First of all, Happy Easter weekend — whether your celebration is religious, secular, or a combination of both I hope that everyone gets to spend a little time with their loved ones this weekend.
As the draft sits just three weeks away, it seemed like a good time for the Lions Congregation to start pondering the Lions’ annual Superbowl event. After the early success of picks like DeAndre Levy and Sammie Hill in the 3rd and 4th rounds, the entire draft seems filled with more possibilities than it has since Millen took charge. This week, we focus in on the #2 pick in the first round.
This week’s Congregation:
1. Assuming the Rams end up taking Sam Bradford QB as they appear most likely to do, who would you pick at #2 overall?
NetRat: If the Rams take Bradford at #1 (or any other team that trades with them instead) then the Lions should take at #2 Mr. Suh. A once in a decade DT comes around, oh, about once every 10 years by my count (and that might be stretching it a bit..no?). In fact, based on Schwartz’s dependence on his best year as a DC on Haynesworth, I can’t imagine the pick being any other.
Steve: I agree with what seems to be the general consensus, that the Lions have their sights set upon drafting Nebraska DT Ndamukong Suh, should they have the good fortune of being given the opportunity to be able to select him. Eventually drafting Suh is exactly in line with whom I believe that they should select with the second overall pick, too.
Al:Your nominees for 2nd overall pick for the 2010 NFL draft: Ndamukong Suh, Gerald McCoy, Eric Berry and Russell Okung.
And the future Detroit Lion is…
Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh!
The Lions’ need is too great, and his ceiling too high, to not take Suh. That is, if the NFL scouts and draftniks are to be believed. As I’m neither, I’ll have to take their word for it as gospel. But if Suh’s performance in the Big 12 championship game is an indication of what he could accomplish in the NFL, the Lions absolutely have to take the Outland Trophy winner. It was the most dominant game I’ve seen from a college player since Charles Woodson was a Wolverine.
Phil: Ndamukong Suh. He’s got fantastic measurables, of course, but it’s really the intangibles that impress me the most. He seems to have a drive and desire to be the best that is really extraordinary. Sure, defensive tackle isn’t a money position like LT and DE, but if a DT is disruptive enough, he can be worth his weight in gold. At Suh’s weight
and today’s prices, that’s about $5,526,000.
Joshua: This is probably going to be the first time this year the entire Congregation has agreed on something. Hands down, if the Rams take Bradford I would hand in the card for Ndamukong Suh, smile big, kick back in my chair and start fielding offers for the 2nd pick in round 2. He nearly pulled off an upset in the Big 12 championship game single-handedly from the Defensive Tackle position. Beyond that, Mr. Suh seems to have a drive and desire for the game. How often can you find a DT who is dominant in college, extremely talented, and has a strong work ethic and drive? Oh, about once every ten years or so…
Often times, highly talented college players slack somewhat in their training and coast by on natural ability. Not so with Suh. According to what I’ve read and seen, he is a driven, focused young man who cares deeply about the game. Back when I was a cocky young sales guy who thought he knew everything, my first sales manager got me into a routine that has helped me immensely over the last decade or so. Every morning he told me to look in the mirror and say: “Everyone has strengths, and everyone has weaknesses. Everyone can get better today, but many won’t. Everybody includes me.” Then he told me to say it again over and over until I understood that I could still be better, and I wasn’t close to perfect. From what I can see, Ndamukong Suh gets this much better than I did at his age.
With that kind of talent and attitude, how do you not want him on your team?
2. If the Lions were to trade the #2 pick who do you feel is the most likely trading partner?
NetRat: The Lions might be able to trade the pick if the Rams go Suh at #1 (though I just don’t see it). The trade offers for Bradford at #2 might come from various teams, including the Redskins, the Seahawks, the Browns and possibly even the Raiders (their last QB pick hasn’t turned out so well, same goes for the Browns).
Steve: The Lions would likely look first to the Seahawks and 49ers, who have multiple first round draft selections as potential trading partners. I think that should Sam Bradford fall past pick one or more specifically, if Jimmy Clausen has great personal workouts or an amazing pro day, and Bradford is taken first overall, teams like the Browns, Redskins, Seahawks and Niners, would all be among the teams reportedly interested in drafting a Qb, would look to the Lions pick with great interest.
Al: The Redskins, but it’s going to take the Rams drafting Suh. If the Rams go in a different direction than is to be currently believed, and draft Suh over Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford, GM’s of teams drafting behind the Lions. specifically those looking for a QB, will be on the phone with Martin Mayhew in a nanosecond.
The Redskins are one of those teams, and drafting at number 4 makes the ‘Skins an attractive trading partner. They are also run by a spendy and very aggressive owner in the loopy Daniel Snyder. The future is always “NOW” in Washington, and Snyder drops cash around like a drunken George Steinbrenner on a free agent singing bender.
Obviously, any trade would involve the swapping of 1st round selections, and with the ‘Skins number 4 pick, the Lions would still be in position to draft one of the draft’s top talents. Getting a Berry or Okung would be a nice consolation prize for trading down
Phil: It comes down to Cleveland and Washington, and I’m going with the former. I think Washington is in position to sit and wait. They have a QB with some starting experience, and they’re right behind two teams who will certainly not draft a QB. The only way Washington will be beaten is by another team who wants to jump them after the Rams draft Bradford.
An argument for the Skins, though, could be that they don’t need to jump as high, and won’t have to give up as much. Still, I’m going with Cleveland.
Joshua: Cleveland is the only team that I see making the trade. Washington is mentioned quite frequently, but there are two words that stop me from seriously thinking that they will trade up for anyone — Bruce Allen. When he was GM of Tampa Bay he was not known for trading up. Despite wanting Calvin Johnson, he wouldn’t pull the trigger and trade up to get him. The only way I see Washington trading up is one of two things: 1) Dan Snyder demands it. 2) Allen really likes Bradford, the Rams take Suh, and he fears doing the equivalent of skipping CJ for Ginn in not going for his guy.
Cleveland seems the more likely destination. First off, both Holgrem and Mangini are known for trading both up and down to get the specific players they are targeting. Secondly, Cleveland has 10 picks in the 2010 draft (after trading with Philly early this morning) thanks to offloading most of the players who weren’t playing up to their contract numbers for picks in this uncapped year. They have their 1, 2, and three 3rds. With 3 5’s and two 6’s they have the ammo to move without sacrificing their entire draft.
2b. What would you need to get from that team to trade down, rather than taking the player you originally targeted?
NetRat: If those 4 teams get into a trade bidding war, then I’m looking for the Redskins #1 pick at the 4th spot and their 2nd rounder and taking Okung or Spiller at #4. If it’s the Seahawks then it’s the 6th and 14th pick in round 1 with the Lions taking Berry or Okung and Spiller or Haden if there. If it’s the Browns then I’m thinking their 1st, 2nd and 3rd rounder, then taking Spiller at #7 and trading that 3rd round pick for Hargrove, leaving that extra 2nd rounder for more defense. And if it’s the Raiders, then their 1st, 2nd and 3rd rounders again looking at Spiller at #1, the 2nd for more defense, and trading the 3rd for Hargrove.
There are actually quite a few more options in those trades but without knowing who will be taken where, that is my thinking. However, since I am now 90% certain that the Rams will take Bradford I am now 90% sure the Lions won’t get any decent trade offers and will be picking at #2. That means, to me, there’s a 90% chance the Lions are taking Suh in 2010 in the first round.
Steve: If passing on Ndamukong Suh is involved, the Lions has better get a raft of draft selections, with which Martin Mayhew could attempt to re-create last season’s successful draft, which made an immediate impact, even on a 2-14 team.
I believe that the Lions are very amenable to trading down, but I also believe that they will find it very difficult to find someone willing to part with the trade capital necessary to move up to the Lions selection.
Al: If the Lions are dropping only a few spots in the 1st round, anywhere from 3 to 5, then a 2010 2nd round pick would be solid compensation. But if the Lions drop any further back, then I need to see them get multiple draft picks, and not necessarily in this year’s draft. It’s not enough, but a 2011 1st round pick would be a good place to start.
Phil: I’d want at least a No. 2 from Cleveland, which would: A) give me three of the top 39 picks, and B) do me the favor of taking tens of millions of guaranteed dollars of my plate.
Joshua:If Suh is available I really don’t want to see them trade the pick. I know there are a ton of holes/upgrades needed on the roster, but having a young difference maker on the D-line would outweigh one additional solid starter for me. From Washington I would take a swap of 1’s, their two, and one later round pick if possible. This is because if Washington trades up for a QB the Lions will still have their choice of everyone they were looking at if Suh had gone #1 (he would go to Tampa Bay) such as Okung, McCoy, Berry, et al. only at the #4 position with an extra pick or two to boot. Nice.
From Cleveland you are sliding further back. In addition to swapping #1’s and their #2, I would want to get one of their #3’s as well — the 7th pick if I could, but I’d settle for pick 21 in the 3rd and one of their early 5th rounders. Unless Suh goes #1, or either of these teams (or another) falls in love with getting Claussen, then I just don’t see much chance of a trade even if I would like to see it.
Thanks again for joining the Lions Congregation! Come visit every Friday.