Lions’ DJ Reader, Alim McNeill get no respect from NFL insiders

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Not surprising at all, when most see one really good Nose Tackle and another as pretty athletic Nose Tackle being shoehorned into playing 3t while being more 0 than 3. Curls get the girls and DTs that get sacks get top 10 grades. Nose Tackles are (rightly) viewed as dime a dozen types which is why they usually get drafted late and don’t command huge FA dollars.

Holmes just seems to view DT differently and time will tell if he’s right. I can’t really think of any other team that invested (2) 3rd round picks in two years in Nose Tackles and still felt the need to make one of your largest FA investments of year 3 in… a Nose Tackle. This in addition to having to be held back from trading up into round 1, to take Levi at the top of round 2 who’s college position was… yup… Nose Tackle.

Now IF IF IF, Levi and or Alim makes the successful transition to be an impact 3t - then great job Holmes and we’ll pay one and get a comp pick for the other. You had the golden vision. If not, maybe he should learn to put Benito Jones money into Nose Tackle like everyone else does and go draft a TRUE 3t or pay the big FA dollars necessary to get one. I did love the Wingo pick though and maybe he ends up becoming what they thought Levi would be. Or maybe what Alim will be after this season. Or… Levi, Alim, Reeder, BroMart and Wingo will all stud out and I’ll gleefully come back for my crow feast!

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I think Brad has proven he goes after the best player for his system regardless of draft slot - within reason. He seems to work magic with trade downs and trade ups. I have no problem with where we drafted Alim…he’s played well. He is integral cog in keeping our opposition one dimensional. How many times in the past have the Lions picked the appropriate position according to the draft slot / round and they ended up being shit players? Brad is hitting on way more than he’s missing and so I say he should keep doing what he’s doing. In the end, we can’t re-sign everybody anyway so if he thinks he’s found a player who can excel for the next 4 to 5 years, then grab him, as long as it isn’t a long snapper or punter - ever.

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Happy Will Ferrell GIF

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The only exception would be Ray Guy as Mr Irrelevant.

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Who cares!
We can only hope opposing teams disrespect them. I doubt it, though.

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I agree he has a type. NT sized guys that can move. Wingo is the only “true” DT I can think of in the 3t variety (that wasn’t really a 5t tweener in sub packages) that he’s invested in. I agree Levi had those traits as I was high on him coming out. I think he’s shown flashes. But he was strong enough against the run to play the 0 at Washington.

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DT’s are so damn important to a defense it blows my mind how it’s ignored. You want someone who can pass rush and stop the run. But IMO, NT’s are the most important. Every year I scream for DT’s. I’ll take back to back 1st rounders let alone 3rd rounders.

A DT/NT can be your entire dang defense.

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The general take has been that Alim will flourish with DJ next to him, I think it may very well be the other way around. The draft capital used to get DT’s I believe will be worth it, it simply takes more time for them to get up to speed so the grade is on hold. Looking forward to seeing the entire D unit hit the ground running this year.

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Levi was drafted as an “interior pass rusher”.
Alim was drafted as a NT.
BroMart was drafted as a NT.
Reader was signed as a NT.

Levi has not worked out.
Alim has worked out differently than expected.
BroMart has always been a project and is on schedule.
Reader is an easy addition to mentor BroMart and improve Alim’s play next to him.

They’ve said in past that linemen who are unable to stack and play the run are NOT considerations for this team. While they do value pass-rushers, it’s not at the expense of stopping the run. That being the case, any 3t we add will have shades of 5t to him. (And, by virtue of their size and demonstrated 2-gap abilities, will often take snaps at NT in college.)

And, since I did it for my own edification, here’s a list of starting NTs, per Ourlads:

Player Round Pick # Current APY
Dexter Lawrence 1 17 $22,500,000
Vita Vea 1 12 $17,750,000
Kenny Clark 1 27 $17,500,000
Jordan Davis 1 13 $4,252,320
Mazi Smith 1 26 $3,318,674
T’Vondre Sweat 2 38 $2,388,110
Jarran Reed 2 49 $4,500,000
Keeanu Benton 2 49 $1,833,281
Harrison Phillips 3 96 $6,500,000
DaQuan Jones 4 112 $8,000,000
Bobby Brown III 4 117 $1,059,133
David Onyemata 4 120 $11,666,667
Andrew Billings 4 122 $4,000,000
Bilal Nichols 5 145 $7,000,000
DJ Reader 5 166 $11,000,000
Davon Godchaux 5 178 $10,400,000
D.J. Jones 6 198 $10,000,000
Shy Tuttle - - $6,500,000
Michael Pierce - - $3,750,000
Poona Ford - - $1,790,000
Teair Tart - - $1,292,500
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Yes! I think we finally have the players needed on defense to allow complimentary football between position groups. DB’s can give Dline and extra second, Dline can help keep linebackers clean and pressure up front can help produce some ints.
Plus AG can mix in his blitzes as often as he likes and Alim and Reader should be a huge roadblock for running backs and eating up double teams, helping out the edge rushers On paper we are looking like a pretty good unit. If Jack Campbell can really take that leap we’ve read about look out!

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