Linebacker Jarrad Davis was drafted with the 21st overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft.
For the Detroit Lions, their sigificant issues on defense stem from not having enough talent on the defensive line, in the secondary and at the linebacker position, despite the high draft picks used to try and upgrade the various areas.
Jeff Risdon of USA Today's Lions Wire noted the eerily similar strengths and weaknesses of Davis and a potential candidate Detroit could select with the No. 7 overall pick in this year's draft -- Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons.
"The point of this little exercise is to highlight the folly in being overconfident in any player being the answer. Parsons is a high-end prospect, no question about it," Risdon writes. "His game film from 2019 is stellar, but that doesn’t make him a can’t-miss prospect -- especially after not playing for a full season. He’s also got some disturbing character questions that never plagued Davis.
"The relative failure of Davis to live up to the lofty expectations and insane athletic potential cannot be ignored in evaluating Parsons. It doesn’t mean Parsons will turn out the same way."
ESPN NFL Draft insider Mel Kiper even expressed during a teleconference on Monday that Detroit should avoid drafting Parsons in the top 10 this year.
"Parsons is not necessarily going to be a 3-4 outside backer. He could possibly do that, but I think his range against the run, tracking down quarterbacks that are mobile and fast, he can do all that," Kiper explained. "Is he better than Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah from Notre Dame in that area? As an open-field tackler, Koramoah is the best I've seen in a long, long time. As a cover linebacker, he's one of the best I've seen in a long time. So, that's a debate there, which one do you like better. They're both pretty close."
Kiper explained further that Detroit should look to build around quarterback Jared Goff and that the correct selection for general manager Brad Holmes would be a wide receiver.
"It's a little high for them at seven. So, if you stay at seven, you wouldn't look at the linebacker, you'd look at a wide receiver," Kiper said.
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