SB Nation's second 2011 NFL Mock Draft is out. Last week the SB Nation mock draft had the Detroit Lions selecting Florida cornerback Janoris Jenkins. He has since announced that he is staying at Florida for his senior season, but the new SB Nation mock draft was put together before that came out. Even so, Jenkins is not the Lions' pick this week. Jenkins was bumped up to the No. 9 pick, and the Lions are now selecting Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn.
The reasoning for the pick is that defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch isn't getting any younger, so adding Clayborn would be a move that allows the Lions to continue building an outstanding defensive line. While it's true that Vanden Bosch is getting older (and he is coming off neck surgery), I have to disagree with the idea of drafting Clayborn. In Vanden Bosch's absence toward the end of the season, the Lions got a good look at players like Turk McBride and Lawrence Jackson. Both played very well in Vanden Bosch's place and showed the potential to be a starter. Cliff Avril is one of the Lions' starters at defensive end going forward. Although McBride and Jackson were brought in as depth players originally, both have the ability to start opposite Avril or at the very least be rotational guys that get a lot of playing time with Vanden Bosch.
If Clayborn were the best player available, the Lions could end up selecting him even though defensive end depth isn't a huge concern, but I don't necessarily think he would be the BPA. Clayborn had an outstanding season in 2009 at Iowa, but he wasn't nearly as good in 2010. Many analysts doing Iowa games have attributed the drop in production to him seeing more double teams and offenses keying in on him more, but other analysts have said that he just didn't play that well. I tend to think the latter is the case, which is why I'd be a bit weary of picking Clayborn that high in the draft, especially with a guy like Brandon Harris still on the board.