Lions granted two compensatory picks for Suh
When the Lions lost two former first-round picks in free agency last year, one of the hidden advantages was that they’d likely receive a couple more draft picks in 2016.
And on Friday, the NFL announced that the Lions will get two more selections, including the highest compensatory pick in the draft as result of Ndamukong Suh signing with the Miami Dolphins as an unrestricted free agent.
The Lions received compensatory picks in the third round, 95th overall, and sixth round, 210th overall as a result of losing more or better unrestricted free agents than they gained last year.
In addition to losing Suh, the Lions lost former first-round pick Nick Fairley to the Rams, and he played 15 games with zero starts. Offensive lineman Garrett Reynolds also signed with the Rams and played 16 games with 11 starts, and tight end Kellen Davis signed with the Jets and played 16 games with nine starts.
The only unrestricted free agent the NFL considered gains for the Lions last year was cornerback Josh Wilson, who had four starts in eight games. In addition to having limited cap space, the front office tried to avoid signing big-name unrestricted free agents last year after losing Suh and Fairley, instead filling the defensive tackle hole with a trade (Haloti Ngata) and restricted free agent (Tyrunn Walker).
The Lions were one of 13 teams to receive compensatory picks. The Cowboys, Patriots and 49ers each received four picks, and the Ravens, Browns, Broncos and Seahawks each got three.
With the two picks, the Lions now have 10 total selections in the upcoming draft, which would be their biggest draft haul since having 10 in 2009 — if they use them all.
The Lions traded their initial third-round pick in the 2016 draft to the Eagles last year for a fourth-round pick, 113th overall, which became defensive tackle Gabe Wright.
Now, the Lions have one pick in every round, including two in the fifth and three in the sixth. They have the No. 16 pick in the first round and No. 46 in the second round.
Compensatory picks cannot be traded.