The Detroit Lions tipped their strategic hat a bit on Friday when the team scouted and
later met with Boilermaker quarterback Kyle Orton and receiver Taylor Stubblefield.
The scheduled workout sessions, which involved several NFL teams, were held indoors during Purdue's Pro Day. The Lions, however, skipped a media session to speak at length with both Orton and Stubblefield.
The two Big Ten standouts are eligible for April's NFL draft, and while it is protocol for a team to scout as much talent as possible (including interviews), Orton and Stubblefield hold two positions Detroit will target in the draft: quarterback and wide receiver. And, ironically enough, each have been pegged as west coast offense-oriented players.
Orton's stock dropped a bit after a shaky senior season, but the intelligent and accurate signal caller still amassed gaudy statistics throwing to Stubblefield, who is viewed as a prototype possession receiver. Orton could possibly slide to round two, but some have him projected as a late first round selection. Stubblefield, meanwhile, will be a mid-round selection.
The Lions haven't exactly been shy about their willingness to draft a quarterback. Earlier in the off-season, Lions' head coach Steve Mariucci acknowledged that the draft could bring a developmental quarterback as insurance at the position. While that would generally allude to a late-round selection, it at least prompts intrigue toward Detroit's meeting with Kyle Orton and the team's inability to attract a backup quarterback via free-agency.
Quick Notes: Four-year quarterback Mike McMahon signed with the Philadelphia Eagles on Friday, joining former coach Marty Mornhinweg and ending a peculiar tenure in Detroit. There are rumblings that a deal is brewing between free-agent quarterback Jeff Garcia and the Lions. According to Lions' insider Mike Fowler, Brad Johnson's recent workout in Detroit went sour, prompting the Lions renewed interest in Garcia. The Lions are also unlikely to leave the left guard position vacant for very long. It has become a priority by team president Matt Millen, who would like nothing more than to fill it with free-agent guard Rick DeMulling (Colts) -- the last top flight guard available in free-agency.