The Lions were unable to get Lane Johnson or Eric Fisher, the two Left Tackles they were targeting. They then tried desperately to trade back for extra picks, but were unable to.
So, they had to use the pick they earned and they chose Ziggy Ansah, a Defensive End from BYU. The Lions coaching staff had a chance at the SEnior Bowl to work directly with Ansah, so the belief is that the talent level is already there and they understand EXACTLY what they are going to get.
Defensive End was certainly a need and the Lions obviously believe that Ansah was more help to the Dline than Dee Milliner would be to the Secondary. The major issues become the lack of experience that Ansah has as he has only played football for three years and that, despite all the weapons on offense, Matthew Stafford has to be given time to stand in the pocket and they did not improve the offensive line.
This pick is very risky in the top 5. Many “experts” have pegged Ansah as a Defensive Player of the Year type player in 2 to 3 years. However, there is considerable concern about him actually succeeding in the NFL due to complete lack of experience.
This pick screams “WIN NOW” out of Martin Mayhew, as he wants someone to step in and dominate immediately, and at 24 years old, Ansah is going to be a contribute now or cost Mayhew his job type of player.