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MOCK DRAFT WATCH: RB, DL, OL all in play for Lions

At the end of this month the NFL Draft will kick off in Dallas (April 26-28), and 32 teams will have an opportunity to get younger and more talented.

The draft is fast approaching, which means the mock draft cycle will be ramping up their final predictions in the coming weeks.

Here’s an update on what the most recent mock drafts think the Lions will do with the 20th overall pick:

Daniel Jeremiah, NFL.com

Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

Why: Bryan can play any position on the defensive line and he'd be a fun toy for new head coach Matt Patricia.

Bucky Brooks, NFL.com

James Daniels, C, Iowa

Why: The ultra-athletic interior blocker would shore up the Lions’ offensive line as a mobile pivot with sweet feet and a high football IQ.

Charley Casserly, NFL.com

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Why: The Lions go from having a poor running game to making it a strength of the team with the selection of Guice.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com

James Daniels, C, Iowa

Why: Finding a quality pivot is important for Matthew Stafford and the run game to operate efficiently.

Charles Davis, NFL.com

Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama

Why: Tough to move in the run game and has good pass-rush skills up the middle. He had enough agility to intercept a pass and catch a TD pass in successive series in the national championship game Lions need help in the defensive interior.

Lance Zierlein, NFL.com

Harold Landry, DE, Boston College

Why: Detroit lands an edge rusher with the ability to play standing up or with a hand in the ground for new head coach/defensive mastermind, Matt Patricia.

Peter Schrager, NFL.com

Mike McGlinchey, T, Notre Dame

Why: Coming off Notre Dame's pro day last week, I had more people texting me about McGlinchey than his former teammate/all-world guard Quenton Nelson. Love this fit for Detroit, a team that shuffled its offensive line a bunch due to injuries in 2017.

Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN.com

Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

Why: This pick is all about projection, as Bryan is a freakish talent who didn't produce to his ability at Florida; he had only 5.5 career sacks. But there were games (turn on the Texas A&M tape from 2017) in which he looked like a top-10 pick. He would play 3-technique for the Lions and new coach Matt Patricia. Bryan is raw, but he could be a star given time (and coaching) to develop. Linebacker and cornerback also could be options for Detroit here, and running back shouldn't be out of the question.

Todd McShay, ESPN.com

Sony Michel, RB, Georgia

Why: A lot of buzz surrounding Michel right now. He'd be a great addition to the backfield with Matthew Stafford.

Dane Brugler, NFL Draft Scout

Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

Why: Detroit needs reinforcements on the defensive line to provide more of a pass rush, and Bryan is a candidate to do that. One of the few three-technique defensive tackles in this draft with Pro Bowl potential, Bryan is a plus athlete who showed steady improvement since he arrived in Gainesville.

Rob Rang, NFL Draft Scout

James Daniels, C, Iowa

Why: With starting center Travis Swanson exploring his options in free agency, the Lions could look to the draft for a replacement. Daniels possesses rare quickness and length for an interior offensive lineman, projecting as a Day One starter.

Chris Trapasso, CBSSports.com

Harold Landry, DE, Boston College

Why: The Lions tagged Ziggy Ansah, which is good news for their defensive front. Will he be on the roster in 2019? Probably not. Landry isn't a traditional 4-3 end, but new head coach Matt Patricia is fine with utilizing different fronts.

R.J. White, CBSSports.com

Joshua Jackson, CB, Iowa

Why: The Lions re-signed Nevin Lawson and brought in Deshawn Shead, but neither should prevent them from selecting a potential starter at the position across from Darius Slay should the right opportunity present itself. Matt Patricia gets a ball hawk with this pick who led the nation in interceptions last year.

Will Brinson, CBSSports.com

Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama

Why: The Lions can find a long-term anchor for the middle of Matt Patricia's defense in the first round with this draft class.

Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com

Joshua Jackson, CB, Iowa

Why: Darius Slay is one of the NFL's best young corners and Jackson has the physical attributes to become a force opposite him in a division that features Aaron Rodgers and now Kirk Cousins.

Pete Prisco, CBSSports.com

Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama

Why: They need to get another power player inside in their defense. They could also go for a pass rusher here, but Payne would be better value.

Jared Dubin, CBSSports.com

Marcus Davenport, DE, UTSA

Why: As ever, the Lions are still in need of pass-rush help. The last time they took an elite athlete up front with an early pick, it worked out pretty well for them: they got Ezekiel Ansah. Here, they finally get him some help.

Nate Davis, USA Today

Sony Michel, RB, Georgia

Why: Alvin Kamara comparison he seems to invite is apt and would greatly enhance an offense that's gotten little capability or reliability from its backs. Michel and LeGarrette Blount would be a potent tandem.

Nick Klopsis, Newsday

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Why: The Lions had the NFL’s worst rushing offense in 2017 with just 76.3 yards per game. They signed LeGarrette Blount but could use another big-play back to complement the powerful Blount and pass-catching Theo Riddick. Derrius Guice runs with excellent balance and a great mix of power, speed and agility, and he can make defenders miss in the open field.

Dean Tomlinson, Bleacher Report

Harold Landry, DE, Boston College

Why: The Detroit Lions were starved for anything that resembled a consistent pass rush in 2017. They ranked 20th with 35 sacks, most of which came from defensive end Ezekiel Ansah, who was retained with a franchise tag. However, even Ansah's production was wildly unpredictable. He rebounded from a poor 2016 (just two sacks) by taking down the quarterback 12 times in 2017. But those sacks came in quick bursts followed by silence. There were three games when he finished with three sacks, which added up to three quarters of his 2017 total. And then he logged seven games without any sacks. The Lions need to find a running mate for Ansah—another source of pocket pressure for when he goes cold. That can come from Harold Landry, the edge-rusher out of Boston College who struggled through an ankle injury in 2017 and played just nine games but in 2016 erupted for 16.5 sacks and 22 tackles for loss. And as Zierlein noted, even in that shortened 2017 season, Landry was still effective as a run defender while tallying 38 stops.

Vinnie Lyer, Sporting News

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Why: The Lions have vowed to field a more legitimate running game in 2018. That should also mean they're thinking about another offensive line upgrade with this pick, but it would not be shocking if Guice were to be selected this high. He would allow Detroit to officially give up on Ameer Abdullah and would be the workhorse ahead of new veteran backup LeGarrette Blount and pass-catching Theo Riddick.

Eric Galko, Sporting News

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Why: The Lions are clear in their desire to upgrade their rushing attack this offseason, but they haven’t finished the job. Guice, the draft’s second best running back, would give this team the difference-maker its group of rotational backs doesn’t offer.

Dan Kadar, SB Nation

Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

Why: The Lions added Sylvester Williams to go along with A’Shawn Robinson on the defensive line. But both of those players are known more for stuffing the run and occupying gaps than creating pressure. Detroit still needs a player who can get off blocks and get after the quarterback. That is Bryan’s specialty.

Albert Breer, SI.com

Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville

Why: Alexander’s big week at the combine has propelled him into the first-round conversation, and the Lions need a corner to pair with Darius Slay.

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