Players Lions should watch at NFL combine

Josh Katzenstein
The Detroit News
Alabama defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson (86) makes a tackle against Michigan State in the Cotton Bowl.

Go through the gallery above or go HERE to see Josh Katzenstein’s analysis on the players the Lions should watch closely at the NFL combine.

Some of the Lions’ needs for the 2016 offseason became clearer this week as they made some cost-cutting moves. In the coming week, they’ll have a chance to see some of the players who might fill those needs in April.

Many of the 332 players invited to the NFL combine arrive Tuesday, and in the days that follow, team scouts, coaches and executives will test them physically and mentally as they try to see which players would fit on their teams.

The Lions have plenty of work to do before the draft, of course. They cut linebacker Stephen Tulloch, running back Joique Bell and defensive tackle C.J. Wilson – and cornerback Rashean Mathis retired – and the Lions have close to $34 million in cap space. But, many of the free agents the Lions sign will be short-term solutions.

In the draft, the Lions will try to find long-term contributors, and based on the current roster, they’ll be looking closely at defensive tackles, offensive tackles, linebackers, wide receivers and safeties, among other positions at the combine.