ALLEN PARK (Mich.) — Once Detroit LionsAfter Brad Holmes, general manager of the front office, identified their top prospects before last weekend's NFL Draft, they began to evaluate the possibility of trading up for a second pick on Day 1.
But not just for anyone, it had to be for a “game-changer,” Holmes said.
The No. With the No. Aidan Hutchinson. Holmes became aggressive and traded up 20 slots, starting at No. To take the Alabama wide receiver, Holmes traded up 20 spots from No. Jameson WilliamsWith the 12th selection.
“This guy’s gritty. He’s a dog. He loves football. He just fit what we’re about,” said Holmes, who acquired the pick from the Minnesota Vikings. “Once the conviction and the buy-in kept rising, then I started saying, ‘OK, alright, maybe being that he’s one of those guys that we had graded similarly, very evenly up at the top, let’s go get him.’”
• Biggest questions, needs for all teams
• Schoen's draft changes feel of Giants
• Why K.C. traded up for McDuffie
• Does Dallas' draft have staying power?
• Chargers' draft not flashy, but necessary
Williams stated that he was in the green room watching the draft when he noticed the Lions were trading up for him.
Williams described the draft call by saying, “A Detroit number called but it hung up. Then it called me back.”
Holmes claimed that there were talented receivers throughout the draft. But Williams stood out, even though Williams is still recovering from a torn left ankle ligament sustained in January.
Williams spoke at his introductory news conference and stated that he expected to be fully fit in time for training camp.
Williams is viewed by Detroit as an outside deep threat when he is 100%. His ability to stretch the field will allow for opportunities for other skill players. Six wideouts were drafted within the first twenty picks. Three of them had already been taken before the Lions made a move to acquire Williams.
“When we saw how it was unfolding and we saw there was a chance to possibly acquire Jameson, we were pretty set on going up and getting him,” Holmes said. “And again, it wasn’t going up to get a wide receiver, it was going up to get him. That’s not saying anything about the quarterbacks or anything like that, it was just the fact that Jameson was available. We felt good about going up to get him.”
Many draft experts and fans were surprised by the move, but the Lions want to add explosive offensive weapons to their quarterback. Jared Goff2022. After a 3-13-1 finish, Detroit needed the most help at receiver after recording just two pass plays of 50-plus yards last season, which was tied for the league’s third-fewest, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
Re-signation by the Lions Josh ReynoldsAdditions DJ Chark Jr.In the offseason, to complement Pro Bowl tightening T.J. HockensonThe breakout rookie receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown. They have the option to take Williams slowly while he heals from his knee injury.
“We have to do our part to make sure he’s set up for success. We need to develop him,” Holmes said. “He’s got to get healthy. But we do think we’ve got the right resources and structure in place.”
Williams, who was undoubtedly the most gifted of the group before sustaining his injury, demonstrated the value of wide receiver in today's NFL. His 1,572 receiving yard in 2021 was the fifth-most in FBS history and the third-most in Alabama history.
He is confident he can have a similar impact on Detroit.
“I think it does translate, and yeah, I think I can be a big-play threat in the NFL,” Williams said. “At the end of the day, it's football, and it’s about how you play it really.”