Ziggy Ansah Selected No. 5 by Detroit Lions
Had one of the top three offensive tackles fallen to Detroit at No. 5, it would have been hard for the Lions to pass. Jeff Backus retired, Gosder Cherilus left in free agency, and all indications are that the Lions would prefer to either use Riley Reiff at right tackle or a guard spot.
But Eric Fisher, Luke Joeckel and Lane Johnson all came off the board in the top four picks, and the Lions wisely decided not to spend more picks to trade up. Thus, Ziggy Ansah was the pick.
Ansah fits a clear need — Detroit also lost Kyle Vanden Bosch and Cliff Avril this offseason and, aside from Jason Jones, had not moved very aggressively to replace them. All signs pointed toward the Lions addressing defensive end in the draft.
How well will Ansah’s raw talent translate to the NFL? Well, the Lions are banking on the Ghana native coming in and being able to use his speed and motor to collapse the pocket out of the wide-nine; he’ll have help with Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley pushing in the middle. As Ansah continues to mature as a player and fills out physically, he could become dominant.
The worry is how long that development will take.
Grade: B. The Lions swing for the fences at a position of need. This all depends on how much of his potential Ansah can fill. Should Detroit have gone cornerback here?