The Secondary

As we edge closer to free agency and re-signing our own guys and maybe even grabbing a few new guys I though it best to look at this secondary closer. We all know the DT need on the DL and no one is counting on Levi O. again. He is as likely to never play again as be a contributor ro the DL rotation. If Jalen Carter is gone this draft becomes tough for the Lions.

With that in mind here are our CBs for 2023:
Jerry Jacobs, Jeff Okudah and Chase Lukas. AO is likely gone and Mike Hughes is likely gone too.

At Safety we have:
Kerby Joseph (a REAL find!), Iffy and Tracy Walker.

There is work to be done there. Tracy Walker is the real wild card here. 28 in February, signed for two more years but injured in September. July puts him 10 months removed from this awful injury. How might we play him? What position might he play? To me Campbell is silly if he moves Kerby. Still a nice problem to have overall.

There is work to be done. I really hope we re-sign DeShon Elliott as he is a viable strong safety.

Might we sign a free agent or two? Yep. I have zero idea what Brad is thinking of course. But I hope Brad goes young and cheap in the secondary outside signing Elliott.

I am looking at these young CBs and thinking I am seeing value at almost every pick we are likely to make. This is a DEEP CB draft, but esp. in the first two rounds. To me I hope Brad weighs CBs V. available player and if Brad does that I think we would be really, really smart to draft two CBs in the 1st two rounds. I have serious concerns about Okudah and like Swift I am likely to let them both walk in 2024:
PFF CB Rankings

DT gives me pause and Jalen Carter isn’t making it past me. But after that? I flirted with Bojon in rd. 1 but I just don’t like the value overall. I like DT Bresee and I might consider him at 18 but damn, if a better CB is there at 18 that might be a tough call for me.

I am really liking Devon Witherspoon with our top pick right now. PFF describes his playstyle as DOG!

After that you have Gonzalez, Cam Smith (maybe my pick at #18…instincts), Joey Porter, Ringo (elite speed for a CB with that size) and many others that should all be day one or day two picks…and there is also Brian Branch too. What a GREAT secondary draft! The same can be said for safety with at least three VERY likely day two picks that will put Elliott (if re-signed) and Iffy on notice too. JL Skinner is a guy I like with the Vikes pick. Jammie Robinson looks like a really good prospect too. ALSO…we might start most of the IL position group s I really like Sydney Brown too (maybe my favorite safety and he may have better instincts than Skinner and he is fast…and he also played box safety). Jordan Battle looks like a damn fine safety as ell:
PFF Safety rankings

To me Holmes has an opportunity to solve the secondary short and long-term right now. Give me two CBs with our first 4 picks AND a safety as these three picks will give us our deepest secondary ever. Jerry Jacobs and Okudah are on notice as is Elliott and Walker.

If we take two CBs in rd, 1 I don’t expect either to start but we have long-term affordable upside. With a re-signed safety in Elliott and a 2nd or 3rd round safety that position group looks EXCELLENT. Affordable with options as Walker and Elliott would be on vet contracts but not for stupid $.

Take advantage of the stupid RB depth and wait until rd. 5 for a really great value RB at that point. Als, wait for G/C depth too as there is likely solid depth there as well.

Say we draft Witherspoon, Sam Smith and say Safety Sydney Brown…that to me would be outstanding. Value there except at #6. Our 2nd rd. pick is a head scratcher BUT…DT may look really good at that point. I am really starting to like DT Karl Brooks at that point. Bowling Green, from Lansing and he fits a need with a profile that is exciting.

Here is a mock draft I just completed on Fanspeak that I feel pretty good about:
6: R1 P6 CB Devon Witherspoon - Illinois

18: R1 P18 CB Cam Smith - South Carolina

48: R2 P17 DL Karl Brooks - Bowling Green

55: R2 P24 S Sydney Brown - Illinois

81: R3 P18 LB Daiyan Henley - Washington State

154: R5 P18 RB Evan Hull - Northwestern

183: R6 P6 C Ricky Stromberg - Arkansas

194: R6 P17 QB Max Duggan - TCU

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Taking Witherspoon also has the added bonus of familiarity. Wasn’t he kirby’s roommate at Illinois? That would certainly help him transition faster to a new city and team.


Hire Rex Ryan as a DC. And move Dre Bly and AG to starting corners! Problem solved. Also we need a time machine.


Here’s the biggest thing that needs to happen this offseason aside from improving our secondary. We need a strong defensive interior presence. The draft has basically one, maybe two if you count Bresee. We already have the forever injured Levi on the roster. Although I won’t rule him out (Bresee), he’s a big risk for us for obvious reasons.

So obviously some things have to go right for us to have a legit shot at Jalen Carter. We are gonna need three QBs to go before we pick at six. And then, we are going to need another team to pass on Carter. The most likely way that happens is if the Bears, Cardinals, and Seahawks bring in someone significant in free agency. Now they all don’t have to bring in a Payne/Hargrave/Onyemata/Rankins, but each one who signs with these teams above helps. I am really holding out hope for Carter.

My plan A hope is Carter and a trade up for Witherspoon.

My plan B hope is Witherspoon and Branch at 18.

Now of course I’m not running the show lol but these are my favorite two starts. My plan B is the only route that has me taking two “CBs” in the first two rounds. Branch is technically a safety so I don’t count it as taking two corners. I don’t think it’s smart for a team in win now mode to draft multiple CBs and expect a ton out of them. And we are in a position to win now. High impact players are what we need in rounds 1 & 2.

I know we all would love to see a trade down if Carter doesn’t fall to six. Now there is a possibility that happens, but i would say there’s a bigger chance we trade up with four picks in the first 55.

It’s been exciting the last two offseasons with so much draft capital. It’s going to be somewhat lame next year when we are likely back to normal without any extra 1st & 2nd round picks.


Kerby was Jartavius Martin’s roommate


I think unless Cam Smith rehabs his stock through testing, he’s gonna drop like a stone.


What is great about Cam sliding is that it doesn’t matter are there are what, 4 DBs who likely have a 1st rd. grade without him?

I measure DT V. all other positions and I am not taking a RB early in 2023. I flirted with that but I cannot get over the lack of positional value.

So it is CB V. DT for me.

If DT Breese is there at #18 and I took a CB earlier I think I draft Bryan at #18. Too much upside for me at that point.

If the Lions go this route…I believe one of the rookies might beat out Okudah. I think Jacobs wins a job but I am taking the over on Okudah starting over Witherspoon. And that would be a good thing for the Lions on every level.


Yeah I don’t mind going CB or DT at all. I just don’t think Cam’s it. Hopefully one of Witherspoon, Gonzalez or Porter is there, if not I could see Forbes rising into that area if the tests well. He’s an intriguing option though I don’t know that he’ll be Brad’s cup of tea. Bresee is probably the only DT around there and I don’t love him as a prospect, but I’m intrigued to see if Adebawore can rise that high with elite testing. I really think his ceiling is sky high.


Porter is going to be an interesting case study if he doesn’t run particularly well. Welill the extreme length save him?

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I’m starting to think he’ll run a decent enough time to quiet those concerns. When he really opened up he looked OK. Not a blazer but maybe Okudah fast? He ran down JSN from behind without the angle, and granted JSN probably isn’t the fastest guy in the world but both Olave and Wilson called him the best athlete of all the Ohio State WRs last year. Teammate-speak or maybe he’s a little faster than we think?

He uses his length really, really well. Maybe better than anyone I’ve seen since… I don’t know, Talib? Peak Gilmore? I actually think he’s better than Sauce was when he was coming out. Maybe not now though.


If he runs in the 4.4s then he’s back in the conversation for top corner. The Sauce’s comps will help him.


Yeah his range is still pretty vast. 4.4 puts him in the same tier as Gonzalez and Witherspoon IMO, 4.6 puts him in the 2nd round and maybe limits him to certain schemes like Seattle. I think both outcomes are possible.

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It’s just my opinion, and I know it’s highly unlikely we will be aligned, but I would treat the free agency period like there won’t even be a draft…

There is a big different between going crazy kicking the can down the road (Saints, Packers, Bucs) and using the resources we have both responsibly, but also somewhat aggressively…

Based on 2022 snap counts: here is who we have on our depth chart for 2023, and for how many years…I’m counting on the 5th year option since the GM has it-

QB1- Goff (2)
QB2- xxx

RB1- xxx
RB2- Swift (1)
RB3- xxx

WR1- ASB (2)
WR2- Reynolds (1)
WR3- Raymond (1)
WR4- xxx
WR5- xxx
WR6- Jamo (4)

TE1- xxx
TE2- xxx
TE3- Mitchell (3)

LT- Decker (2)
LG- J Jackson (1)
C- Ragnow (4)
RG- xxx
RT- Sewell (3)
OT3- Awosika (1)
OG3- Sternberg (1)

  • We do have options for Wright, Kraemer, Zylstra, and Netfilx

Edge1- Hutch (4)
Edge2- xxx
Edge3- Paschal (3)
Edge4- Harris (1)
Edge5- J Houston (2)
Edge6- R Okwara (1)

DT- Levi (2)
NT- McNeill (2)

LB- xxx
LB- Rodrigo (3)
LB- Barnes (2)
LB- xxx

CB- Okudah (2)
CB- xxx
CB- xxx
CB- J Jacobs (1)
CB- xxx
CB- Lucas (3)

S- K Joseph (3)
S- xxx
S- xxx
S- Walker (2)

We do have Pittman, Benito Jones as RFAs…

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I like the idea of drafting two corners, but not as the first two picks. The guy I love as a later pick is Clark Philips of Utah. He’ll slide a little because of his size, but I like his aggressiveness and ball skills. At 6 (or maybe 8 or 9 with a tradeback) I’d take one of the top 2 CB’s - Gonzalez or Spoon, as you did in your mock draft.

The pick at 18 will be the most interesting. It would be tough to pass on either Branch or Bijan if they are there. If not, I don’t like Bresee there at all. Or really any other DL. Although you could get value with a second CB here (Forbes, Smith?), I think that’s a luxury since you’d be replacing Okudah or Jacobs, and that might not happen. It might depend on Chark. If we don’t re-sign him, WR is in play at 18.

Later on, I like your picks of Brown and Henley alot though Brown might not last till 55. If we pull a TD at 6 to 8 or 9, we.d have an extra second there, too.

Others have mentioned this too - but I’m not stressing out over draft picks. We now have an adult in charge! Keep Dorsey around though!


We had plenty of holes, weaknesses, and role players out there last year, and had a pretty solid year despite it… Fun as hell to watch the 2nd half of the season…

That said we are missing… RB1, RG1, TE1, TE2, Edge2, LB1, LB4, CB2, CB3, CB5, and SS1 and that is just to get back to where we were!!!

That said we only got 609 TOTAL SNAPS out of Brockers, Big V, Romeo, Cabinda and Charles Harris, and if we try and equate that to production??? Basically we spent $35MM for a few dropped passes and 3.5 sacks???

That same group of guys would be scheduled to make $51,500,000 against the 2023 cap… WTF is right! Cutting them all costs $21MM in dead cap against the 2023 salary cap, but if we wait til after June 1st we reduce the dead cap on Romeo to 3.5MM from 7MM if we cut him now… Also gives us a chance to get through the draft with another edge intact, and if we want to keep him, we simply restructure a few guys to free up “in season cap,” and if we feel good about edge, then we cut him then and save the full $11.5MM…

I would cut Big V, Brockers, Harris, and Cabinda now… That would create another $22.7M in addition to what we currently have, but our current cap space will mostly cover the draft…

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I seem to be one of the only ones who really like this guy, he to me is like a pĂłormans Brain Branch.

  • This article assumes a lot obviously about who takes another step forward, who regresses, etc… What it also points out is the exact thing I have been worried about all along…

PFF pretends every player in NCAA is available this April, and does a mock draft… I won’t say that I would 100% agree with their placements, but I agree with a lot of what’s there…AND A LOT OF WHAT IS NOT IN THERE!

They have 14 players eligible in 2023… 13 players eligible in 2024… and 5 players not eligible til 2025-

They had 1 DT from this class listed…1 CB from this class…

I won’t be shocked if only 1 CB goes in the top 15-20 picks by the time the draft comes around. On tape Witherspoon has been my favorite since November, but back then I was getting him in late 2… Now he’s climbed massively, not because he was EVER a late rd 2 guy, or because he’s gotten bigger or faster, but mainly because guys like Cam Smith and Ringo have fallen like rocks…

I think this OT class is better than it’s being mocked, or at least the guys will go higher… I think the WR class is much better than it’s getting recognized as right now… Watch what happens when Q Johnson runs a 4.4 and jumps 42"… or JSN runs a 4.45 and kills the route tree… Flowers runs a 4.3 something… The hype will start…

Nobody wants to average OL players and WR2-3 types between 11-18M APY!!!

I love CGJ for this team, but I also like Ji Ayir Brown, Brian Branch, JL Skinner, and Sydney Brown for different reasons back there, and I’d like Jammie Robinson a bit later on?

I think we can figure out DT and CB in Free Agency

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You are definitely not the only guy who likes him, I like him for sure, and I’m pretty sure @CuriousHusker does too. But I don’t think he’s Branch or Sydney Brown, I don’t think he has the frame to hold up in the box the way those guys do. And I don’t think he’s nearly as physical as those guys either.

He was basically a position-less rover on that Illinois defense and much like Antonio Johnson (though for different reasons), I think his best long-term position is as a free safety. His athleticism is his best trait and his physicality is his worst IMO. But we’ve already got Kerby back there. If we decide to keep playing this two-deep look maybe he’s an option, but I don’t think that’s how AG wants to continue to play.


Hey man can you take this a little more serious? We also need glover quin back there. Get your head out your ass :rofl::rofl:

Sorry Matt Leblanc GIF