1. First round, 5th overall: Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
Ansah is a big risk, potentially even bigger reward pick for the Lions. This is a guy who is an athletic freak at 6’5″ 271 pounds who ran a 4.56 at the Scouting Combine, and you see that quickness and uphill speed on tape. Ansah needs to develop his overall game, as he is still relatively new to football, but for the Lions, I think he can come along slowly while still being a critical part of the Lions defense early on. He will be playing with Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley, two nasty and disruptive defensive tackles who command attention. Ansah will get a lot of one-on-one looks and it’s up to him to make the most of those. Ansah will come into Detroit and immediately be penciled in as the starting RDE. This is an incredibly talented pass rush prospect who simply has too much athletic ability to ignore for the size and position he plays, and I think after missing out on the top offensive tackles, the Lions had no choice but to take him at #5 overall. Not that he’s some kind of consolation prize or something, because many people felt like he was the best overall defensive player available in this draft. Detroit had a huge need at DE with Cliff Avril bolting for Seattle, and Kyle Vanden Bosch out as well. This is a good pick for Detroit, one that should pay immediate dividends.