Rafalski and Draper may play.
• The Cubs might be putting it together after a sweep of the struggling Marlins. It is just a lot of little things hurting the Cubs now. We are lucky to get the Giants at home for the next three to right the ship.
• I’m not a fan of Ovechkin. I’m less of a fan of Crosby. But I am rooting for Ovie over Syd the Kid in the NHL dream series. Ovechkin is a better player and not a diver (but somewhat of a showboat, I adore Don Cherry) and love to see a 7 game battle. Right now we need to root for the NHL almost as much as anybody.
• As a WMU Broncos fan and a huge Detroit Lions fan, I am pumped to see Safety Louis Delmas play this season after hearing Lions coaches praise his play all during camp. Our first overall pick Matt Stafford will probably start the season on the bench. GM Martin Mayhew said Daunte Culpepper will start the season at Quarterback for the Honolulu Blue and Silver.