ESPN’s Kiper drops Lions 2015 draft grade to C-plus

The Detroit News

The Lions’ 2015 draft haul doesn’t look quite as good as it did a year ago, at least to Mel Kiper Jr.

The ESPN draft expert regraded the draft Wednesday (pay site), dropping the Lions’ showing to a C-plus, after giving them a B immediately following the draft.

According to Kiper, part of the issue was the top picks didn’t produce enough. At least not yet.

“I didn’t mind the addition of Laken Tomlinson on paper because while it felt a little bit like a luxury pick —you can get a guard well into Day 3 — it was a clear area of need,” Kiper wrote. “Problem was, Tomlinson struggled too often and Detroit’s Round 2 pick limited his own value because of fumbling problems. Ameer Abdullah is a special player with the ball in his hands, but it too often didn’t stay there, and that could largely determine where his NFL career goes.”

Kiper did like the Lions’ selection of cornerback Quandre Diggs in the sixth round, a pick Kiper called a “steal.”

“When he was a freshman at Texas I figured him for a future first-rounder,” Kiper wrote. “Detroit got him in Round 6 and might have gotten the freshman I saw. The grade has to dip a bit because the team took a step back and the top guys in the class have to provide more.”

Lions 2015 draft

Round 1 (No. 28 overall): Laken Tomlinson, G, Duke

2 (54): Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska

3 (80): Alex Carter, CB, Stanford

4 (113): Gabe Wright, DT, Auburn

5 (168): Michael Burton, FB, Rutgers

6 (200): Quandre Diggs, CB, Texas

7 (240): Corey Robinson, OT, South Carolina