You could do this by rankings from PFF or just your own opinion. For the sake of argument, 1-11 is above avg to elite, 12 -21 is avg. and 22-32 is below avg. this allows for a continuum and some leverage in your ranking.
- I am going to start with TE. I certainly hope Hockenson recovers and becomes elite, but I’ll start my list there.
- Name a LB’er.Tavai, Davis, Jones…all fighting with the TE’s for worst positon group in football. Severely handicaps this team.
- RG Not a premier position but woeful at times.
- DT Big hole to fill, no pressure, no depth.
- RB No threat, no elite traits, injured, Kerryon Johnson
- CB2 Not good enough to challenge mismatches or make plays consistently.
- QB2 Back-ups couldn’t start anywhere for an NFL team.
Surely, starting in FA you might consider where your team is avg or below avg and pursue players you think are better. Our TE room currently has a vacancy generated by FA for Logan Thomas. Now, last year our number three TE did not distinguish himself, neither did Jesse James. Hockenson was hurt. I haven’t checked but there are three or four TE’s I think that might improve the room. Cameron Brate, Hunter Henry and Kyle Rudolph. Theoretically, any one of those is better than Thomas and improves the team.
Moving on to LB’er. Nobody will mistake any Lion Lb’er for all pro’s. Players who would improve our lot would be nearly anyone we pick. I would shoot for a difference maker. This is kind of like asking for two different skill sets because of pass rush and coverage abilities. Corey Littleton is a freak and I think getting him might solidify our pass coverage and provide leadership for Tavai and Davis while allowing us to move Davis to OLB where his rushing abilities might be better utilized and his coverage abilities limited while he learns from a guy like Littleton.
RG, the Lions have shown out three guys in Aboushi, Wiggins and Glasgow at least as near as we can figure. They have highlighted Benzschawel’s development and Joe Dahl’s. They might be looking at Joe Thuney, an upgrade to solidify the IOL. EX-Patriot. Good fit. Drafting a guy like Bredeson, Kindley, Cushenberry or Lemieux gives you a cheaper solution for a back-up.
DT, there are solutions to this problem. Many have discussed their ideas. I like FA names like Javon Hargraves and DJ Reader. Also, guys like Davison, Kinlaw, Brown, Blacklock and others on draft day.
RB has been a sore point. Derrick Henry. Solutions in the draft like Swift and Taylor and Cam Akers and Vaugn and others.
CB2, well even if we retain Slay this may be a vital need. Chris Harris in FA or certainly Okudah in the draft.
QB2, a guy like Bridgewater or maybe Jalen Hurts or even Justin Herbert, who knows but the fodder from last year points this out.
Some might say edge rushers and these guys are premium players,
Chase Young in the draft, or one of the guys from free agency in Judon or Dupree. Better than the alternative of Okwara and Kennard who have given us avg play but we need to generate more pressure so, premium investments. You could argue QB1 or OT or WR but I tried to start with below avg. players. You might have different ideas.
This may seem overly bleak. But I think free agency could fill four or five spots and the draft also could fill three or four. Hashing some of that out will allow the most flexibility.
I dream, but bringing in a FA class like Littleton, DJ Reader and Thuney like last years blitz and maybe Rudolph or Brate. I fill all four of my top below avg. positions with plusses. The draft with Okudah and Murray gives me two more. I get shots at WR depth, RB and even CB or safety .and punters. For instance, we move on from our punter and get one from the college ranks. Cheaper that way and an upgrade, presumably from an inconsistent roster spot and less expensive than the veteran…
Last year, I identified Flowers and Mark Ingram and CJ Mosely and the Minnesota LB’er and Coleman as likely targets this way and we offered all of them. We only got a few but it was better than a bunch of GM’s. We were actually winners. Hopefully, they think like I do, if last year was any indication, they do.
I know, long post.