NFC North defenses are waiting with baited breath to see if the Detroit Lions can come through on their promise.
According to multiple reports, the Lions have made it clear to Sammy Watkins “they are very serious” about trading up to draft him.
From talking with Sammy Watkins today: The #Lions have made it clear to him they are very serious about potentially trading up for him.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) May 6, 2014
Spoke to Sammy Watkins for an @FOXSports1 sitdown a little while ago. Thinks Lions interest is legit. “It’s kinda serious.”
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) May 6, 2014
The Lions’ interest in Watkins dates all the way back to early March when the team was contemplating moving up from No. 10 in order to grab the draft’s consensus No. 1 wideout.
The National Football Post reported two teams are looking to trade up to take Watkins, and names the St. Louis Rams and the Jacksonville Jaguars, who hold the second and third picks, respectively, as potential trading partners.
St. Louis has openly shopped the No. 2 pick, while the Jaguars are thought to be in the mix to draft Watkins when they’re on the clock. And it remains to be seen what the team would have to give up in order to move down into one of the top three spots.
Lions General Manager Martin Mayhew has made no secret of his praise for Watkins. Last month, he, along with Vice Chairman Bill Ford Jr. and wide receivers Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate, met with Watkins in Detroit. During Monday’s pre-draft news conference, Mayhew expressed his admiration for the wideout.
Via the Detroit Free Press:
“All the players that are really, really good, I’m enamored with all of those guys,” Mayhew said. “And the ones that aren’t so good, I’m not enamored with.
“We like (Watkins) as a football player, so we did our due diligence on him, as we’ve done on (Jadeveon) Clowney and other guys.”
“Sammy’s a very talented guy. He would fit us; he can make plays. His track record speaks for itself, I think.”
The Lions have needs in the defensive secondary, but are believed to want to add to their receiving corps as well. A trio of Johnson, Tate, and Watkins would give the Lions one of — if not — the best receiving units in all of football.