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Who should be Detroit's selection?


At this point in the draft process, teams are finalizing their draft boards and compiling all information put together by scouts.

If you have the first pick overall, now is also the time to start thinking contracts. That's exactly what the Lions are doing, according to Tom Kowalski of

Although no player was specified by Lions president Tom Lewand, there are three obvious options. They are Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry, Baylor offensive tackle Jason Smith and Georgia quarterback Matt Stafford.

Each player is good, but certainly not a once-in-a-lifetime player. Still, it doesn't seem like Detroit will trade the pick, especially given the high price tag attached to the No. 1 pick.

That's where Mocking the Draft comes in. Here's a look at each and how they would help Detroit the most.

Aarron Curry
Why they need him:
In 2008, the Lions finished last in the league in points and yards allowed. Leading tackler Paris Lenon is an unrestricted free agent. Curry is unquestionably the best defensive player in the draft.

Why they don't: The team just traded for outside linebacker Julian Peterson, so Curry would likely have to shift to inside linebacker. A linebacker hasn't been taken first overall since 1988 when the Falcons took Aundray Bruce.

Matt Stafford
Why they need him:
The Lions had three quarterbacks throw 100 or more passes last season. Each had just as many interceptions as touchdowns. Each completed less than 57 percent of their passes. None led the Lions to a single win. Five members of the Lions' front office attended Stafford's pro day.

Why they don't: Stafford is no sure thing. There are questions about his decision making and underclassmen quarterbacks are hit or miss. Out of the three, it's likely Stafford will want the most money.

Jason Smith
Why they need him:
Last year, the Lions gave up 52 sacks. The team's leading rusher, Kevin Smith, didn't crack 1,000 yards on the ground. By all indications, Smith impressed the Detroit front office in a March 9 meeting. Smith could have the best price tag because the Lions could theoretically negotiate him against Eugene Monroe.

Why they don't: There is an abundance of offensive line talent in this draft. Coming out of a wide spread offense at Baylor, does Smith have what it takes to put a hand down every play and handle the strong defensive ends of the NFC North?

Sign the Lions still don't get it: "Whenever the muffin rises above the tin, it's time to eat," Lewand said about signing the top pick. I'm not sure what that means, but muffin tops are delicious.

What the fans say: As of this writing, 39 percent of Lions fans voting at Pride of Detroit say Curry. That's followed by 24 percent for Stafford and 20 percent for Smith.

What the draftniks say: Quickly scanning the Hail Redskins mock database, most still have Stafford as the choice.

The verdict: Stafford should be the choice. Curry is somewhat unproven playing middle linebacker and that is too much money for a linebacker. A left tackle could be found with the team's second pick in the first round, so that eliminates Smith.

Just picture Stafford throwing the deep ball to Calvin Johnson. Sounds like a perfect match.