(For more from Jordan Adams, visit his Draft Blog located here)
So much hype is made of the so called 'experts' mock drafts prior to the NFL selection process the final weekend of April. Sure, these guys know what they are talking about, but it's not exactly rocket science to assume which teams are in need of specific positions.
Here is a breakdown of who most of the experts see the Lions taking with No. 15 overall pick, followed by my personal take on who will be the consensus selection when the draft rolls around in a few weeks.
Don Banks - SI.com - Rashard Mendenhall | RB | Illinois
The biggest reason for drafting the Illini tailback is the release of Kevin Jones and not really trusting Tatum Bell to carry a bulk of the load in the backfield for the Lions. He mentions an OT is an easy second option, but needing to balance the offense with the running game is a must.
Chris Steuber - Scout.com - Chris Williams | OT | Vanderbilt
This was Mr. Banks second choice, but it's also understood why the Vandy product is a must here as well. Williams would be thrown into the starting five immediately, and he will surely help to fix up the offensive line and help protect Kitna and company. At 6'6'' and 317, no doubt the size here could prove wonders, similarly to a poor man's Joe Thomas in Cleveland last season.
Pete Prisco - CBS Sports - Rashard Mendenhall | RB | Illinois
The second to concur that Mendenhall is the play here. I don't think Detroit can go wrong, but seeing the success with running backs the last couple of seasons and their impact, it would be tough to pass on someone with that many special characteristics.
Here's a wild card out of the bunch, and you can't deny the success that speed and power combo ends have had right out of college in recent years. Julius Peppers, Mario Williams and Gaines Adams have all showed something and Harvey very well could be the next in line to put his name on the list.
Our consensus selection:
With the 15th pick in the 2008 NFL draft, the Detroit Lions select: Rashard Mendenhall
I love both Harvey, as well as offensive linemen Williams and Otah, however the Lions need another explosive tailback. Tatum Bell is nice, but the NFL is a copycat league and right now the trendiest fad is a two-back system. I honestly believe that if the Lions draft someone for the offensive line, we'll see again way too much passing from Kitna, as Detroit will fall back to last year's norm once they see Bell consistently stuck on only 50-60 yards per game. Mendenhall is a balanced threat with major upside. He will give the Lions another dimension for them to attack the field