Thanks to the Los Angeles Rams’ struggles throughout the 2022 NFL season, Detroit is in a position to potentially land two picks inside the top ten. While intriguing quarterback prospects will likely be available when the Lions are on the clock, it seems more likely that Detroit will opt to reinforce its league-worst defense instead. It doesn’t take an expert to see that Jared Goff isn’t the team’s future at quarterback, but some of the defensive studs in the 2023 Draft may prove more valuable than a talent like C.J. Stroud or Bryce Young.
DL Jalen Carter – Georgia
Depending on the Rams’ finish to their season, Carter may or may not be available for Detroit when their pick rolls around. The 6’3” 310 lb lineman out of Georgia is regarded by many as the top prospect in the entire draft class, boasting a surprising burst off the line to compliment his elite stature. While playing better as of late, Detroit has been gashed on the ground this season, giving up over 150 rushing yards per game. Pairing Carter with one of the Lions’ budding young players in Alim McNeill could be just what Detroit needs to stop the bleeding on the ground.
EDGE Myles Murphy – Clemson
While adding an impact player like Aiden Hutchinson has helped this Detroit pass rush, getting to the quarterback consistently is still a work in progress. Detroit’s 20 sacks on the season are good enough to land them in the bottom half of the league, which is unacceptable due to how often they send the blitz (30.0% of snaps). Murphy’s speed at his size could provide an element to the Lions’ pass rush that is currently absent. The Clemson product’s 4.5 40-yard dash, combined with an NFL-ready array of moves off the line could be too much for Detroit to pass up on.
EDGE Will Anderson – Alabama
If Detroit misses out on Carter, another bruiser may just fall right into their lap. Like Murphey, Anderson could pan out as a generational pressure generator, logging double-digit sacks in consecutive years for Alabama. Anderson’s athletic profile allows him to play as a jack of all trades, providing dominant run support and pass-rushing ability while showing flashes of solid play when backed up into coverage. While viewed as perhaps one of the more unpolished prospects, Anderson’s ceiling could provide Detroit with a playmaker they so direly need.