Kalamazoo native, Lions SI writer Logan Lamorandier previews 2021 NFL Draft

Lions hold 7th overall pick in Thursday's Draft
Brad Holmes
Posted at 5:17 PM, Apr 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-25 17:17:21-04

(WXMI) — The NFL Draft is this Thursday night and the Detroit Lions hold the seventh overall pick.

The franchise has been through a big change over the past few months with first-year head coach Dan Campbell and General Manager Brad Holmes.

"It's going to be really interesting for the Lions considering where they're at in this rebuild," said Logan Lamorandier, a Kalamazoo native who now writes for Sports Illustrated's All Lions.

"You just don't know what they're going to do because they need pretty much a position on the table," Lamorandier added, "there's only a couple that they can't take. They're probably going to take the best player available at seven and you don't really know who that will be until the top six shake out."

As General Manager Brad Holmes said in Friday's press conference, there have been discussions with other teams about a trade down.

Lions GM Brad Holmes
In a this photo provided by the Detroit Lions, team general manager Brad Holmes is seen on his first day at the Lions football practice facility, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, in Allen Park, Mich. The Detroit Lions' best and perhaps only chance to turn around their franchise is to finally figure out how to hit more than miss on NFL draft picks.(Detroit Lions via AP)

"I think a trade down would be a great option for the Lions. It's the the same thing we said last year and sometimes it's just harder to actually do, it's a lot easier said than done."

There has been a lot of talk about Oregon offensive lineman Penei Sewell dropping to pick No. 7 and many consider him to be the best draft-eligible offensive tackle in the past few drafts.

"Penei Sewell if he's there, he's the probably the second-best player in this draft, the best non-quarterback player in this draft," said Lamorandier, "and if he is there at seven then yes, the Lions should probably take him. Even though left tackle might not be a glaring need but you can plug him in at the right tackle spot, and it would really give them a solid foundation going forward."

Penei Sewell
FILE - In this Aug. 31, 2019, file photo, Oregon offensive lineman Penei Sewell (58) looks on as Oregon plays Auburn in an NCAA college football game in Arlington, Texas. The last NFL event not impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic was the 2020 combine in Indianapolis. A year later, with the 2021 combine canceled, the league has released a list of players who would have merited invitations. From such high-profile quarterbacks as Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence and Ohio State’s Justin Fields to guys who sat out last season such as Oregon tackle Penei Sewell, there are 323 players from 100 schools. (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins, File)

And if Sewell is the pick, the Lions would have one of the best offensive lines on paper in the NFL and that would be locked in for the next few seasons.

In fact, left tackle Taylor Decker, left guard Jonah Jackson, center Frank Ragnow and Sewell would all be signed through the 2023 season.

Brad Holmes comes to Detroit after years as the Director of College Scouting for the Los Angeles Rams where he helped make several outstanding picks in the later rounds of the NFL Drafts.

"One of the reasons why I was a big proponent of bringing in Brad Holmes was just because he does have a lot of college scouting experience and that was his forte that's what he's been good at. If you look at the Los Angeles Rams and how they've kind of built their roster over the years, they've hit on a lot of mid-round picks, and you can give a lot of credit to Brad Holmes on that, they haven't had a first round pick in Los Angeles since Jared Goff."

And on social media, several fans continue to talk about Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields possibly slipping to the Lions at pick seven.

Justin Fields
FILE - In this Jan. 1, 2021, file photo, Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields looks for a receiver during the second half of the Sugar Bowl NCAA college football game against Clemson in New Orleans. With Jacksonville set to pick Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 pick and Zach Wilson appearing to be the favorite to go second to the New York Jets, the San Francisco 49ers will have their choice of Fields, North Dakota State's Trey Lance and Alabama's Mac Jones to be the eventual successor to Jimmy Garoppolo. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)

While quarterback isn't a direct need right now with former No. 1 overall pick Jared Goff, it is something the Lions could consider for the future.

"The Lions really need to evaluate because he's a talent that you don't often see, especially having one fall in your lap at pick number seven, that's pretty rare," Lamorandier said.

However, with there being such a need for quarterbacks and Fields being one of the top four available, it would only benefit Detroit if he is available to them, possibly for a trade down.

"There's a trade down opportunity [if that happens], if another team really wants Justin Fields and the Lions are able to bring in more draft capital for Justin Fields, I think that should happen, too. At the end of the day, Jared Goff is the Lions quarterback, they're going to give him a chance, I don't think lions drafting the quarterback this year."

The NFL Draft begins on Thursday, April 29 at 8:00 PM ET.