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Detroit Lions NFL Draft Odds: Defense Priority For NFC North Hopefuls

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com

Adam Thompson  | 4 mins

Detroit Lions NFL Draft Odds: Defense Priority For NFC North Hopefuls

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After going 3-13-1 in Dan Campbell’s first season as head coach, the Detroit Lions made an upward leap into contention in 2022, going 9-8 and missing the NFL Playoffs by a half-game. 

Detroit is hoping to keep the momentum going, and it has two first-round picks in the 2023 NFL Draft to help push the franchise along to the next level. It starts with the No. 6 overall pick, thanks to the trade of Matthew Stafford to the Rams in 2021. 

Bookies.com oddsmaker Adam Thompson has used his resources of NFL contacts developed over 20 years covering the league and the NFL Draft to create his hypothetical NFL futures odds on who gets selected No. 6 overall by the Lions in the 2023 NFL Draft. 

Detroit Lions 1st Round Pick Odds (No. 6)

PlayerCollegeOddsImplied Probability
Jalen Carter, DLGeorgia+30025.0%
Christian Gonzalez, CBOregon+32523.5%
Devon Witherspoon, CBIllinois+35022.2%
Tyree Wilson, EdgeTexas Tech+80011.1%
Will Anderson Jr., EdgeAlabama+9509.5%
The FieldN/A+48017.3%

Odds are projected and do not reflect any odds that may be available at legal betting sites or betting apps.

Who Will The Detroit Lions Take In 2023 NFL Draft?

Detroit is available around +2800 to win Super Bowl 58 on NFL futures markets. One year ago, the Lions were +15000 to win it all. What a turnaround. 

The Lions improved so dramatically mainly because their offense improved dramatically. The Jared Goff-led O jumped from 22nd in scoring and 25th in yards gained to 4th and 5th, respectively. 

The defense, meanwhile, allowed more points than any other team in the NFL, and the fifth-most yards. For a team that ranked 29th vs. the pass and 30th vs. the run, help is needed at all three levels. 

So, defense is the clear priority for the Lions at No. 6. “Best available” defensive player could be the Lions’ approach here, and that would make sense. 

Christian Gonzalez Odds To join Detroit Lions

Alabama edge rusher Will Anderson Jr., Texas Tech edge Tyree Wilson and Georgia lineman Jalen Carter are considered the top three defensive players in the field. With QBs expected to be taken in three of the first five selections, at least one of those defensive standouts will be available at No. 6. 

Anderson was called arguably the best Crimson Tide defensive player the last 30 years – that’s high praise. The 6-6, 270-pound Wilson has elite size and athleticism for the position. Carter is considered a special talent, though his part in a drag race that ended in death has raised character questions. 

Oregon cornerback Christian Gonzalez is considered among the most-elite defensive back in the field, and No. 6 isn’t a stretch. Though, will the Lions shy away from using a high pick on a CB? They got burned when they selected Jeff Okudah at No. 3 overall in the 2020 NFL Draft. He has yet to live up to the lofty expectations, and good corners should be around when the Lions pick again at No. 18.

Illinois' Devon Witherspoon has vaulted to the top of some teams' cornerback charts. He should be available at No. 6. If it comes down to Gonzalez and Witherspoon, which does Detroit prefer? 

The Field is led by players on offense, notably a QB of the future or a tight end for the present. 

It isn’t out of the realm of possibility they use No. 6 to find their next QB. Of the four top-tier QBs in the draft, Anthony Richardson of Florida, C.J. Stroud of Ohio State and Will Levis of Kentucky are all candidates to be available when Detroit is on the clock. Goff has just two years left on his deal at just over $30 million in cap space annually. Allowing any of these rookies to sit behind Goff for two seasons could be an ideal situation. 

Tight end is the other area of need for Detroit, though it could get one of three possible first-rounders at No. 18. 

Complete List Of Lions 2023 Draft Picks

  • Round 1 (Pick 6 from LAR)
  • Round 1 (Pick 18)
  • Round 2 (Pick 48)
  • Round 2 (Pick 55, from MIN)
  • Round 3 (Pick 81)
  • Round 5 (Pick 152)
  • Round 5 (Pick 159, from JAX)
  • Round 6 (Pick 183, from DEN)
  • Round 6 (Pick 194)

About the Author

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com
Adam Thompson
NFL writer and expert Adam Thompson joined Bookies.com in 2019 after a successful run as senior handicapper for SportsLine and CBSSports.com. He's long been established as one of the nation's premier handicappers, specializing in the NFL where he's hit on more than 60% over the past three years. Adam's NBA, PGA and horse racing picks have also produced major winners over the last 12 months. His customized NFL and NBA odds for players and teams have been picked up by hundreds of websites over the past year.