With Jared Goff at the helm, quarterback may not seem like an immediate, pressing need for the Detroit Lions.
However, Goff may not be the long-term solution for Detroit general manager Brad Holmes and head coach Dan Campbell. Goff has played in a Super Bowl, but has struggled since appearing on the game’s biggest stage.
This inconsistency begs the question: Should the Lions select a quarterback in the 2021 NFL Draft?
Certainly, there are other needs that the Lions have that seem more pressing. However, the Lions could choose to address other needs early and elect to take a quarterback later in the draft.
Here are four quarterbacks the Lions could select in the late rounds of the 2021 draft.
Kyle Trask (Florida)
Projected draft range: Second-fourth round
Why Trask fits: Kyle Trask was all over draft boards during his time at Florida. He went nearly six seasons without starting a game at quarterback, going from his sophomore year of high school to his fourth year at Florida. After an injury to incumbent starter Felipe Franks, Trask burst onto the scene.
Trask entered the 2020 season as a likely first-round pick, but struggled with accuracy and turnovers. Pair those struggles with the rise of Alabama’s Mac Jones and BYU’s Zach Wilson, and Trask fell out of first-round projections.
He should be available on Day 2, if the Lions want an experienced signal-caller who will be less of a project than some of the other late-round options.
Kellen Mond (Texas A&M)
Projected draft range: Third-fifth round
Why Mond fits: Mond is a four-year starter from Texas A&M who has won some big games. He’s got a cannon of an arm, and moves very well. In Mond, a team will be getting a very naturally-talented quarterback who is in need of some development.
There are connections to Mond and Campbell, as both come from Texas A&M. Mond is a very good athlete, and adds versatility to any scheme. With the Lions already in possession of a trio of talented running backs, having Mond to pair with them could do wonders, should he develop into a solid, accurate passer.
Davis Mills (Stanford)
Projected draft range: Third-sixth round
Why Mills fits: Mills is a little more raw than the previous two players listed, making only 11 career starts. He was able to snag the starting job from K.J. Costello in 2019, and Costello promptly transferred to Mississippi State.
With the 2020 season shortened due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mills got less opportunities to show his development from the 2019 season. Having played in a pro-style system certainly helps, but there is room for improvement for him heading to the next level.
Mills is a big quarterback, standing in at 6-foot-3, and he is mobile, as well. Taking a chance on him isn’t a bad move, especially given that he has room to grow.
Feleipe Franks (Arkansas)
Projected draft range: Fifth-undrafted
Why Franks fits: Franks is another quarterback who has been up and down in his career. As an underclassman at Florida, he showed flashes of stardom, while exhibiting the struggles that come with being a young quarterback.
After suffering a serious ankle injury and losing the starting job to Trask, Franks moved on to Arkansas as a graduate transfer in 2020. In his one season with the Razorbacks, Franks threw for 2,107 yards and 17 touchdowns, against four interceptions. And, he showed he still has potential.
Franks is mobile, with a big arm -- similar to Mond. Whether he has a higher ceiling than what he’s already shown will likely determine whether he’s selected in this year’s draft.
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