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Brad Holmes
Detroit Lions

Should Lions Trade No. 2 Pick in 2022 NFL Draft?

  • Justin Melo
  • February 3, 2022
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The Detroit Lions are open for business. General manager Brad Holmes expressed his willingness to trade the No. 2 overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft should the appropriate offer reveal itself while speaking with the NFL Network's Tom Pelissero in Mobile, Alabama at this week's Senior Bowl. "I'm never scared to move around [the draft board], and we're definitely always open for business," Holmes said. Detroit's willingness to participate in such trade discussions makes sense on the surface when analyzing their roster alongside the current crop of talent expected to be drafted in the top half. Several high-end players are expected to be available at No. 2 overall. The possibilities include Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux, Michigan's Aidan Hutchinson, Alabama’s Evan Neal, NC State's Ikem Ekwonu, and Notre Dame’s Kyle Hamilton. A team interested in securing the services of a franchise left tackle or premium pass rusher may express interest in acquiring the second overall selection. It’s worth noting the Lions are unlikely to have much interest in drafting Neal or Ekwonu after selecting Penei Sewell in the top 10 a year ago—a move that limits their options at the top and is likely to increase their willingness to listen to trade offers. The Lions went a disappointing 3-13-1 in their first year under Holmes and head coach Dan Campbell. A resilient roster largely built via a mixture of veteran journeymen and inexperienced players fought hard for the tough-natured Campbell, but there's no denying the Lions badly required an injection of talent all throughout their 53-man roster, and upgrades are expected to occur throughout the impending offseason. Acquiring a plethora of both current and future draft capital by trading away the second-overall pick would represent an ideal way for the Lions to begin rebuilding a poor roster. Holmes is no stranger to participating and executing in blockbuster trade discussions. Prior to taking charge of the Lions, Holmes spent the previous 17 seasons as a member of the Los Angeles Rams' front office and scouting department. Holmes served as Los Angeles' Director of College Scouting when the Rams executed a shocking trade with the Tennessee Titans that allowed them to select Jared Goff with the No. 1 overall selection in 2016. The Goff trade was just one of many big-time deals Holmes was privy to while working Rams under general manager Les Snead. Holmes is no stranger to the parameters and discussions that would surround such a deal. Those discussions could begin to take shape at this week's Senior Bowl, where Holmes, Campbell, and the Lions' coaching staff have taken charge of the American Team roster that features a pair of potential first-round quarterbacks in Liberty's Malik Willis and North Carolina's Sam Howell. This year's quarterback class, however, fails to include a quarterback worthy of making a top-three selection, despite possessing at least five intriguing, first-round hopeful signal-callers. It likely serves as a driving force behind Holmes' willingness to trade the pick. Holmes and the Lions badly need to acquire playmakers at various positions this offseason, including wide receiver, defensive end, and cornerback. Executing a blockbuster trade that involves the second overall selection represents the best way for the Lions to address their needs.