Due to their impressive run to the NFC Championship game, the Lions are no longer flying under the radar. Brad Holmes and Dan Campbell now face the responsibility of providing the organization with the necessary talent to take the next step in the upcoming season.

A significant area of need for the Lions is the cornerback position, particularly the boundary spot. However, Holmes has emphasized fit over need in the organization’s drafting approach.

Consequently, the Lions may opt to bypass selecting a cornerback early in the Draft in favor of top players at other positions. Should they choose this approach, they could target a cornerback later in the draft.

Here are three cornerbacks projected to be drafted later in the Draft that the Lions should consider in April:

1. Kamal Hadden, Tennessee:
Hadden had an outstanding campaign before a season-ending shoulder injury in 2023. He was one of the highest-graded coverage corners by Pro Football Focus with a 90.4 coverage grade before his injury. Despite the setback, he emerged as the Volunteers’ top cornerback, not allowing a touchdown catch in his final season and finishing his career with six interceptions. Hadden’s development is evident as he transitioned from two seasons as a rotational player to breaking out in 2023. Standing at 6-foot-1, he exhibits a keen ability to play on the boundary, combining good length with strength and speed.

The upcoming NFL Combine will provide an opportunity for Hadden to showcase his skills and reveal his progress in the rehab process. Beginning his college career at Independence Community College before transferring to Tennessee in 2021, Hadden is also a Michigan native who played at River Rouge High School.

2. Willie Drew, Virginia State:
A transfer from James Madison and the 2023 CIAA Defensive Player of The Year, Drew showcased his abilities with six interceptions and 34 tackles in a solid all-around season at the Division II level. Despite being 5-foot-11, Drew demonstrates intriguing coverage skills and competitiveness in the run game. His invitation to the NFL Combine presents an opportunity to prove his abilities against top prospects.

Given Holmes’ awareness of lower-level prospects and his willingness to select players flying under the radar, Drew is an intriguing name to follow throughout the pre-Draft process.

3. Qwan’tez Stiggers, CFL:
Stiggers stands out as one of the most unlikely Draft stories, having not played a snap of college football. After spending time in the Fan Controlled Football League, he played for the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL last year. Stiggers had a remarkable season, recording 53 tackles and five interceptions, earning him the title of CFL Most Outstanding Rookie. This performance led to his selection for the East-West Shrine Bowl.

At the event, Stiggers impressed scouts with his physicality and solid coverage skills, standing out and competing well against high-level competition. His performance in the CFL makes him an enticing developmental prospect worthy of evaluation at the NFL level.

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