Detroit Lions Mock Draft 3.0: Trading back in the first round

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports /
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Detroit Lions
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With the 101st pick in the NFL Draft, the Detroit Lions select Andre Cisco.

The Detroit Lions desperately need to add a safety or two to compete for a starting job with a pair of former Lions’ third-round choices a year apart.  The Detroit Lions drafted Tracy Walker and Will Harris a year apart, but both have struggled to adjust at the NFL level.

Some of this is due to the fact former head coach Matt Patricia, a self-proclaimed genius, appeared to be cluelessly patrolling the Detroit sideline.  Even newly appointed head coach Dan Campbell recognized the Lions roster has talent littered throughout but hadn’t been utilized the correct way, whether it’s players being asked to do more than their skill-set will allow or being lined up in the wrong alignment.

Andre Cisco projects as a starting free safety at the NFL level coming out of Syracuse. Cisco enjoyed a pair of stellar seasons with Syracuse as a freshman and sophomore, totaling 125 total tackles, a whopping 12 interceptions, 14 passes defended, and a touchdown in 22 games.

Last season Cisco appeared in just two games, recording 11 tackles and an interception after suffering a season-ending lower-body injury that occurred in a pre-game warmup.  It was the second straight season a leg injury ended his season.  Cisco underwent surgery to repair his latest injury this past October and is expected to make a full recovery.

The 22-year old safety is comfortable playing as a single high safety and has proven to be a ball magnet but struggles to tackle in space and at times will be a victim of his aggressiveness trying to make a big play on a ball that will lead to some blown coverages. Still, as seen in the video above, Cisco has the ability to come up and lower the boom.

Prior to his latest injury, Cisco had been projected as a top-three safety in the 2021 class, so if he can remain healthy, this may be a bargain for the Detroit Lions at no. 101.

Notable players available: Tyler Shelvin, James Hudson, Trey Sermon, Cameron Sample, Stone Forsythe.