North Carolina C Russell Bodine
For any team looking for a solid offensive lineman, this draft seems to have quite a few good ones scattered throughout. This draft has been commonly referred to as a deep draft with a boatload of talent scattered throughout. So it comes as no surprise that the Detroit Lions are expected to grab at least one offensive lineman at some point in the draft. They have even brought in center / guard players for one of their pre-draft interviews. So with the Lions exploring their options on the offensive line, we will explore what they need and who I think their best target should be.
The Detroit Lions have needed a new center for quite some time. It was thought that former first round pick Dominic Raiola was not good enough to continue to be the Lions starter. This past season, he proved otherwise. He played very well, but he is also ageing. The Lions re-signed him to a short term deal this past offseason but they desperately need to find their center of the future. They also could use a new left guard because Rob Sims will not be around forever. So it comes as no surprise that they looked at former USC center / guard Marcus Martin. I think they should look at Russell Bodine.
Former North Carolina center Russell Bodine played both guard and center in college. He registered one of the highest bench press numbers in the combine, hoisting two hundred and twenty five pounds forty two times. He stands six foot three inches and weighs three hundred and ten pounds. He is credited for being solid in his upper body and having tremendous strength. Some of the knocks on him though are in regards to his movement. Pundits and scouts alike see Bodine as having problems with moving too far out to block and transitioning from one defender to another. While these concerns are very real, he could grow into a better player at the NFL level. It is also possible that his lack of movement is related to his confidence in his teammates or his offensive scheme.
Either way, Bodine will be drafted. It is likely though that he will be a lower round pick which works in favor of Detroit. They have other pressing needs that they would like to use the higher round picks on so it would be beneficial to the Lions to grab a center or guard in the lower rounds. Considering Bodine’s versatility, why would you not want him to be the pick?