By Ashley Dunkak
CBS DETROIT – Despite a visit to team headquarters last week from veteran safety James Ihedigbo, the Detroit Lions still need help in the secondary, and now it appears the team is checking out some younger options.
More than likely, the Lions will still sign a safety with NFL experience, and it could still be Ihedigbo.
However, the possibility exists that if the Lions cannot get wide receiver Mike Evans or a similarly desirable offensive player with their No. 10 pick, they could take a safety. Alabama’s Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Louisville’s Calvin Pryor top the list of rookies-to-be at that position, and the Lions have been looking at both of them.
After the release of Louis Delmas earlier this offseason, the remaining safeties on the Lions roster include Glover Quin, Don Carey, DeJon Gomes and Akwasi Owusu-Ansah. Quin started opposite Delmas and recorded 57 tackles, while Carey and Gomes played in most games as backups and combined for 39 tackles.
The Lions surrendered fourth-quarter lead after fourth-quarter lead in 2013, and the team’s pass defense ranked low in the league. To help shore up the secondary, Detroit could also use a solid presence at corner, and the analysts of CBSSports.com have the Lions taking Oklahoma State cornerback Justin Gilbert with their No. 10 pick for that reason. That group has Evans, Clinton-Dix and Pryor all going with lower picks.
Detroit still has about two months to decide on its course of action; the NFL draft does not begin until Thursday, May 8.