ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay has the Lions taking Ohio State offensive tackle Taylor Decker with No. 16 pick in the first round while fortifying the defensive line with Florida tackle Jonathan Bullard with the No. 46 pick in the second round.
Unlike his previous three offerings, McShay’s 4.0 Mock Draft (pay site) goes two rounds deep.
McShay has Tennessee taking Mississippi offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil first overall with Michigan State offensive tackle Jack Conklin going to Chicago at No. 11. He has MSU QB Connor Cook heading to Dallas in the second round with the No. 34 pick overall.
McShay sticks to his guns saying the Lions will take Decker, who is 6-foot-7 and 310 pounds. He had Detroit selecting the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year in his March 2 mock draft.
Of Decker, McShay writes, “This is a no-brainer. The Lions need to do a better job of protecting QB Matthew Stafford, who has been sacked 89 times over the past two seasons, and Decker is a starting right tackle from Day 1. He doesn't have a lot of flash to his game, but Decker is one of the steadier offensive linemen you'll study on tape.”
McShay’s prediction the Lions will take a defensive tackle in the second round can only be seen as a move to add depth. The team has re-signed starting DTs Haloti Ngata and Tyrunn Walker, added free agent Stefan Charles in the offseason.
“Bullard has experience playing inside and outside along the D-line,” McShay writes about the 6-3 and 285 tackle. “He lacks elite physical tools, but he grows on you the more tape you watch. He's a high-motor player.”