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TWENTYMAN: 10 prospects who make sense for Lions at No. 29

NFL Draft week is finally here and that means Lions GM Brad Holmes and the 31 other general managers around the NFL are making their final preparations for the three-day event kicking off with Thursday night's first round in Detroit.

The Lions have seven total picks, one in each of the first three rounds, one in the fifth, two in the sixth and one in the seventh. This is the most complete of a roster Holmes has had entering the draft, which means he has options. He could move up to make a play at one of the elite defenders who might start to drop with this being an offense-heavy draft at the top. Maybe he finds there's a group of players similarly graded and he gets an offer to move back, gain an asset, and still come away with a player they like early in Day 2.

If Holmes stays put at No. 29, here's a look at 10 players who could be on the board late in the first round that make sense for the Lions:

1. OL Graham Barton, Duke

Barton just might be the most versatile offensive lineman in this draft. He is predicted to go somewhere in the 20s. With teams having to make hard decisions with gameday roster restrictions his kind of versatility can be an asset for a team. He played center at Duke during his freshman season and kicked out to left tackle the last three seasons. He projects to be an athletic interior lineman in the NFL with the ability to bounce out and hold his own at tackle if needed. There's value in that.

2. EDGE Chop Robinson, Penn State

Robinson had a terrific Combine, running in the 4.4s at over 250 pounds and showing he can also play in space. He's an athletic freak with the potential to be a good complement to the players the Lions have assembled opposite Pro Bowl edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson.

3. CB Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

McKinstry was a three-year starter at Alabama. He has all the physical tools, he's a smart player and he plays with discipline.

4. DT Jer'Zhan Newton, Illinois

Newton is an athletic and powerful interior defender who made his living playing in the opponent's backfield the last few years at Illinois. He tied for the national lead in QB pressures among interior defenders last season with 44, according to Pro Football Focus. That was 15 more pressures than any other interior defender in the Big Ten last season.

5. WR Adonai Mitchell, Texas

Mitchell had one of the more impressive Combine performances, measuring in at 6-foot-2 and running the 40 in 4.34 seconds with explosive traits in the vertical jump and broad jump. He can stretch the field with his speed but also showed good skills going up and getting 50-50 balls. He could be a matchup weapon in the red zone. He caught 55 passes for 845 yards with 11 touchdowns last season for the Longhorns.

6. CB Cooper DeJean, Iowa

DeJean might be the most versatile defensive player in this entire draft. The reigning Big Ten Defensive Back of the Year and Return Specialist of the Year should be able to play both cornerback spots and safety at the next level. He was named a finalist for college football's top defensive player last year despite missing the end of the season with a broken fibula suffered mid-November in practice. Now with the kickoff back in play, he provides value there too.

7. IOL Jackson Powers-Johnson, Oregon

It doesn't take long watching Powers-Johnson play with a toughness, edge and nastiness to know he would be a fit in Detroit's offensive line room. He won the Rimington Trophy as the nation's top center in 2023 and has the ability to play both center and guard at the NFL level. He wasn't credited with allowing a sack in his first season as a full-time starter last year.

8. WR Keon Coleman, Florida State

Coleman has a huge catch radius with his 6-foot-3 frame and 38-inch vertical. He can go up and catch the football. His college tape is filled with highlight-reel receptions. He was one of the best high school basketball players in the state of Louisiana, and those skills translate to the football field with his quick feet, body control and leaping ability. He caught 11 touchdowns for Florida State last season and might have the best hands of any pass catcher in this draft.

View photos from offseason workouts on Monday, April 22, 2024.

9. EDGE Darius Robinson, Missouri

Robinson is a versatile defender who started his career playing defensive tackle and shifted to the edge in 2023 where he had 8.5 sacks and 14.0 tackles for loss. Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn loves that kind of versatility upfront. Robinson has terrific length and strength in his toolbox and the pass-rush game will improve if new Lions defensive line coach Terrell Williams gets to work with him.

10. IOL Zach Frazier, West Virginia

A four-time high school wrestling champion with four years of starting experience and a nasty mentality in the run game. Sounds like a Dan Campbell guy. He started at left guard and center in college. He has a high football IQ and a powerful frame. He understands leverage and football from his wrestling days and uses them to his advantage on the football field.

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