ESPN Todd McShay Detroit Lions NFL analysis draft simulation

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ESPN released its latest mock draft on Wednesday and in it, the Lions were selected at No. 2 overall and No. 32 overall (via the Rams).

With the No. 2 overall pick, draft analyst Todd McShay selected defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and he took quarterback Sam Howell with the second of the Lions’ two first-round picks.

“It’s a slam-dunk scenario for the Lions. They gave up 5.9 yards per game (29th) and 26.9 ppg (28th), opposing quarterbacks had the third-best QBR against them (53.4 ), and only two teams had fewer sacks than their 30 on the season,” says McShay. “Hutchinson — who comes from Michigan and played his college ball less than an hour from Detroit — is a relentless passing thrower who had 14.0 sacks and 66 pressures last year.”

Over the past two years, Howell has had 18 touchdowns against six interceptions on throws of 20 yards or more.

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With Jared Goff likely playing his final season at Motown, adding a quarterback this season may not be the worst decision the front office has made in the draft.

“Howell is fitting in well with the Lions organization. He’s super accurate at hitting deep rail shots, and he’s got quick delivery and good touch. But his footwork needs work, and he’ll need to improve. mid-level forward throws,” McShay writes. “Let Howell sit behind Jared Goff, whose dead money grows from $30.5 million in 2022 to $10 million in 2023 and $5 million in 2024. I’d like to see Howell partner with the catcher Amon-Ra St. Brown to revive the Lions passing offense, which had the 25th-best total QBR in the league in 2021 (37.6).

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