2025 mock draft has Lions making odd decison that would put promising rookie’s future in doubt

Yardbarker

The 2025 NFL mock drafts are starting to fly around more and more from draft experts. On the fourth of July our own Ian Valentino put one out for The 33rd Team and he made an interesting choice for the Lions. One that would almost scrap one of the biggest projects Detroit just drafted to be a future starter this past April. 

Valentino has the Lions picking at 27 and he has them selecting Arkansas tackle Fernando Carmona Jr. Here’s his reasoning:

“Taylor Decker’s future is muddied, so the Detroit Lions won’t wait too long to add a more viable replacement than 2024 fourth-round flier Giovanni Manu.

Fernando Carmona Jr. brings a similar level of toughness and physicality as Decker. The 6-foot-5, 320-pounder would seamlessly fit into Detroit’s culture.” 

It’s true. At this point we don’t really know what the future holds for Taylor Decker. The Lions have yet to agree to an extension with him. We don’t necessarily know what the future will be for Decker, but we do likely know what the future of the Lions left tackle position will be. That guy is on the team already and he’s an All-Pro. 

We’ve seen Penei Sewell play on the left side on multiple occasions and not miss a single beat. It makes a lot of sense that the Lions would move him over to the left side of their offensive line once Decker retires or moves on. That would open up the right side. 

Carmona would be a fine addition, the issue is that it essentially makes two recent draft picks meaningless for the Lions. The team took Colby Sorsdal in the fifth round of the 2023 NFL Draft and he showed some promise at guard last season. Now that he’s moving back to his natural position of tackle, the Lions are likely to want to see where that goes. 

The other one is Giovanni Manu. The Lions just traded up future assets to get him in the fourth-round of this years draft. The plan for him seems to be to take a red shirt year and then start to get more playing time in 2025. The Lions see him as more than just a project. They see him as a future starting piece on their offensive line. 

Drafting a tackle in the first-round of the 2025 NFL Draft would essentially wipe out that project and almost kind of deem it a failure before it even gets to start. It would also likely push Sorsdal down even further. 

The move would make sense if we knew what Sorsdal and Manu fully were, but this move would make sure that we never find out. 

The likelihood is that the Lions stick with what they have and then sign Decker to an extension sometime before the end of this coming season. He’s a big part of this franchise, it’s hard to see them letting him hit free agency next year. 

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