News: Lions Close In On Stafford is reporting that the Detroit Lions are in final negotiations on a contract with Georgia QB Matthew Stafford.  ThStafford2e deal could be signed late tonight.

Lions GM Martin Mayhew said the team hoped to have a contract completed for the top selection before the draft started.  Detroit officials have been negotiating with Tom Condon and Ben Dogra, who not only represent Stafford but also Baylor OT Jason Smith.  Smith is believed to be an option for the Lions should a deal with Stafford not materialize.

Should Stafford and the Lions agree, the QB is expected to work behind Daunte Culpepper, who impressed coaches at a recent mini-camp.

The Rams hold the No. 2 pick and if Stafford’s deal is completed before the draft, all eyes would then move to St. Louis.  It is believed the Rams would select Smith or Virginia OT Eugene Monroe, but team officials said they like what they have seen from Alex Barron, whom they moved to left tackle and they could take LB Aaron Curry or QB Mark Sanchez.

Earlier today,Tom Kowalski at reported the Lions completed a contract with Curry while they waited to see if an agreement could be reached with Stafford, their No. 1 target.  The Lions, per a source, would give Stafford until Friday and then if he still isn’t signed they would officially go with Curry.

Lots going on with Detroit today.  If the Chiefs want to trade out of the No. 3 spot the best thing that could happen would be Curry being taken by the Lions and Smith by the Rams.  Any team looking for a quarterback could trade up with Kansas City and have their choice of quarterback instead of waiting for No. 5 and whoever the Seahawks don’t take.  If Stafford, as expected, goes to the Lions and the Chiefs keep their top pick then the Rams would virtually decide who they would take.  They would go with Curry if the Rams pass on him or Smith if St. Louis decides to go defense.

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