The Detroit Lions have a big decision to make in terms of the NFL Draft, and if one player is in the mix, it could be due to the excitement of one particular member of the front office.
Detroit has plenty of needs to fill out, but one of the biggest continues to be on the defensive side of the ball. The Lions have a need for an elite linebacker, but the trouble is, questions are swirling about if one exists in the 2021 NFL Draft.
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Some will say Penn State’s Micah Parsons fits the bill, while others will admit that is not the case. But according to a new report, Chris Speilman could be sold on the speedy linebacker. According to a Football Morning in America piece by Peter King of NBC Sports, the team may look at wideout or offensive line unless Spielman gets his way and folks are sold on Parsons.
“But if the Lions stay, one of the top tackles or DeVonta Smith seems the most logical way to go . . . unless the Chris Spielman influence reverberates through the building and the best linebacker in the draft, Micah Parsons, has the Lions smitten.”
Smitten is an interesting word to describe Parsons from the Detroit perspective, and obviously, as a former linebacker, Spielman would have a good idea of what the team could need to add on defense to feel better about their chances. It’s sounding more than possible that Speilman likes Parsons, at least according to these rumors. Whether there is a consensus in the building on that remains to be seen.
Don’t discount Parsons from the mix, however, as a result of this.
Lions ‘Connected’ to Parsons Before
Recently, Sports Illustrated insider Albert Breer also wrote about what he was hearing as it relates to the Lions pick. As he said, he believes the Lions are in position to potentially trade down, but it’s wise to assume the brain trust might be considering a few other options in the form of offensive tackles Penei Sewell or Rashawn Slater if available and potentially even linebacker Micah Parsons.
“If the Lions stay there, I’d just keep an eye on the background of the two guys in charge, GM Brad Holmes and coach Dan Campbell, and their history of valuing offensive linemen (Penei Sewell? Rashawn Slater?). And I also wouldn’t ignore the presence of Chris Spielman, who joined the organization in December, which would explain why I’ve heard them connected to Penn State LB Micah Parsons.”
Obviously, the Lions would probably love to land a player like Parsons in a trade back, which could make sense. The other players could be gone by the time the Lions pick later, so if they want one of Sewell or Slater, it would make more sense for the team to nab them as quickly as possible with their pick. All this isn’t even to discount the need for a wideout as well, which could be had early or via trade back.
Parsons’ Stats and Highlights
Parsons figures to be in-play for the draft next season within the top 10 when the Lions pick, and the former Penn State linebacker figures to be a player that the team considers strongly thanks to their need not only on defense, but in the spot he plays. In college, Parsons was special, racking up 191 total tackles, 6.5 sacks and 6 forced fumbles. The numbers would have been even better had Parsons not sat out the 2020 season, but it’s clear he is going to be one of the top picks in the draft as these clips show.
Parsons being in the mix to be selected by Detroit would not be a surprise, but it will be fascinating to see if it’s after a trade back or not.
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