It is no secret the Detroit Lions must upgrade virtually every position on their roster.
Heading into the 2021 NFL Draft, new general manager Brad Holmes and the Lions' front office must weigh some challenging decisions, including whether or not to invest in a wide receiver with the No. 7 overall pick.
Could the Lions target a quarterback?
While it is possible the organization looks to draft and develop a young signal-caller, it appears more likely that one of the talented wideouts available will be selected by the Lions.
In a recent ESPN article, the various wideouts were paired with organizations deemed to be the "best fits" for them, based on scheme and team needs.
For Alabama wideout DeVonta Smith, the Lions present an opportunity for the 2020 Heisman Trophy winner to shine -- and sooner rather than later.
"Smith makes a lot of sense -- he would immediately upgrade a barren wide receiver room in Detroit. He has No. 1 upside, given his playing speed and strength. That's the easy juice he brings to the route tree, the instant acceleration within the stem to create separation," NFL writer Matt Bowen explains.
"With the offensive structure I anticipate under new coordinator Anthony Lynn -- which could lean on more play-action throws for quarterback Jared Goff -- the Lions can scheme for Smith. Use motion and reduced formations to get him off the ball clean, while catering to his toughness on deep overs, in-breakers and vertical shot plays," Bowen addeThe tape tells us that Smith has the chance to develop quickly in the pro game as a three-level target, and the Lions need receivers with dynamic traits to build this offense under a new coaching staff. They'll get that with Smith."
Smith had a phenomenal season with the Crimson Tide in 2020. During his Heisman-winning regular season, the 6-foot-1, 175-pound wideout recorded 98 catches for 1,511 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Although many analysts and pundits favor Ja'Marr Chase over Smith at this point, the talented wideout will have an opportunity in 2021 to prove what he can accomplish in the league when he is selected in the first round of this year's draft.
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