The Detroit Lions Select Da’Shawn Hand In The Fourth Round Of The 2018 NFL Draft

Embed from Getty Images

The Detroit Lions Draft Da’Shawn Hand At Pick 114th In The 2018 NFL Draft.

The Lions addressed what was arguably their biggest need by drafting defensive end Da’Shawn Hand from Alabama after trading into the fourth round of the 2018 draft. The Detroit Lions gave up a third round pick in 2019 to move into the fourth round, making a deal with the New England Patriots.

Hand will be paired with fellow defensive end Ziggy Ansah in an attempt to provide a pass rush the Lions were sorely missing last season. With defensive tackle Haloti Ngata on his way out, Hand could be next to another former Alabama Crimson Tide player, A’Shawn Robinson.

During his time at Alabama, Hand finished with 71 total tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss, nine sacks, one pass deflection, and one forced fumble. He also won two championships with Alabama during his four years with them.

Embed from Getty Images

Why Did The Lions Draft Da’Shawn Hand?

The defensive line was the weakest part of the Detroit Lions defense in 2017. They ranked 20th in sacks and 15th in rushing yards allowed. Ngata’s departure left a gaping void as he was a good veteran presence on the team and on the defensive line. Hand won’t bring any experience like Ngata, but he can bring some power, which is needed along this defensive line.

The starting job won’t be given to him as defensive tackles Sylvester Williams and Akeem Spence might be able to have Hand start behind them and learn a few things or two before he can take the reins and become a full-time starter. When Detroit drafted Robinson in the second round of the 2016 draft, it was a steal as Robinson was a first-round talent, but even he didn’t start out when the season began, as he played in all 16 games, but only started in five. If he doesn’t win the starting job, Hand might take the same route as Robinson did in 2016, playing in every game, but starting in only a handful.

You can check out some of Hand’s highlights here.

Questions? Comments? Find me on Twitter @MrEasyStreet or in the Detroit Lions subreddit

More From The Detroit Lions Podcast