Further confirmation the Detroit Lions ‘got their guys’ in the 2023 NFL Draft

Detroit Lions linebacker Jack Campbell goes through drills during Rookie Minicamp Saturday, May 13, 2023.
Detroit Lions linebacker Jack Campbell goes through drills during Rookie Minicamp Saturday, May 13, 2023. /

Not that more confirmation was necessary, but it’s clear the Detroit Lions indeed got “their guys” in the 2023 NFL Draft.

After taking running back Jahmyr Gibbs with the 12th overall pick, the Detroit Lions went 2-for-2 to draw ire from first-round positional value truthers by taking linebacker Jack Campbell at No. 18 overall.

Then some eyebrows were surely raised when the took tight end Sam LaPorta at pick No. 34, when Michael Mayer, the No. 1 tight end in this year’s draft class for some, was still available.

The Lions also frankly don’t care about the critics as they seek overall fits. Time will tell if zigging when many others would’ve zagged in the 2023 draft pays off.

For whatever it’s worth, Gibbs doesn’t care about the critics of where he was drafted either.

“Everybody is entitled to their opinion, “I really don’t care.”

There’s further confirmation the Detroit Lions got their guys in the 2023 NFL Draft

Seemingly every year, this one included, we hear how most teams have roughly half the number of players who actually go in the first round of the draft with first-round grades. The Lions were apparently not much different this year.

After a brief rehash of what he had reported about their original first-round plan and having to pivot from it, Albert Breer of Sports lllustrated added more context to the Lions’ draft.

"Well, we’ve got another piece of context for you, as an addendum to our lead on the Lions landing in the NFL opener. It turns out Detroit had only 14 players with first-round grades in the entire draft class. Gibbs, Campbell and LaPorta were three of them. A fourth was Alabama DB Brian Branch, and the Lions used a fifth-round pick to move up from 48 to 45 to get him.So, yeah, the Lions don’t really care what people think about their draft. Because as they saw it, they wound up with four of the top 14 players in the whole class."

Out of who knows how many hundreds of 2023 draft prospects, the Lions had 14 with a first-round grade–and ended up drafting four of them. Within their plan and vision for building the team, against the popular grain as it was, that’s a pretty good batting average plucking from the group they had earmarked as their top guys in this draft class.

More. 5 biggest winners for the Detroit Lions after the 2023 NFL Draft. light