Lions still working on draft board ... or are they?
The Lions are still busy setting their draft board, and this weekend's mandatory mini-camp won't have much impact on what they do with their first five picks.
I think where we are as a team, talent is going to trump need for us, coach Jim Schwartz said Wednesday. We can't afford to pass talent in the draft. We're not at the position that some other teams in the NFL are where they have just a few needs and they want to address those in the draft.
The Lions have the first overall pick for the first time since 1980 and four more choices, including a second first-rounder, in the top 82. Georgia quarterback Matt Stafford, Baylor offensive tackle Jason Smith and Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry are candidates to go No. 1 overall.
Asked if their draft board was set, Schwartz said, We're still working on it.
You don't start at the top, you go by positions usually, he said. Generally what you do is you start by positions, you'll go through there and then once all the positions are done, then you'll start going line by line. You guys ever hear the horizontal and vertical nature? Right now, we're still vertical. We haven't started going horizontal across positions yet.
Schwartz said they'll start aligning their board horizontally comparing players across positions probably later this week.
A little bit of it's been done simply because you stack the positions horizontal's sort of set, but then you need to look across the board, Schwartz said. It doesn't take as long as it does to go vertical.
So if a little bit has been done and you generally start at the top, which Schwartz also said, does that mean the Lions have decided on their top pick?
Um, not 100 percent, Schwartz said. Not 100 percent. There's still discussions to be had.
He didn't reveal the nature of those discussions contract ones, possibly? but I'd be surprised if the Lions don't know who they're taking No. 1 overall at this point (pending the completion of a deal). The draft's 10 days away, all the film and private workouts and meetings have long since been digested, and president Tom Lewand indicated back in January a pick would be made by this point.
The reality is, if you do it the right way you (know who you're picking ahead of time) because you've had that debate on April 10, not on draft day, Lewand said at the Lions' first town hall meeting three months ago. You've watched the film and you've gone back and forth and you cut up the tape a different way, you look at another game, you bring somebody else into the room and you get the board developed right so when draft day comes around there aren't any surprises.