Timmy Jernigan Wants to Play for Detroit

Timmy Jernigan

One of this year’s best pass-rushing prospects, Timmy Jernigan of Florida State said he wouldn’t mind if the Detroit Lions use their 10th overall pick on him. The Lions have drafted defensive linemen in the first round three of the last four years.

“I would love it,” Florida State defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan said Saturday at the NFL combine. “That’d be an honor to be able to play with (Ndamukong Suh), learn from him, definitely could model my game after him. And (Nick) Fairley as well. Fairley’s a beast, too.

Jernigan is rated as the draft’s best defensive tackle prospect and No. 6 player overall by ESPN’s Scouts Inc. He had 63 tackles and 4.5 sacks as a junior last year, and helped Florida State win the national championship while playing defensive line.

Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said earlier this week he doesn’t consider finding a pass rusher a major need. But considering his affinity for defensive lineman, he said taking a lineman at 10 is a possibility.

“As you guys know we like to keep our options open,” Mayhew said. “We’re going to look for good players. The most important thing we need from a talent standpoint is guys that can play football. It doesn’t matter what position that they play, the way I look at it.”

If Jernigan ended up in Detroit, he’d join forces with Suh, one of the two tackles along with Darnell Dockett.

“Those two guys, I just like the way they play, the nastiness that they play with,” Jernigan said. “I actually met (Suh four years ago) at the Army game and I could tell this guy was for real. He was real quiet, he kind of stayed to himself a little bit. I could tell that this dude was a beast on the field. I’ve met Dockett a few times. He’s a Florida State guy, but I just love the way they play the game for the most part.”

For more on this story visit: Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press