About this time of year, mock drafts wage a rampant assault on the blogosphere and common sense. Lost amid the endless array of, well, random guessing, is some of the homework already performed and acknowledged by NFL teams. The Lions have nearly reached their cap of 30 prospect visits, where the team has interviewed and/or worked out a potential draft pick on-site.
Last season, Detroit met with Ndamukong Suh and other potential first-rounders during pre-draft visits, although the consensus was always Suh at No. 2 overall. There is obviously more ambiguity with the team's No. 13 pick, and the meat of the draft -- the middle rounds -- are even more cryptic.
And all of this actually makes the current visit list the more intriguing.
With that in mind, and in lieu of phone taps in Martin Mayhew's office, RoarReport.com has compiled the list of known prospects and sorted them by position. But a prospect list is merely frivolous names without some sort of round projection. Leveraging resident draft expert Josh Liskiewitz's seven-round mock draft (we felt bad potentially not using it), below is the list with an approximate round projection based on Josh's analysis.
|Position||Player Name||School||Draft Projection|
|CB||Ras-I Dowling||Virginia||Mid 2nd|
|CB||Prince Amukamara||Nebraska||Early 1st|
|CB||Jimmy Smith||Colorado||Early/Mid 1st|
|CB||Chris Culliver||South Carolina||Late/Undrafted|
|RB||Mikel Leshoure||Illinois||Early-to-Mid 2nd|
|WR||Torrey Smith||Maryland||Late 1st/Early 2nd|
|WR||Jonathan Baldwin||Pittsburgh||Mid 2nd|
|OT||Tyron Smith||USC||Early 1st|
|OT||David Mims||Virginia Union||Late/Undrafted|
|OT||Johnny Culbreath||South Car. State||Late/Undrafted|
|OG/C||Mike Pouncey||Florida||Mid/Late 1st|
|OG||Will Rackley||Lehigh||Late 2nd/Early 3rd|
|DT||Nick Fairley||Auburn||Early 1st|
|DE/OLB||Chris Carter||Fresno State||Mid/Late 3rd|
|DE||Greg Romeus||Pittsburgh||Mid 4th|
|DE||Cameron Jordan||California||Early 1st|
|DE||Aldon Smith||Missouri||Mid/Late 1st|
|LB||Akeem Ayers||UCLA||Late 1st/Early 2nd|
|LB||Bruce Carter||UNC||Late 2nd/3rd|