Eric Ebron, drafted before Odell Beckham and other stars, gets released by Lions

Shutdown Corner
<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/teams/det/" data-ylk="slk:Detroit Lions">Detroit Lions</a> tight end <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/27538/" data-ylk="slk:Eric Ebron">Eric Ebron</a> (85) walks on the field before an NFL football game against the <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/teams/cin/" data-ylk="slk:Cincinnati Bengals">Cincinnati Bengals</a> in Cincinnati, Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Detroit Lions tight end Eric Ebron (85) walks on the field before an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Cincinnati, Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

There was a stretch of the 2014 NFL draft, between picks 11 and 17, in which every player became a very good pro, and some might become Hall of Famers.

Taylor Lewan, Odell Beckham, Aaron Donald, Kyle Fuller, Ryan Shazier, Zack Martin and C.J. Mosley went with those seven picks. Fuller is the only one to not make a Pro Bowl, and the Chicago Bears just gave him a transition tag worth $13 million. And at pick No. 10, the Detroit Lions took tight end Eric Ebron.

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While it’s not Ebron’s fault he was drafted ahead of seven fantastic players, that was always part of his story with the Lions. But now he can get a fresh start, because the Lions decided to release him after not finding a trade partner according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Ebron never blossomed the way it appeared he would coming out of North Carolina. He wasn’t terrible, once posting 711 yards in a season and another season putting up five touchdowns, but he wasn’t worth the 10th pick of the draft. Surprisingly he’s still just 24 years old, and he’ll latch on somewhere else. And he’ll get to let go of the baggage he had in Detroit, having been selected before Beckham or Donald.

There are draft mistakes every season, but the Ebron pick was a glaring one. The Lions could have thrown a dart at the top of their board and found a Pro Bowler. The fans know that, and that was probably a reason Ebron found himself getting booed at home games last season. Both sides probably needed to move on and get a fresh start.

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Frank Schwab is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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