Lions take Alabama DT A'Shawn Robinson

Posted at 8:17 PM, Apr 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-29 20:48:33-04

The Detroit Lions are trying to bolster both lines under new general manager Bob Quinn.

Detroit selected Alabama defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson in the second round with the No. 46 overall pick of the NFL draft Friday night. The Lions addressed another pressing need by taking Ohio State offensive tackle Taylor Decker in the middle of the first round 24 hours earlier.

Quinn acknowledged he plans to avoid risky picks this year, opting to be safe rather than sorry.

Detroit drafted Decker to help the team protect Matthew Stafford better when he passes and to improve the league's worst rushing offense.

The Lions had a pair of intriguing options at defensive tackle when it was on the clock, and both played at Alabama. They chose Robinson over his former teammate Jarran Reed.

The 6-foot-4, 307-pound Robinson is regarded as a powerful player and a team leader, who stops the run well and is relatively limited as a pass-rushing lineman.

The Lions went into the three-day draft with 10 selections, including a pair in the fifth round and a trio of slots in the sixth round. The franchise was given a third-round pick, 95th overall, for losing defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and a fifth-round selection for losing Nick Fairley in free agency last year.

Detroit signed Haloti Ngata last year to attempt to replace Suh, and re-signed the 32-year-old defensive tackle early in free agency. He started last year next to Caraun Reid, a fifth-round in 2015. Robinson should have a shot to start, possibly replacing Reid.

Quinn expected to mesh drafting the best player available with addressing needs. With his first two picks, he clearly took players who can be plugged in to significant roles as rookies for a team coming off its 13th losing season in 15 years.