Detroit Lions 2014 Draft Preview: Justin Gilbert


So, is it just me, or does the NFL off-season always take WAY too long?

Well, hopefully I can help quench your football thirst a bit with a breakdown of some possible Detroit Lions draft prospects in 2014.  I plan on covering a couple prospects a week, rather than jam them all into one post.  If you guys have a prospect you’d like covered, drop me a line on our Facebook or on Twitter.  I am also going to be following the rules of mocks, no covering of any players that we would trade up for.  So Sammy Watkins will probably not get one of these [unless reader demand says otherwise].

So let’s get to it, I’m going to be covering Justin Gilbert first, since he seems to be the near unanimous pick that fans want to see at #10.


  • Elite Speed
  • Great in Man Coverage
  • Got “Burned” on only 16% of routes against him in man coverage
  • Strong, big frame, and long arms which help create a smaller window for the QB
  • Doesn’t hold or get “grabby” when he falls behind his receiver
  • Excellent leaping ability, can climb the ladder to make plays
  • Has a Natural feel for the game, great instincts


  • Didn’t play much press coverage, when he did, he couldn’t get a good hit on his receiver and would fall behind almost immediately
  • Stiff footwork, harder for him to defend quick routes [Digs, comebacks, etc.]
  • Doesn’t care to make plays against the run, tends to become passive and give up when a run develops
  • Not very good in zone coverage, “Burned” on roughly 30% of routes against him in zone
  • In zone coverage, gives the QB easy underneath routes, sits on the routes too long
  • Likes to drop his shoulder for the big hit instead of wrapping up
  • Immature at times, tries to coast through games on his athletic ability alone

Gilbert has been compared to guys like Patrick Peterson and Jonathan Joseph, a bigger corner with the physical tools needed to succeed at the next level.  He's a player that we could use right away to give our secondary a much needed boost in pass protection.  Aside from an altercation against West Virginia in which he threw some punches and was ejected, Gilbert doesn't have any glaring on field problems or off field character issues.  I believe that Gilbert's negatives can all be fixed with effort on his part as well as having coaching that will work with him.  I think if the Lions go this route at 10, that Gilbert could very well become a franchise type player who could be that leader on defense and in the secondary the Lions have so desperately needed for so long.

~Daniel Nowaczyk

Don't Believe it?  Watch some highlight tape Youtube

Next Prospect: Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix


  1. I'm just excited for the new season ahead..the lions are moving up to the big show ..I love what they did in the off season so far ..but look forward to the draft.I find whoever they pick up will be an asset to the team for years to come! Nows our time! Let it Shine!

  2. Trade down, we need lot's of help, WR,CB,S,DE,DT,LB,C, LG,QB,K,TE we need one of each of those positions in this draft for this team to have good depth and to prepare for guys leaving soon.

  3. Caldwell has said from the beginning "It is time to Win not build" so trade up and try to get Clowney or Mack we need Defense more. We can get offensive help in the later rounds plus add defense.

  4. Not a fan of trading away picks, but if we end with Watkins hopefully it won't cost a lot of picks. I'd be happy with Watkins, Evans, Becham Jr or Ebron with the 1st pick and then concentrate on defense for the rest of the draft,LB's and OLB's. My top 2 favorite picks are Watkins and Becham Jr

  5. This just in, breaking news: The Detroit Lions have traded every draft pick they have for this draft and next 3 drafts to move all the way up to number 9 and select... the kicker from St. Valley State community college.
    We can all agree that the kicking game was what cost us a playoff birth last year so this move makes perfect sense if you are the Detroit Lions.

  6. Drafting Watkins will be a good move but not so much if Stafford doesn't improve significantly. Really need secondary help.

  7. I just hope and pray.....the Lions don't screw it up and trade up for Watkins! I pray....Maynew isn't that stupid! They need to add on DEFENSE.....CB, LB, Safety, name a few!

  8. I think so Lions will get Sammy Watkins in the first round tonight. Go Lions!!


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I cover Soccer and the Detroit Lions for Detroit Sports Nation. I love my fiance, my family, my pups, sports, cooking and video games.