Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State (3)
Is a 29-year-old Chris Houston who’s coming off his worst season and second-year Darius Slay enough in an NFC North division that’s loaded with stat-whore quarterbacks and enormous wide receivers? Adding a Mike Evans or Eric Ebron with Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate is very tempting, especially for a head coach with an offensive background. Unless they don’t like Darqueze Dennard (off my board) or Gilbert, I’m still leaning on them finding a playmaker in the secondary. As a bonus, Gilbert gives them a backup plan in case something happens to return specialist Jeremy Ross.
This pick is simple. They desperately need help in the defensive backfield, and with Justin Gilbert being available it only makes sense to take him. He is a big corner who can play with the likes of the receivers they have in their division which is a must. Darqueze Dennard could also be an option here, but I think the Lions will take the “Best Player Available” route here and go with Gilbert. Either way they are making a solid choice, I just think Gilbert matches up better with the receivers in the Lions division.
The Lions simply can’t ride with patchwork corners any more. If Rashean Mathis was your alleged No. 1, it’s time for an upgrade. Detroit’s corners have to cover Brandon Marshall, Jordy Nelson, Alshon Jeffery, Randall Cobb, and Cordarrelle Patterson twice a season. The opportunity to take the most complete corner in the draft is going to fall into the Lions’ lap, and if they don’t take it, it’ll be another season of getting torched.