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Lions mock draft: Dream picks and reality

Dream Pick

Tim Twentyman: Penn State running back Saquon Barkley
Remember last week when Bob Quinn was asked who he'd take at No. 1, and he said he didn't want to say in case he moved up that far? Well, he'd probably have to do that in order to snatch my dream pick.

The Lions have struggled running the ball with any kind of consistency since Barry Sanders retired. I think Barkley is a once-in-a-decade kind of player who would step right in and make the Lions one of the most feared offenses in the NFL.

Mike O'Hara: Barkley
If you're going to dream, dream big – and I'm trying to hit the lottery. My dream pick is running back Saquon Barkley of Penn State. He'd make everybody more effective – Matthew Stafford, his receivers and, of course, the running game.

Barkley isn't likely to be drafted any lower than sixth overall, which means it would take a lot for the Lions to move up from No. 20 to get him. That's for GM Bob Quinn and his staff to figure out to make a dream come true.

Tori Petry: UTSA defensive end Marcus Davenport
With all the comparisons Davenport has drawn to Ziggy Ansah in the pre-draft process, I think he'd be the perfect piece to complement Ansah on the opposite side of the defensive line. Plus, new defensive line coach Bo Davis was Davenport's DL coach at UTSA last year - the connections make too much sense.

I'm counting him as my dream pick not because he's the draft's best player, but because he's a realistic fit I still don't think will last until pick number 20.

Editor's Pick: Barkley
Dream big or go home.

Realistic Pick

Twentyman: Alabama defensive tackle Da'Ron Payne
New head coach Matt Patricia said at the Combine he prefers to build his defense from the ball out. Addressing the defensive tackle position is as close to the ball as he can get.

Payne is a terrific blend of strength and athleticism at the position. He dominated the line of scrimmage against Clemson and Georgia in the college semifinal and final this past season, and then had a terrific Combine. He's a 311-pound man who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.91 seconds. Payne's 1.67-second split was one hundredth of a second faster than that of Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa, who went No. 3 overall in the 2016 draft. That's a big man that can get off the ball.

O'Hara: Florida defensive tackle Taven Bryan
I'm sticking with the position I've projected for the Lions at No. 20 in my first three mock drafts, but the name has changed.

Based on who's available this year to give the defensive line the help it needs, the best bet is an athletic tackle with the ability to get penetration. I gave the Lions Maurice Hurst of Michigan in my first two mocks and Da'Ron Payne of Alabama with No. 3.

No. 4 is for real – written in ink ...

Petry: Boston College defensive end Harold Landry
The Lions are in need of a pass rush, and with Ziggy only secured for one year for now, they need to think about the future of this position. Landry is a realistic pick at 20 that can provide the boost they need opposite of Ansah right away, as well as provide the basis of their pass rush down the road. Defensive coordinator Paul Pasqualoni will know how to use him as he was Landry's DL coach last year at Boston College.

Editor's Pick: Michigan defensive tackle Maurice Hurst
The Lions don't have to look far for help at defensive tackle, assuming everything checks out with his medicals.

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