Advertisement

Grading the Lions selection of Ennis Rakestraw in second round

Following the selection of Terrion Arnold in the first round, the Detroit Lions continued to bolster their cornerback corps by drafting Missouri CB Ennis Rakestraw with their second-round pick, initiating a comprehensive overhaul of last year’s cornerback room.

The decision to pick consecutive cornerbacks may have surprised observers, but Rakestraw embodies the qualities the Lions value in their players. Described as “super competitive” and willing to contribute in run defense, Rakestraw aligns perfectly with the Lions’ ethos of giving their all on the field to earn playing time.

Rakestraw’s skill set meshes well with the Lions’ press-man coverage scheme, having demonstrated versatility by playing both inside and outside at Missouri. His strong coverage abilities enable him to shadow opponents effectively, complemented by his physicality and relentless attitude.

However, concerns linger regarding Rakestraw’s lack of ball production, with just one interception in his college career, as well as his injury history, which includes a torn ACL and groin injury. Despite these drawbacks, Rakestraw’s short-area speed and sticky coverage skills offer promise for his NFL career.

The Lions likely view Rakestraw as a long-term investment, especially considering the thinning of their secondary group after the 2024 season. With the depth added during the offseason, the Lions can afford to ease Rakestraw into action, allowing him to develop and acclimate to the NFL.

Nevertheless, Rakestraw’s tenacity and determination suggest he’ll vie for playing time from the outset, setting the stage for an intriguing competition during training camp.

The Lions’ defensive back room now boasts an array of talented players, providing flexibility in defensive packages. Rakestraw’s addition reinforces the Lions’ desire for physical, aggressive cornerbacks, offering the potential for a formidable cornerback duo alongside Arnold for years to come.

Grade: B+

Story originally appeared on Lions Wire