Photograph: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Actual 2nd round pick – The Lions jumped for joy at the possibility of drafting Kyle Van Noy in the 2014 draft. In fact, they were so excited at the possibilities, they traded up with the Seattle Seahawks, in order to move from the 45th to the 40th pick, and select Van Noy.
Van Noy was lauded for his big-play ability and versatility. In college, at BYU, he displayed the skills to rush the passer, drop into coverage, stop the run, and make game-changing plays. He was viewed as an every-down player, and a tremendous addition to a Detroit linebacking unit that lacked depth, and certainly could use an infusion of talent.
Unfortunately, during his time as a Lion, Van Noy has not seen the field consistently enough to make a big (positive) impact. He spent the first half of his rookie season injured, and then recovering, from a hernia. He played sparingly (mostly on special teams) the second half of the year. After dealing with another injury, early this season, Van Noy simply hasn’t lived up to expectations (yet). In almost two full seasons, Van Noy has compiled a mere 15 career tackles, and one sack.
Re-draft 2nd round pick – On the other hand, Weston Richburg is excelling as the starting center for the New York Giants. After being drafted by the Giants with the 43rd overall pick in the 2014 draft, Richburg played out of position (at guard) last year, due to injury issues on the Giants offensive line.
This year, he has gone back to his natural center position, and is flourishing. He has been a dependable force – paving lanes for Giants rushers, while protecting Eli Manning. He was recently named to PFF’s Pro Bowl roster.
Trading up wasn’t a bad idea for the Lions. They just should’ve chosen Richburg instead of Van Noy.
Next: Round 3