Detroit Lions 2013 NFL Draft: Team needs and potential solutions

Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) completes a pass during the first quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. (Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports)

The Detroit Lions were arguably one of the most talented four-win teams in recent NFL history. Matthew Stafford piled up numbers yet again, throwing to the one and only Calvin Johnson. Better known as ‘Megatron’, Johnson set the NFL’s single-season record for reception yards with an incredible 1,964 on the year. However, beyond Johnson, Stafford does not have too many weapons offensively. The Lions’ organization has had an entire offseason to decide whether or not it go go offensive or defensive with the No. 5-overall selection.

Here is what they will be thinking about.

  1. Two Defensive Ends: Only one defensive end will be needed if the Lions can retain Cliff Avril. They’ll have to upgrade Kyle Vanden Bosch, who struggled in every aspect of the game this past season. He’s done.
  2. Two Safeties: Louis Delmas is an impending free agent, but he barely played because he was always injured. Detroit had nothing outside of Delmas at the safety position, so the front office will need to find two upgrades there if the Western Michigan product isn’t brought back.
  3. Cornerback: It wouldn’t be an offseason if the Lions didn’t need a cornerback. Chris Houston is a free agent, while Dwight “Bullet Bill” Bentley did not look good in three starts – even for a third-round rookie.
  4. Two Outside Linebackers: Justin Durant and DeAndre Levy are a couple of other free agents that Detroit will have to re-sign. Perhaps Travis Lewis will get a chance if one of them leaves, but he was just a seventh-round rookie in 2012 who barely saw the field.
  5. Wide Receiver: It’s Calvin Johnson, and that’s it. Ryan Broyles, who looked promising, tore yet another ACL. Titus Young, meanwhile, actually tried to sabotage a potential Detroit victory by intentionally lining up in the wrong spots. Matthew Stafford won’t win many games throwing to Mike Thomas, Kris Durham and Brian Robiskie.
We have broken down the 2013 NFL Draft needs for all 32 teams.