It’s been a couple of weeks since we checked on the 2023 NFL mock draft projections. Our friends at Draft Wire updated their pick forecast after Week 12, and the changes in the picks for the Detroit Lions in the first two rounds have changed quite a bit.
The first Lions pick, the one plucked from the Rams, is No. 3 overall. With that pick acquired from trading away QB Matthew Stafford, the Lions go after their long-term quarterback. In this projection, that would be Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud,
Jared Goff isn’t a problem or anything, but he’s also not a long-term solution for the Lions. If they luck out and get a top-three pick from the Rams, this scenario would give them the perfect opportunity to land their quarterback of the future in Stroud.
Stroud is a bit of a polarizing pick, but there is no denying his high-end potential with his pinpoint accuracy and willingness to make difficult throws. Alabama players were the first two picks, with QB Bryce Young to Houston and EDGE Will Anderson to Chicago.
Detroit’s own pick comes at No. 13 overall. Draft Wire editor Luke Easterling uses this pick and the Lions’ own pick in the second round (No. 43 overall) to address the secondary. It’s Penn State CB Joey Porter Jr. at 13 and Texas A&M safety Antonio Johnson at 43.
Detroit’s final pick in this projection is No. 61, a pick acquired from Minnesota in the T.J Hockenson trade. I’m a big proponent of using an acquired pick on the position traded away, and Easterling does just that here. The projection is South Dakota State TE Tucker Kraft. I haven’t seen Kraft in 2022, a season he mostly missed with a foot injury. He’s well-regarded enough to declare early from the FCS level.