NFL Draft: Lions hold key to NFL Draft


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Justin Vanfulpen -

Allen Park, MI - When the announcement comes from the stage in New York that the Detroit Lions are now on the clock, don't expect them to send up their card to the stage without using all 15 minutes. The names that people will be calling about so that they can trade up with the Lions are QB Joey Harrington, CB Quentin Jammer, OT Bryant McKinnie, DT John Henderson and maybe if Carolina passes on him, DE Julius Peppers. One players that will not be on the board is most likely QB David Carr of Fresno State -- who looks like he will be drafted number one by the Houston Texans.

The Lions must decide at that time if they are going to keep the pick and draft a player or if they will trade down and get more draft picks. Let's take a look at what teams are looking to trade up to the number 3 pick in the draft and what player they want and where it would put the Lions in the first round.


Buffalo has the number four pick in the draft so they would only be moving up one spot to draft QB Joey Harrington, but they might not be in the running if they sign QB Jeff Blake as a free-agent. Blake also might end up in Washington. If the Lions do trade down to the number four they again will have a lot of options to do a lot of things and even trade down again. But it all depends on where Blake ends up as a free agent.

San Diego:

San Diego wants an offensive tackle and might be willing to trade up to draft OT Bryant McKinnie, or they could stay at number five and draft OT Mike Williams, of Texas. There have been some question marks about Williams and his weight and his knee. If Detroit traded with San Diego again they would have a lot of options and could trade down again.


Dallas wants CB Quentin Jammer and there is some thought that they would be willing to trade up so that they can be assured to get him. The Cowboys hold the number six pick in the first round and if the Lions traded with them most of the top players would be gone -- but there will still be some talent on the draft broad and they Lions could still trade down and get more draft picks.


Cincinnati would like to trade up so that they could draft QB Joey Harrington. They have the tenth pick in the first round and might be willing to trade with Detroit, if the Lions do trade down there is a chance they could draft CB Phillip Buchanon of Miami.


There is some talk that the Redskins want QB Joey Harrington and for them to draft him, they will have to trade up with the Lions. They are also in the market for QB Jeff Blake, so what happens with him will have an effect on where Harrington could end up. If the Lions do trade down with Washington, who has the 18 pick in the draft, they could be looking at a lot of players.


Oakland want to get a defensive tackle and they really like John Henderson and might be willing to trade both of their first round draft picks to be able to pick him. Oakland has the 21st and the 23rd pick in the first round. With those 2 picks the Lions would be able to get two starters for the 2002 season.

In the draft, the Lions would like to get a CB, S, DE, OLB, TE, WR and maybe a RB. The Lions know that to be able to get starters, that they need to trade down and maybe even trade down more then once to pick up extra draft picks. They don't have a fourth round draft pick (Ty Detmer trade). This draft could make or break the future of the Detroit Lions so the need to make every pick and trade count.


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