With NFL Mock Draft season in full swing, many are projecting the Detroit Lions to go for a defensive end with their No. 5 overall pick in April. One of the most prominent among the mock drafters is ESPN's Mel Kiper, and he thinks that a prominent Georgia Bulldog could slip to Detroit.
Kiper projects outside linebacker Jarvis Jones out of Georgia to the Lions in his first mock of the season:
He led the nation in sacks even as every team brought help to block him, and Jones not only uses great leverage to hold up as a run defender, but is vastly underrated in his ability to drop and cover. He brings a workmanlike effort and will sack quarterbacks, and skip the dance as he helps them up. A mature player and a good fit on any team, and within any system.
There are varying opinions on who the top defensive end in the draft is, from Jones to Bjoern Werner of Florida State to Damontre Moore of Texas A&M, but it will come down to which players fit which schemes in the best fashion. For the Lions, they could see their leading sack-getter of 2012, Cliff Avril, leave via free agency. Meanwhile, Kyle Vanden Bosch is 35, and backup Lawrence Jackson is also a free agent.
It seems almost certain that the Lions would pick a DE, but will it be Jones?