The Detroit Lions nailed it in the first round of the 2018 draft, but a re-draft of that opening round has landed them an interesting alternative.
Coming of their most recent winning season, the Detroit Lions had the 20th overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. Center Frank Ragnow out of the University of Arkansas was not a glamorous pick, but hindsight puts it in the narrow column of wins for former general manager Bob Quinn. Ragnow is one of the best centers in the NFL, and the literal centerpiece of the Lions’ best unit.
Ryan Musleh of The 33rd Team recently did a re-draft of 2018’s first-round. Many “re-picks” are interesting to consider as alternate history, with four seasons on the resumes of the players as a solid sample.
For the Lions at No. 20, Musleh has them going away from Ragnow.
#20 – Detroit Lions
Previous Pick: Frank Ragnow
Re-Draft Pick: D.J. Moore
Although Ragnow has done nothing to drop lower on this list, it is more of a testament to how strong this draft class was overall. Moore has benefitted from the increased value of wide receivers, even in the past few years. Since 2018, Moore has racked up the eighth-most receiving yards, more than Julio Jones.
D.J. Moore would have been/would be an interesting fit with the Lions
Moore really went 24th overall to the Panthers, and he has overcome bad quarterback play in Carolina to top 1,100 receiving yards and 1,200 yards from scrimmage in each of the last three seasons. In Detroit he would have had three seasons with (mostly) Matthew Stafford as his quarterback to start his career, and with the state of the Lions’ receiving corp for a big chunk of 2021 he would have been a welcome piece.
Musleh ultimately had the Lions and Panther swapping picks, with Ragnow to Carolina in the re-draft at No. 24. For once, Lions fans can look at something like this and not shake their heads at how inept the front office was.